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AutoExportTemplatesAndFields enables continuous integration of template and field configuration changes

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Hello,

in one of my current projects, we have a test and production stage with their own ProcessWire installations, and we regularly want to migrate template/field configuration to the next stage without migrating content as well. ProcessWire supports this via the import/export functionality in the admin GUI. However we (and some others) would like to do this as part of an automated process. There seem to have been some discussion on this topic and two existing modules that get pretty near our requirements:

However, they try to solve more then we need and for mindplay-dk's module, development seems to have discontinued. At that point I decided to build a more simple module with reduced scope that basically just makes ProcessWire's import/export automation-ready.

Thanks in advance for trying this out and any feedback!

About this Module

CAUTION: This module is incompatible with repeater fields and ProFields.

The module enables you to transfer template and field configuration from one processwire installation to another in an automated way.

  • Changes to templates or fields are exported to the file system immediately (so they can be added to source control together with changes in the template files)
  • The import script is designed to run from the command line (so it can be invoked from your build/deployment tool). On invocation in import mode,
    • a DB backup is created
    • template/field changes from the persist directory are imported into the DB
  • In restore mode, the import script can restore any of the DB backups previously saved

How to Use

  1. Make sure the module is installed in the source and destination ProcessWire environments.
  2. After installation of the module, you should check if the module's default persistDirectory configuration setting fits your requirements. The module will automatically export all fields, fieldgroups, and templates to JSON files in the directory specified by that setting. Note that the same setting is used by the import script as well, so if you change it, make sure you change it in all affected ProcessWire environments.
  3. The JSON files can be transferred to the destination ProcessWire environment.
  4. Running the import script from the command line will import template and field data in the destination ProcessWire environment.

Manual Installation

Caution: Beta software - do not use in a production environment without prior testing and regular back-ups.

Caution: This module is incompatible with repeater fields and ProFields.

In case automatic installation does not work, get the code at https://github.com/jaromic/pw-autoexport-tf/ and follow the instructions in README.md for manual installation.

Manual Uninstall

Delete the following files and directories from your module directory:

AutoExportTemplatesAndFields/
AutoExportTemplatesAndFields.module
 Download

Install from the module directory, clone the repository via GitHub, or download ZIP.

Edited by jaro
Statement about incompatibility added
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Hi and welcome to the forums.

This sounds interesting. I definetly will try it out, but not soon. Maybe in a week or two.

The DB-backup integration looks good. :)

Do you have used it with namespaced PW version 3 too?

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Thanks, horst :)

Using that version in our project, I have developed and tested for 2.6 only so far. It does not use namespaces, so 3.x will probably not load the module. I will adapt and test with 2.7 and 3.x as soon as my time allows, hope to get to that within the next two weeks too.

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Now, that's some nice first post to have in the forums, so first of all welcome here.

I just wanted to add a word of caution here. The export functionality should work well for core fieldtypes, but 3rd party fieldtypes might not export/import their settings correctly. Especially for more complex (db-wise) fieldtypes like Table or maybe Matrix it's often not so simple to export to a text format. E.g. FieldtypeOptions didn't export it's options for quite some time. 

Also I'd be cautious with calling modules discontinued, which is, at least for my module, not the truth. Not seeing a weekly changelog is not necessarily a bad thing. 

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Thanks, and sorry, I just corrected that statement about your module.

Even if it cannot handle all field types that some other modules contribute, I hope I'll be able to improve my module to the point where it reliably warns about field types causing problems.

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@jaro @LostKobrakai

<dream mode>

Not sure if this is a good idea or not, but could this module be made to automatically export migrations that are compatible with Benjamin's migrations module? This would allow his module's interface to be used on the importing side to select which migrations to import.

</dream mode>

Edited to add: Now I've actually tried this module, I think the dream outlined above is more of a delusion. As it stands, the module does seem like a very neat way to keep the state of the fields and templates under version control along with the template files; nice work, @jaro!

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On 3.9.2016 at 1:59 PM, netcarver said:

Not sure if this is a good idea or not, but could this module be made to automatically export migrations that are compatible with Benjamin's migrations module? This would allow his module's interface to be used on the importing side to select which migrations to import.

Sorry it took me a while to answer, and thanks for the input and for trying it out!

