h1. Pre-flight Checklist
The only real requirement for participating in a BugMash is enthusiasm. But there are some things you can do in advance to make it a more productive and rewarding experience.
h2. Required Software
* Ruby. In general, Ruby 1.8.6 or Ruby 1.8.7 at a reasonably current patch level is fine for working on Rails. However, if you want to help check on cross-Ruby-version issues, you'll need to have multiple copies of Ruby and a way to switch between them. Fortunately Relevance has provided some "easy instructions and utilities":http://blog.thinkrelevance.com/2009/7/29/ruby-switcher-working-with-multiple-ruby-versions-has-never-been-this-easy for doing just that.
* RubyGems. You need to be on the cutting edge to work with the Rails source - 1.3.5. Run @gem --version@ to check your version and, if necessary, @gem update --system@ to upgrade.
* Rails. You presumably have some version of Rails installed, but to participate, you'll need the Rails source. And because we're concentrating on Rails 2.3.x issues, you need the correct branch of the source. Here's how:
git clone git://github.com/rails/rails.git
git branch --track 2-3-stable origin/2-3-stable
git checkout 2-3-stable
* Mocha. The Rails tests depend on mocha for mocks, so @gem install mocha@. Make sure you have mocha 0.9.7 or higher, or > 0.9.5 otherwise you'll see a whole bunch of mystery errors due to a change in the way that Rails and mocha interact.
* MySQL. Having a working MySQL install is the bare minimum to run the tests on Rails.
* PostgreSQL and sqlite. If you're planning to work on Active Record issues, you'll need to run the AR tests across MySQL, PostgreSQL, and sqlite at the very minimum. ([[Installing PostgreSQL on OS X to run AR Tests|Installing PostgreSQL on OS X?]])
* You'll need an account with Lighthouse to comment on "Rails issues":https://rails.lighthouseapp.com/projects/8994-ruby-on-rails or to upload tests or patches. Sign up "here":https://rails.lighthouseapp.com/login
* You don't need a "Github account":https://github.com/signup/free unless you start doing such extensive surgery that you want to have your own fork of the Rails repo. (Note that the Rails team only accepts patches, not pull requests)
h2. For Windows Users
Windows users can find an installation guide over at the "devChix":http://wiki.devchix.com/index.php?title=Server_2003 wiki. (You can skip steps 11 and 12 for setting up Heroku.)
h2. Optional Components
* If you'd like to help the JRuby-on-Rails story, you'll need to have "JRuby":http://jruby.codehaus.org/ installed. Note that the Relevance switcher mentioned above can do this for you.
* If you're brave enough to test ActiveRecord with JDBC connections and databases, "this ticket":https://rails.lighthouseapp.com/projects/8994/tickets/1685-adding-ar-test-connections-for-jdbc-via-jruby will point you in the right direction.
* If you do a great deal of work with Lighthouse, you may find the OS X application "Lighthouse Keeper":http://www.mcubedsw.com/software/lighthousekeeper useful.
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