How to keep Escenic v6 websites updated

This is how you'll keep an Escenic v6 website on a Debian/Ubuntu based Linux distribution updated.

First, upgrade all the packages on your system, this of course, now includes Escenic Content Engine 6, all plugins as well as the new multi backend user interface, CUE:

# apt-get update
# apt-get upgrade

Then, change into the escenic user and apply the newly installed or upgraded versions to your current ECE:

$ ece -i engine1 repackage stop deploy start

This will replace all JARs and WARs in the EAR that was last used to deploy your website.

You have now upgraded your Escenic system. Easy right? Deploying an EAR from your build server

If you want to deploy a fresh EAR from your build server, and replace the libraries and Escenic webapps (like webservice.war) with the versions installed with apt-get, simply add --uri to the above command (the order of the parameters doesn't matter).:

$ ece -i engine1 \
  repackage \
  stop deploy \
  start \

You've now upgraded your engine1 instance with the latest ECE6 and all its plugins with all the publication webapps from my-website-3.0.3.ear. Tracking the linage of deployed EARs

The lineage of the repacked EAR can be seen in the deployment log (lines wrapped for improved readability):

$ ece -i engine1 list-deployments
[ece#engine-engine1] These are all the publications on engine1:
Fri Nov 4 13:38:28 UTC 2016
Fri Nov 4 13:41:21 UTC 2016

Here, you can see that my-site-3.0.4.ear was repacked and deployed Fri Nov 4 13:38:28 UTC 2016 and the archive had the checksum 523f32273c1add9c0034762ddb2e4a01.

Then later, a previous deployment with checksum 523f32273c1add9c0034762ddb2e4a01 was repacked (probably after an apt-get upgrade was executed) and deployed. This time the archive got the checksum 43ce5090f2e9255090ae4918f4b1bc86 after it was repackaged. What if you haven't installed all the needed Escenic packages?

If the my-site-3.0.4.ear contains Escenic dependencies, like Live Center, that for some reason haven't been installed on the machine (yet), ece repackage will simply do nothing. It will only replace JARs and WARs present on the machine. What if I want to provide ECE configuration in my own DEB files?

Since the escenic-content-engine DEB package provides configuration in:


your own configuration packages cannot provide any of the same files as apt-get will not install a second package providing (some) of the same files as an already installed package. Therefore, a conf package must populate one of the other Nursery layers, e.g. the instance layer:


This will make it possible for the escenic-content-engine and your my-site-conf-3.0.3 package to co-exist without messing about with DEB diversions and similar complexities. Conclusion

Upgrading Escenic systems has now gotten both easier and have become an integral part of the operating system. Querying the machine for its installed packages will list Escenic software among the other components like apache2, nginx and ssh.

As an added bonus, the operating system now understands that configuration files from the package under /etc/escenic is configuration files and will not overwrite this on upgrades, but will instead offer the administrator a choice what to do, including showing diff between the locally modified version and the new package's version of the configuration file(s).

Happy upgrading!

Licensed under CC BY Creative Commons License ~ ✉ torstein.k.johansen @ gmail ~ 🐘 ~ 🐦 @torsteinkrause