The module is all about ProcessWire's built-in import/export functionality, merely exposing and automating it. For the moment I'd rather have it become good and stable in this than doing both formats mediocrely. For example, there are still issues with some common field types, and I want to look into special cases during import that are handled specially by the GUI when doing it graphically.

On 12.7.2016 at 5:01 PM, horst said:

Do you have used it with namespaced PW version 3 too?

In the meantime I did some tests with ProcessWire versions 2 and 3. The module itself worked without any changes both in v2 and v3 installations (thanks to ProcessWire's namespace magic), but I had to do differentiate in the import script. v1.0.1 contains that and some small fixes.

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Hi,

I Installed the "AutoExportTemplatesAndFields" and when creating repeater fields the module was affecting the fields editing.

I had two repeater fields: "repeater1" and "repeater2", the "repeater1" should repeat the "images1" field and the "repeater2" should repeat the "images2",

the problem was each time I edited one of them and change the repeated field the other assumed that modification. Example: editing the "repeater1" and change the field to "image3" the "repeater2" instead of having the "image2" has the field to be repeated assumed the field "image3".

After uninstall the "AutoExportTemplatesAndFields" module I could edit each repeater and assign different fields to them.

I hope you can find the issue it is a great module to use.

Thank you.

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On 1.4.2017 at 5:31 PM, vmo said:

I had two repeater fields [...] the problem was each time I edited one of them and change the repeated field the other assumed that modification. [...] I hope you can find the issue it is a great module to use.

Hi, thanks for that bug report, and I'm glad you like that module! I hope I'll have some time to look into this soon. I have added it to the issues on github for now.

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On 4/6/2017 at 2:25 AM, jaro said:

Hi, thanks for that bug report, and I'm glad you like that module! I hope I'll have some time to look into this soon. I have added it to the issues on github for now.

Hi i ran into the same issue und it cost me much time to find the culprit of it. Please at least post a big warning in the readme for users to be aware before installation since i suspect this can affect many users who have installed pro fields

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3 hours ago, ICF Church said:

Hi i ran into the same issue und it cost me much time to find the culprit of it. Please at least post a big warning in the readme for users to be aware before installation since i suspect this can affect many users who have installed pro fields

@ICF Church README has been updated. Thanks for your feedback.

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This issue hit me a while back too with the RepeaterMatrix field. I ended up posting about it in the Profields support board but, embarrassingly, forgot to let you know about it at the time, jaro. My apologies to all for the oversight.

 

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The issue, which I'd like to call Agent Smith Bug, that caused a Repeater/RepeaterMatrix field copying itself onto other same type fields while erasing the contents of the fields happened to me inversely without warning. Fortunately, it happened on a site while it's in development. I installed the module way before while browsing for new modules in the directory, and I forgot it was ever installed. It was later I upgraded the core many times, and available modules with the ProcessWireUpgrade module and later I installed the ProFields.

I think we need a special cross-checking notification system, just like a product changes its price or availability in Amazon's shopping cart. One way it was achieved, while you're installing a module it shows a warning for the system version. Right there, a system should notify us with a critical warning that module x would possibly break the behavior of module y. In my case, it would be great if the ProFields installation notified me. But how can it know? (Reminds me the Project Insight scene of Winter Soldier) As humans, we can't check every issue, every board entry.  Hence we need a database, testers, modifiers, structural changes, etc. Too many resources, scratch this idea.

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On 1.4.2017 at 5:31 PM, vmo said:

I had two repeater fields: "repeater1" and "repeater2", the "repeater1" should repeat the "images1" field and the "repeater2" should repeat the "images2",

the problem was each time I edited one of them and change the repeated field the other assumed that modification. Example: editing the "repeater1" and change the field to "image3" the "repeater2" instead of having the "image2" has the field to be repeated assumed the field "image3".

 

On 2.11.2017 at 1:26 PM, adoxus said:

The issue, which I'd like to call Agent Smith Bug, that caused a Repeater/RepeaterMatrix field copying itself onto other same type fields while erasing the contents of the fields happened to me inversely without warning.

 

On 10.10.2017 at 1:34 PM, netcarver said:

This issue hit me a while back too with the RepeaterMatrix field.

