A First Taste of Netlify

June 11, 2018

As I've been learning about the JAMstack I've often heard really good things about using Netlify for hosting. I had a chance to try it out yesterday and I must say that the hype seems pretty warranted.

I often call my blog the least important site on the internet, but the real winner of that award is Camp Perry, a blog that I created as a joke for the unofficial neighborhood camp that happens in my back yard every summer. I wanted to move the blog to Gatsby and also take better advantage of the campperry.fun domain than I could on my current Github Pages configuration. Seemed like as good an excuse as any to try out Netlify. After granting access to my github repo, Netlify was able to:

  • Automatically determine that I had a Gatsby site, and configure the build process accordingly
  • Deploy a new build whenever a commit was made to the master branch
  • For each new pull request, create a deploy preview site that I could use to sanity check my changes
  • Use my custom domain (this took a little configuration and was the hardest part, but mainly because I'm not great at domain stuff)

All of that in a few minutes, and on the free tier. They also offer one click https, which I haven't gotten around to yet. Well worth checking out if you're looking for a place to host a static site build. I'd like to migrate this site to Netlify at some point as well to take advantage of some of the build automation and also https.

Update: with my custom domain stuff all squared away I was able to try the one click https features. One click to enable https via letsencrypt, a second click to force https on the site. Took about 90 seconds start to finish. And Netlify will autorenew my letsencrypt certificate before it expires. Pretty amazing.