EasyStaging

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Frequently Asked Questions about EasyStaging.




What does my live server need to work with EasyStaging?

To transfer files to a target server you must be able to connect to that server via:

  1. SSH via Private/Public Key
  2. SFTP
  3. MySQL Remote

As long as your live server (hosting provider) allows you to connect to it with all three methods then EasyStaging should work.

 

Can I use EasyStaging on a…

Can I use EasyStaging on a shared host/public server/Go Daddy… NO,NO, NO!

EasyStaging should only be run on servers accessible only on private networks or via a secure VPN.

We don't run EasyStaging on production machines, in our setups for clients a staging site is never on the same server as a production site (in fact they're never on the same network). Using EasyStaging on publicly accessible servers is not safe and we do not support or recommend its use on publicly accessible servers.

EasyStaging is meant to only be installed on local network development server, a secured staging server on a private network or accessable only by secure VPN.

It should not be installed on a publicly accessable server.

Trouble Shooting

EasyStaging is not an extension for the non-technical user. As we've said repeatedly if you don't understand what rsync is, how SQL works or for that matter Javascript, you shouldn't be using EasyStaging.

If you do understand all of these things and still have problems, here's our normal order of trouble shooting when a new site is being setup

When EasyStaging won't connect to the live server:

If EasyStaging doesn't connect to the live server then the first things to check are:

  1. That your host is running a LAMP based server (i.e. a unix variant with all the standard ssh, rsync etc available).
  2. That your server and development machines are using PHP 5.3.10+ or later
  3. That SSH access works, try this from your Terminal application (or your development server)
    1. Open a Terminal window
    2. Try to ssh to your server, e.g. >ssh myserver.com
    3. If this fails either:
      1. your server is not setup correctly (may not have your public key installed) or
      2. you don't have SSH setup on your computer/development server (is your private key properly associated with this host in your ssh configuration?)
    4. There are lots of articles on generating SSH keys (e.g. GitHub) and configuring SSH host+key settings, you should read some of them.
  4. Connect to your server using SFTP, the easiest way we find is to open up a nice realiable GUI app like Transmit (I'm sure there are similar easy to use products on Windows oh wait…)
    1. If you can not connect with SFTP but can with FTP, go back to Step 3 and fix your SSH, if it really is working then
    2. Have you configured your GUI app correctly? (i.e. you've told it what private key to use to connect to your server)
  5. Connect to MySQL on your live server using a gui tool (like SequelPro) using the credentials you're placing in EasyStaging.

Use the test features to try and connect to the live server, the replies are very helpful ;)

When EasyStaging, won't "run" a plan or step:

  1. Check the browsers console for errors. (e.g. resouces not loaded, Javascript errors).
  2. Make sure you can run rsync from your command line without a password prompt
  3. Use a web debugging proxy (like Charles) to check what is being sent between your browser and the server.

When the EasyStaging interface looks "wrong"

(yes, seriously that's the sort of helpful description we get)

  1. Check the browsers console for errors. (e.g. resouces not loaded, Javascript errors).
  2. See 1 (100 times out of 100, so far it's been resolved to a CSS/JS file not being loaded).

When EasyStaging hangs in the Database step…

The 1.0 version of the free EasyStaging will on some setups will hang in the Database Step (usually after telling you it has connected successfully) during the initial Plan run. If the remote database is empty and this happens simply add a table to the remote database using PHPMyAdmin or similar and re-run the plan.

Remember...

When you don't understand what your doing, see our first sentence at the top of this FAQ.

Getting Help

Support for EasyStaging is not provided.

We do provide a community forum where you can discuss EasyStaging with other user (but, it's pretty barren as anyone using it should be able to address any problems they encounter).

Why?

EasyStaging is a dangerous tool, if you can't figure out basic issues (e.g. installation issues, file permissions, out of memory problems) that occur with Joomla! then you shouldn't be using it.

 

Permissions after 'rsync'

With 'rsync' the permissions are based on the user account that rsync connects to at the target location. Depending on your OS and whether rsync is being connected via ssh or rsyncd will affect the permissions that are applied.

e.g. if you have a WHM/cPanel server, you should always connect to the cPanel user account for the website in question, that way the permissions will match.


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