Lifeboat Updates - Deploy Web Apps Anywhere!

About Lifeboat
Lifeboat was created to help anyone that wants to write a web app deploy a web app. Automate configuration and let Lifeboat juggle port assignments, system services, and reverse proxy software for running a web app server. Lifeboat is designed to deploy both Xojo Web 1.0 and Xojo Web 2.0 standalone applications.

In addition to the Xojo Web specific tools, Lifeboat offers features to manage static websites. Install and configure SSL in one (or two) click(s) for free with LetsEncrypt integration. Serve static HTML or PHP files to offer visitors a main landing page (or more!)

Download and evaluate Lifeboat for free. For evaluation Lifeboat will configure one server, one web application, and one static files directory. A license is required to unlock these limits.

For more information about Lifeboat, please visit the website:
https://strawberrysw.com/lifeboat

Download Lifeboat and try it for free on Mac or Windows 10:
https://strawberrysw.com/lifeboat/get

Contact the author directly:
support@strawberrysw.com

8 Likes

Build 54

Adds valuable Server Tools to create memory swapfiles and schedule cron jobs. Creating a swapfile can improve your server performance. Cron jobs run at regular intervals and can be used to schedule routine scripts.

New: Create and install a swapfile
New: Schedule and manage Cron jobs
New: Drag & Drop SSH keys to import
Fixed: Button locking on SSH key window
Fixed: Height of a dozen buttons on Windows are now correct
Changed: Developer license can now host multiple websites!

(I’m going to use a single thread like Einhugur does going forward)

8 Likes

Build 60

Install PostgreSQL! Also in this update developers can now check for and install server software updates from Lifeboat.

New: Install and manage PostgreSQL
New: Install server software updates
New: Copy remote file server paths
New: Modify remote file permissions
Fixed: Clear Caches now works on Lightsail instances
Fixed: Shows configurations with no domain assigned
Changed: Improved install process and connection failures

Download the update: https://strawberrysw.com/lifeboat/get

10 Likes

Build 64

This update improves support for the Valentina libraries. Symbolic links are no longer lost from the libs folder during upload, which supports older versions of the Valentina libraries. Additionally, this is the update with custom error pages that @Sam_Rowlands blogged about!

New: Check for server software updates at connection
New: Configure custom error pages (like 404, 500)
Fixed: Symbolic links in the Libs folder are maintained through transfer (Support for Valentina)
Fixed: Apps failing to terminate no longer hang Lifeboat for 90 seconds
Fixed: Improved libsoup installation
Fixed: Button alignments on Windows
Changed: Cron job name restrictions are now more lenient

Download the update: https://strawberrysw.com/lifeboat/get

8 Likes

Build 68

This update improves SSH security. The installation process now ensures the port currently connected remains open on the firewall, and adds the ability to change the SSH port to the Secure Authentication server tools.

New: Hide nginx server tokens
New: Static Files now support HTTP 2.0
New: Change the SSH port from Secure Authentication
Fixed: Install process ensures the currently connected port is open on the firewall

Download the update: https://strawberrysw.com/lifeboat/get

6 Likes

Build 69

This build adds dark mode support for Windows! Additionally this version configures the nginx proxy to use HTTP 1.1 (previously using the default HTTP 1.0). Finally, this version also fixes two errors that can occur.

New: Dark mode support on Windows
Fixed: Exception when expanding upload folders with hidden items
Fixed: Issue launching uploaded apps containing spaces
Changed: nginx configuration proxy_http_version 1.1

Download the update: https://strawberrysw.com/lifeboat/get

8 Likes

Build 70

Lifeboat now supports Debian 11! The first release of 2022 packs a lot of improvements including the ability to clear log files, reliability enhancements, and UI fixes. Build 70 is a recommended update for all.

New: Support for Debian 11
New: Clear logs from within Lifeboat
New: Log viewer scrolls to bottom to show the latest entries automatically
New: Weekly cron job to cleanup Lifeboat temporary files
New: Automatically open web browser after deploying a web app
Fixed: Reliability of downloading larger log files
Fixed: Install process apache detection
Fixed: Can no longer resize Preferences window
Fixed: Cron job editor is now legible in Windows dark mode
Changed: Refactored web app upload process
Changed: Improved the handling of missing log files
Changed: Status report window better fits the width of the contents

Download the update: https://strawberrysw.com/lifeboat/get

7 Likes

Build 77

Today I am proud to release Lifeboat Build 77, with a turbo-charged update engine. This new version stages updates faster than ever before. Every developer, with apps of all sizes, should notice an improvement!

MariaDB / MySQL installation is here! Developers can now use Lifeboat to install MariaDB for use with the Xojo MySQL Community Server plugin. Lifeboat can now install the components necessary to run Wordpress next to your Xojo Web apps.

