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Use Circle CI to build a Drupal site with Composer, test with Behat, and then deploy to Pantheon.

1.0.3 2015-08-04 22:27 UTC

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Last update: 2024-07-11 03:46:34 UTC


This project is deprecated; it has been replaced with a newer and more comprehensive example Drupal 7 Circle CI Composer project, which can be used to quickly create your own derived project.

Original Documentation

This project is designed to be included from the require section of a Drupal site's composer.json file. Doing this allows you to achieve the following things:

  • Specify the Drupal modules, themes and libraries you use in your composer.json file, and build them with Composer.
  • Automatically build components via Circle CI every commit.
  • Use Behat to run tests on your site from Circle CI.
  • Automatically deploy your site to your Pantheon dev environment, or some other branch, every time the tests pass.

All of this can be accomplished with only a few light files committed to your repository.


Copy the contents of the examples directory to the root of your project, renaming files as appropriate:

  example.gitignore     -> .gitignore    -> circle.yml
  example.behat.yml     -> behat.yml
  features              -> features

You will also need a composer.json file for your project. The project example-drupal7-circle-composer can be used as a template to quickly create your own project; for Drupal 8, see drupal-composer/drupal-project.


You must customize the contents of these files to suit the needs of your project. See the detailed instructions below; more information is also available in the comments inside each file.


Do not use the composer.json file included in the pantheon-systems/circle-scripts project; instead, use one from a project mentioned in the section Setup, above.

Set the name and description in your composer.json file to something appropriate for your project.

Customize the require section to contain the modules and themes needed for your project. You might want to try using drush composer-generate to get started. If you want to run your site on Pantheon, then you should keep "pantheon-systems/drops-7" as your main component; otherwise, you may replace this with "drupal/drupal" if you prefer.

The custom installers in the require section of your composer.json file control the way the components in your project are installed. Always keep these items at the top, so that they are available at the very beginning of the installation process. Modules and themes listed before the custom installers might not install correctly.

Circle CI

Set up your project to be tested by Circle CI:

  • Log on to in your web browser.
  • Click on the "+", "Add Projects", on the left-hand menu bar.
  • Find the repository you would like to configure to test. Navigate to the right organization, if necessary, and use the "Filter repos..." field to reduce the size of the displayed list.
  • Click "Build Project" to enable the repository and build it for the first time.

Next, set up the environment variables used by the push-to-pantheon script:

Edit these in Project Settings > Environment Variables (

You also need to set up an ssh key, so that the push-to-pantheon script can commit changes to the Pantheon git repository.

See the Circle CI documentation for more information on configuration.


This sample is set up to run a single behat test that confirms that the name of the site was set correctly by drush site-install. Note that the first part of the site name is set by the SITE_NAME environment variable that you customize in your .travis.yml file; the second part of the site name is set to Travis Test Site on Travis, and Pantheon Test Site on Pantheon.

See the behat documentation for further instructions on adding more tests to your project.

Local Testing

Once setup is complete, doing local testing is a simple matter of:

$ composer install
$ ./bin/local-test