 

On 9.10.2017 at 11:38 AM, ICF Church said:

Hi i ran into the same issue und it cost me much time to find the culprit of it.

 

Thanks guys for all the feedback.

I looked into this a little, and I was able to reproduce an instance of the problem using VMO's description with two repeater fields 'rep1' and 'rep2' and two text fields 'text1' and 'text2'. The assignment of text fields to repeater fields got mixed up if and only if the AutoExportTemplatesAndFieldsModule was installed.

I could narrow down the problem onto my use of ProcessWire's $field->getExportData() inside a hook 'after' ProcessPageView::finished. The problem is triggered when this function is called on the repeater fields in that hook, so the function seems to have side effects. I have added a minimal showcase for this called 'BreakRepeaterFields module' to the git repository, see module info summary for usage.

To sum this up: I am pretty confident there is no bug in my code directly causing the faulty behaviour. On the other hand one could not say that there is a bug in ProcessWire either, as my module is using an internal method which is not part of the documented API.

Best I can do for now is to declare this module incompatible with repeater fields and ProFields.

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Thanks for looking into it @jaro!

Is there no possibility to check weather a field is / is used inside, a repeater and then treat it differently (or omitting it)? Since this solves a rather critical weakness of Processwire (imho), maybe @ryan can help out with this?

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7 minutes ago, noelboss said:

Thanks for looking into it @jaro!

Is there no possibility to check weather a field is / is used inside, a repeater and then treat it differently (or omitting it)? Since this solves a rather critical weakness of Processwire (imho), maybe @ryan can help out with this?

Fields could be omitted by type, but the output of this module would then not be a complete snapshot of templates and fields any more, which was its purpose in the first place. Do you think, such an incomplete snapshot (without repeater fields and similar) could still be useful for repeater field users?

Treating problematic fields differently could solve the problem, but the module would most probably have to be equipped with code for each problematic field type.

Yes of course, one or two hints from @ryan could be very helpful now :)

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I think a partial export is still better then breaking an entire system ;) So even if it does not do anything, it's still better to if-repeater-return than to do harm imho. You could still log a warning that there have been unsupported fields that need manual exporting so the user knows what fields need to be exported…

Now, as for me, i just had to manually copy a field (not repeater) that I otherwise could have just exported - imported… (which I now did via the db directly)…

Also, shouldn't it be possible to narrow down the problem even further now that we know what causes the problem? What happens if you use "getTableData()" directly?

 

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50 minutes ago, noelboss said:

I think a partial export is still better then breaking an entire system ;) So even if it does not do anything, it's still better to if-repeater-return than to do harm imho. You could still log a warning that there have been unsupported fields that need manual exporting so the user knows what fields need to be exported…

So far, I haven't heard of any case where using this module "breaks an entire system". However, you are claiming that it "nuked [your] system" in your article as well (linking here). I must say I'm really surprised to read about what sounds far worse than the problems mentioned so far by you or anyone else in this thread. Can you please provide some details on what happened there? Thanks.

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Hi Jaro, sorry for the long delay.

Now, nuked is probably a strong word, sorry if that offended you, that was not my intention and I can change that.

Now to as what happened: I stored some Configuration (like meta-data, logo, global site info etc) of my site in a Repeater Matrix structure (would rather user functional fields but they don't support all kinds of fields like images etc.) – and I also used several other repeaters on my site. Now whenever I made changes to any of them, the other Repeaters where changed as well, deleting my work I put into creating them and also the data that each of the already existing repeaters held. Thus breaking my site in some cases (where it dependet on configurations beeing present) and losing work, data stored as well as work I put into structuring things.

For example: I created a repeater for Social Media Links and started filling these in. After that I would create another Repeater for Multiple Information Junks. – Now my Configuration Repeater would lose its data, its setup and the same happened with the Social Media Links repeater. I would lose its data plus its setup. I had to recreate the Configuration Repeater and the Social Media Repeater and input the data again.

Until i found the culprit, I lost quite some hours of development work. And it was not obvious from where the problem stemed. At first I thought Repeater was broken, or my setup was wrong (I'm fairly new to PW).

