browse the blogs

[ 27 Aug 2015 ]

Debugging Varnish VCL configuration files | Midwestern Mac, LLC:

Over the past few years varnish has become the “go to” way for Magento systems to paper over serious backend performance problems – which means varnish debugging is quickly becoming a must have skill for Magento developers working at all levels of scalability.

This entire article’s worth a read, but the ability to log from VCL files dirctly to the system log is what drew my attention

In your VCL (at the top), add in import std; to import the std library. Then, anywhere in the vcl, you can log messages to the system log using something like:

std.syslog(0, req.http.Cookie);

[ 10 Aug 2015 ]

Magento 2: How to Check if a Module’s Installed:

Hint: Inject Magento’s Magento/Framework/Module/Manager object.

[ 6 Aug 2015 ]

Magento Patches Finder:

Nice and simple web application that will let you say

Hey, I’m using THIS version of Magento CE

and the application will say back

Then here’s the security patches you want

It’s a pity that the politics of a company in transition don’t let Varien/Magento Inc./Ebay Enterprises/etc. release something like this themselves, but I’m glad I’m working inside a platform/community where things like this exist.

[ 27 Mar 2015 ]


This tool is used to build a minimal Magento environment that allows to run PHPUnit tests for a Magento module on Travis CI.

[ 27 Mar 2015 ]


Clever bit of programming from clockworkgeek (Daniel Deady) that lets you turn any Magento project with a composer.json file into a Magento Connect package.

[ 23 Jan 2015 ]

Where Magento Connect **does** Check for Permissions:

Magento Connect, File Permissions, and myself have a rocky, inconsistent relationship. This one’s the opposite of my usual complaints — if Connect’s saying it can’t install itself due to file file permissions errors, here’s where to check which directories it thinks it can’t write to.

[ 26 Dec 2014 ]

Magento Sellers Guide to Sales Tax:

A relatively straight forward article about how to collect sales tax for an ecommerce business. It’s remarkable how much hand waving there is about this from agencies representing themselves as ecommerce experts.

[ 23 Dec 2014 ]

If Magento 2 is your first introduction to PHP namespaces, here’s one small thought technology that might help. Consider the following

namespace Foo\Baz;
class Bar {

The above does not define a class named Bar. It defines a class named “Foo\Baz\Bar”. That’s how PHP sees the class internally, and once you start thinking about classes the same way PHP does, they start making more sense, (or, at least, they did for me)

[ 21 Dec 2014 ]

If you’re trying to use the browser setup workflow in the Magento 2 beta released in December of 2014, make sure your web server is using the index.php in the root of the project and not the pub/index.php file.

It’s unclear which index.php is “the right” file to point to — the pub folder seems to be an attempt to adopt a more modern, Symfony like approach that keeps your code and your web serve-able file separate, but the root level index.php seems like an affordance for developers used to Magento’s traditional structure.

[ 21 Dec 2014 ]

If you’re using Vagrant to manage your Magento 2 installations, you’ll want to be careful with file permissions. By default, it appears that Vagrant’s synced folder setup won’t allow the apache/web user to create folders with permissions elevated higher than the default sync share.

Dropping in some custom mount options should fix this up, and while 0666 and 0777 aren’t ideal, that seems to be world we live in nowadays.