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Plone 4 buildout for



  • Prerequisites - What needs to be installed by sys admin
  • Run buildout for development
  • Run buildout for production (deployment)
  • Cron jobs to be setup on production and development
  • Database packing
  • Logs
  • Logs via Graylog2
  • Monitoring
  • EEA deployment
    • Contacts
    • Copyright and license
    • Source code
    • Resources
      • Hardware
      • Software

Buildout is a tool for easily creating identical development or production environments. This tool gives you the right versions of Zope, Plone products and python libraries to ensure that every installation gets exactly the same configuration.

Everything is installed in a local folder. This prevents conflicts with already existing python and zope packages. Nothing other than this folder is touched, so the user doesn’t need any special priviliges.

There are two configurations available for running this buildout:

  1. one for developers (devel)
  2. one for production (deployment)

Prerequisites - What needs to be installed by sys admin

This buildout is intended to run on Linux/Unix-based operating systems. The buildout has been used and tested on Fedora, Debian, Ubuntu and Mac OS X.

Be sure that you have this software and libraries installed on the server before you run buildout. These must be globally installed by the server administrator.

  • python-2.6
  • python-dev (Debian/Ubuntu) / python-devel (RedHat/CentOS)
  • wget
  • lynx
  • poppler-utils (for pdftotext etc)
  • tar
  • gcc
  • make
  • libc6-dev (Debian/Ubuntu) / glibc-devel (RedHat/CentOS)
  • libxml2-devel
  • libxslt-devel
  • libcrypto
  • libsvn-dev and libaprutil1-dev (on Debian/Ubuntu)
  • apr-util-devel and subversion-devel (on RedHat/CentOS)
  • cyrus-sasl-devel (on RedHat/CentOS) or libsasl2-dev (on Debian/Ubuntu) as OpenLDAP dependency
  • graphiz, graphiz-devel and graphiz-gd (read more under eea.relations)
  • xpdf and pdftk (read more under eea.converter)
  • ImageMagick ver 6.3.7+ (read more under eea.converter)
  • git
  • libcurl3-dev (Debian/Ubuntu) / curl-devel (RedHat/CentOS)
  • libbz2-dev (Debian/Ubuntu) / libbzip2-devel (RedHat/CentOS)
  • libmysqlclient18 and libmysqlclient-dev (Debian/Ubuntu) / libmysqlclient and libmysqlclient-devel (RedHat/CentOS)

For CentOS 7 you should install:

yum install python-devel postgresql-devel libmemcached-devel zlib-devel libxslt-devel libxml2-devel mariadb-devel python-devel openldap-devel

Also, on Centos7: Microsoft core fonts

yum install curl cabextract xorg-x11-font-utils fontconfig rpm -i

< installer-2.6-1.noarch.rpm>

This project also needs access to a MySQL database. Currently there is one that has the data for the current BISE site. Either that database should be migrated to this server or provide access from this servers to there.

Run buildout for development

The first time you want to use this buildout you first have to get all software from github and then run a few commands:

$ git clone
$ cd bise.plonebuildout
$ ./ -c development.cfg
$ ./bin/buildout -c development.cfg

This first three steps only have to be done the first time you use this buildout. When you later want to update the site because people have committed changes you do:

$ cd bise.plonebuildout
$ git pull origin master
$ ./bin/develop rb

If you want to use a production database, put your Data.fs in var/filestorage/.

To start the site:

$ ./bin/instance fg (or start)

To debug:

$ ./bin/instance debug

Run buildout for production (deployment)

The above instructions are for developers. When running buildout in a production environment one should pass the configuration argument for deployment:

$ git clone
$ cd bise.plonebuildout
$ ./ -c deployment.cfg
$ ./bin/buildout -c deployment.cfg

The apache config for production is etc/apache-vh.conf

Now buildout will use the production configuration and install ldap product and other zope/plone products that are not used during web development.

The deployment buildout is based on the ZEO client and server. It installs several zope instances, one zeo server and one debug instance.

To run the debug instance use:

$ ./bin/instance fg

Cron jobs to be setup on production and development

On production (chicken):

$ crontab -e -u zope
@reboot cd /var/local/bise.plonebuildout && bin/zope-start

On production (chicken) create symlinks from /var/local/bise.plonebuildout/etc/cron/feed-update-cron to /var/spool/cron/zope

Database packing

Packing is a vital regular maintenance procedure The Plone database does not automatically prune deleted content. You must periodically pack the database to reclaim space.

