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Now that you’ve successfully installed Kalabox you can start creating your own apps. Kalabox apps are completely isolated development environments. At a high level they contain the following things:
- Metadata about the containers and services your application needs to run.
- Metadata about the tooling your application needs for development.
- High level configuration such as name, service exposure, file sharing, etc.
- Your application’s codebase.
Apps are mutually exclusive
This architecture means that everything you need to run and develop your app is contained within the app itself. That means you can blow away
app1 without it having any impact on the containers and tools you are using on
Kalabox apps can be quite simple or massively complex. For example, a Kalabox app can be a static HTML site, or can mimic and integrate with hosting providers like Pantheon.
A Kalabox app at it’s smallest requires only two files:
kalabox.ymlfile that contains the high level configuration for your app.
kalabox-compose.ymlfile that contains the services your app needs to run.
Kalabox uses Docker Compose
kalabox-compose file is simply a Docker Compose file.
Let’s look at a few examples.
Example 1: Static HTML site
You can find the code for this example over here. Let’s clone the repo and then start up the app.
git clone https://github.com/kalabox/kalabox-app-examples && cd kalabox-app-examples/html1 kbox start
Now that you’ve started up the app you should have…
- A static HTML site running the latest
nginxand accessible at
- A webroot with the default
nginxindex.html inside your app in the
Everything in your apps
code directory should be synced to the web server. Try editing
index.html and refreshing your site to see all the magix.
Now let examine your app’s directory structure and files.
. |-- kalabox.yml |-- kalabox-compose.yml
Let’s examine the basic config options here:
name: html1.example type: example version: 0.13.0-alpha.1 pluginconfig: sharing: share: 'web:/usr/share/nginx/html' services: web: - port: 80/tcp default: true
- name - Tells Kalabox the name of the app
- type - Tells Kalabox the type of the app
- version - Tells Kalabox the version of the app
- pluginconfig - Tells Kalabox how this apps sharing and services plugins should be configured. Read more about that here.
This is a simple
docker-compose file that tells Kalabox to spin up a container called
examplehtml1_web_1, which should be built using the latest official image of
nginx and whose port
80 should be exposed to the outside world so we can communicate with it. It also sets the containers hostname based on the environmental variable
$KALABOX_APP_HOSTNAME. Read more about that in the tip below.
web: image: nginx:latest hostname: $KALABOX_APP_HOSTNAME ports: - "80"
PRO TIP: Level up your
You can use variables found in
kbox env when constructing your
kalabox-compose.yml such as
$KALABOX_APP_HOSTNAME. This can give you a lot of power and flexibility when crafting your app.