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README.md

ArangoDB Documentation

Netlify Status

This is the ArangoDB documentation repository containing all documentation for all versions.

The documentation uses the static site generator Jekyll.

Working with the documentation

To work locally on the documentation you can:

Note that the Algolia plugin has a dependency which does not support Ruby 2.6+.

A full build (all versions) will take quite a while. You can use Jekyll's watch mode to let it continuously rebuild the pages you change after an initial build. For simple documentation changes this process normally works perfect.

However there are cases where Jekyll won't detect changes. This is especially true when changing plugins and configuration (including the navigation YAML when adding a new page). To be sure you have an up-to-date version remove the _site directory and then abort and restart the watch mode.

Performance

To speed up the build process you may disable certain versions from being built by changing the _config.yml:

exclude:
  #- 3.5/
  #- 3.4/
  - 3.3/
  - 3.2/
  - 3.1/
  - 3.0/
  - 2.8/

Above example disables versions 2.8 through 3.3, so that 3.4 and 3.5 will be built only. Do not commit these changes of the configuration!

Building the documentation

Jekyll

If you want to build the docs the first time, run bundle install to ensure that all gems / plugins are installed.

For local development, start Jekyll in watch mode:

bundle exec jekyll serve

To let Jekyll build the static site without serving it or watching for file changes use:

bundle exec jekyll build

Docker container

In the docs directory execute:

[docs]$ docker run --rm -v $(pwd):/docs -p 4000:4000 arangodb/arangodb-docs

This will watch file changes within the documentation repo and you will be able to see the resulting static site on http://127.0.0.1:4000/docs/.

To build the documentation without watch mode or serving the resulting site you can execute:

[docs]$ docker run --rm -v $(pwd):/docs arangodb/arangodb-docs bundler exec jekyll build

After that the HTML files in _site are ready to be served by a webserver.

Please note that you still need to put them into a /docs subdirectory.

Example:

mkdir -p /tmp/arangodocs
cp -a _site /tmp/arangodocs/docs
cd /tmp/arangodocs
python -m http.server

Documentation structure

In the root directory the directories 3.4, 3.5 etc. represent the individual versions and their full documentation. The content used to be in version branches in the main repository.

The core book (Manual) of the version will be in the root e.g. 3.4/*.md. The sub-books (AQL, Cookbook etc.) will have their own directory in there.

The organization of documents is flat, namely there are no subdirectories per book (as opposed to the old documentation system).

The other directories are:

  • _data: data files which are used by plugins and layouts, including the navigation definitions
  • _includes: templates for custom tags and layout partials
  • _layouts: layout definitions that can be used in YAML frontmatter like layout: default
  • _plugins: Jekyll extensions for the navigation, version switcher, custom tags / blocks etc.
  • _site: default output directory (not committed)
  • assets: files not directly related to the documentation content that also need to be served (e.g. the ArangoDB logo)
  • js: JavaScript files used by the site
  • scripts: Scripts which were used in the migration process from Gitbook to Jekyll (not really needed anymore)
  • styles: CSS files for the site, including a lot of legacy from Gitbook

Navigation

Each book has a navigation tree represented as a nested data structure in YAML. This is being read by the NavigationTag plugin to create the navigation on the left-hand side.

The YAML file for a book can be found here: _data/<version>-<book>.yml. For example, the 3.4 AQL navigation is defined by _data/3.4-aql.yml.

Adding a page

Start off by adding the page to the navigation. Assume we want to add a new AQL keyword to the list of operations, above the FOR language construct and the page we want to add will be aql/operations-create.md:

 - text: High level Operations
   href: operations.html
   children:
+    - text: CREATE
+      href: operations-create.html
     - text: FOR
       href: operations-for.html

Then create the Markdown document and add the following frontmatter section:

---
layout: default
description: A meaningful description of the page
---

Add the actual content below the frontmatter.

When adding a new release

  • Copy over the navs in _data, e.g.
    for book in aql cookbook drivers http manual; do
      cp -a "3.5-${book}.yml" "3.6-${book}.yml"
    done
    
  • Create relative symlinks to program option JSON files in _data, like
    for prog in bench d dump export import inspect restore sh; do
      ln -s "../3.6/generated/arango${prog}-options.json" "3.6-program-options-arango${prog}.json"
    done
    
  • Copy the latest devel version to a new directory i.e. cp -a 3.5 3.6
  • Add the version to _data/versions.yml with the full version name
  • Add all books of that version to _data/books.yml
  • Adjust the following fields in _config.yml as needed:
    • versions
    • algolia.files_to_exclude
    • exclude
  • Update _redirects
  • Re-generate the examples, or rather add nightly build job for the new version to Jenkins

Adding a new arangosh example

This process is currently more or less unchanged. However to fit it into the Jekyll template it had to be encapsulated in a Jekyll tag.

