By alexmoreno, 4 August, 2017

Working with vm’s makes everything simpler and easier. Easy to reproduce bugs, easy to reproduce features between environments and, most importantly, between developers.

In the past I’ve been working with different solutions, custom mainly, based on puppet, ansible…. Until I arrived to Acquia. Local environments as it happens is a recurrent topic on every team, a clear pattern… and when there is a pattern, you can write something to save some time to those lazy developers ;-). Enter BLT (Pronounced BOLT).   BLT is basically an environment that has everything ready for fast developer on-boarding, easy deployment on different environments (dev, staging, prod, … and of course, local), but also for quick automation of repetitive tasks, like rebuilding your sites, pulling databases...   Configuring BLT is very straightforward, but it will take some reading from you. Keep reading for a TL;DR version:   PRE-REQUIREMENTS   First, install the requirements:   In Mac it is very easy to do it simply following the brew requirements.   Now   Basically:  
brew tap caskroom/cask

brew install php56 git composer ansible drush

brew cask install virtualbox vagrant
  Once this is installed you have blt in your command line:  
  blt --version
  That’s it, you are ready. Note: for other operating systems please visit:   INSTALLING YOUR NEW SITE(s)   Once we have all the tools installed in our computer we can start building apps. It couldn’t be simpler:  
    composer create-project --no-interaction acquia/blt-project MY_PROJECT
  That will create a base directory from which you can start building your Drupal app. First thing I’d do is moving this to your git repo, i.e. GitHub:  
  $ git add .

  $ git commit -m "BLT-00 first commit."

  $ git remote add origin

  $ git push -u origin master
  Now, let’s move inside the repo and start doing the magic. Let’s initialise the vm (I am assuming here that we’ll be working on a virtual machine):  
  blt vm
  It will ask if you want to install Drupalvm, to which we’ll say yes, and afterwards if we want to boot it. Yes again.   At the end of the process you should see a green message like this one:   "Drupal VM booted successfully. Please use vagrant commands to interact with your VM from now on.”   Your vm is ready. Last stop, install a site:    
  # Since blt 9.x, you have to do this from inside the vm, so:
  vagrant ssh 
  blt setup
  This will install a default Drupal 8 site in docroot. You could put your custom site here, or for example install lighting ( instead of the default one. The best practice for that road would be using composer, although I’ll leave this for a different post.   CONNECTING EVERYTHING TO ACQUIA CLOUD   Now, next step you need is to actually connect your new vm to your Acquia Cloud (AC) environments. You have to do this drush level and BLT level, drush to be able to execute drush against the environments, BLT to be able to sync the databases, build artifacts, etc…   First bit, BLT settings. Edit:   blt/project.yml   And add in remotes the url to AC. You’ll find this url in AC. Go to, select your application and, in the list of environments, you’ll see on top right an icon called “Application Information”. Click and the first url is what you need. IE:   Your yml file will look like this:  

  default_branch: master


   - ''
  Lastly, your drush settings. Go to your AC profile page:   Select Credentials and, after confirming your password, you should see 'Drush integration’ in the new page. Download and place the hidden files in your $HOME.   DEPLOYING   Time to deploy your stuff to Acquia Cloud (or theoretically any other host provider). First thing, you’ll need to add your ssh keys to Acquia Cloud, just:   If you don't have any ssh keys yet there are some good short tutorials out there, it shouldn't take you more than 10 minutes to generate a new ones.   Ready to go, do:  
blt deploy -Ddeploy.commitMsg='BLT-000: Deployment test' -Ddeploy.branch='master-build'
  Answer ‘y’ to create a tag, return for the default commit message, and write your tag (i.e.: 1.0.3-build)   If your keys are good to go you should see some magic happening, and your artefact being deployed to the Acquia Cloud remote server. Now simply go to Acquia Cloud, select the tag that you have just created and deploy it in your environment.    All done… although now I am thinking on changing the title of the article… not that short after all :-)     Bonus: Some commands   - Rebuild your local with the remote db:  
blt sync
  Equivalent to: drush sql-sync @remote @local