VIP Go Local Development

Overview #

Because developing sites for VIP Go is different than developing for hosted VIP sites, you need a different development environment.

Your VIP Go site runs three codebases: WordPress core (tracking the most current version), the VIP Go mu-plugins, and the codebase from your specific site repo. Because of this, a variety of WordPress local development environments can be suitably configured for VIP Go development purposes.

Here we describe using a VVV-based local development environment. Other options may include: Chassis, Docker-WordPress, Laravel Valet, etc.

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VVV for VIP Go Development #

Note: These instructions assume a familiarity with command line tools an macOS, Linux, or similar Operating System.

Prerequisite: all git operations referenced in this guide assume you have an ssh keypair registered with GitHub and are using ssh (vs. https) protocols. Using https protocols may lead to unexpected errors and is not supported.

Step 1: Setting up VVV #

The basic instructions for installing VVV are in their GitHub Complete setup per their instructions before continuing below.

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Step 2: Add your site code #

Find and remove the entire wp-content folder at {VVV FOLDER}/www/wordpress-default/public_html/wp-content. Replace {VVV FOLDER} with the path to your VVV folder (i.e. the folder you installed VVV into).

Git clone your VIP Go site repo in place of it, using the following command. Replace {CLONE URL} with the GitHub clone URL for your VIP Go GitHub repository.

git clone {CLONE URL} {VVV FOLDER}/www/wordpress-default/public_html/wp-content

Note: VIP Go sites must use the wp-content folder structure from If you do not yet have a VIP Go site repo hosted with us, please use this vip-skeleton repo for the “CLONE URL” above and place your codebase (theme & plugins) within it for testing. Once your VIP Go site repo has been provisioned, you’ll most likely use that repo instead.

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Step 3: Add the VIP Go MU plugins #

Git clone the VIP Go MU plugins repo at wp-content/mu-plugins/; using the following command. Replace {VVV FOLDER} with the path to your VVV folder (i.e. the folder you installed VVV into).

git clone --recursive {VVV FOLDER}/www/wordpress-default/public_html/wp-content/mu-plugins/

Periodically pull changes down from this repository to ensure you have the latest code… we suggest checking for and pulling changes before the start of development on any given day:

$ cd {VVV FOLDER}/www/wordpress-default/public_html/wp-content/mu-plugins/
$ git pull origin master
$ git submodule update --init --recursive

Note: Do not commit the mu-plugins/ directory to your VIP Go site’s repository.

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Step 4: Include the VIP config file #

Add the following code to your wp-config.php just above this line: /* That's all, stop editing! Happy blogging. */:

if ( file_exists( __DIR__ . '/wp-content/vip-config/vip-config.php' ) ) {
    require_once( __DIR__ . '/wp-content/vip-config/vip-config.php' );

That’s it! Your development environment is ready to “Go” and you should see a “VIP” menu in wp-admin.

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