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Dockerized Ruby on Rails 5.1 boilerplate

This is basically something like a base for my projects... a boilerplate if you will... First project I did with it was a no brainer, so there is loads missing I use on bigger projects, but since my previous unpublished one is out of date (rails 4.2) I will have to implement all that stuff in here (see TODOs down)

Demo could be seen here:

What this provides?

It provides couple things, but first and foremost it is:

  • Rails 5.1 boilerplate
  • webpacker and yarn are used (hopefully I move completely away from assets pipeline which is still left there hanging)
  • Tests are configured and using Rspec, Capybara + poltergeist, VCR and couple more usefull configs
  • Using PostgreSQL
  • dotenv
  • Devise (and admin_user)
  • AdminLTE for /admin/...
    • accessible on /admin/home
    • create your user in rails console: > AdminUser.create(email: '', password: 'whateverdude')
  • Couple things watching your every step...
    • Rubocop
    • rubycritic (in wercker example config)
    • rails_best_practices
    • overcommit (running couple more precommit hooks...)
    • Brakeman (in wercker example config)
    • bundle-audit (in wercker example config)
  • Wercker as free CI for private github repos - default .yml config
  • Docker fully configured to be used for development (Win users in the team)

I highly recommend using dokku even for production envs. which really takes pressure off you as developer, but I get the idea of how hard it may be to have your own PaaS and install and update server, why not just use heroku for that purpose right? So here is a button:


There are couple more things prepared for usage, which you can simply discover by running through Gemfile and also config directory

Will be adding more as time goes and different projects get finished

Rake tasks


This template also provides you with usefull DB rake tasks, but if and only if you use dokku as mentioned before for deployment here...

all you need is SSH key added as root user on server where your dokku runs (which you probably have anyway...)

And know your server IP address and name of postgres container linked to your dokku instance... You just fill those out in .env as REMOTE.. keys respectively... then you are all set for these things:

Backing up your given remote DB to your local machine with:

rails db:backup

And the script will tell you where it saves the .sql human readable dump of DB.

Then you can run import of that backup to local DB if properly configured (.env again):

bin/rails db:environment:set RAILS_ENV=development db:import_backup

Standard disclaimer here, as this task drops and recreates your DB please set env variable as given, this script is not intended to be used outside importing development DB!

And also provides a task that does both in one go:

bin/rails db:environment:set RAILS_ENV=development db:backup_and_import

Renaming to your app

I ussually use rename to just rename the whole app to something more suitable

Then there are few areas where you should not forget to do it yourself:

  • .env contains DB name and other config which should be app specific
  • database.yml defaults to rails_template values
  • Dockerfile-dev contains APP_HOME
  • docker-compose.yml contains it in more places (look for rails-template-sync and rails_template)
  • docker-sync.yml also has rails-template-sync name in it


To setup a basic project there is not much to do....

Clone this repo:

$ git clone

Enter the directory with project, and run bundle:

$ cd rails_template
$ bundle

Then you are ready to run both webpack and rails server and enjoy the app:

rails start

This one is basically just a rake task that starts webpack-dev-server and rails s on your machine. Your app is now running on port 5000 which you can change whenever you want...


Tested on MacOS (well not really with webpacker, but previously this was flawless the way it is... I just transfered over configs and stuff...)

Try out docker-sync so it install all required dependencies and downloads all images correctly:

docker-sync-stack start

Will seem like your app is started, but that is not all, you will get all kinds of mistakes about DB, so you need to create and load DB structure:

docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml run bundle web exec rails db:create db:structure:load

You will also need to install yarn packages since /node_modules is taken out of sync list for docker by running:

docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml run web yarn install

Now it will start correctly and you are able to load it too. First load is insanely slow, but from then on it will run smoothly for you.


Docker uses .env file to read defaults on startup and defined env_file for runtime substitutions... therefore the contents on .env in example look like that ;)

More commands

Anytime, you can call all rails/rake tasks you are used to with prepending this to it:

docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml run web bundle exec ...

so e.x. running testsuite looks like this:

docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml run web bundle exec rspec


There are many more things missing:

  • Discover and use more of adminLTE cool stuff
  • Yarn packages (ton of then either missing or not working...)
  • Translations... hardcoded stuff all over the place...
  • And much more I will discover...


You probably know anyway right?

Write me in the issues, I will gladly help with any of them :)

Or just fork and create PR, that woul be very much appreciated :)


My template for quick webpages frontend and admin







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