GOV.UK PaaS Technical Documentation
This is the new technical documentation system for GOV.UK PaaS.
It is published at https://docs.cloud.service.gov.uk (for technical reasons, it is also available at https://paas-tech-docs.cloudapps.digital but that is NOT the official address and you should not send cloudapps.digital URLs to tenants, link to them etc).
Documentation for the technical documentation tool is published at https://tdt-documentation.london.cloudapps.digital [external link].
Clone this repository to a folder on your computer.
In the application folder, type the following to install the required gems:
To make changes, edit the markdown files in the
Although a single page of HTML is generated, the markdown is spread across
multiple files to make it easier to manage. They can be found in
A new markdown file isn't automatically included in the generated output. If you
add a new markdown file at the location
the following snippet in
source/index.html.md.erb will include it in the
<%= partial 'documentation/agile/scrum' %>
Including files manually like this enables you to specify the position they appear in the page.
The sections in the documentation are controlled by the use of markdown headers, not the file structure.
Avoid editing any of the following:
as this will make it a lot harder to stay up to date with any changes made to the template.
Images to be included in the docs are kept in
In order to configure some aspects of layout, like the header, edit
Whilst writing documentation, you can run a middleman server to preview how the published version will look in the browser.
The preview is only available on your own computer. Others won't be able to access it if they are given the link.
Type the following to start the server:
bundle exec middleman server
If all goes well something like the following output will be displayed:
== The Middleman is loading == LiveReload accepting connections from ws://192.168.0.8:35729 == View your site at "http://Laptop.local:4567", "http://192.168.0.8:4567" == Inspect your site configuration at "http://Laptop.local:4567/__middleman", "http://192.168.0.8:4567/__middleman"
You should now be able to view a live preview at http://localhost:4567.
Changes to the
tech-docs.yml file require stopping and restarting the server to show up in the preview. (Stop it with
This repo is configured in Travis to run a link-checker over the generated docs to find any broken links etc. If you want to run this locally, do the following:
virtualenv .venv source .venv/bin/activate make dependencies make test
Build and deploy
The docs are hosted on the PaaS and any change to master is automatically deployed by the PaaS release CI. The build status can be seen here: https://concourse.build.ci.cloudpipeline.digital/teams/main/pipelines/paas-tech-docs
Updating the template
The master repository for the tech docs template system is at https://github.com/alphagov/tech-docs-template
See the section "Updating a project to use the latest template" at https://github.com/alphagov/tech-docs-template
The template system is maintained and developed by the service design manual team. You can contact them at
#tech-docs-format on GDS Slack. Note that this is an MVP version and there is a roadmap of planned features and improvements.
Unless stated otherwise, the codebase is released under the MIT licence.