Add Composer installation support #10

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bergie commented May 8, 2012

Composer is the new emerging default way of handling PHP library dependencies. This patch adds support for it that works very similarly to the NPM support in the Node.js buildpack: if there is a composer.json file in an app, then its dependencies are installed with Composer.

Here is a simple example app using it: (source code)

beberlei commented May 8, 2012

Shouldn't it verify that "vendor" does not exist in case you shipped the vendors in the package?

@@ -46,6 +46,20 @@ cp $LP_DIR/conf/php.ini php
mkdir -p bin
ln -s /app/php/bin/php bin/php
+# check if we have Composer dependencies and vendors are not bundled
+if if [ -f composer.json ] && [ ! -d vendor ]; then

beberlei May 8, 2012

sorry to annoy, but wasnt this www/composer.json before? :), since you invoke composer from www also.

till commented May 8, 2012

Two questions:

  1. Is www the public directory on heroku? Is there no way to do this in a directory not exposed to the world?
  2. Can you check if a composer.phar is shipped with the code and use that instead (and not delete it)?

bergie commented May 8, 2012


  1. I didn't want to make too big changes to how the PHP buildpack works, so yes, this is the public dir. Feel free to submit a PR doing a nicer organization :-)
  2. I could check it, but how likely is that? Is there a good reason to keep an instance of Composer in your own app repository?

till commented May 8, 2012


I think it's very likely since composer is in an early state. I distribute the phar with all my projects to avoid always going through changes. I update every once in a while though. But e.g. my php_composer resource for chef currently assumes composer.phar in the project as well.

Add to that – it also minimizes the RTs required for an install. And one less dependency on external resources and Internet.

cordoval commented May 8, 2012

@bergie nice, i wonder for sf2 apps, one would need to have things stored under another root project and root/web for public folder. It would be the only thing preventing us from deploying sf2 apps into heroku right?

keeping composer.phar is not a good idea, composer is fetched with the curl or so command on but it should be done automatically within this package too.

till commented May 8, 2012

What do you guys do when is down? Don't deploy anymore? :)

cordoval commented May 8, 2012

you fork your own, put composer.phar on it and run it

The PHP buildpack currently caches everything that it needs in S3. I suspect that this is a wise policy that should be continued, instead of relying on — which would be the first "external" dependency in the whole buildpack, if this pull request were accepted verbatim, I believe?

bergie commented Jul 11, 2012

@brandon-rhodes we can easily place a local copy of composer.phar to this if needed. Then this would be sort of similar to the Node.js buildpack, which does include NPM.

bergie and others added some commits Jul 27, 2012

Bump 👍

friism commented Jan 18, 2013

When experimenting with this using a standard Symfony2 app I'm getting the error below:

Generating autoload files
Script Sensio\Bundle\DistributionBundle\Composer\ScriptHandler::buildBootstrap handling the post-install-cmd event terminated with an exception

The php executable could not be found, add it to your PATH environment variable and try again

I've tried augmenting the path to include the php binary like this:

  export PATH

... to no avail. Any suggestions?

@friism I guess it makes sense

I'm using a different web root for my src so there is no index.php file in the root. However, I still need composer to run to install the dependencies. It seems like the detect script should look for an index.php file OR a composer.json file.

Any updates on this pull request. Composer support by default would be awesome...

dragoon commented May 25, 2013


buzzedword and others added some commits May 30, 2013

Update compile
Cleanup after install to make sure no module has a repository left, reducing slug size.

This is re-run every deploy, so these directories are being nuked every time anyway. Might as well save space.

Can this be merged? Would be nice to not have to rebase composer support...

For the record, it appears that the dynamic linking of mcrypt breaks this pretty awesomely:

/tmp/build_2qch10sfzpchy/php/bin/php: error while loading shared libraries: cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory

The following is a potential fix, though still buggy because of .so loading errors:

LD_LIBRARY_PATH=$BUILD_DIR/php/ext:$BUILD_DIR/vendor/mcrypt/lib $BUILD_DIR/php/bin/php -c $LP_DIR/conf/php.ini -d detect_unicode=Off composer.phar install --prefer-source

You'll notice I added -d detect_unicode=Off as well as :$BUILD_DIR/vendor/mcrypt/lib to the LD_LIBRARY_PATH.

Is there any possibility of Composer being added to the native PHP buildpack in the near future?

walker commented Dec 26, 2013


Best PHP buildpack so far is this one:

+1 @willdurand I've been using (and trying to contribute) to that one for a while. It appears there is less support for PHP than for other official heroku buildpacks - based on recent contributions - which sucks but I can totally understand. is legit. A++ would deploy again.

Two years, no progress. What is going on over here?

Unfortunately it looks like PHP is a second-class citizen in Heroku land. Thankfully, the guys over at aTech Media are launching their own cloud hosting platform, Viaduct, which has PHP support from the get-go, so I’ll be investigating that as soon as it launches.

Well, they hired @dzuelke for improving PHP support, so things should be better at some point.


dzuelke commented Dec 30, 2013

Indeed; expect official support to be shipped in early 2014. Composer support is obviously very high up on the list of priorities.

@dzuelke Glad to hear and to have some sort of timeline. Looking forward to seeing it.


dzuelke commented Dec 30, 2013

@martinbean There's also going to be some sort of roadmap as well as more regular announcements in January.

hinaloe pushed a commit to hinaloe/heroku-buildpack-php that referenced this pull request Mar 13, 2014

@dzuelke hi david. when can we expect composer support exactly? are there now any more information on this?

Well, Viaduct has launched their beta, with PHP support from the off, and even Composer support. Once I’m comfortable with Viaduct, I’ll be moving all my apps from Heroku to there.

acedude commented Mar 21, 2014

The best PHP buildpack was made by awesome @CHH


dzuelke commented Mar 21, 2014

@bytefreak @martinbean @acedude Email me (dz@) and I'll get you early access to the new PHP support.

I think I emailed the right place. I'll be very excited to test it out and blog about it when it's ready.

hi @dzuelke. i didn't receive anything.


dzuelke commented Apr 8, 2014

Invites are going out tomorrow, @bytefreak


dzuelke commented Apr 30, 2014

Composer is now supported in the new version of PHP support on Heroku. Check out the blog post and the Dev Center category with the Getting Started Guide and other resources!

@dzuelke dzuelke closed this Apr 30, 2014

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