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Installing PloneSoftwareCenter on Plone 4

Installing PloneSoftwareCenter on Plone 4

In addition to the Plone Help Center, I also wanted to have PloneSoftwareCenter for project management capabilities. The normal method for installing PloneSoftwareCenter is to add Products.PloneSoftwareCenter to the eggs = section of the zinstance/buildout.cfg file in the Plone installation. Trying to build and then run Plone, I ended up adding three additional lines to the buildout.cfg. I’m not sure why these dependencies were not automatically added.

Figuring out dependencies

Each time I ran the buildout command, I received an error message similar to this one reported on the PloneSoftwareCenter issue #84:

2009-02-24 10:03:06 ERROR Application Could not import Products.PloneSoftwareCenter
Traceback (most recent call last):
File "/home/encolpe/zopes/ve-p31-eurocontrol/management/parts/zope2/lib/python/OFS/", line 709, in import_product
product=__import__(pname, global_dict, global_dict, silly)
File "/home/encolpe/.buildout/eggs/Products.PloneSoftwareCenter-1.5-py2.4.egg/Products/PloneSoftwareCenter/", line 15, in ?
from Products.PloneSoftwareCenter.content import validators
File "/home/encolpe/.buildout/eggs/Products.PloneSoftwareCenter-1.5-py2.4.egg/Products/PloneSoftwareCenter/content/", line 7, in ?
import root
File "/home/encolpe/.buildout/eggs/Products.PloneSoftwareCenter-1.5-py2.4.egg/Products/PloneSoftwareCenter/content/", line 22, in ?
from Products.ArchAddOn.Fields import SimpleDataGridField
ImportError: No module named ArchAddOn.Fields

The last line indicates that ArchAddOn.Fields was missing. A quick search for ArchAddOn revealed a Products.ArchAddOn, with a few of these hits also referencing PloneSoftwareCenter. I received a similar error for fancyzoomview and AddRemoveWidget.


To get PloneSoftwareCenter working, I added the following lines to the buildout.cfg file in the eggs section:

eggs =
. . .

Running the buildout and instance commands then started Plone so I could use the portal_quickinstaller in the Zope Management Interface ( to activate all of the packages. The Software Center then appeared under the Add New menu on the Plone site.

Tip: If you are behind a proxy server, make sure you export your proxy server using the command line option export Make sure you replace with the appropriate proxy address.

Installing Plone Help Center on Plone 4

Installing Plone Help Center on Plone 4

Over the past few days I’ve been trying to install Plone Help Center module on a Plone 4 installation running on a Mac OS X 10.6.5 server. Plone Help Center is the module used to run the Plone documentation and support center. The module comes with predefined FAQ, How-to, Tutorial, Reference Manuals, Error Reference, Links, Glossary Definitions.

PHC will work with Plone 4 if you install PHC as a development egg using the SVN trunk. Development eggs override eggs listed in the eggs section of the buildout.cfg file.


According to posts found on the Plone Product Developers list, the released, final version of Plone Help Center (PHC) listed on the project page is not compatible with Plone 4. (, a Plone 3-based environment, also has problems running PHC.)

If you try to install PHC using buildout or non-buildout methods (i.e., in the Products folder), you will most likely receive the following error message: AttributeError: type object 'BrowserDefaultMixin' has no attribute '__implements__'.


To get Plone Help Center working with Plone 4, you will need:

  • Access to the Plone 4 installation with permissions to edit files
  • An available text editor
  • The address of the SVN PHC trunk:


This procedure assumes that you have a running, properly configured Plone 4 installation, are familiar with editing files and using a Unix terminal. While this procedure is written for OS X, it should be compatible with other Unix or Linux. Commands used for Windows will be different, however, the general method should still work.

Instructions for adding the development eggs are based upon Plone’s Installing a third party product article.

In the example procedure below, Plone was installed as a stand-alone instance (non ZEO Cluster).

  1. Log on to the Plone server.
  2. Change directory to the Plone installation folder (replace with the appropriate username: cd /Users//Plone/zinstance
  3. Stop Plone: ./instance stop
  4. Change directories to src and checkout a copy of the PHC from SVN.

