Category Archives: Phabricator

Accelerate Phabricator with Nginx

Phabricator is an awesome suite of tools open sourced by Facebook and now maintained by Phacility. At Disqus, it’s the central nexus of our engineering team. Since so much of an engineer’s day revolves around using the web interface, I was tasked with trying to optimize our local instance of it. The quickest win was installing and enabling APC per the Installation Guide. Next up, I opened the network tab of Chrome’s developer tools and found that PHP is handling the serving of static assets. Granted, phabricator does set very sane and liberal headers so that browsers will heavily cache all the assets, each browser still needs to obtain them first. To ease the pain of the first load, I setup Nginx to handle caching them as well. This way PHP only has to serve and/or generate assets once and something that’s far better at serving static content, can handle the heavy lifting from then on out.

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Jenkins and Phabricator sitting in a tree

We’ve been using Phabricator for just about a year here at Disqus. It was originally created at Facebook and open sourced in Spring 2011. To sum it up using their own words: “Phabricator is a open source collection of web applications which make it easier to write, review, and share source code.” The small team working on it at Phacility (the SaaS company behind Phabricator) is constantly improving it so it’s on a continuous release cycle.

Jenkins has been used for continuous integration testing here for much longer. I’m not exactly sure for how long since it was setup before I started in September 2011. David Cramer has always been pushing for an ideal continuous integration/deployment system (IE here here) so part of my duties has been to improve what we have to achieve that goal (we’re hiring).

Currently, there isn’t a direct CI hook into Phabricator that is as deep as say Github+Travis. However, with a little script and an simple event listener for Arcanist, we can replicate most of that functionality.

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