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Installing Pantheon Site Locally

When building your Drupal 8 site locally site from a Pantheon instance, there are a few things that need to be done. As I've just gone through this process I've put together this quick 5 minute description of how to do it, and resolve the error that you may run into.

If you haven't used Pantheon Hosting yet, give it a try. I highly recommend it.

  • Clone the codebase (ideally with Git, if not download the codebase over FTP)
  • Backup and download the database
  • Install the MySQL datbase locally
  • In the codebase copy example.settings.local.php from /sites into sites/default
  • Rename example.settings.local.php to setting.local.php
  • Enter the details & credentials for your local site:
    // Local development configuration.
    if (!defined('PANTHEON_ENVIRONMENT')) {
        // Database.
        $databases['default']['default'] = array(
            'database' => 'your-database-name',
            'username' => 'your-database-username',
            'password' => 'your-database-password',
            'host' => 'localhost',
            'driver' => 'mysql',
            'port' => 3306,
            'prefix' => '',
  • Now you will also need to specify a hash_salt otherwise Drupal will throw a tantrum / error message
  • In settings.local.php add the following:
    $settings['hash_salt'] = 'RandomString';

Now you can hit the URL of your local site and it should load without an error, now you can write and push code to your hearts content.