Creating a Planet for your LoCo Team

Installing and configuring

  1. Go to http://www.planetplanet.org/ and download the latest tar archive (tar.bz) planet-x.x.tar.bz2

  2. Extract this into a non public directory.

For example:

  1. Copy one of the example directories for your own planet.

For example:

cp /home/user/planet/examples/fancy/ /home/user/planet/myplanetname/
  1. create an output directory, this should be the directory which is accessable by the public over http.

For example: (some common locations would be)

mkdir /home/user/public_html/planet/


mkdir /var/www/planet/


mkdir /home/user/htdocs/planet/
  1. Now navigate back to your myplanetname directory. In this directory you should find a config.ini and an index.html.tmpl. Open the config.ini file with your favorite text editor.

For example:

edit /home/user/planet/myplanetname/config.ini 
  1. Important options to configure:
  2. name =
  3. link =
  4. owner_name =
  5. owner_email =
  6. template_files =

For example: template_files = myplanetname/index.html.tmpl examples/atom.xml.tmpl examples/rss20.xml.tmpl examples/rss10.xml.tmpl examples/opml.xml.tmpl examples/foafroll.xml.tmpl (the example xml templates for most people will be fine so leave them)

  • output_dir =

For example: (some common locations would be) mkdir /home/user/public_html/planet/ or mkdir /var/www/planet/ or mkdir /home/user/htdocs/planet/ NOTE this must be the directory that you created in step 4.

  1. Add feeds to your config.ini. There should be examples already in your config.ini file. The syntax is: http://url/to/my/feed

name = bob

  1. Generate your planet's page: execute the planet.py file with the config.ini file, planet.py path/to/config.ini

For example:

/home/user/planet/planet.py /home/user/planet/myplanetname/config.ini 
  1. You now find that the output directory now has files in it. Navigate with your browser to check that it looks OK.


Automating can be done using the crontab facitily.

  1. To edit your crontab type: crontab -e
  2. Input the values for how oftern you would like the planet to run/update/generate.

Here is a reminder of the cron syntax.

minute (0 - 59) hour (0 - 23) day of month (1 - 31) month (1 - 12) day of week (0 - 6) (Sunday=0) command to be executed

For example

0 * * * * cd /home/user/planet/ && ./planet.py ./myplanetname/config.ini

This means when the minute is 0 , every hour, every day, every month and every day of the week. run "cd /home/user/planet/ && ./planet.py ./myplanetname/config.ini"

  1. Save and quit the crontab editor.

For more information on crontab https://help.ubuntu.com/community/CronHowto


Customise the look of the planet page by editing the index.html.tmpl which should be located in your /home/user/planet/myplanetname/

Make sure that any files you use in your template are put into your publicly accessable directory that you created in step 4.



Feel free to use these and modify these files to your liking.

Produces: http://www.ubuntu-uk.org/planet/


LoCoCreatingPlanet (last edited 2009-02-12 20:26:42 by 71)