Versions:

This document contains information for an outdated version and may not be maintained any more. If some of your projects still use this version, consider upgrading as soon as possible.

Environment Types

SilverStripe knows three different environment types (or "modes"). Each of the modes gives you different tools and behaviors. The environment is managed either through a YML configuration file or in a environment configuration file.

The definition of setting an environment type in a mysite/_config/app.yml looks like

Director:
  environment_type: 'dev'

The definition of setting an environment type in a _ss_environment.php file looks like

define('SS_ENVIRONMENT_TYPE', 'dev');

The three environment types you can set are dev, test and live.

Dev

When developing your websites, adding page types or installing modules you should run your site in dev. In this mode you will see full error back traces and view the development tools without having to be logged in as an administrator user.

dev mode should not be enabled long term on live sites for security reasons. In dev mode by outputting back traces of function calls a hacker can gain information about your environment (including passwords) so you should use dev mode on a public server very carefully.

Test Mode

Test mode is designed for staging environments or other private collaboration sites before deploying a site live.

In this mode error messages are hidden from the user and SilverStripe includes BasicAuth integration if you want to password protect the site. You can enable that but adding this to your mysite/_config/app.yml file:

---
Only:
  environment: 'test'
---
BasicAuth:
  entire_site_protected: true

Live Mode

All error messages are suppressed from the user and the application is in it's most secure state.

Live sites should always run in live mode. You should not run production websites in dev mode.

Checking Environment Type

You can check for the current environment type in config files through the environment variant.

---
Only:
  environment: 'live'
---
MyClass:
    myvar: live_value
---
Only:
  environment: 'test'
---
MyClass:
    myvar: test_value

Checking for what environment you're running in can also be done in PHP. Your application code may disable or enable certain functionality depending on the environment type.

if(Director::isLive()) {
    // is in live
} else if(Director::isTest()) {
    // is in test mode
} else if(Director::isDev()) {
    // is in dev mode
}

Was this article helpful?