One year ago I blogged about Pelican and up until today this remains the most frequented post in my blog. However, in the meantime Pelican got two major version bumps and is much more powerful now (and easier to use). So let's see how to setup your blog with Pelican and host it on Github Pages today...
As usual, before you do anything with Python, create a virtual environment for your Project.
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mkvirtualenv -p python2.7 blogging pip install Pelican==3.2 deactivate workon blogging
Pelican now comes with a quickstart command similar to Sphinx which will setup the recommended folder structure for you. When running the command, I think I answered all questions with their default answers.
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mkdir -p ~/blogging/src cd ~/blogging/src pelican-quickstart
At this point you will have a nice project structure and you should initiate a
Git repository and a
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git init nano .gitignore # Content of the .gitignore file: *.pid *.pyc *.swp output/
cd into the
content folder and create your markdown content
files there. While you are writing your post, you will likely want to see your
latest changes in a browser. For this reason pelican now provides a simple
development server which you can start like so:
Please note that when you quit that command with
CTRL+C, the server is still
somehow running in the background. In order to really quit it, you need to run:
This will also be necessary if you saved a file with incorrect syntax and caused an error in the devserver. The server output will usually describe nicely what the error was but it will not restart properly once you corrected the error, so you need to do that manually.
Github Pages is a fantastic way to host static
websites in Github's cloud. In my old post I described how to do this using
User pages but I would no longer recommend this because it expects you to
have the output in your project root, which we don't have any longer. Our
output is in the
output directory and it is good that way because we can now
delete that directory prior to each publish.
Instead we will use Project Pages. Simply create a new project on Github, make your initial commit in your pelican project and push it into your new Github project.
When using a Project Page you need to put your HTML output into a branch
gh-pages. I have never really understood how to create and maintain
this branch, but thankfully there is an awesome script called
ghp-import which will do all the magic
for you. Simply install that script into your virtualenv:
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workon blogging pip install -e git+git://github.com/davisp/ghp-import.git#egg=ghp-import deactivate workon blogging
Now you can publish your blog for the first time using one of Pelican's Make commands:
Whoa. That was easy!
If you would like to show your blog under your own domain, just set your
domain's A-Record to
22.214.171.124. Now we need to make sure that there is
a file called
CNAME in the output directory. In order to achieve this,
content directory and create a folder
extra and put that file
into that folder:
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cd ~/blogging/src/content/ mkdir extra && cd extra nano CNAME # Put your domain name into that file, i.e.: example.com
Now add the folowing setting to your
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nano pelicanconf.py FILES_TO_COPY = ( ('extra/CNAME', 'CNAME'), )
This makes sure that the
CNAME file will be copied from the content folder
into the output folder on each publish. Don't forget to wait a few hours for
the CNAME changes to propagate.
If you want another theme, you should check out pelica-themes.
Just clone that repository and change your theme setting in
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git clone git://github.com/getpelican/pelican-themes.git ~/pelican-themes cd ~/pelican-themes git submodule init git submodule update nano ~/blogging/src/pelicanconf.py # Change the THEME setting: THEME = '/Users/martin/pelican-themes/basic'