Data.fs should be packed daily via a cron job:

01 2 * * * /var/local/bise/bise.plonebuildout/bin/zeopack

This cronjob is already set on the previous step when symlinking the cron-file to /var/spool/cron


EEA-CPB for deployment will generate logs from ZEO, Zope, Pound and Apache. All this logs have a default location and a default size on disk allocated for each of them.

A ZEO server only maintains one log file, which records starts, stops and client connections. Unless you are having difficulties with ZEO client connections, this file is uninformative. It also typically grows very slowly – so slowly that you may never need to rotate it. In respect of this ZEO log files will not be rotated and the default location on disk will be:

  • /var/local/bise/bise.plonebuildout/var/log/zeoserver.log

Zope client logs are of much more interest and grow more rapidly. There are two kinds of client logs, and each of your clients will maintain both, access logs and event logs. By default the logs will be rotated once they rich 100Mb in size and 3 old log files will be kept. Zope clients will write the logs on disk under /eea.plonebuildout.MY-EEA-PORTAL/var/log/, e.g.:

  • /var/local/bise/bise.plonebuildout/var/log/www1-Z2.log
  • /var/local/bise/bise.plonebuildout/var/log/www1.log

Logs generated by Pound will be created under /var/local/bise/bise.plonebuildout/var/log/pound.log. This logs must be rotated using logrotate. System administrators should configure logrotate for example like this:

# rotate Pound logs for MY-EEA-PORTAL
/var/local/bise/bise.plonebuildout/var/log/pound.log {
rotate 5
  /bin/kill -HUP `cat /var/run/ 2> /dev/null` 2> /dev/null || true
  /bin/kill -HUP `cat /var/run/ 2> /dev/null` 2> /dev/null || true

Logs generated by Apache will be created under /var/log/httpd/*.log. This logs must be rotated using logrotate. Logrotate comes with suitable default configurations for apache/httpd. However, for extra log locations, such as specific access logs kept under /var/local/www-logs, system administrators should provide additional configuration file(s) for logrotate; for example, in /etc/logrotate.d/eea we might have something like this:

# rotate Apache logs for MY-EEA-PORTAL and MY-OTHER-EEA-PORTAL
/var/local/www-logs/MY-EEA-PORTAL/*.access /var/local/www-logs/MY-OTHER-EEA-PORTAL/access {
    /sbin/service httpd reload > /dev/null 2>/dev/null || true

Logs via Graylog2

For Zope logs to rich Graylog2, rsyslog should be installed and configured under /etc/rsyslog.conf similar as it is under an existing backend (e.g. redsquirrel). Zope clients should send the logs to rsyslog on certain interfaces and should be configured like bellow:

event-log-custom =
        address /dev/log
        facility local4
        format ${:_buildout_section_name_}: %(message)s
        level info
access-log-custom =
        address /dev/log
        facility local1
        format ${:_buildout_section_name_}-Z2: %(message)s
        level info

In order to have access on EEA Graylog2, an administrator should be asked to give you permissions.


The EEA uses Munin to monitor it’s servers. To enable the backend monitoring of your server via Munin follow this wiki instructions_.

Complete list of EEA Munin nodes is accessible here:

EEA deployment

The project name is BISE: Biodiversity System for Europe and it’s based on Zope/Plone framework.


The project owner is Franz Daffner (franz.daffner at, +45 3336 7146). Other people involved in this project are:

  • Alberto Telletxea (atelletxea at
  • Mikel Santamaria (msantamaria at
  • Mikel Larreategi (mlarreategi at

The Initial Owner of the Original Code is European Environment Agency (EEA). All Rights Reserved.

The BISE Biodiversity System for Europe (the Original Code) is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

Source code

You can get the code for this project from:



Minimum requirements:

  • 2048MB RAM
  • 2 CPU 1.8GHz or faster
  • 2GB hard disk space


  • 4096MB RAM
  • 4 CPU 2.4GHz or faster
  • 6GB hard disk space


Any recent Linux version. apache2, memcached, any STMP local server.

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