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A collection of Moonshine plugins and tools to help with server management
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Moonshine DS Tools

A plugin for Moonshine

A plugin that provides tools configured by digital scientists for deploying Rails apps

Tools included

  • Astrails-Safe backup
  • phpMyAdmin (PHP)
  • Webmin
  • Server setup Capistrano recipes
  • DS Thinking Sphinx
  • Radiant CMS


Install Moonshine and related plugins:

git submodule add git:// vendor/plugins/moonshine
git submodule add git:// vendor/plugins/moonshine_ds_tools
git submodule add git:// vendor/plugins/moonshine_ssh
git submodule add git:// vendor/plugins/moonshine_iptables

Prepare the git submodules:

git submodule init
git submodule update

Capify your application:

capify .

Ensure all required gems are declared using config.gem in config/environment.rb.

script/generate moonshine
script/generate moonshine_ds_tools
  • answer "y" to prompts for overwriting files
  • edit the lines in config/moonshine.yml that end with ### example text ###
  • if you are setting up a staging server initially, use those values in moonshine yml
  • edit the config/deploy/staging.rb and config/deploy/production.rb files
  • Make sure that config/database.yml contains information for staging and production because moonshine will use this info to setup the databases on the server

Prepare server

cap staging ds_tools:prepare -p USERNAME=rails
  • use the root password that your server provider sends via email when slice is created
  • the script will create a rails user as sudo and ask you to set a password
  • the script will ask you to change the root password (or you can put in the old one again)
  • you'll need to add the server's ssh key to your repository host for your project if it is private

Setup server

cap staging deploy:setup -p PORT=22

specify port 22 b/c the app will use 30306 by default, use the new admin password from now on

cap staging deploy -p PORT=22

  • the initial deploy will take much longer than future ones b/c many things are being installed for your app
  • after this deploy, port is optional b/c moonshine will move ssh access to 30306 and the cap script will automatically use 30306

Tools and Settings


Configure settings if needed

plugin :ds_tools
recipe :phpmyadmin

configure(:phpmyadmin => {
    :domain => '',    # defaults to
    :only_on_stages => ['production']     # stages you want phpMyAdmin setup, defaults to all
  • Make sure you point your dns to the server to access phpMyAdmin
  • I used sub domains because I was facing conflicts with passenger and rails when trying to setup


Make sure you have port 10000 open, if you are using the iptables plugin add the following rule:

plugin :ds_tools
recipe :webmin

-A INPUT -p tcp -m tcp --dport 10000 -j ACCEPT

DS Thinking Sphinx

Installs Sphix and Thinking Sphinx gem

Include the plugin and recipe(s) in your Moonshine manifest:

plugin :ds_tools
recipe :ds_thinking_sphinx, :ds_thinking_sphinx_gem

Radiant CMS

Specify the order of migrations if needed in your application_manifest.rb:

configure(:radiant => {:extensions => ['settings', 'all']})

Include the plugin and recipe(s) in your Moonshine manifest

plugin :ds_tools
recipe :radiant, radiant_migrations
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