Deploy Bonita Community on OpenShift

Do you want to run your Bonita Community Tomcat instance on Redhat’s Openshift Online, using MySQL?

This post will not go into the details of using OpenShift, but rather focus on making Bonita Community Ed. 6.2.4 work on it, along with MySQL. I will not go into details of a regular installation of Bonita either.

Note to Bonita Subscription users: It is currently impossible to run the Subscription Edition on OpenShift (and most likely other PaaS services), due to not being able to generate license requests. Being one of these users, I raised a ticket to Bonita support, but didn’t get much support for it nor any hope to see it in the future.


  • Have a free OpenShift account
  • Have deployed an OpenShift application with the MySQL 5.5 and Tomcat 7 (JBoss EWS 2.0) cartridges
  • Downloaded on your workstation the Bonita BPM deployment Bundle

Note: After your git clone, don’t forget to remove the pom.xml from your git root and the src folder in order to avoid triggering a maven build when git pushing your changes.

git rm -r src/ pom.xml

Configuring Bonita the OpenShift way

If you have already deployed Bonita on one of your own server, you will soon notice that you cannot install it the same way using OpenShift.

Don’t forget that for all these local files you’ll modify, you’ll have to git add, git commit, and git push them.

The .openshift folder

After doing your git clone, you will have a local openshift directory (that we’ll call $OPENSHIFT_LOCAL_HOME), along with whatever apps you have. Let’s assign a few variables for this post purposes. Don’t confuse them with variables that you could find on your OpenShift instance:


The gem folders are located under $OPENSHIFT_LOCAL_APP/.openshift. In that folder, you will notice 4 folders, 3 being of interest for now.


Make sure you have an empty file named “java7” in it. This will tell your application to use java 7. Without it, you’d be running with java 6.


This is where you will configure the environment variables needed to start your Bonita context.

Create a file named pre_start_jbossews-2.0, and put something along these lines inside:


export CATALINA_OPTS="${CATALINA_OPTS} ${BONITA_HOME} ${DB_OPTS} ${BTM_OPTS} -Dfile.encoding=UTF-8 -Xshare:auto -XX:+HeapDumpOnOutOfMemoryError"


This is the place where you will put your .properties file. This what you should have at the end:

ironman:config fblaise$ ls -l1

Bonita and Tomcat configuration

Local files configuration

Not all files need to be modified. Find below the ones that do.

In your local config folder under $OPENSHIFT_LOCAL_APP/.openshift, edit the Locate the line starting with “common.loader”, and append the following:
Note that this string will be unique for each of you. the string of “x” above represents your user for your OpenShift instance. You should then get:



Add the following right above the <GlobalNamingResources> tag:


I think there is also a H2 listener line you should also remove, since we’re using MySQL. Look in that space also.


You will notice a resource that is already configured for MySQL, done when you add the MySQL cartridge. Here, we will add our Bonita datasource and bitronix transaction factory. It should look like this:

[cc lang=”xml”]


There is no variable interpolation in this file, so you will have to get your IP address from your OpenShift instance. You will notice in the block below the variables holding the values you’re looking for

[cc lang=”xml”]
## NOT INTERPOLATING !! resource.ds1.driverProperties.URL=jdbc:mysql://${OPENSHIFT_MYSQL_DB_HOST}:${OPENSHIFT_MYSQL_DB_PORT}/bonita?dontTrackOpenResources=true&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;useUnicode=true&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;characterEncoding=UTF-8
resource.ds1.testQuery=SELECT 1

Don’t forget to git commit.

war, bonita_home and libraries


Copy the bonita.war found in your Bonita download in $OPENSHIFT_LOCAL_APP/webapps. git add and commit.


There are several ways to go about that one. I will just present the one I use.

– On your openshift instance


– scp all the .jar files you will find in your Bonita Community download under Tomcat-6.0.37/lib (without the *h2* ones) to the above directory.
– Don’t forget to put in there your MySQL connector jar file as well.


Upload the bonita_home-6.2.4 (containing the client and server subfolders) to your OpenShift instance, straight into $OPENSHIFT_DATA_DIR.

Don’t forget to change from h2 to mysql


Push and deploy

Everything should now be set.

Make sure you’ve git added and committed all your local files, that your bonita.war in the local webapps directory, that you’ve removed your pom.xml and

git push

Performing a git push will restart your application, albeit all your cartridges.

You can tail the logs straight from your terminal with

rhc tail 

You can check out on your web browser as well, see if the login screen shows. Login with your install user then.


Of course, since the application will be out on the wild, don’t forget to change Bonita’s default passwords if not already done (i.e., install user, platformAdmin, etc…).

I may have forgotten some things, as I have written this article some time after doing it. Please let me know if things are missing or are wrong.