Installing and running Movable Type on OpenSolaris

Movable Type is another open source blogging platform, written in Perl, and is one of several I've been playing with over the past few weeks.  Sun's ISV Engineering group has been working on getting several of the leading open source content management systems and blogging engines into OpenSolaris via the neato installation system, to make it as easy as possible for fans of these blog engines and CMS's to get working right away, with little hassle.

Eric Reid in ISV Engineering recently made Movable Type available in the OpenSolaris "pending" repository of software, the "pending" meaning "please somebody test this package so we can vote it into the "contrib" third-party software repository.  So, I spent some time checking out the installation and configuration process for Movable Type.  Here is what I did and what I observed.

First, I set up the OpenSolaris to find packages from the Source Juicer "pending" repository, with these two steps:
  1. type "pfexec pkg set-publisher -O http://jucr.opensolaris.org/pending jucr-pending"
  2. type "pfexec pkg refresh"
Next, I launched the Package Manager application and chose the "jucr-pending" repository from the pop-up menu on the right side of that application's user interface.  After Package Manager thought about its new catalog of apps for a moment, I saw a list of hundreds of packages available to me.  I used the search field to type "type", and found the "movabletype" package.  Selected that, saw that it lists several other packages as dependencies (i.e., those other packages had better be installed for Movable Type to work correctly), then I installed it.  Nicely, the Package Manager installed MovableType and its dependent packages for me.

One more thing: we've configured MovableType to use the PostgreSQL database by default; before quitting Package Manager, I selected the main "opensolaris.org" repository, then selected PostgreSQL 8.3 packages (the server and client packages, plus one for docs and manual pages) and installed those.

Next step: get the database running.  I don't know much about PostgreSQL (shame on me), so I cheated by looking at this nice blog entry to show me what I needed to do to configure it as a nice Solaris service, so that it will launch for me automatically.

Got the database running, created a database called "mtype", granted all privileges to that database for a user I created, and was ready for the next step: web-based configuration of MovableType.

I launched my web browser and went here: http://localhost/movabletype to bring up the easy-to-use web-based installer.  It checked the system, told me everything was fine (except that I'm missing a few optional components that won't hurt me; I tested on a minimally-installed system), then asked me some questions about the name of the database to use, which user and password, then it took a minute to churn.  No problem, it was ready to go.

After install, MovableType brought up a web page asking me to login.  I did so, created my first blog entry (which was incredibly easy to do), then saw it published.

I made a minor mistake when I set up MovableType: it asked me where I wanted to publish my blog.  I mistakenly said "http://localhost/my_first_blog".  I should have said "http://localhost/movabletype/my_first_blog", because the web server has write access to that directory.  This messed up subsequent preview and blog navigation actions, but when I entered the correct URL, everything worked just fine.  Pilot error, not the package's problem.

Next, I created a new user, gave that user access to the original blog (so now I have a blog that can have two different authors), and tested it by posting a guest blog entry.  Yep, it worked.  Next, tried posting a comment to the blog.  That worked, too.

I futzed around a little bit with the Movable Type features.  Although I didn't spend a ton of time on it, everything seemed to work as expected.

So, check it out, Movable Type users.  Does Movable Type worke okay for you on OpenSolaris?  It was pain-free for me, but let us know what you think.


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Comments:

Greaat site. Well done.

Posted by Motivational Speaker on June 13, 2010 at 07:53 PM PDT #

Nice article you have put together here, I am about to set up my own blog (first time) and am trying to decide which platform to use. Your site was very helpful, although I have decided not to use Moveable Type as it is pearl based (which I was not previously aware of) and I am more experience with PHP.

Thanks

Posted by accident claims on July 29, 2010 at 10:06 PM PDT #

Thanks for the nice words about the blog posting. For my personal blog, I use Drupal. I like the flexibility of it, and although Drupal is a little bit more difficult to configure for my website, it allows so much expansion and flexibility, and the development community is amazing. I love those guys.

Best of luck setting up your own blog: I hope you have fun doing it, and fun blogging.

Posted by George Drapeau on July 30, 2010 at 09:14 AM PDT #

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