Thursday, December 9, 2010

Upgrading to Rails 3

If you’re upgrading an existing application, it’s a great idea to have good test coverage before going in. You should also first upgrade to Rails 2.3.5 and make sure your application still runs as expected before attempting to update to Rails 3. Then take heed of the following changes:

1.1 Rails 3 requires at least Ruby 1.8.7

Rails 3.0 requires Ruby 1.8.7 or higher. Support for all of the previous Ruby versions has been dropped officially and you should upgrade as early as possible. Rails 3.0 is also compatible with Ruby 1.9.2.

1.2 Rails Application object

As part of the groundwork for supporting running multiple Rails applications in the same process, Rails 3 introduces the concept of an Application object. An application object holds all the application specific configurations and is very similar in nature to config/environment.rb from the previous versions of Rails.
Each Rails application now must have a corresponding application object. The application object is defined in config/application.rb. If you’re upgrading an existing application to Rails 3, you must add this file and move the appropriate configurations from config/environment.rb to config/application.rb.

1.3 script/* replaced by script/rails

The new script/rails replaces all the scripts that used to be in the script directory. You do not run script/rails directly though, the rails command detects it is being invoked in the root of a Rails application and runs the script for you.

1.4 Dependencies and config.gem

The config.gem method is gone and has been replaced by using bundler and a Gemfile, see Vendoring Gems below.

1.5 Upgrade Process

To help with the upgrade process, a plugin named Rails Upgrade has been created to automate part of it.
Simply install the plugin, then run rake rails:upgrade:check to check your app for pieces that need to be updated (with links to information on how to update them). It also offers a task to generate a Gemfile based on your current config.gem calls and a task to generate a new routes file from your current one.

You can see an example of how that works at Rails Upgrade is now an Official Plugin

Aside from Rails Upgrade tool, if you need more help, there are people on IRC and rubyonrails-talk that are probably doing the same thing, possibly hitting the same issues. Be sure to blog your own experiences when upgrading so others can benefit from your knowledge!

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