Exclusive Sandbox or Staging Environs for Orgs?

One small challenge we’ve found with Discourse is the the lack of a staging or sandbox environment that is exclusive to our org. We’d like a place where to stage and test any planned changes (everything from CSS changes to SSO testing) outside of production.

How are other teams handling this with their hosted versions of Discourse?

Does the Discourse team offer, or would they consider offering, anything like this for their customers to purchase, whether it’s a blank slate or a clone of their current environment?

We spin up staging environments for anyone who wants one on our enterprise plan. Admittedly few do this: it’s usually when they have many custom plugins and need to make sure everything integrates properly.

SSO is generally an issue before a site launches, and once it works it generally keeps working so I haven’t heard of using a staging environment for that case.

For CSS, you can use the admin interface to preview the styles before you enable them. You shouldn’t have to break things for people who are currently browsing your site!


Thanks for the info, Robin!

Ah, it seems like we’re a special case. We’ve already launched, and are changing our SSO from Drupal to Salesforce. Sam has been a HUGE help, but we’re still working out the quirks and would like to do some additional testing in a staging environment.

For the CSS, that’s an excellent suggestion and how we’re currently reviewing changes before we enable them. Our interest in staging here is allowing the executive team to review and approve (they’re not regular forum users and do not have admin access) before we push to production.

Any suggestions for us to move forward (we’re on the Business plan)? If necessary we could sign up for an additional account.

Perhaps the easiest option is to sign up for a standard hosted site as site-staging.domain.com; we do offer 20% off second (and third, fourth, etc) sites when you already host a site with us, provided they are on the same plan or lower.

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Since we’re using the oAuth2 plugin (for now) for SSO, it looks like we’d need to sign up for another Business plan as that’s the only one that supports our oAuth2 – or is there a way to get that plugin support on the standard plan?

(We’re also still considering upgrading to the Enterprise plan in the near future for the more robust plugin support and the ability to have a true staging environment.)

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You can upgrade or downgrade your hosting plan at any time, just let us know!

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