Fetching contributors…
Cannot retrieve contributors at this time
211 lines (150 sloc) 6.9 KB


First off, thank you for considering contributing to Active Admin. It's people like you that make Active Admin such a great tool.

Where do I go from here?

If you've noticed a bug or have a question that doesn't belong on the mailing list or Stack Overflow, search the issue tracker to see if someone else in the community has already created a ticket. If not, go ahead and make one!

Fork & create a branch

If this is something you think you can fix, then fork Active Admin and create a branch with a descriptive name.

A good branch name would be (where issue #325 is the ticket you're working on):

git checkout -b 325-add-japanese-translations

Get the test suite running

Make sure you're using a recent ruby and have the bundler gem installed, at least version 1.14.3.

You'll also need chrome and chromedriver installed in order to run cucumber scenarios.

Now install the development dependencies:

bundle install

Now you should be able to run the entire suite using:

bundle exec rake

The test run will generate a sample Rails application in spec/rails to run the tests against.

If your tests are passing locally but they're failing on CircleCI, it's probably because of some breaking change or problem with the latest version of some dependency. You should be able to reproduce the issue locally by:

  • Removing the Gemfile.lock file.
  • Running bundle install.
  • Re-running the tests again like you did previously.

This is not your fault though, so if this happens feel free to investigate, but also feel free to ping maintainers about the issue you just found.

If you want to test against a Rails version different from the latest, make sure you use the correct Gemfile, for example:

export BUNDLE_GEMFILE=gemfiles/rails_51.gemfile

Did you find a bug?

  • Ensure the bug was not already reported by searching all issues.

  • If you're unable to find an open issue addressing the problem, open a new one. Be sure to include a title and clear description, as much relevant information as possible, and a code sample or an executable test case demonstrating the expected behavior that is not occurring.

  • If possible, use the relevant bug report templates to create the issue. Simply copy the content of the appropriate template into a .rb file, make the necessary changes to demonstrate the issue, and paste the content into the issue description:

5. Implement your fix or feature

At this point, you're ready to make your changes! Feel free to ask for help; everyone is a beginner at first 😸

6. View your changes in a Rails application

Active Admin is meant to be used by humans, not cucumbers. So make sure to take a look at your changes in a browser.

To boot up a test Rails app:

bundle exec rake local server

This will automatically create a Rails app if none already exists, and store it in the .test-rails-apps folder.

You should now be able to open http://localhost:3000/admin in your browser. You can log in using:

User: Password: password

If you need to perform any other commands on the test application, just pass them to the local rake task. For example, to boot the rails console:

bundle exec rake local console

Or to migrate the database:

bundle exec rake local db:migrate

Get the style right

Your patch should follow the same conventions & pass the same code quality checks as the rest of the project. bundle exec rake lint will give you feedback in this regard. You can check & fix style issues by running each linter individually. Run bundle exec rake -T lint to see the available linters.

Make a Pull Request

At this point, you should switch back to your master branch and make sure it's up to date with Active Admin's master branch:

git remote add upstream
git checkout master
git pull upstream master

Then update your feature branch from your local copy of master, and push it!

git checkout 325-add-japanese-translations
git rebase master
git push --set-upstream origin 325-add-japanese-translations

Finally, go to GitHub and make a Pull Request :D

CircleCI will run our test suite against all supported Rails versions. We care about quality, so your PR won't be merged until all tests pass. It's unlikely, but it's possible that your changes pass tests in one Rails version but fail in another. In that case, you'll have to setup your development environment (as explained in step 3) to use the problematic Rails version, and investigate what's going on!

Keeping your Pull Request updated

If a maintainer asks you to "rebase" your PR, they're saying that a lot of code has changed, and that you need to update your branch so it's easier to merge.

To learn more about rebasing in Git, there are a lot of good resources but here's the suggested workflow:

git checkout 325-add-japanese-translations
git pull --rebase upstream master
git push --force-with-lease 325-add-japanese-translations

Merging a PR (maintainers only)

A PR can only be merged into master by a maintainer if:

  • It is passing CI.
  • It has been approved by at least two maintainers. If it was a maintainer who opened the PR, only one extra approval is needed.
  • It has no requested changes.
  • It is up to date with current master.

Any maintainer is allowed to merge a PR if all of these conditions are met.

Shipping a release (maintainers only)

Maintainers need to do the following to push out a release:

  • Make sure all pull requests are in and that changelog is current

  • Update version.rb file and changelog with new version number

  • Create a stable branch for that release:

    git checkout master
    git fetch activeadmin
    git rebase activeadmin/master
    # If the release is 2.1.x then this should be: 2-1-stable
    git checkout -b N-N-stable
    git push activeadmin N-N-stable:N-N-stable
  • bundle exec rake release