Hugo | Generate your own site

I brought a domain name romainlespinasse.dev, so naturally I search to build a website, a small one.

  • to give access to some social links about me,
  • to make available all my posts across blog platforms (Company blog site, Medium, Dev.to).

I choose

Step 1 | Build the site

After installing Hugo, I bootstrap a site for romainlespinasse.dev and initialize a git repository :

hugo new site rlespinasse.github.io
cd rlespinasse.github.io
git init

To have a good looking site, I choose one of the theme from https://themes.gohugo.io/. The chosen theme is a simple one, adapt for a personal site : Hermit.

As documented, I add it as git submodule :

git submodule add https://github.com/Track3/hermit.git themes/hermit

Now, I need to configure the site with my own settings. The setup part is managed by the config.toml file :

# access url (use to setup links inside the site)
baseURL = "https://www.romainlespinasse.dev"
# Title (for the '<title>' html tag)
title = "Romain Lespinasse"
# site language
languageCode = "en-us"
defaultContentLanguage = "en"
# theme
theme = "hermit"
# folder to serve static files
# '/static/image.png' will be available at 'https://www.romainlespinasse.dev/image.png'
staticDir = ["static"]

# additional configuration from hermit theme (see themes/hermit/exampleSite/config.toml)

I add the hermit additional configuration and made some changes :

  • copyright to set the chosen license for this site: MIT License,
  • googleAnalytics to have some analytics about my site,
  • Some social links to Twitter, LinkedIn or GitHub accounts.

After configuration, I start to write the first post of my site. Hugo can serve locally the site with live reloading capabilities :

$ hugo serve -D
...
Web Server is available at http://localhost:1313/ (bind address 127.0.0.1)
Press Ctrl+C to stop

Hugo can also create post template hugo new posts/gohugo.md

A sample from this current blog post :

---
title: "Hugo | Generate your own site"
date: 2019-10-27T10:42:00+02:00
draft: false
tags:
  - feedback
  - hugo
  - staticsite
  - github
---

I brought a domain name `romainlespinasse.dev`, so naturally I search to build a website, a small one.

To build the static site, I just run hugo and setup generated folders as ignored by git :

Content of .gitignore

resources/_gen
public/

Step 2 | Add Continuous Delivery

Since I'm using GitHub for hosting my git repository, I setup

  • a Github action to build and deploy the site on the default branch: sources,
  • a GitHub action to build the site on every branches and pull-requests in order to validate the content of the static site.

peaceiris have created some useful GitHub actions to my usecase :

In .github/workflows/build.yaml file, the following action will, on any branch except sources branch :

  • checkout the git repository with its submodules,
  • build the hugo site.
name: build

on:
  push:
    branches-ignore:
    - sources

jobs:
  build:
    runs-on: ubuntu-18.04
    steps:
    - uses: actions/checkout@master
      with:
        submodules: true

    - name: Setup Hugo
      uses: peaceiris/actions-hugo@v2.2.2
      with:
        hugo-version: '0.58.3'
        extended: true

    - name: Build
      run: |
        hugo --gc --minify

In .github/workflows/deploy.yaml file, the following action will, on sources branch :

  • checkout the git repository with its submodules,
  • build the hugo site,
  • deploy the content of public folder to master branch in order to serve as GitHub pages.
name: deploy

on:
  push:
    branches:
    - sources

jobs:
  build-deploy:
    runs-on: ubuntu-18.04
    steps:
    - uses: actions/checkout@master
      with:
        submodules: true

    - name: Setup Hugo
      uses: peaceiris/actions-hugo@v2.2.2
      with:
        hugo-version: '0.58.3'
        extended: true

    - name: Build
      run: |
        hugo --gc --minify

    - name: Deploy
      uses: peaceiris/actions-gh-pages@v2.5.0
      env:
        ACTIONS_DEPLOY_KEY: ${{ secrets.ACTIONS_DEPLOY_KEY }}
        PUBLISH_BRANCH: master
        PUBLISH_DIR: ./public

To setup secrets.ACTIONS_DEPLOY_KEY, I follow the peaceiris/actions-gh-pages guideline.

Step 3 | Configure Github User Site

With a site built and push to master branch, I setup the repository to use GitHub user pages to serve it.

In order to tell my domain romainlespinasse.dev to serve my GitHub pages, I just follow the GitHub guideline to configure an APEX domain. In addition of GitHub pages settings and Domain DNS settings, I need to add a CNAME file to the master branch :

www.romainlespinasse.dev

Since the static site is not built by jekyll (the default static site generator), I need to add a .nojekyll file to the master branch.

In .github/workflows/deploy.yaml file, I update the Build step with :

    - name: Build
      run: |
        hugo --gc --minify
        cp CNAME public/
        touch public/.nojekyll

Now, https://romainlespinasse.dev is live.