Development environment

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Main Page > Development > Development Environment

This page explains how you can configure and use a standard Linux system as an Archivematica development environment. The Archivematica development environment is available for developers that want the ability to customize or enhance their own Archivematica installation and/or contribute code back to the Archivematica project.



  • Install ubuntu 12.04
  • Use git to checkout Archivematica code
    • If you have commit access, use the private repository
    • If you have read-only access, use the public GitHub repository
git clone

Configuring and Using Archivematica

These manuals contain information about the use and configuration of Archivematica:


To pull down the latest code commits from the repository, and reset your dev install, navigate to the directory where Archivematica has been cloned:

  • Change Directory to the archivematica git directory.
cd ~/archivematica/
  • Check to see if you have any local changes that need to be stashed
git diff
  • If there are local changes please stash or commit them. (Or you won't be able to update).
git stash


  • ./dev-helper
  • "Would you like to git pull?" (y/N) y
  • "Would you like to recreate the databases?" (y/N) y
    • Note: this command will remove any processing sips/transfers.
  • "Would you like to Include mock FPR data?" (y/N) y 
  • "Would you like to restart archivematica services?" (y/N) y
  • "Would you like to re-create gui-scripts editor file?" (y/N) y
  • "Would you like to update AtoM (branch 1.x) and restart its atom-sword service?" (y/N) y

If you stashed changes, re-apply them with

git stash pop


  • If it stalls during update "Would you like to update/install package requirements?" (y/N)
    • Stop the script with CTRL + C
    • Try installing the item it failed on on the command line. Ie.
    • sudo apt-get install postfix
    • Restart the dev-helper "Would you like to update/install package requirements?"
  • If you get this error error starting service:
    • sudo start archivematica-mcp-server
    • start: Unknown job: archivematica-mcp-server
    • Then reboot the machine.
  • If a SIP processing fails, it will move it to the 'failed' directory which is located:
    • /var/archivematica/sharedDirectory/watchedDirectories/failed
  • if ArchivematicaServer freezes
    • sudo restart archivematica-mcp-server
    • sudo restart archivematica-mcp-client
  • if ArchivematicaClient freezes (in terminal kill command)
    • sudo restart archivematica-mcp-client
  • Updates to the Dashboard may require an Apache webserver restart:
    • sudo /etc/init.d/apache2 restart
  • If you find a problem running the Dashboard and you want to get a detailed error log to report us, please switch it to debug mode following these instructions.
  • MCP is currently logging to the /tmp/directory
    • /tmp/archivematicaMCPClient-HOST.log
    • /tmp/archivematicaMCPServer-HOST-DATE.log
    • /tmp/archivematicaMCPServerPID
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