Publishing a Galaxies site

A number of steps are carried out when a Galaxies site is published. The process can essentially be boiled down to the following:

  1. Web server config files are created
  2. A new database is created and tables are imported
  3. A directory for the Galaxies site is created and Galaxies site files are copied to it
  4. The CSS for a Galaxies site is saved in the Galaxies site directory
  5. The web server is restarted

Web server config files are created

How a Galaxies site is configured depends on whether the Galaxies site has its own sub-domain or not. If it has its own sub-domain then a virtual host is created for the Galaxies site. If the Galaxies site is to be used via an alias of the main site domain (e.g. then the appropriate alias will be created.

A new database is created and tables are imported

The name of the database for the Galaxies site consists of a prefix specific to the Continuum CMS installation and the id of the Galaxies site for example, myGalPrefix_25. The prefix of a Galaxies site is set from the galaxies_prefix value in the var/config/constants.xml configuration file.

The database is created using the db_galaxies_manager_username and db_galaxies_manager_username configuration values defined in var/config/system.xml. This user should only be used to create and delete Galaxies database. General Galaxies site database queries are made using the lesser privileged db_galaxies_username user.

After the database has been created the database schema is imported along with any data from a data set.

A directory for the Galaxies site is created and Galaxies site files are copied to it

When a Galaxies site is created a new directory, the name of which is the same as the name of the database, is created in the microsites directory. Into this is copied the contents of the selected data set.

A data set is a collection of files consisting of front end scripts, downloads, images, taxonomy and content. Continuum CMS provides one data set as standard, known as the empty data set. Data sets can be created from any previously created Galaxies. When a data set is created the scripts, downloads, images, etc. (as above) are all copied into a new directory in the microsites/datasets directory.

The web server is restarted

When changes are made to the web server configuration files the web server must be restarted. Every minute a scheduled task (or cron job) determines whether a file named goapacherestart.txt is present in the system temporary files directory.

If it is, the web server restarts.

Therefore, whenever a change is made to a Galaxies site that requires a web server configuration change (e.g. adding or removing a domain or alias) this file will be created and the web server will be restarted.

On IIS-based systems an additional piece of software is installed for managing the configuration of Galaxies. This software is called Dark Matter. Dark Matter monitors the Galaxies configuration files for changes and makes the appropriate configuration changes to IIS.

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