Archive for the ‘Tips’ Category

Development Environment Setup, A Story

One of the parts that I don’t really like when starting/joining a new project, is setting up my development environment (dev env). Sometimes, it takes a long time. Once, at my first job, the first three days were spent to set up my dev env. It was creating a plugin for a desktop application. Well, I think again, it was more on my first real experience using non-Windows OS. It was Ubuntu. 😀

I also had an experience with setting up a development environment for a web project that uses Virtual Machine. It was very exhausting. VM is very heavy for my computer. I don’t really recommend it. I use it since I needed to use specific dependency version that not compatible with my OS (mine was Ubuntu 14, it needs Ubuntu 16). Ouch.

Virtual Machine is not my favorite for sure. It’s very heavy, you need to install many things.

Then there is this cool guy, docker. A smaller version of Virtual Machine. It’s very light. You can spin up more than one easily. With a docker compose, you can orchestrate your whole system easily. It’s really helpful. You can have the same environment like in production. No longer “but, it works on my machine“.

I am still using it.

Another thing to set up is your IDE. For example in my favorite IDE, PyCharm, you can set your custom python env, running env, and so on. Sometimes, you miss one step, and it’s not working like in your friend’s laptop.

My friend had this idea, to use Ansible to setup PyCharm. It’s a little bit hacky, but it works. It hacks the PyCharm configuration (which is an XML file). By using Ansible also, he customizes the docker compose override file to match with our computer env. It works really great. Only by updating some variables in all.yml, run it, you can have the same setup as your friend.

Another thing is Rancher. Docker is great, but you need to remember all the commands. I don’t really like it. My company uses it to deploy on the server, for production and staging. I think it’s a great product also. No need typing command, no need to log in to the server. It has nice UI to manage your system. It’s recommended to use also.

So, my current choices are Docker, Ansible, and Rancher. It can be changed for sure. I recommend these tools for your work.

Btw, for a small project, I also use virtual env for python development. It’s easier to setup when I just need to have clean python environment. I also recommend it. But for a bigger project that have many parts, I don’t really recommend it, although I have ever done it :).

Thanks for reading, and please share if you have tips for setting up dev env.

P.S.: Looking back, it’s very funny to remember that I need to spend 3 days for dev env setup. Well, I couldn’t even exit from Vim.


Installing PyCharm 2.7 on Ubuntu

One of the best IDE for Python is PyCharm and I use it currently. The newest version is 2.7. I want to upgrade my PyCharm from 2.6.3 to 2.7. It’s actually an easy step to do it. But, somehow I forgot how to do it on Ubuntu. So, I create this post.

  1. Get your PyCharm from here.
  2. Extract it
  3. Run bin\

Until this step, you can already use your PyCharm. But, for easiness, it’s would be better to create PyCharm launcher. These are the steps:

  1. Run PyCharm from command line, just like the 3rd step above
  2. Go to Tools–>Create Desktop Entry
  3. Click Ok
  4. Quit your PyCharm session

And, taraaa… You can launch PyCharm from desktop launcher.

If you want to install it on Windows, it will be much easier. Just install it like another application’s installation.



If you don’t have any project, you can go to Configure–>Create Desktop Entry

Those steps above also apply for Intellij IDEA


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