Deployment best practices

Build and deploy scripts activate when you merge code to a remote environment. These scripts use the environment configuration files and application code to prepare data and configurations to provision cloud infrastructure and services, and to install or update the Adobe Commerce application and third-party and custom extensions in the cloud environment.

The build and deploy process is slightly different for each plan:

  • Starter plans—For the Integration environment, every active branch builds and deploys to a full environment for access and testing. Fully test your code after merging to the staging branch. To launch your site, push staging to master to deploy to the Production environment. You have full access to all branches through the Project Web Interface and the CLI commands.

  • Pro plans—For the Integration environment, every active branch builds and deploys to a full environment for access and testing. You must merge your code to the integration branch before you can merge to the Staging environment and then the Production environment. You can merge to the Staging and Production environments using the Project Web Interface or using SSH and magento-cloud CLI commands.

Track the process

You can track build and deploy actions in real time using the terminal or the Project Web Interface Status messages—in-progress, pending, success, or failed—display during the deployment process. You can view details in the log files. See View logs.

If you are using external GitHub repositories, the log of operations does not display in the GitHub session. However, you can still follow activity in the interface for the external repository and the Project Web Interface. See Integrations.

NOTE

In Integration environments, you cannot view the deploy logs from the Project Web Interface. This feature is available only for Production and Staging environments. However, you can view logs for every phase of the deployment in any environment using the build and deploy logs. For troubleshooting information, see the Deployment error reference.

Best practices for builds and deployment

We highly recommend the following best practices and considerations for your deployment process:

  • Ensure that you are running the most current version of the ece-tools package—See Release notes for ECE-Tools.

  • Follow the build and deploy process—Ensure that you have the correct code in each environment to avoid overwriting configurations when merging code between environments. For example, to make configuration changes that apply to all environments, modify and test the changes in the local environment before deploying to Integration, and then deploy and test the changes in Staging before deploying to Production. When you merge from one environment to another, the deployment overwrites all code in the remote environment, except environment-specific configuration and settings.

  • Use the same variables across environments—The values for these variables may differ across environments; however, you usually need the same variables in each environment. See Configuration management for store settings.

  • Keep sensitive configuration values and data in environment-specific variables—This includes variables specified using the Cloud CLI, the Project Web interface, or added to the env.php file. See Variable levels.

  • Ensure that all code is available in the environment branch—If you point to or include hooks to code in other branches, such as a private branch, you may encounter problems with the build and deploy process. For example, if you include a theme from a private repository in your branch, the theme will not build with the application code.

  • Add new extensions, integrations, and code in iterated branches—Make and test changes locally, push to Integration, then to Staging and Production. Test and resolve issues in each environment before merging the updates to the next environment. Some extensions and integrations must be enabled and configured in a specific order due to dependencies. Adding these in groups can make your build and deploy process much easier and help determine where issues occur.

  • Verify service versions and relationships and the ability to connect—Verify the services that are available to your application and ensure you are using the most current, compatible version. See Service relationships and System requirements in the Installation guide for recommended versions.

  • Test locally and in the Integration environment before deploying to Staging and Production—Identify and fix issues in your local and Integration environments to prevent extended downtime when you deploy to Staging and Production environments.

    TIP

    Run the smart wizard commands to ensure that your cloud project configuration follows best practices for build and deployment configuration, including static content deployment (SCD) strategy.

  • After completing testing in local and Integration environments, deploy and test in the Staging environment–See Staging and Production testing.

  • Check Production environment configuration–Before deploying to Production, complete the following tasks:

    • Ensure that you can connect to all three nodes in the Production environment using SSH.

    • Verify that Indexers are set to Update on Schedule. See Indexing modes in the Extension Developer Guide.

    • Prepare the environment by updating any environment-specific variables in the Production code, verifying service availability and compatibility, and making any other required configuration changes.

  • Monitor the deploy process–Review the deployment status messages and mitigate issues as needed. Review the Cloud logs for detailed log messages.

Five phases of Integration build and deployment

The following phases occur in your local development environment and the Integration environment. For Pro plans, the code is not deployed to the Staging or Production environments in these initial phases.

Phase 1: Code and configuration validation

When you initially set up a project from a template, we retrieve the code from the cloud infrastructure template. This code repo is cloned to your project as the master branch.

  • For Startermaster branch is your Production environment.
  • For Promaster begins as origin branch for the Integration environment.

Create a branch from master for your custom code, extensions and modules, and third-party integrations. We provide a full Integration environment for testing your code in the cloud.

When you push your code from your local workspace to the remote repository, a series of checks and code validation completes prior to build and deploy scripts. The built-in Git server checks what you are pushing and makes changes. For example, you may want to add an OpenSearch instance. The built-in Git server detects this and verifies that the topology of your cluster is modified to your new needs.

If you have a syntax error in a configuration file, our Git server refuses the push. For details, see Protective Block.

