I want a real staging site feature.
We always value our customers’ feedback, the work has been started.
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@mustaasam.saleem, this is great news. Is there any expected timeline for the rollout of the staging feature?
Thanks for your valuable feedback, after a lot of hard work, testing, and public beta, we are pleased to announce our enhanced staging environment where one can create a staging application, test changes and then push and/or pull changes to & from a live site/application.
Here is how it works along with the important notes:
Looking forward to your feedback.
First of all I appreciate the effort from Cloudways to create this. However it still has a long way to go before it is a reliable staging environment such as the one I used to use when I was on WPEngine.
I have two sites hosted on Cloudways. One of them is a very simple WordPress site whose only purpose is to run a survey plugin so I can get feedback from my users. This one worked beautifully when I created a staging site.
However my main site didn’t work, it suffered the exact same problem as it always did in my two previous attempts to clone it - the site redirects back to the main site when you try and load the staging site. I’m pretty sure that this is because I have hardcoded the URL in several files in my child theme. I do this for performance and make no apologies for it, it is wasteful to call the database every time you need the sites name or title tag or other info provided by the WordPress Get_bloginfo() command.
What the staging environment should do is go through all of the files and change the URL accordingly, I assume it doesn’t do that right now.
I know that if I open a support ticket you guys will fix this and I may do that soon - I did it both times when I made the clone sites and it got fixed. But both times it took a few hours and every time I asked for feedback I just got a “please wait we are working on it” response. I don’t have time today to do that. Also both times when it finally got fixed I asked what the problem was so I didn’t have to bother you guys (i.e didn’t have time to wait for you to fix it) but I never got a clear response - the “fix” from the first attempt was to delete a caching file that didn’t even exist on my second attempt. I may also just SSH to the clone suite and try to see if I can just replace the hard coded text. But again I am far too busy today to do this.
So that’s my feedback. I like the direction this is taking and once it woks as well as the one I used to use on WPEngine I’l be a happy camper!
This so-called staging environment is a joke.
As Dronebot_Workshop mentioned, without swapping out the original URL with the staging application’s URL it’s just a pile of crap.
So I’ll ask again…
When do you expect to have this half-baked solution fixed so that it’s a REAL staging system?
Why even release it without this CRITICAL feature?
Actually in all fairness to Cloudways I just took the time to check the files in the staging site and my initial suspicion was incorrect - they did indeed change the hard coded URL’s in the files to match the staging site URL.
Checked the database too and they seemed to change them in the native WordPress tables. Some of the plugin tables however still contain entries for the original URL.
But it still doesn’t work, it redirects back to the original site. Same as whenever I’ve cloned it in the past.
I will have to bite the bullet and open a support chat. I am in need of a staging site as a new feature I just added to the production site is killing my response time and I need to fix it without incurring any downtime. Which is what a staging site is for after all.
I REALLY wish this could be resolved, both for the staging and for the cloning operation. I can take small comfort in that I see from the forum that others have experienced the same problem with their clone sites redirecting back to the original.
Follow up to all of this:
I got onto the live chat support and worked with the support tech to try and resolve this, however he was unable to fix it and opened a support ticket on the problem.
Got a note back from support on the ticket, the problem is resolved. It was the Redis cache, clearing it apparently resolved the issue (which makes sense, wish I’d thought of it earlier).
So all is good now, thank you Cloudways. If Redis is indeed the issue I suggest that the staging process should clear all the caches (Redis and Breeze) as part of the procedure.
One amusing part of the online chat was when the tech asked me to clear the Breeze cache on the new staging server. I had to remind him that since I couldn’t access the staging site as it kept redirecting there was no way for me to do that!
I haven’t tried pushing changes from staging to the live site yet, I’ll find out later today if that works too.