Handling private packages with Satis#

Satis is a static composer repository generator. It is a bit like an ultra- lightweight, static file-based version of packagist and can be used to host the metadata of your company's private packages, or your own. It basically acts as a micro-packagist. You can get it from GitHub or install via CLI: composer.phar create-project composer/satis --stability=dev.

Setup#

For example let's assume you have a few packages you want to reuse across your company but don't really want to open-source. You would first define a Satis configuration: a json file with an arbitrary name that lists your curated repositories.

Here is an example configuration, you see that it holds a few VCS repositories, but those could be any types of repositories. Then it uses "require-all": true which selects all versions of all packages in the repositories you defined.

The default file Satis looks for is satis.json in the root of the repository.

{
    "name": "My Repository",
    "homepage": "http://packages.example.org",
    "repositories": [
        { "type": "vcs", "url": "http://github.com/mycompany/privaterepo" },
        { "type": "vcs", "url": "http://svn.example.org/private/repo" },
        { "type": "vcs", "url": "http://github.com/mycompany/privaterepo2" }
    ],
    "require-all": true
}

If you want to cherry pick which packages you want, you can list all the packages you want to have in your satis repository inside the classic composer require key, using a "*" constraint to make sure all versions are selected, or another constraint if you want really specific versions.

{
    "repositories": [
        { "type": "vcs", "url": "http://github.com/mycompany/privaterepo" },
        { "type": "vcs", "url": "http://svn.example.org/private/repo" },
        { "type": "vcs", "url": "http://github.com/mycompany/privaterepo2" }
    ],
    "require": {
        "company/package": "*",
        "company/package2": "*",
        "company/package3": "2.0.0"
    }
}

Once you did this, you just run php bin/satis build <configuration file> <build dir>. For example php bin/satis build config.json web/ would read the config.json file and build a static repository inside the web/ directory.

When you ironed out that process, what you would typically do is run this command as a cron job on a server. It would then update all your package info much like Packagist does.

Note that if your private packages are hosted on GitHub, your server should have an ssh key that gives it access to those packages, and then you should add the --no-interaction (or -n) flag to the command to make sure it falls back to ssh key authentication instead of prompting for a password. This is also a good trick for continuous integration servers.

Set up a virtual-host that points to that web/ directory, let's say it is packages.example.org. Alternatively, with PHP >= 5.4.0, you can use the built-in CLI server php -S localhost:port -t satis-output-dir/ for a temporary solution.

Usage#

In your projects all you need to add now is your own composer repository using the packages.example.org as URL, then you can require your private packages and everything should work smoothly. You don't need to copy all your repositories in every project anymore. Only that one unique repository that will update itself.

{
    "repositories": [ { "type": "composer", "url": "http://packages.example.org/" } ],
    "require": {
        "company/package": "1.2.0",
        "company/package2": "1.5.2",
        "company/package3": "dev-master"
    }
}

Security#

To secure your private repository you can host it over SSH or SSL using a client certificate. In your project you can use the options parameter to specify the connection options for the server.

Example using a custom repository using SSH (requires the SSH2 PECL extension):

{
    "repositories": [
        {
            "type": "composer",
            "url": "ssh2.sftp://example.org",
            "options": {
                "ssh2": {
                    "username": "composer",
                    "pubkey_file": "/home/composer/.ssh/id_rsa.pub",
                    "privkey_file": "/home/composer/.ssh/id_rsa"
                }
            }
        }
    ]
}

Tip: See ssh2 context options for more information.

Example using HTTP over SSL using a client certificate:

{
    "repositories": [
        {
            "type": "composer",
            "url": "https://example.org",
            "options": {
                "ssl": {
                    "local_cert": "/home/composer/.ssl/composer.pem"
                }
            }
        }
    ]
}

Tip: See ssl context options for more information.

Downloads#

When GitHub or BitBucket repositories are mirrored on your local satis, the build process will include the location of the downloads these platforms make available. This means that the repository and your setup depend on the availability of these services.

At the same time, this implies that all code which is hosted somewhere else (on another service or for example in Subversion) will not have downloads available and thus installations usually take a lot longer.

To enable your satis installation to create downloads for all (Git, Mercurial and Subversion) your packages, add the following to your satis.json:

{
    "archive": {
        "directory": "dist",
        "format": "tar",
        "prefix-url": "https://amazing.cdn.example.org",
        "skip-dev": true
    }
}

Options explained#

Once enabled, all downloads (include those from GitHub and BitBucket) will be replaced with a local version.

prefix-url#

Prefixing the URL with another host is especially helpful if the downloads end up in a private Amazon S3 bucket or on a CDN host. A CDN would drastically improve download times and therefore package installation.

Example: A prefix-url of http://my-bucket.s3.amazonaws.com (and directory set to dist) creates download URLs which look like the following: http://my-bucket.s3.amazonaws.com/dist/vendor-package-version-ref.zip.

Resolving dependencies#

It is possible to make satis automatically resolve and add all dependencies for your projects. This can be used with the Downloads functionality to have a complete local mirror of packages. Just add the following to your satis.json:

{
    "require-dependencies": true
}

When searching for packages, satis will attempt to resolve all the required packages from the listed repositories. Therefore, if you are requiring a package from Packagist, you will need to define it in your satis.json.

Found a typo? Something is wrong in this documentation? Just fork and edit it!