This phase also runs composer install to retrieve dependencies.

Phase 2: Build

NOTE

During the build phase, the site is not in maintenance mode and if errors or issues occur is not brought down. It only builds the code that has changed since the previous build.

This phase builds the codebase and runs hooks in the build section of .magento.app.yaml. The default build hook is the php ./vendor/bin/ece-tools command and performs the following:

  • Applies patches located in vendor/magento/ece-patches, and optional, project-specific patches in m2-hotfixes
  • Regenerates code and the dependency injection configuration (that is, the generated/ directory, which includes generated/code and generated/metapackage) using bin/magento setup:di:compile.
  • Checks if the app/etc/config.php file exists in the codebase. Adobe Commerce auto-generates this file if it does not detect it during the build phase and includes a list of modules and extensions. If it exists, the build phase continues as normal, compresses static files using GZIP, and deploys the files, which reduces downtime in the deployment phase. Refer to build options to learn about customizing or disabling file compression.
WARNING

At this point, the cluster has not been created, so you should not try to connect to a database or assume that anything was daemonized.

After the application builds, it is mounted on a read-only file system. You can configure specific mount points that are going to be read/write. You cannot FTP to the server and add modules. Instead, you must add code to your local repository and run git push, which builds and deploys the environment. For the project structure, see Local project directory structure.

Phase 3: Prepare the slug

The result of the build phase is a read-only file system referred to as a slug. This phase creates an archive and places the slug in permanent storage. The next time you push code, if a service did not change, it uses the slug from the archive.

  • Makes continuous integration build faster by reusing unchanged code
  • If code changes, updates the slug for the next build to reuse
  • Allows for instantaneous reverting of a deployment, if needed
  • Includes static files if the app/etc/config.php file exists in the codebase

The slug includes all files and folders excluding the following mounts configured in magento.app.yaml:

  • "var": "shared:files/var"
  • "app/etc": "shared:files/etc"
  • "pub/media": "shared:files/media"
  • "pub/static": "shared:files/static"

Phase 4: Deploy slugs and cluster

Now we provision your applications and all backend services you need:

  • Mounts each service in a container (web server, Elasticsearch or OpenSearch, RabbitMQ)
  • Mounts the read-write file system (mounted on a highly available distributed storage grid)
  • Configures the network so services can “see” each other (and only each other)
NOTE

Make your changes in a Git branch after all build and deployment completes and push again. All environment file systems are read-only. A read-only system guarantees deterministic deployments and dramatically improves your site security because no process can write to the file system. It also works to ensure that your code is identical in the Integration, Staging, and Production environments.

Phase 5: Deployment hooks

NOTE

This phase puts the application in maintenance mode until deployment is complete.

The last step runs a deployment script, which you can use to anonymize data in development environments, clear caches, and ping external, continuous integration tools. When this script runs, you have access to all the services in your environment, such as Redis.

If the app/etc/config.php file does not exist in the codebase, static files are compressed using gzip and deployed during this phase. This increases the length of your deploy phase and site maintenance.

NOTE

Refer to deploy variables to learn about customizing or disabling file compression.

There are two default deploy hooks. The pre-deploy.php hook completes necessary cleanup and retrieval of resources and code generated in the build hook. The php ./vendor/bin/ece-tools deploy hook runs a series of commands and scripts:

  • If Adobe Commerce is not installed, it installs with bin/magento setup:install, updates the deployment configuration, app/etc/env.php, and the database for your specified environment, such as Redis and website URLs. Important: When you completed the First-time deployment during setup, Adobe Commerce was installed and deployed across all environments.

  • If Adobe Commerce is installed, perform any necessary upgrades. The deployment script runs bin/magento setup:upgrade to update the database schema and data (which is necessary after extension or core code updates), and also updates the deployment configuration, app/etc/env.php, and the database for your environment. Finally, the deployment script clears theAdobe Commerce cache.

  • The script optionally generates static web content using the command magento setup:static-content:deploy.

  • Uses scopes (-s flag in build scripts) with a default setting of quick for static content deployment strategy. You can customize the strategy using the environment variable SCD_STRATEGY. For details on these options and features, see Static files deployment strategies and the -s flag for Deploy static view files.

NOTE

Our deploy script uses the values defined by configuration files in the .magento directory, then the script deletes the directory and its contents. Your local development environment is not affected.

Post-deployment: configure routing

While the deployment is running, we freeze the incoming traffic at the entry point for 60 seconds. We are now ready to configure routing so your web traffic arrives at your newly created cluster.

Successful deployment removes the maintenance mode to allow for normal access and creates backup (BAK) files for the app/etc/env.php and the app/etc/config.php configuration files.

If you enabled static content generation using the SCD_ON_DEMAND variable and you configured the post_deploy hook, this clears the cache and pre-loads (warms) the cache after the container begins accepting connections and during normal, incoming traffic.

To review build and deploy logs, see View logs.

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