Heroku is a popular hosting choice for many developers. This guide will show you how to:
- Install and deploy a Refinery application on the Heroku hosting platform
Creating a new Refinery application on Heroku
First you need to install Refinery. To do that you need the refinerycms gem.
gem install refinerycms
Then, if you haven't done so already, follow the first three steps of the Heroku quick start guide. They cover signing up for Heroku, installing the Heroku client, and logging in through the client.
Now it's time to create your Refinery application using the built in
refinerycms myapp --heroku
NOTE: Heroku relies on Git being installed on your system. You should install it beforehand.
Watch the output for these lines:
Creating Heroku app.. Running: cd /path/to/app/myapp && heroku create Creating random-site-name..... done Created http://random-site-name.herokuapp.com/
This will output the URL for your Heroku-hosted Refinery application. Your application should now be live at http://random-site-name.heroku.com.
NOTE: you may have issues precompiling your assets, which may result in system images not loading. Skip to the following Step 3 for a fix.
Deploying an existing local Refinery application
If you have already built a Refinery application locally, you'll need to make some changes to be able to deploy to Heroku.
Step 1: Update the Gemfile
If your local database is not PostgreSQL
You don't have to change your local database settings to use PostgreSQL, but Heroku depends on the presence of the
pg gem. So, in your Gemfile, change:
gem 'sqlite3' # or whatever the database driver for your local database is
WARNING: Using differing databases for development and production is not recommended. Occasionally, specific Rails idioms may have different effects on different databases. We encourage you to set up and develop on PostgreSQL if you intend to deploy your application to Heroku.
Getting a place to store files
If you want to use Refinery's image and resource support, you need to follow the guide Amazon S3 for Uploads below (you can do the other steps in that section after your site is first deployed).
Applying your changes
Now we just need to run bundle and add the changes to git:
$ bundle install $ git add Gemfile $ git add Gemfile.lock $ git commit -m "setup for Heroku"
Step 2: Set up your app on Heroku
Step 3: Set up asset precompilation
config/application.rb, at the end of the config block, make sure you add the following:
config.assets.initialize_on_precompile = true
You may also need to enable the experimental
user-env-compile option on Heroku. You can read more here, but in short, run the following command:
heroku labs:enable user-env-compile
In theory, this should only affect applications where
initialize_on_precompile is false or default; however, you may need to set the
user_env_compile option if you receive complaints about being unable to connect to
(If someone else created the Heroku app for you, make sure it is on the Cedar stack. Cedar is the newest stack and Heroku recommends it for new apps. You can run
heroku stack to check which stack your app is on.)
Step 4 (Option 1): Start from clean slate
If you haven't set up anything locally, or don't want to copy your local database to heroku, you'll need to run a few commands to get Refinery's database set up.
This will set up the required database tables, and set up a homepage. Log in to your site to set up your first user.
$ heroku open
Step 4 (Option 2): Copy your data from your local database to the Heroku app
If you've developed your website locally, you likely have information in a local database that you would like to use. Rather than trying to recreate all that on Heroku, Heroku provides you with a task that requires you to install the
taps gem. Be warned, though: Taps has been known to raise errors with Ruby 1.9.3.
If you receive any errors or the transfer fails the first time, switch to 1.9.2 to be safe.
You'll want to actually install taps to your system - not just add it to your Gemfile.
gem install taps
Now copy the data to your Heroku app.
If that command gives you the error "no such file to load –taps/operation", you have run into this Heroku and taps bug. See its comments for fixes to try.
Missing a required gem
Simply add that gem to the Gemfile.
Images or Resources don't work
Double check your
S3_ information and make sure that the right buckets actually exist. You can confirm against the values Heroku has recorded by running
See the How to use Amazon S3 for uploads guide for more specific information on file storage.
heroku logs or
heroku logs --tail and see if you can spot the error yourself. Or you could explore the help options available.