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Building the Cyclus website requires:

  1. Sphinx v1.1.2 or higher
  2. sphinxcontrib-bibtex v0.3.0 or higher
  3. cyclus
  4. cymetric
  5. cycamore
  6. Cloud Sphinx Theme

NOTE: The cloud package for Debian and Ubuntu is broken, so do not apt-get this. Please pip install cloud_sptheme, easy_install cloud_sptheme, or install from source instead.

Modifying the Cyclus Website

A 2 branch system has been implemented to maintain a clean process of rebuilding this site.

1. The source branch contains the restructured text documents and Sphinx configuration used to build the site. All direct editing of files should be made in the source branch.

2. The master branch contains the processed and published web content that is derived by Sphinx from the source branch. These files should not be editted directly.

The rest of this readme assumes that you have two remotes associated with

  1. Your fork, called origin.
  2. The upstream Cyclus group remote, called upstream.


If you simply want to build the documentation and are on the source branch, you may always run:

make html

Or if you have docker, you can forget about the other dependencies and just run:

make docker-html

There are docker targets in the makefile for doing everything related to the site - building, previewing, and publishing. See the Docker section below for more details.

Best practice workflow for contributing to site changes

  1. Checkout the source branch

    git checkout source

  2. Synchronize your branch with the repository (either pull or fetch and merge)

    git pull upstream source

  3. Create a branch to contain your change

    git checkout -b add_some_info

  4. Make your changes in this branch

  5. Test your changes by using the gh-preview target

    make gh-preview

    This will build a version of the site in the gh-build directory of your branch, add_some_info. You can load it directly in a local browser. Or if you have docker installed, you can optionally use the docker preview target:

    make gh-preview-docker

    to build the website inside a docker container with all the correct dependencies and configuration taken care of automagically.

  6. Repeat steps 4-5 until satisfied.

  7. Once satisfied with the source RST files, push your branch to your fork of the repo. Be sure to synchronize with any possible changes to the upstream repo source branch first.

    git fetch upstream
    git rebase upstream/source
    git push origin add_some_info
  8. Issue a pull request by going to your branch on your fork of the repo and clicking the "Pull Request" button.

Best practice for managing a pull request

  1. Synchronize your repository with the upstream repo:

    git fetch upstream git checkout master git merge upstream/master git checkout source git merge upstream/source

  2. Checkout the pull_request_branch in the pull request submitter's repo:

    git fetch[username]/ pull_request_branch
    git checkout -b pull_request_branch
  3. Test the changes by using the gh-preview target

    make gh-preview

    This will build a version of the site in the gh-build directory in your branch, pull_request_branch. You can load it directly in a local browser.

  4. If satisfied, merge the pull_request_branch into the source branch:

    git checkout source
    git merge pull_request_branch
  1. If there are no conflicts, push this to the repo

    git push upstream source

  2. Republish the pages with the gh-publish target.

    make gh-publish


The make docker-... targets require the cyclus/ docker image which can be retrieved/updated by running:

docker pull cyclus/

Occasionally (i.e. for a Cyclus release) the image will need to be updated. This can be done by:

cd docker/

# update the image the image depends on
docker pull cyclus/cymetric

# rebuild the image
docker build -t cyclus/ .

# push the new image to docker-hub
docker push cyclus/

Remote Execution

The website has functionality for allowing visitors to submit and run Cyclus simulations in the cloud. Files and instructions for deploying/updating the remote execution back-end functionality are in the misc/ directory of the repository.