Modifying the BETY schema

Changes to the Bety schema happen through the Ruby on Rails database migration system. Here is a detailed guide on database migration for Ruby on Rails. What follows is a lightning guide to the essential steps.

  1. If you have not done so already, git clone the Bety repository. If you are on the VM, it should already be present in ~/bety.

  2. cd into the bety repository and update to the latest version with git pull.

  3. Make sure all Ruby gems are up to date. Running bundle check should do a quick check. If anything is out of date, update with bundle install --path vendor/bundle. (Adding the --path argument is strongly recommended to isolate these gems from the system install.) If this throws an error, see Troubleshooting below.

  4. Check the config/database.yml file to make sure that database parameters are set correctly. If you have multiple instances of Bety installed (e.g. development, production), adjust parameters accordingly. You can name each database environment whatever you want, but this guide assumes you are working with the production configuration (the default on the VM). The default VM configuration should look like this:

production:
adapter: postgis
encoding: utf-8
reconnect: false
database: bety
pool: 5
username: bety
password: bety
  1. Update the Bety database itself with the latest migrations by running bundle exec rake db:migrate RAILS_ENV=production (if you are using a different BETY instance, change production to whatever you are working on). If this command exits silently, then your bety instance is up to date. If it throws an error, see Troubleshooting below.

  2. Modifying the database involves adding new Ruby scripts to the db/migrate directory. In a nutshell, each migration describes a database revision (up -- how to make the change) and its inverse (down -- how to undo the change). Here is an example that adds a new workflow_id column to the ensembles table.

class AddWorkflowIdToEnsembles < ActiveRecord::Migration
def self.up
add_column :ensembles, :workflow_id, :integer
end
def self.down
remove_column :ensembles, :workflow_id
end
end

Here is another example that runs SQL code directly to add a constraint on a column in a table:

class AddGeometryConstraint < ActiveRecord::Migration
def self.up
execute %q{
ALTER TABLE public.sites
ADD CONSTRAINT enforce_valid_geom CHECK (st_isvalid(geometry))
}
end
def self.down
execute %q{
ALTER TABLE public.sites
DROP CONSTRAINT enforce_valid_geom
}
end
end

There are lots of examples of previous migrations in this directory that can be used for reference. Database operations can be performed by passing SQL queries directly to an execute %q{<YOUR QUERY HERE>} statement, or through Ruby helper commands like change_column. Although you can name migrations whatever you want, because they are run in numerical-alphabetical order, the convention is to prefix your script with the current year, month, day, hour, minute, and second (you can generate this string by running date +%Y%m%d%H%M%S on the command line). Alternatively, a command like the following can be used to automatically generate a properly named file in the appropriate place: bundle exec rails generate migration MyNewMigration.

  1. To apply the new database changes, re-run bundle exec rake db:migrate RAILS_ENV=production from the bety repository root directory.

  2. To undo changes, use the db:rollback task (i.e. bundle exec rake db:rollback RAILS_ENV=production). Each call of db:rollback will undo one migration. Optionally, if you want to make multiple changes, add the STEP=n (e.g. STEP=3) flag to undo the last n migrations. If you want to modify the last migration, you can use the shortcut task db:rollback:redo (shorthand for db:rollback, then db:migrate).

Troubleshooting

Error related to pg_dump non-existent option -i

This is a bug the results from versions mismatches between Rails and Postgres. The correct solution is to update to Rails 2.4.6 or greater. The simpler solution is to manually grep through the vendor/bundle folder in your Bety instance, searching for instances of pg_dump and manually remove the -i arguments. This should only be in a few (~3) files. Before making these manual changes, be sure to run bundle install --path vendor/bundle to make sure you are modifying the most up-to-date gems. Otherwise, your changes will be overwritten. There is no need to re-run bundle install or any other command after these changes -- they should propagate to the Rails app immediately and automatically.

For reference, see this Stack Overflow question.

Error related to "can't activate ...already activated"

This is related to mismatches between the "installed" and required versions of a gem, or a mismatch between a gem's version and the version expected by its dependencies. The basic solution is to uninstall the offending gem with bundle exec gem uninstall <gem> ^[Note that this command may throw an error like "undefined method 'delete' for bundler". This is normal, and the gem was actually uninstalled.] and then re-install with bundle install --path vendor/bundle. If this doesn't work, you may have to rm -rf the entire vendor/bundle directory and then re-install all gems with bundle install --path vendor/bundle.

For reference, see this Stack Overflow question.