In my humble opinion, dataloss is probably the worst that could happen to a system. A PHP Error, no Problem, remove the module, fix the code. Loss of files – they are under GIT, some work might be lost but not much. But data loss, even more important if it's structural – thats really bad. Things get worse if it's not obvious what causes this data to disappear.

I think, all of this is the case here. Hope this explains it a bit better. If I can be of any help in solving this issue, let me know. BTW, you said

On 11/6/2017 at 10:10 AM, jaro said:

but the output of this module would then not be a complete snapshot of templates and fields any more

with this issue, this is not the case anyway because the module can not handle the repeaters correctly and thus also not export its config corretly, thus the output is not a complete snapshot in the first place ;)

 

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Sorry for the even longer delay – as always, the weeks before christmas are the busiest of the year.

On 9.11.2017 at 11:09 AM, noelboss said:

Now, nuked is probably a strong word, sorry if that offended you, that was not my intention and I can change that.

No worries, I don't feel offended personally, it's just bad PR and that it kind of looks like some careless coding of this module caused data loss. I'd appreciate if you could reword or just remove the link.

Thanks for the detailed explanation.

On 9.11.2017 at 11:09 AM, noelboss said:

with this issue, this is not the case anyway because the module can not handle the repeaters correctly and thus also not export its config corretly, thus the output is not a complete snapshot in the first place ;)

I agree, but that's not how I meant it anyway, I was referring to the partial export vs. clean fail design choice.

Sticking to the second, I have added a blacklist of known incompatible fieldtypes (containing only repeater so far) for now so the module will not only skip incompatible fields, but refuse to export all fields with a clear error message in that case.

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Hi @jaro

Thanks for the update. Would it be possible to still have a partial export (after checking a confirmation or using module settings)?

I have removed the links :)

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Hi @jaro,

I've been having a look at the Repeater issue and the BreakRepeaterFields demonstration.

Interestingly, the issue is not that fields are copied from one repeater to another. It is that the module interferes with the listing of fields when the repeater field settings are viewed in ProcessField, causing the fields of one repeater to appear in the AsmSelect of another repeater. So if you check the database the fields associated with each repeater is actually correct despite the incorrect listing shown in ProcessField. But if the user then saves the field in ProcessField it is at this point that the associated fields become incorrect.

Could you explain why the module needs to hook ProcessPageView::finished? This method fires on every page view, front-end and back-end. But most of these page views will have no connection to field settings or template settings changing. Instead of hooking this method, couldn't you hook only methods that are related to field and template settings? So some method in ProcessField and ProcessTemplate?

And also, the module is looping over all fields on every page view. Could you focus in on just the field that is being edited? So when field1 is edited in ProcessField, just export the data for field1 rather than looping over every field. This would avoid the situation where the data for repeater2 becomes involved when editing repeater1.

I should say that I've just had a brief look at the issue so far, so there might be good reasons why the module does what it does.

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      This module integrates EmailMessage, SMTP and SASL php-libraries from Manuel Lemos into ProcessWire. I use this continously evolved libraries for about 10 years now and there was never a reason or occasion not to do so. I use it nearly every day in my office for automated composing and sending personalized messages with attachments, requests for Disposition Notifications, etc. Also I have used it for sending personalized Bulkmails many times.

      The WireMailSmtp module extends the new email-related WireMail base class introduced in ProcessWire 2.4.1 (while this writing, the dev-branch only).
       
      Here are Ryans announcement.



      Current Version 0.4.2
      Changelog: https://github.com/horst-n/WireMailSmtp/blob/master/CHANGELOG.md
      get it from the Modules Directory Install and Configure

      Download the module into your site/modules/ directory and install it.

      In the config page you fill in settings for the SMTP server and optionaly the (default) sender, like email address, name and signature.
      You can test the smtp settings directly there. If it says "SUCCESS! SMTP settings appear to work correctly." you are ready to start using it in templates, modules or bootstrap scripts.


      Usage Examples
      The simplest way to use it:
      $numSent = wireMail($to, $from, $subject, $textBody); $numSent = wireMail($to, '', $subject, $textBody); // or with a default sender emailaddress on config page This will send a plain text message to each recipient.
       
