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Dispatching TurboGears via FCGI

This confirmed to run on Mac OS X 10.4.7 under Turbogears 0.9.9 and 1.1a (so, no reason not to run under the 1.0b release).

Information was drawn from the Turbogears trac wiki , which shows how to use Nginx to proxy to TG, and this wiki's FastCGI Example page, the latter detailing the PHP/FCGI process.

This is for Nginx/FCGI/Turbogears.


Substitute throughout with the values relevant to your own set-up:

${HOST} = localhost - (or whatever you choose)

${PORT} = 8080 - (or whatever you choose)

${NGINX} = /usr/local/nginx - location of nginx installation

${PROJECTBASE} /opt/projects/wiki20 - location of Turbogears project


Getting the required files

Two files are required to be created: ${NGINX}/scripts/fcgi.py and ${NGINX}/scripts/${PROJECTNAME}.fcgi.

To create ${NGINX}/scripts/fcgi.py ...

mkdir ${NGINX}/scripts
curl -o ${NGINX}/scripts/fcgi.py http://www.saddi.com/software/py-lib/py-lib/fcgi.py

To create ${NGINX}/scripts/${PROJECTNAME}.fcgi ...

Copy and paste the following to ${NGINX}/scripts/${PROJECTNAME}.fcgi. Edit the file, navigate to the "USER EDIT SECTION" and replace each instance of ${PROJECTBASE} and ${PROJECTNAME} with the corresponding values for your project.


import cherrypy
import sys
import os
from os.path import *
import pkg_resources
import turbogears


code_dir = '${PROJECTBASE}'    # (Required) The base directory of the TG app code.
root_class_name = '${PROJECTNAME}.controllers.Root'    # (Required) The fully qualified Root class name.
project_module_name = '${PROJECTNAME}.config'          # (Required) The config module name.
log_dir = ''                                           # (Optional) The log directory. Default = code_dir.

class VirtualPathFilter(object):
: def on_start_resource(self):
: if not cherrypy.config.get('virtual_path_filter.on', False):
	prefix = cherrypy.config.get('virtual_path_filter.prefix', '')
	if not prefix:

	path = cherrypy.request.object_path
	if path == prefix:
	    path = '/'
	elif path.startswith(prefix):
	    path = path[len(prefix):] 
	    raise cherrypy.NotFound(path)
	cherrypy.request.object_path = path

def tg_init():
: """ Checks for the required data and initializes the application. """

: global code_dir
: global root_class_name
: global log_dir
: global project_module_name
: last_mark = 0

: # Input checks
: if not code_dir or not isdir(code_dir):
: raise ValueError("""The code directory setting is missing.
: The fastcgi code will be unable to find
: the TG code without this setting.""")

: if not root_class_name:
: raise ValueError("""The fully qualified root class name must
: be provided.""")

: last_mark = root_class_name.rfind('.')
: if (last_mark < 1) or (last_mark + 1) == len(root_class_name):
: raise ValueError("""The user-defined class name is invalid.
: Please make sure to include a fully
: qualified class name for the root_class
: value (e.g. wiki20.controllers.Root).""")    

: sys.path.append(code_dir)

: # Change the directory so the TG log file will not be written to the
: # web app root.
: if log_dir and isdir(log_dir):
: os.chdir(log_dir)
: else:
: os.chdir(code_dir)
: log_dir = code_dir

: sys.stdout = open(join(log_dir, 'stdout.log'),'a')
: sys.stderr = open(join(log_dir, 'stderr.log'),'a')        

: if exists(join(code_dir, "setup.py")):
: turbogears.update_config(configfile=join(code_dir, "dev.cfg"),modulename=project_module_name)
: else:
: turbogears.update_config(configfile=join(code_dir, "prod.cfg"),modulename=project_module_name)

: # Set environment to production to disable auto-reload and
: # add virutal path information.
: cherrypy.config.update({
: 'global': {'server.environment': 'production'},
	    '/' : { 'virtual_path_filter.on' : True,
	    'virtual_path_filter.prefix' : '/bel.fcgi' }

: # Parse out the root class information for Cherrypy Root class.
: package_name = root_class_name[[last_mark]] 
: class_name = root_class_name[last_mark+1:] 
: exec('from %s import %s as Root' % (package_name, class_name))
: Root._cp_filters = [VirtualPathFilter()] 
: cherrypy.root = Root()


from fcgi import WSGIServer
cherrypy.server.start(initOnly=True, serverClass=None)

from cherrypy._cpwsgi import wsgiApp

Adjust the TurboGears configuration

Edit the ${PROJECTBASE}/dev.cfg or ${PROJECTBASE}/prod.cfg file (whichever you are using), uncomment the server.socket_port assignment and change ${PORT} to a value of your choice (make sure nothing else is running on that port, Tomcat defaults to 8080, as does Jetty. Save yourself some time and check first with a telnet localhost 8080, you should see Connection refused).

The relevant lines in prod/dev.cfg are:


Spawning a FastCGI TurboGears process

The lighttpd "spawn-fcgi" script is useful: download, compile and install lighttpd. Then (replacing ${HOST} and ${PORT} values appropriately), execute the following:

/usr/local/bin/spawn-fcgi -a ${HOST} -p ${PORT} -u nobody -f ${NGINX}/scripts/${PROJECTNAME}.fcgi

Nginx configuration

Save the following into ${NGINX}/conf/fastcgi_params

fastcgi_param  GATEWAY_INTERFACE  CGI/1.1;
fastcgi_param  SERVER_SOFTWARE    nginx;

fastcgi_param  QUERY_STRING       $query_string;
fastcgi_param  REQUEST_METHOD     $request_method;
fastcgi_param  CONTENT_TYPE       $content_type;
fastcgi_param  CONTENT_LENGTH     $content_length;

fastcgi_param  SCRIPT_NAME        $fastcgi_script_name;
fastcgi_param  REQUEST_URI        $request_uri;
fastcgi_param  DOCUMENT_URI       $document_uri;
fastcgi_param  DOCUMENT_ROOT      $document_root;
fastcgi_param  SERVER_PROTOCOL    $server_protocol;

fastcgi_param  REMOTE_ADDR        $remote_addr;
fastcgi_param  REMOTE_PORT        $remote_port;
fastcgi_param  SERVER_ADDR        $server_addr;
fastcgi_param  SERVER_PORT        $server_port;
fastcgi_param  SERVER_NAME        $server_name; 

Add the following to the server section of the ${NGINX}/conf/nginx.conf configuration file, changing ${HOST} and ${PORT} as appropriate:

: # static files
: location ~ ^/(images|javascript|js|css|flash|media|static)/  {
: root ${PROJECTBASE}/${PROJECTNAME}/static;
: }
: location = /favicon.ico  {
: root ${PROJECTBASE}/${PROJECTNAME}/static/images;
: }
: # pass all requests to FastCGI TG server listening on ${HOST}:${PORT}  
: #  
: location / {  
: fastcgi_pass   ${HOST}:${PORT};
: fastcgi_index  index;  
: fastcgi_param  SCRIPT_FILENAME  /scripts$fastcgi_script_name;  
: include        conf/fastcgi_params;  
: }  

Starting nginx

Start nginx with ${NGINX}/sbin/nginx. Point your browser to http://${HOST}:${PORT}/, your Turboears project should be serving via FastCGI. If so ... congratulations.

Performance test software

Basic but usefully free http://www.hpl.hp.com/research/linux/httperf/


[I left the IP address as because it worked for me, whereas did not. If you're experiencing difficulties connecting to, these are both alternative options; localhost:8080,]

Good luck.