We’re pleased to announce the 1.5 release of our Joomlatools Vagrant box! Bringing a dashboard redesign, a complete cleanup of the provisioning code, some bug fixes and lots of improvements and tool updates to help increase your development productivity.
Bigger and better dashboard
We refactored the dashboard to make it much easier to use with the introduction of tabs instead of regular links for the main navigation. You no longer move away from the dashboard when consulting another tool. Instead, they are opened inside the page.
To top it off we also integrated the terminal right into the dashboard. Run your box commands straight from the browser, stop switching windows and just keep on coding!
PHP 7.1 by default
PHP 7 has been here for a while now, so about time we set it as the default version! A new install of the box will give you PHP 7.1 out of the box.
We also removed HHVM as we learned no one was using it right now, ourselves included. Thank you for your service, HHVM, it’s been an honour having you with us.
Apache is first-class citizen again
Previous version of the box had Varnish running in front of Apache. However, not many people actually made use of it and it complicated debugging. That’s why we moved Varnish aside and put Apache back on port
80, the default HTTP port.
If you do need to test Varnish, not to worry. You can still access it on port
We often work with Nginx for our various projects, so we installed it on the box too. As a first step we have it listening on port
81. You can connect to Nginx by browsing to joomla.box:81 to get the dashboard and features you expect on the box.
More disk space, smaller box
As your list of projects grows, the disk space you need does too. A lot of people hit the limit of the 8GB disk after a while so we increased it to 25GB. Don’t worry if you’re not keen on reserving that much space on your machine: the box only takes up what’s actually in use! Virtualbox takes care of managing the virtual disk for you.
At the same time, we reduced the size of the box by 200MB, so you need to download less when installing it.
Improved PHP builds
PHP 7.x builds did not include Xdebug yet, which we use for easy profiling and debugging on the box. This has now been fixed and all 7.x versions now compile perfectly, including the current 7.2 release candidate.
We no longer build mod_php for Apache either and use php-fpm instead. We also decided to stop support for PHP versions older than 5.3.9. Sometimes it’s time to let go, especially concerning software built over 6 years ago.
Learn more about building other PHP versions in the docs.
Make sure to run the latest versions of Virtualbox and Vagrant before upgrading. We built the new box to be compatible with the latest Vagrant 2.0 and VirtualBox 5.1 versions.
We’re just getting started
We have a lot more ideas to make this the perfect environment for PHP and Joomla development. We’re looking at ways to further reduce the size of the box, improve the dashboard even more, make use of containers through Docker and add more features and tools to work with.
Happy Joomla coding!