Where to start with your Umbraco journey?
So, you’ve decided to learn Umbraco today but don’t know where to start? You are in luck as I’ve been there before and I might be able to help you. I was really excited to get my hands on some Umbraco action. I’m ready to break things, and use Umbraco to its full potential. Are you ready? Let’s go set-up our local development environment.
First we need the following before we can start
- A GitHub account – you can sign-up at https://github.com/
- Git for Windows – you can download at https://git-scm.com/download/win
- .NET Framework 4.7.2
- Visual Studio 2017 Community Edition
Forking the Umbraco GitHub repository
Let’s start with the Umbraco GitHub repository. If you did some research already, then we both know that Umbraco is an open-source CMS written in .NET. The best thing about Umbraco is the MIT license that comes with it. MIT license is the best open-source license, follow this link if you want to know more. To check out the Umbraco GitHub repository, let’s login to our GitHub account. After that, navigate to the Umbraco GitHub repository which is located at https://github.com/umbraco/Umbraco-CMS.
Ideally, we want to have our development repository independent from the original Umbraco GitHub repository. So let’s get ourselves a copy by forking the repository. Click on the Fork link and select the repository where we want our fork to be in.
When we are successful in forking the original Umbraco GitHub repository, we will have the forked copy similar to what we see below.
Cloning our Umbraco GitHub repository
So now that we have a copy of Umbraco on our GitHub repository, we need to clone this to our local machine. To do this, go to a local folder using git bash and use the command git clone.
Once Umbraco is already cloned to our local git repository, let’s open the solution found under the src subfolder using Visual Studio. Build the solution to make sure there are no issues with our copy of the source code, this will trigger the download and installation of some NuGet packages and may take a few minutes to finish. Time to grab some coffee or a bottle of beer while we wait.
Okay, we don’t have build errors. We are now ready to get some coding action. Always remember to use SOLID principles when coding to make it highly maintainable. Don’t be afraid to refactor mercilessly and test your code.
Learning a new technology can be daunting without someone to guide you, and the first question would be where we should start. For Umbraco, the best way to start is forking the original GitHub repository and work with our own copy on a local environment. From there, sky is the limit on what we want to do with our Umbraco. For me personally, I want to try and integrate Umbraco with other Microsoft technologies. I’m interested on how to deploy Umbraco to Azure. How to use Umbraco as a portal for Dynamics 365. The possibilities are endless. Umbraco, use it, own it, it’s ours.