{% arangoshexample examplevar="examplevar" script="script" result="result" %}
    @startDocuBlockInline working_with_date_time
    @EXAMPLE_ARANGOSH_OUTPUT{working_with_date_time}
    db._create("exampleTime");
    var timestamps = ["2014-05-07T14:19:09.522","2014-05-07T21:19:09.522","2014-05-08T04:19:09.522","2014-05-08T11:19:09.522","2014-05-08T18:19:09.522"];
    for (i = 0; i < 5; i++) db.exampleTime.save({value:i, ts: timestamps[i]})
    db._query("FOR d IN exampleTime FILTER d.ts > '2014-05-07T14:19:09.522' and d.ts < '2014-05-08T18:19:09.522' RETURN d").toArray()
    ~addIgnoreCollection("example")
    ~db._drop("exampleTime")
    @END_EXAMPLE_ARANGOSH_OUTPUT
    @endDocuBlock working_with_date_time
{% endarangoshexample %}
{% include arangoshexample.html id=examplevar script=script result=result %}

Adding a new AQL example

This process is currently more or less unchanged. However to fit it into the Jekyll template it had to be encapsulated in a Jekyll tag.

{% aqlexample examplevar="examplevar" type="type" query="query" bind="bind" result="result" %}

    @startDocuBlockInline joinTuples
    @EXAMPLE_AQL{joinTuples}
    @DATASET{joinSampleDataset}
    FOR u IN users
      FILTER u.active == true
      LIMIT 0, 4
      FOR f IN relations
        FILTER f.type == @friend && f.friendOf == u.userId
        RETURN {
          "user" : u.name,
          "friendId" : f.thisUser
        }
    @BV {
    friend: "friend"
    }
    @END_EXAMPLE_AQL
    @endDocuBlock joinTuples
{% endaqlexample %}
{% include aqlexample.html id=examplevar query=query bind=bind result=result %}

Guidelines

  • Use American English.
  • Wrap text at 80 characters. This helps tremendously in version control.
  • Put Markdown links on a single line [link label](target.html#hash), even if it violates the guideline of 80 characters per line.

Troubleshooting

  • Liquid Exception: No title found for /x.x/xxx.html.
    Maybe you forgot to link it to the navigation? in /_layouts/default.html
    

    Jekyll points you to the wrong file. _layouts/default.html should be fine. Jekyll has no native support for navigation menus. _plugins/NavigationTag.rb is a custom plugin to generate the left-hand side navigation from _data/<version>-<book>.yml. You probably forgot to add your new page there.

  • docs/page.html
      target does not exist --- docs/page.html --> target.md
    

    If you see this error and the target ends with an .md extension then change it to .html. The resulting page has to be referenced, not the source file!

  • docs/page1.html
      target does not exist --- docs/page1.html --> target.html
    docs/page2.html
      target does not exist --- docs/page2.html --> target.html
    ...
    

    If you get dozens of these errors for the same target, then you likely forgot to add a frontmatter to that page (docs/target.md):

    ---
    layout: default
    description: ...
    ---

    The error is issued once per page of the same book because the target page is linked in the navigation.

  • docs/page.html
      hash does not exist --- docs/page.html --> target.html#hash
    
    docs/page.html
      target does not exist --- docs/page.html --> target.html
    

    Check if the target file exists and if the anchor is correct (if applicable). Look at the generated .html file if in doubt. A redirect_from frontmatter might be bad (e.g. wrong version number in path) and accidentally overwrite a page, removing the original content and links.

CI/Netlify

For the CI process we are currently using Netlify. This service has been built so that you can quickly test and deploy static sites. We are only using it to have a live preview and a CI pipeline.

There are a few files in the repo required for Netlify:

  • _redirects

    Defines redirects for Netlify. There is only one redirect going from / to the docs so that the site preview doesn't start with a 404 (we are generating pages into /docs/). As Netlify doesn't understand symlinks we are linking absolutely to a version.

  • netlify.toml

    Defines the build pipeline. Not much going on there.

  • netlify.sh

    Special script for Netlify build. Because we cannot just use a Docker container we have to download htmltest every time.

For details please check out the Netlify documentation.

LICENSE

The ArangoDB Docs are licensed under Apache2. See LICENSE.md for details.

Parts not licensed under Apache2 are outlines in LICENSES-OTHER-COMPONENTS.md

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