Changes in Build 77

New: Turbo-charged update engine
New: Install and manage MariaDB / MySQL
New: Hide server and process identifiers from the log viewer
New: Launch SSL Labs test from address list
New: Manually configure and install SSL certificates if necessary
Fixed: No longer intermittently disconnects after downloading logs
Fixed: Issue downloading app logs from CentOS 7
Fixed: Connection error messages no longer fail with encoding error
Fixed: PHP configuration is no longer broken when updating
Fixed: Typo in swapfile help description
Fixed: Windows uninstaller icon
Fixed: Windows message boxes are no longer light mode when dark mode is active
Changed: Improved user experience for updating a web app
Changed: Improved upload progress display accuracy

Download the update: https://strawberrysw.com/lifeboat/get

Happy coding!

9 Likes

Build 79

Todays update has some really cool stuff that I’m excited to release! Lifeboat now includes a special (almost magic) application offline page. When it discovers your application has come back it automatically reloads to your app! This cool feature has been in development for a while and has been quite optimized.


( the favicon is from strawberrysw and is not part of the offline page :grimacing: )

Changes in Build 79

New: Application offline page that refreshes when the application comes back
New: Secure Authentication now also configures SSH key authentication
New: Select a default SSH Key for new server connections
New: Pre-selects imported SSH key to improve new connection workflow
Fixed: Proxy instance health check no longer disconnects users in rare cases
Fixed: Setting SSH port can no longer leave the firewall closed in rare occasions
Fixed: Disappearing tool status text in when using Light Mode
Fixed: Laggy behavior with the SSH Keys Manager
Fixed: Documentation describing the configure web app view
Changed: Server Tools now organized into groups for discoverability

Download the update: https://strawberrysw.com/lifeboat/get

Happy coding!

8 Likes

Lifeboat is a must have for Xojo Web developers. It really works like magic for deployment but in case you manage to get stuck support is amazing.

6 Likes

Hey @Tim_Parnell assume the offline page is a page I can specify ?

Not yet, send me an email with what you need to do and we’ll figure out the best way forward :slight_smile:

2 Likes

Any chance of supporting Red Hat/CentOS 8 in the near future?

I have no plans for CentOS 8 right now.

The last time I tested, CentOS 8 is missing yum packages necessary to install everything and run a Xojo Web app. I don’t use the platform personally, so I did not dig into what workarounds would be necessary. I also thought sysadmins were afraid of where CentOS was heading, so I’ve abandoned the flavor.

If you have a strong need for CentOS 8 and would like to make private arrangements please send me an email :slight_smile:

For anyone interested, I personally use Debian 10

@Tim_Parnell
My company is still using CentOS 7.x since it is still supported for a couple more years.
We will watch and decide our next move later in 2023 but so far looks like Rocky Linux might be a great choice.

Yes CentOS 8 is now CentOS Stream so it would be like supporting Fedora and that is not stable for a server environment

just my opinions

Thanks for your response, Tim. Why are the yum packages necessary for deploying Xojo apps? Or is this a package that Lifeboat only needs?

The reason that I am asking is that I have someone who is setting up a server for me to deploy Xojo apps and (for some reason) he is using Rocky Linux 8 (Red Hat/CentOS 8) as the operating system. I know nothing about Linux servers (that is why he is doing the setup), but he knows nothing about Xojo, so he might be missing something that will be necessary.

Since I know little about Linux (I don’t even know what Rocky Linux 8 is or whether it is the same or different than Red Hat/Cent OS 8: I am just quoting what he told me the server would use), and dislike command-line interfaces, I would love to use Lifeboat to do the deploying. But since he will be maintaining the server, I have to go with what he wants as the OS.

@Thomas_Moore

Rocky Linux 8.x = production-ready downstream version of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, so the server admin made an excellent choice

1 Like

From memory I needed to enable the EPEL to install certbot for letsencrypt and nginx in CentOS 7 but I think it’s present in Rocky and Alma.

CentOS 8 is essentially dead now, and CentOS Stream doesn’t really replace it in my eyes, but the alternate clones (Rocky and Alma) are basically the same.

1 Like

Hi Thomas,

Xojo Web requires additional libraries to execute on most Linux installations. It’s easiest to install them with yum. Lifeboat also requires software like nginx, firewalld, cron, and fail2ban that I would consider core and crucial to the whole process.

I last looked at CentOS 8 so long ago I could not tell you which packages were missing, whether it was specifically the libraries or software.

I don’t know all of your needs here, so Lifeboat might not be enough for you. However, Lifeboat is built to run traditional websites and multiple Xojo Web apps on one VPS instance. You can even install PHP and Databases to run software like Wordpress and Mantis.

You are welcome to reach out privately if you would like to discuss your needs and what I can do to help. This link will start a DM with me or xojoconsulting.com/contact :slight_smile:

Best wishes,
Tim Parnell

@brian_franco and @Adam_Charlton thanks so much for your insight!

It sounds like if a customer emails me with needs for CentOS 8 we’ll investigate the path of adding support for Rocky