      You may also use the object oriented style:
      $mail = wireMail(); // calling an empty wireMail() returns a wireMail object $mail->to($toEmail, $toName); $mail->from = $yourEmailaddress; // if you don't have set a default sender in config // or if you want to override that $mail->subject($subject); $mail->body($textBody); $numSent = $mail->send(); Or chained, like everywhere in ProcessWire:
      $mail = wireMail(); $numSent = $mail->to($toEmail)->subject($subject)->body($textBody)->send(); Additionaly to the basics there are more options available with WireMailSmtp. The main difference compared to the WireMail BaseClass is the sendSingle option. With it you can set only one To-Recipient but additional CC-Recipients.
      $mail = wireMail(); $mail->sendSingle(true)->to($toEmail, $toName)->cc(array('person1@example.com', 'person2@example.com', 'person3@example.com')); $numSent = $mail->subject($subject)->body($textBody)->send(); The same as function call with options array:
      $options = array( 'sendSingle' => true, 'cc' => array('person1@example.com', 'person2@example.com', 'person3@example.com') ); $numSent = wireMail($to, '', $subject, $textBody, $options); There are methods to your disposal to check if you have the right WireMail-Class and if the SMTP-settings are working:
      $mail = wireMail(); if($mail->className != 'WireMailSmtp') { // Uups, wrong WireMail-Class: do something to inform the user and quit echo "<p>Couldn't get the right WireMail-Module (WireMailSmtp). found: {$mail->className}</p>"; return; } if(!$mail->testConnection()) { // Connection not working: echo "<p>Couldn't connect to the SMTP server. Please check the {$mail->className} modules config settings!</p>"; return; }  
      A MORE ADVANCED DEBUG METHOD!
      You can add some debug code into a template file and call a page with it:
      $to = array('me@example.com'); $subject = 'Wiremail-SMTP Test ' . date('H:i:s') . ' äöü ÄÖÜ ß'; $mail = wireMail(); if($mail->className != 'WireMailSmtp') { echo "<p>Couldn't get the right WireMail-Module (WireMailSmtp). found: {$mail->className}</p>"; } else { $mail->from = '--INSERT YOUR SENDER ADDRESS HERE --'; // <--- !!!! $mail->to($to); $mail->subject($subject); $mail->sendSingle(true); $mail->body("Titel\n\ntext text TEXT text text\n"); $mail->bodyHTML("<h1>Titel</h1><p>text text <strong>TEXT</strong> text text</p>"); $dump = $mail->debugSend(1); } So, in short, instead of using $mail->send(), use $mail->debugSend(1) to get output on a frontend testpage.
      The output is PRE formatted and contains the areas: SETTINGS, RESULT, ERRORS and a complete debuglog of the server connection, like this one:
       
      Following are a ...


      List of all options and features


      testConnection () - returns true on success, false on failures


      sendSingle ( true | false ) - default is false

      sendBulk ( true | false ) - default is false, Set this to true if you have lots of recipients (50+)


      to ($recipients) - one emailaddress or array with multiple emailaddresses

      cc ($recipients) - only available with mode sendSingle, one emailaddress or array with multiple emailaddresses

      bcc ($recipients) - one emailaddress or array with multiple emailaddresses

       
      from = 'person@example.com' - emailaddress, can be set in module config (called Sender Emailaddress) but it can be overwritten here

      fromName = 'Name Surname' - optional, can be set in module config (called Sender Name) but it can be overwritten here


      priority (3) - 1 = Highest | 2 = High | 3 = Normal | 4 = Low | 5 = Lowest

      dispositionNotification () or notification () - request a Disposition Notification


      subject ($subject) - subject of the message

      body ($textBody) - use this one alone to create and send plainText emailmessages

      bodyHTML ($htmlBody) - use this to create a Multipart Alternative Emailmessage (containing a HTML-Part and a Plaintext-Part as fallback)

      addSignature ( true | false ) - the default-behave is selectable in config screen, this can be overridden here
      (only available if a signature is defined in the config screen)

      attachment ($filename, $alternativeBasename = "") - add attachment file, optionally alternative basename


      send () - send the message(s) and return number of successful sent messages


      debugSend(1) - returns and / or outputs a (pre formatted) dump that contains the areas: SETTINGS, RESULT, ERRORS and a complete debuglog of the server connection. (See above the example code under ADVANCED DEBUG METHOD for further instructions!)


