Deploying Rails with Capistrano and limited access

software development


Hi. I’m putting together a simple Rails app for a DH-hosted site, and I’d like to be able to deploy/upgrade using Capistrano with as few permissions as possible. I don’t want the site’s owner to have to give me anything more than shell access with my own limited sandbox, which is what I currently have with the shell account she set up for me.

Is this even possible? When Capistrano logs in as me to monkey with FCGI processes, will it have permission to do so?

I’ve followed most of the procedures at, except that I’m hosting the SVN repository elsewhere and I don’t care about databases yet – I’m starting with a simple controller.

I’ve successfully gotten cap to export from SVN to my sandbox and create the symlink to current. The deployment aborts in the reaper script, complaining that no processes match the fcgi pattern. This is my first attempt at deployment, so there are no processes to reap: shouldn’t this lack of a match be expected? Why is it an error?

And – how do I make this sandbox-private deployment visible on the website? I’m in the same group as the site admin, but /home/example/example.tld isn’t group-writable. Are she and I the only two accounts in this group? Should I ask her to make our existing HTML directory group-writable?

Or would a better (safer, from her standpoint) approach be for her to put an .htaccess file in there, rewriting requests to /home/myname/railsapp/current/public/dispatch.fcgi? Any gotchas to this approach?

Thanks in advance for your ideas…