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== link:index.html[Index] -> link:cookbook.html[Cookbook]
Cookbook: Setting up Ruby on Rails
----------------------------------
Setting up a Rails application to run with Cherokee is not only
easy. It is also the best possible solution to manage the load among a
bunch of servers running Rails. This is done by using an extremely
efficient web server to manage the web part and leaving as many free
resources as possible to Rails.
There is a
link:http://www.cherokee-project.com/screencasts.html#rails[screencast]
available at the
link:http://www.cherokee-project.com/[Cherokee-Project website] to
demonstrate how easy it is to use the Rails wizard.
image:media/images/screencast.png["Rails wizard",
link="http://www.cherokee-project.com/screencasts.html#rails"]
[[framework]]
=== Preparing the framework
Of course you will need a working Rails installation for this to
succeed. You can set this up easily. If you have Ruby and Ruby Gems
installed, you can directly install the 'Rails' gem like this:
----
# gem update --system
# gem install rails
----
Note that on Debian based systems you don't even need to install
Rubygems. There is already a package that will install every needed
dependency:
----
# apt-get install rails
----
The installation of the 'Rails' gem directly would also work, but note
that you cannot execute the first command because it is disabled by
default.
----
# gem update --system
ERROR: While executing gem ... (RuntimeError)
gem update --system is disabled on Debian. RubyGems can be updated \
using the official Debian repositories by aptitude or apt-get.
----
You can also install some other gems. `thin`, `mongrel`, `unicorn`,
`rack` and `fcgi` are some that you might find useful.
Once you are done with that, you must deploy your Rails project:
----
$ rails example
----
You can do so wherever you want, but the usual recommended way of doing
this is by deploying it outside of your web root path and then
creating a symbolic link. This is simply to protect from exposing all
the files that do not need to be in your document root.
Assuming you deployed the `example` project in `/home/foo/example`,
and you have writing permissions to your web path, `/var/www`, simply
type:
----
$ ln -s /home/foo/example/public /var/www/example
----
Now you are ready to configure Cherokee.
[[cherokee]]
=== Preparing Cherokee
You can either do it by hand, or you can use the appropriate wizard
for a hassle-free configuration.
[[wizard]]
=== Setting up Cherokee with the wizard
You should really use the recommended method, which is using the
configuration wizard provided by Cherokee-Admin. Simply go to the
virtual server list page and click on the `Add` button at the top of
the panel to show the list of available wizards. This will allow you
to set up a new dedicated virtual host for your Rails application.
Once in there, use the `Add` button at the top of the panel to see the
available wizards.
If you wanted to configure Rails to run under a web directory of an
existing virtual server, you would have to launch the wizard from
within the specific virtual server, visiting the `Behavior` tab and
trigger the `Rule panel` by clicking on the `Rule Management`
button.
.Wizards
image::media/images/admin_vservers_wizard.png[Virtual Server Wizards]
Now, you will have to select the `Platforms` category, and run the
`RoR` wizard. You will be asked for some basic parameters about the
installation, and the wizard will try to fill in automatically as many
entries as possible. The virtual server configuration will cover the
vast majority of the cases. Most probably it will cover your needs,
although you are free to modify it as you will. No more configuration
is needed after this step.
.The wizard in action
image::media/images/cookbook_ror_wizard.png[Rails Wizard]
It is usually best to proxy one or several of the servers used by
Rails, be it Thin, Mongrel, Unicorn or whatever it can handle. You
could also choose the FastCGI alternative if there is a suitable
spawning method in your system. This approach, however, has been known
to give inconsistent results on several releases of Rails. In
particular, Rails releases 2.3 or higher are known to give errors when
used with FastCGI. You will have to test it out and choose the method
that best suits your need.
=== Setting up Cherokee by hand
If you decide to ignore the configuration wizard you can set up
everything by hand. Although it is not complicated, this method is not
recommended.
You only need to know that you can spawn the FastCGI process using a
script that is already in your deployed project. In this case,
`/home/foo/example/script/process/spawner`. We will be using the
default parameters (3 instances starting at port 8000) but you can
fine tune this using the many parameters provided by the script.
The process is fairly simple. Set up a new rule for this new path and
manage it with the FastCGI handler.
.Common CGI options
Under `Common CGI options` make sure to check the `Error handler` box and
uncheck `Check file`. This is to prevent possible errors with the
`INFO_PATH` generation that can happen when an application, in this
case 'Rails', manages the whole subtree. This is mentioned in the
link:modules_handlers_cgi.html[Common CGI] section of the
documentation. It is a good idea to enable the `Error handler`
checkbox since it will help you determine if an error is associated
with your Ruby on Rails application or with Cherokee. This, however,
is not required.
.FastCGI handler
image::media/images/cookbook_ror_common.png[Common CGI options]
.FastCGI specific
Under `FastCGI specific` make sure to add the hosts providing the
service. Do this by adding one or more
link:config_info_sources.html[Information Sources].
Note that, in the definition of the information source, you will have
to manually launch the `spawner` if you use a `Remote host` as
`Information source` instead of a `Local interpreter`.
You will simply have to add as many sources as desired, for instance
our example uses the default values to set up ports 8000 through
8002. These sources will be nicknamed *ror0*, *ror1* and *ror2*.
[cols="20%,80%",options="header"]
|===============================================================
|Host |Interpreter
|localhost:8000 |`/home/foo/example/script/process/spawner fcgi`
|localhost:8001 |`/home/foo/example/script/process/spawner fcgi`
|localhost:8002 |`/home/foo/example/script/process/spawner fcgi`
|===============================================================
If any of those ports was not reachable, the `interpreter` command
would be launched and the fallen one would be reinstantiated.
According to that table, the creation of the *ror0* information source
would use the following settings. The rest are similar using the port
variation detailed above.
.ror0 information source
[cols="15%,20%,65%",options="header"]
|===============================================================
|Nick |Connection |Interpreter
|ror0 |localhost:8000 |`/home/foo/example/script/process/spawner fcgi`
|===============================================================
.ror0 information source
image::media/images/cookbook_ror_fcgi.png[FastCGI specifics]
Once everything is done you can check if Rails is really
working. Simply navigate to the path configured by your rule,
http://localhost/example/ for instance, and you should see some notes
about your recently created project.
image::media/images/cookbook_ror.png[Rails example]
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