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I've currently moved an active user site over to Pantheon. It's structured and themed extensively using Panels Everywhere, Panels, Views, and Display Suite.

What I would love to do now, is on the Dev/Test version is to revamp the site structure and display. But while that work is being done, every day new users are interacting with site changing its content, uploading files, etc...

From this previous post...

Pantheon: pull code and config from dev, but preserve content in live?

I understand that the following is a best practice...

  1. code should go from dev -> test -> live
  2. database should go from live -> test -> dev

My question is in this scenario, how can I work on my site (ala Panels, Views, Display Suite) in a Development environment and then push those changes to the Live environment?

There seems to be no way to do this purely in Pantheon since a large majority of the site changes will be on the DB, and if I push that to the Live environment, it will override all the new and changed user content.

Can someone point me in the right direction on this? I seem to be chasing my own tail about how I should be going about this in a sustainable fashion.

marked as duplicate by Letharion, Clive Nov 4 '14 at 15:48

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    I don't think this is strictly related to Pantheon, is it? In either case, the whole workflow thing is really complicated, and I think it a bit broad for a single question on here, so I'm voting to close. I'd be happy to see a discussion about it in Drupal Answers Chat however. – Letharion Nov 4 '14 at 15:48
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    It's not Pantheon-specific; unfortunately content staging/config management is something Drupal does very poorly up to this point in time. There isn't a catch-all solution, it very much depends what modules you have installed and how you're using them. – Clive Nov 4 '14 at 15:49
  • My thought process was that it is Pantheon specific in that Pantheon offers tools to help with Dev/Testing environments that could change how a site developer would manage their deployment Workflow. While my question could be abstracted to "Workflow Best Practices" in general, this one is specifically about this hosting scenario. Considering 70k site are hosted by Pantheon, I presume it's already been solved. But my Google Fu isn't returning a clear answer. Knowing that content staging is NOT "Pantheon" specific, or something Pantheon solves is more clarification than I started with. Thanks! – Bryan Casler Nov 4 '14 at 15:55
  • @BryanCasler Granted I haven't used Pantheon, but from my knowledge of how Drupal (and the community) works, I'd be surprised if this works differently with Pantheon. – Letharion Nov 4 '14 at 16:14
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    Considering 70k site are hosted by Pantheon, I presume it's already been solved The main problem is that the way Drupal 7 is set up, it's very complicated (and "per-site") to work out how to stage/migrate content. Every module does (or at least can do) something different, and as there isn't a universally accepted mechanism for config management (though there have been attempts), even those that do are bucking a trend with another module elsewhere. If there's a single button somewhere that can migrate D7 content between servers, I think there's a human (or at least AI) sitting behind it :) – Clive Nov 4 '14 at 16:20