Information for: DEVELOPERS   PARTNERS



EOL notice! The Lightning Profile will reach end-of-life on November, 2021. For more information, see Frequently Asked Questions.

Acquia Lightning is a packaged distribution of the open source Drupal social publishing system for Drupal 8. As a free collection of useful modules from Acquia and the Drupal community, Acquia Lightning offers you a quick on-ramp to begin building your website.

Acquia Lightning for Drupal 8

In Drupal 8, we have taken advantage of new Drupal features, and added functions enhancing the new standard for enterprise authoring in Drupal, including layout, preview, workflow, and media. We have embedded hundreds of automated tests, allowing developers to create continuous integration pipelines to monitor major features, providing a safe environment to innovate with their own custom code additions to Acquia Lightning.

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Development and maintenance

Although large numbers of other Drupal installations and distributions rely on Drush for updates and development, Acquia Lightning requires the use of Composer commands with your installation.

Unlike Drush, Composer is a dependency manager system you can use to prevent module mismatches and better ensure system reliability. As an example, if the Module A version 8.x-1.0 depends on Module B version 8.x-3.2, Composer will not let you update Module B to version 3.3 or downgrade Module B to version 3.1.

The following table includes Composer command replacements for the Drush commands you may already know:

Task Drush (version <= 8 only) Composer
Fetch the latest version of a project drush pm-download [project] composer require drupal/[project]:8.*
Fetch a specific version of a project drush pm-download [project]-8.x-1.0-beta3 composer require drupal/[project]:8.1.0-beta3
Update all projects and Drupal core drush pm-update composer update
Update a single project drush pm-update [project] composer update drupal/[project]
Updating Drupal core drush pm-update drupal composer update drupal/core

Drush remains in use as the module handles certain tasks, such as database updates (drush updatedb). The installer will install a copy of Drush (local to the project) in the bin directory.

Source control

If you review the .gitignore file provided in the distribution, you will see source control exclude certain directories, including all directories containing contributed projects. The exclusion can be disconcerting if you are familiar with Drush, but in a Composer-based project, you must not commit your installed dependencies to source control.

When you configure the project, Composer will create a file called composer.lock, listing installed dependencies and versions. Commit the composer.lock file to source control. When others want to install copies of the project, they must run composer install, which will install the correct versions of everything listed in composer.lock. The composer install command ensures a consistent base development environment for all team members.

As you install or upgrade to Acquia Lightning, use the information as a guide to connect your website to an Acquia subscription to acquaint yourself with Acquia Support, and network services.

Committing settings.php to your repository

Drupal websites use a settings.php file for basic configuration. Applications on Cloud Platform have a special include statement configuring your settings.php file to function properly in all environments hosted on Cloud Platform. Unless building a distribution or deploying to a large number of environments with different databases, Acquia recommends you commit the settings.php file to your repository.

For an example of how to install a require line in settings.php to protect sensitive credentials becoming stored in version control, see the blt.settings.php file in Acquia BLT.