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Ready, Set, Spin Up: How to Get Drupal 8.6 Running Locally in 5 Steps

With Drupal 8.6 coming out early September this year, I thought it was important to talk a little bit about one of the features that has me most excited: a one line command to run Drupal locally that ships in core.

You may be asking yourself, “how important can one command really be?”  To answer that, I want to share my experience with a discouraging first core sprint.

My first DrupalCon was DrupalCon New Orleans. I remember being excited to talk to members of the community, listen in on some sessions and most important contribute during core sprint. There’s something about being in a room with 100 people all working on an open source project, well it just gets me pumped up. As a developer, I feel most comfortable when all the devops questions are answered and I am just free to get into the code. Little did I know that local setup was not something completely solved yet by the community.

Upon entering the orientation for contrib day, I got everything set up to contribute. But once I sat down to actually start working with the code, my local environment bricked. Regardless of what I did, I couldn’t spin up a new environment. After getting some guidance from my sprint mentor and the several developers that had congregated at our table, I came to the realization that not a single one of us had an identical setup. While I attempted to troubleshoot my issues or try new local setups, I was never able to get my local running and I had to leave New Orleans without a commit to core.

I think about that experience constantly and wonder how many individuals like me were excited to jump both feet into Drupal contrib but were pushed out because of technical hurdles. It astonishes me that such a seasoned community could have missed such a crucial step on onboarding new members. We should do everything in our power to lower the bar for people to experiment and contribute to Drupal and this should be maintained by the Drupal Association; cue 8.6 release.

Now, it sometimes feels like adding functionality to core can be a bit monolithic and what I hear from core contributors is that it takes momentum from the community for an issue to get resolved. For this particular initiative, the stars aligned and after a pretty compelling blog article, running Drupal locally became part of core. If you didn’t catch the DriesNote in Nashville, where he reviewed the pain of someone trying to get through a 41-click process to get Drupal installed and running, it is worth a watch.

Here are the 5 steps to get Drupal up and running in 8.6 on a machine with phpgit and composer:

In summary, come September 15, 2018 Drupal core will finally ship with all the necessary dependencies to get any person up and running with Drupal. I hope these changes get individuals contributing to Drupal or investigating it as a platform more frequently. Changes like these give me hope that the community is still listening and doing everything necessary to increase adoption of our favorite CMS, Drupal.

If you are interested in more details around the work that went into this initiative, please review #2911319.

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Meet team member, Rob Powell

Rob is a Drupal Developer with two years of strategic Drupal practice under his belt. His areas of Drupal expertise lie in Entity API and SQL and his notable work...

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