Ruby, Rails – WAMP!

27 Apr

There was a big buzz around Ruby on Rails awhile ago so I thought I’d give it a go. Bearing in mind I’m primarily a design/scripting person I thought this would be a good opportunity for me to learn some object oriented programming. Its touted as being excellent for a web environment so it seemed a good thing for me to learn.

I used the excellent ONLamp tutorials and was up and running in 20 minutes on my Windows XP machine. Within an hour I’d completed the first two tutorials. I won’t pretend to have understood all the concepts but I could see what it was doing even if I wasn’t 100% sure of how it was doing it – and that sort of stuff is easy to pick up via online tutorials/manuals etc.

So, excitidely I contacted my host and asked if they would be so good as to set it up on my web server so I could test it on a live environment. My excellent host agreed and set it up – and thats where the problems started. Trouble is, neither my host nor I really knew what we were doing and from his end it seems to be installed correctly and from my end I can’t make it work at all. In fact I have no idea how to start.

There’s absolutely zero documentation that I can find that tells a host how to set RoR up, integrate it with Apache and make it available for shared hosting clients. There’s lots of links to Textdrive that allow you to purchase a RoR package but not a lot else.

If the creators want this to become as ubiqutous as LAMP or WAMP (Linux/Windows Apache, MySQL, PHP) then they’re going to have to put a bit of effort in. I’m sure its a doddle to make this happen but I don’t know how and I can’t find a way to find out for myself. Seems like RoR is a great package let down by poor support.

4 Responses to “Ruby, Rails – WAMP!”

  1. Kevin April 27, 2005 at 14:57 #

    RoR is well worth the effort – stick with it. I moved from php a few months ago and would hate to go back.

    For support, check out the “wiki”:http://wiki.rubyonrails.com/rails/show/HomePage and maybe start with a search for Apache. The install is fairly straightforward.

    “4 days on Rails”:http://rails.homelinux.org/ is a good followup to the LAMP article.

    There are lots of books coming which hopefully will make it more accessible, certainly the best learning experience I’ve found is to look at “other’s code”:http://typo.leetsoft.com/ and I recommend checking out the “IRC channel”:irc://irc.freenode.org/rubyonrails where people are normally very helpful and you might even bump into _nextangle_ – “who started the whole thing”:http://www.loudthinking.com/

    I’m certainly amazed at just how fast one can create a working application and even easily add Ajax etc, but there is a little speed bump to get over in the beginning..

  2. Kev April 27, 2005 at 15:01 #

    It does seem a great language and I’m really keen to get it going on something other than my box at home – just can’t see how to sort it though. I’ll have a plough through those links after work though Kevin, ta :o)

    edit: I think the thing I can’t get my head around is how I start new apps off and generate all the necessary directories via my shared hosting account. I’m not skilled enough to use a shell account and I can’t see an easy way to do things like this. Bah.

  3. tom April 27, 2005 at 19:56 #

    Thats allways an issue with new funky open source stuff, nobody ever writes documentation :

  4. Andy Hume April 27, 2005 at 21:19 #

    I installed Ruby on my XP too initially without any trouble. In fact it was very easy, until it came to making it play with MySQL. In attempting this I managed to total the MySQL install and Apache has refused to start since.

    I am now attempting to run Apache off a Debian Linux machine (an old Pentium II). I’ve got the server running, and can access it across the network, which is quite exciting, but unfortunately I don’t have a clue what to do next. To be honest, I’m not even sure how to get my files onto it. Install Ruby? You must be kidding!

    Which is a shame because I’d really like to have a go at it. See what the fuss is about.

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