      getResult () - returns a dump (array) with all recipients (to, cc, bcc) and settings you have selected with the message, the message subject and body, and lists of successfull addresses and failed addresses,


      logActivity ($logmessage) - you may log success if you want

      logError ($logmessage) - you may log warnings, too. - Errors are logged automaticaly
       
       
      useSentLog (true | false) - intended for usage with e.g. third party newsletter modules - tells the send() method to make usage of the sentLog-methods - the following three sentLog methods are hookable, e.g. if you don't want log into files you may provide your own storage, or add additional functionality here

      sentLogReset ()  - starts a new LogSession - Best usage would be interactively once when setting up a new Newsletter

      sentLogGet ()  - is called automaticly within the send() method - returns an array containing all previously used emailaddresses

      sentLogAdd ($emailaddress)  - is called automaticly within the send() method
      Changelog: https://github.com/horst-n/WireMailSmtp/blob/master/CHANGELOG.md
       
       
    • By Robin S
      Sanitizer EasySlugger
      Allows the use of the EasySlugger library as Sanitizer methods.
      Installation
      Install the Sanitizer EasySlugger module.
      Usage
      The module adds four new sanitizer methods.
      slugger($string, $options)
      Similar to $sanitizer->pageName() - I'm not sure if there are any advantages over that method. Included because it is one of the methods offered by EasySlugger.
      $slug = $sanitizer->slugger('Lorem Ipsum'); // Result: lorem-ipsum utf8Slugger($string, $options)
      Creates slugs from non-latin alphabets.
      $slug = $sanitizer->utf8Slugger('这个用汉语怎么说'); // Result: zhe-ge-yong-han-yu-zen-me-shuo seoSlugger($string, $options)
      Augments the string before turning it into a slug. The conversions are related to numbers, currencies, email addresses and other common symbols.
      $slug = $sanitizer->seoSlugger('The price is $5.99'); // Result: the-price-is-5-dollars-99-cents See the EasySlugger readme for some more examples.
      seoUtf8Slugger($string, $options)
      A combination of utf8Slugger() and seoSlugger().
      $slug = $sanitizer->seoUtf8Slugger('价钱是 $5.99'); // Result: jia-qian-shi-5-dollars-99-cents $options argument
      Each of the methods can take an $options array as a second argument.
      separator (string): the character that separates words in the slug. Default: - unique (bool): Determines whether a random suffix is added at the end of the slug. Default: false $slug = $sanitizer->utf8Slugger('这个用汉语怎么说', ['separator' => '_', 'unique' => true]); // Result: zhe_ge_yong_han_yu_zen_me_shuo_3ad66c4  
      https://github.com/Toutouwai/SanitizerEasySlugger
      https://modules.processwire.com/modules/sanitizer-easy-slugger/
    • By Robin S
      If you've ever needed to insert links to a large number of files within CKEditor you may have found that the standard PW link modal is a somewhat slow way to do it.
      This module provides a quicker way to insert links to files on the page being edited. You can insert a link to an individual file, or insert an unordered list of links to all files on the page with a single click.
      CKEditor Link Files
      Adds a menu to CKEditor to allow the quick insertion of links to files on the page being edited.

      Features
      Hover a menu item to see the "Description" of the corresponding file (if present). Click a menu item to insert a link to the corresponding file at the current cursor position. The filename is used as the link text. If you Alt-click a menu item the file description is used as the link text (with fallback to filename if no description entered). If text is currently selected in the editor then the selected text is used as the link text. Click "* Insert links to all files *" to insert an unordered list of links to all files on the page. Also works with the Alt-click option. Menu is built via AJAX so newly uploaded files are included in the menu without the page needing to be saved. However, descriptions are not available for newly uploaded files until the page is saved. There is an option in the module config to include files from Repeater fields in the edited page. Nested Repeater fields (files inside a Repeater inside another Repeater) are not supported. Installation
      Install the CKEditor Link Files module.
      For any CKEditor field where you want the "Insert link to file" dropdown menu to appear in the CKEditor toolbar, visit the field settings and add "LinkFilesMenu" to the "CKEditor Toolbar" settings field.
       
      http://modules.processwire.com/modules/cke-link-files/
      https://github.com/Toutouwai/CkeLinkFiles
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