Drupal Run Book

Drupal in a High Availability Environment:

We wrote a book on taking care of Drupal within really big business, where many Databases communicate with the Drupal Database.  Many services interact securely with the Drupal Database.  E-commerce style transactions require High Availability.  Our only advice in writing your own Run Book is: Do it!  If you're running Drupal in a big business, you must have a Drupal Web App Run Book.

The reasons are these:

Subject Pros Cons
Upgrade-ability If you're writing a Run Book with upgrade ability as one of the key headings, while Development is happening, the Application will actually be upgrade able, with reasonable effort If you don't write a Run Book with upgrade ability in mind, it may or may not get done, depending on the Coder level of experience and diligence.
Scalability If you know which instances to scale when and how, you can easily automate it. People wont know where to start, if the project isn't documented.
Operations/Deployment If the Systems Admin team know what systems need what services, libraries, modules, and configurations, it's much more likely that they'll agree to support it. If the Deployment team doesn't know how to auto-deploy, it's unlikely they'll agree to deploy it.


Many Operating systems need to speak, often Microsoft based services.  If you write a Run book,  it means it's easier to maintain. Without Service connection details and corresponding config files, no one will know how to reconnect, should an address change, or debugging be required.
Performance If all performance variables are outlined clearly, the solution will likely stay tuned. meaning the end-user gets there page fast. When performance lags, it's very difficult to diagnose the problem, unless you have a detailed map of the network.
Code Quality Standards

The custom code written for your project has to be done using Drupal conventions, from the beginning, for so many reasons.  The important reason to you is that it's likely to get built right, the first time.

Without proper Drupal coding convention rigor and code review, your PHP programmer may work against the Drupal way of things, meaning all forms of hooks.
Unit Testing   When proper SimpleTest PHP unit tests are added alongside new Code, many developers can contribute to the same build very quickly. Without unit testing, a Development glass ceiling eventually is reached, because of many cross purposes going undiscovered.

  The reason to write a good run book are the same reasons to comment your code.  If you do, assuming it's well written, it'll outlive you, because, it will evolve.  This is particularly true where Applications that live in successful positive big businesses are concerned.  

Truth be told, this is a part of our mission as a corporate Drupal Integration specialty shop:  Help the wonderful Organic Drupal Community source code, live long-term within the ranks of big business,  as an annuity against dying out as a Liberal fad.  :)  Don't get us started.  

Linux followed this same trajectory,

Drupal Planet: 

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