    cd src
    svn co

    Note: You may need to change the folder name from “trunk” to Products.PloneHelpCenter.
  5. Move up one directory: cd ..
  6. Create a a backup of the buildout.cfg file: cp buildout.cfg buildout.backup
  7. Edit the buildout.cfg file. Add the Products.PloneHelpCenter to the eggs section and the development egg location created earlier to the develop section:

    eggs =

    develop =

  8. Save the file and exit the text editor.
  9. Run the buildout command from the zinstance directory to update Plone: ./bin/buildout
  10. Start Plone: ./bin/instance fg
  11. Log on to Plone’s Zope Management Interface (ZMI) by opening a browser to
  12. On the left side, expand the tree under the name of your site.
  13. Click on portal_quickinstaller and click the checkbox next to PloneHelpCenter under Installable Products. Press Install.
  14. Log on to the Plone site. Help Center should be listed as one of the options under the Add New menu.
Installing Plone 4 on Mac OS X 10.6 Server

Installing Plone 4 on Mac OS X 10.6 Server

Plone 4 is an open source content management system (CMS). It’s an elegant, extensible solution for document and content control. Large companies, including Apple, use Plone. I’m evaluating CMS solutions and was pleased to find that Plone has a Mac OS X installer.

I tried to install the OS X installer and chose the local installation option. The installation process never completed. About halfway through the installation process I received the following error message:

Nov 8 14:13:34 bibracte installd[71515]: ./postinstall: Copying buildout skeleton
Nov 8 14:13:34 bibracte installd[71515]: ./postinstall: Fixing up bin/buildout
Nov 8 14:13:34 bibracte installd[71515]: ./postinstall: Running buildout; this takes a while...
Nov 8 14:13:34 bibracte installd[71515]: ./postinstall: Buildout returned an error code: 1; Aborting.
Nov 8 14:13:34 bibracte installd[71515]: ./postinstall: Buildout failed. Unable to continue
Nov 8 14:13:34 bibracte installd[71515]: ./postinstall: Installation has failed.
Nov 8 14:13:34 bibracte installd[71515]: ./postinstall: See the detailed installation log at /tmp/install.log
Nov 8 14:13:34 bibracte installd[71515]: ./postinstall: to determine the cause.

The /tmp/install.log file indicated that the Zope 2.12.10 Python distribution was missing.

Detailed installation log
Starting at Mon Nov 8 14:13:34 EST 2010
Creating directory '/Applications/Plone/zinstance/parts'.
Creating directory '/Applications/Plone/zinstance/develop-eggs'.
Couldn't find index page for 'Zope2' (maybe misspelled?)
Getting distribution for 'Zope2==2.12.10'.
Getting section instance.
Initializing section instance.
Installing recipe plone.recipe.zope2instance.
Getting distribution for 'Zope2==2.12.10'.
Error: Couldn't find a distribution for 'Zope2==2.12.10'.

Quick search for solutions did not return an easy way to install Zope 2.12.10, except by using MacPorts (which requires XCode and XWindows). One article that mentioned possibly using the unified Linux installer. I created a Ubuntu virtual machine (VM) using Parallels for the Linux Plone version and downloaded the unified installer for Linux. Surprise! The readme file for the Linux installer indicated that it could also be used with Mac OS X.

I followed the command line instructions (copied and pasted code) to install and configure Plone. I reviewed the config file Plone/zinstance/buildout.cfg and it looked okay so I did not run the buildout process. Ran the command to start Plone: /Plone/zinstance/bin/plonectl start and received an error message:

bibracte:PLone-4.0.1-UnifiedInstaller $ /Plone/zinstance/bin/plonectl start
instance: . . Traceback (most recent call last):
File "/Plone/buildout-cache/eggs/zdaemon-2.0.4-py2.6.egg/zdaemon/", line 745, in
File "/Plone/buildout-cache/eggs/zdaemon-2.0.4-py2.6.egg/zdaemon/", line 742, in main
File "/Plone/buildout-cache/eggs/zdaemon-2.0.4-py2.6.egg/zdaemon/", line 241, in main
File "/Plone/buildout-cache/eggs/zdaemon-2.0.4-py2.6.egg/zdaemon/", line 245, in run
File "/Plone/buildout-cache/eggs/zdaemon-2.0.4-py2.6.egg/zdaemon/", line 267, in opensocket
File "", line 1, in bind
socket.error: [Errno 22] Invalid argument
. . . . . . . . .
daemon manager not running

The above error message (“socket.error”) indicated that maybe something was wrong with the network settings in the Plone config files. I went through the config file (mentioned earlier) and through the file and did not find anything wrong. The instructions that I followed from the included Readme.html file did not indicate that a web server should be started with Plone. Mac OS X Server has a built-in web service, which was started and properly configured. I only wanted to run Plone on localhost.

On a hunch, a quick web search turned up other installation instructions on Red Turtle for OS X that included and different start instructions. Running these commands finally got Plone up:

  • Run the buildout: ./bin/buildout
  • Start Plone: ./bin/instance fg
  • Then type this URL in your browser: http://localhost:8080