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Be a Drupal Lion Tamer! Extending the settings.php $conf array to manage site verticals and parallels
Everyone who has set up a Drupal site is familiar with the settings.php conf array. But aside from setting up the database array, what other variables are useful to set up in the conf array and how does it help you get a handle on managing multiple drupal sites (multi-site as well as multiple distributions) as well as improve your strategy to maintain environment verticals (dev, stage, prod, etc.)? How can this help with scaling up an operation to manage many Drupal site?
Even if all you work with is a single stack of dev -> stage -> prod, a few key variables hard set in the conf array can help reduce confusion and errors when you drush rsync/sql-sync back from the prod environment and reduce reconfiguration routines. Knowing which variables to set and having a strategy that helps keep things straight from the first time you set up your environments is key to doing it right.
In this session, we’ll take a look at some common conf variables for site information, files storage, theme settings and others. We’ll look at some environment specific conf variables such as performance and caching and then we’ll look at some specific conf settings for modules such as Apache Solr. Also, an array of settings for backup and migrate that keeps your environment backups separated and clear when doin a drush rsync. Finally, we’ll take a look at developing a separate includes file that settings.php can call using a custom array of site information to ensure consistency between your verticals and parallel distributions, and make configuration spin up for a new site an efficient and less painful process.
I have posted code examples used in the talk at github. You can use these to recreate the demo and/or adapt to use for your own settings.php files substitutions.
Slides from the session have been added too: