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== Welcome to Rails Rails is a web-application and persistance framework that includes everything needed to create database-backed web-applications according to the Model-View-Control pattern of separation. This pattern splits the view (also called the presentation) into "dumb" templates that are primarily responsible for inserting pre-build data in between HTML tags. The model contains the "smart" domain objects (such as Account, Product, Person, Post) that holds all the business logic and knows how to persist themselves to a database. The controller handles the incoming requests (such as Save New Account, Update Product, Show Post) by manipulating the model and directing data to the view. In Rails, the model is handled by what's called a object-relational mapping layer entitled Active Record. This layer allows you to present the data from database rows as objects and embellish these data objects with business logic methods. You can read more about Active Record in link:files/vendor/activerecord/README.html. The controller and view is handled by the Action Pack, which handles both layers by its two parts: Action View and Action Controller. These two layers are bundled in a single package due to their heavy interdependence. This is unlike the relationship between the Active Record and Action Pack that is much more separate. Each of these packages can be used independently outside of Rails. You can read more about Action Pack in link:files/vendor/actionpack/README.html. == Requirements * Database and driver (MySQL, PostgreSQL, or SQLite) * Rake[http://rake.rubyforge.org] for running tests and the generating documentation == Optionals * Apache 1.3.x or 2.x (or any FastCGI-capable webserver with a mod_rewrite-like module) * FastCGI (or mod_ruby) for production performance (CGI is used for development) == Getting started 1a. Setup Apache for the Rails application (see "Example for Apache conf") 1b. Run the WEBrick servlet: <tt>ruby public/dispatch.servlet --help</tt> 2. Go to http://rails/ (or whatever is your ServerName) and check that you get the "Congratulations, you're on Rails!" screen 3. Follow the guidelines on the "Congratulations, you're on Rails!" screen == Example for Apache conf <VirtualHost *:80> ServerName rails DocumentRoot /path/tapplication/public/ ErrorLog /path/application/log/apache.log <Directory /path/application/public/> Options ExecCGI FollowSymLinks AllowOverride all Allow from all Order allow,deny </Directory> </VirtualHost> NOTE: Be sure that CGIs can be executed in that directory as well. So ExecCGI should be on and ".cgi" should respond. All requests from 127.0.0.1 goes through CGI, so no Apache restart is necessary for changes. All other requests goes through FCGI (or mod_ruby) that requires restart to show changes. == Debugging Rails Have "tail -f" commands running on both the apache.log, production.log, and test.log files. Rails will automatically display debugging and runtime information to these files. Debugging info will also be shown in the browser on requests from 127.0.0.1. == Description of contents app Holds all the code that's specific to this particular application. app/controllers Holds controllers that should be named like weblog_controller.rb for automated URL mapping. All controllers should descend from ActionController::Base. app/models Holds models that should be named like post.rb. Most models will descent from ActiveRecord::Base. app/views Holds the template files for the view that should be named like weblog/index.rhtml for the WeblogController#index action. All views uses eRuby syntax. This directory can also be used to keep stylesheets, images, and so on that can be symlinked to public. app/helpers Holds view helpers that should be named like weblog_helper.rb. config Configuration files for Apache, database, and other dependencies. lib Application specific libraries. Basically, any kind of custom code that doesn't belong controllers, models, or helpers. This directory is in the load path. public The directory available for Apache, which includes symbolic links to other parts of the structure that are to be made available. Refrain from placing actual files in here if you're using CVS and don't want to check in this directory. script Helper scripts for automation and generation. test Unit and functional tests along with fixtures. vendor External libraries that the application depend on. This directory is in the load path.