The first step to building or migrating a website to the Common Web Platform (CWP) is setting up an instance. An instance can hold one or more websites.

You can request an instance using the online Service Desk, by completing the Request New Instance form. SilverStripe will provide you with an instance within 3 business days. Service desk access is provided to agencies, once they have signed up.

Choosing the right instance size 

Approving a new instance

The Agency Relationship Manager is required to approve all new instances. This is so they can authorise the costs involved, and are aware of new websites. On receiving an instance request, SilverStripe will email cost and technical details to the Agency Relationship Manager and ask for authorisation by text message (SMS).

Once complete, the relevant people at your agency will be emailed information that the Instance has been set up and what systems can now be accessed.

What information is asked on the instance form?

Agency name* For example "Department of Internal Affairs".
Instance ID*
(only letters and numbers, e.g. diagovtnz, diaict)
A unique identifier shown in our systems and on your invoices. It needs to be sufficiently memorable and identifiable so you know what it is when we send you emails and SMS messages. This is not able to changed in the future, so pick carefully. (All other aspects of the form can be changed upon request after the Instance is created).
Instance name (e.g. Department for Internal Affairs)* A human-friendly description of the instance. The Instance Name is typically the name of a website, but if your instance holds many websites you might describe that instead.
Primary domain name (e.g. We will set up the production environment to listen on this address.
Additional domain names We will also set up the production environment to listen on these addresses.
Instance size* Either Small, Medium, or Large, which dictates the amount of traffic your website will handle, and affects the setup and monthly costs. You can change size after the system is built. See Selecting the attributes of an Instance.
Production Disaster recovery level*

Your production environment can be at one of three different levels: Backup Only, Passive DR, and Active DR. Read about the three different levels and consider how quickly your want your website to be restored following a disaster (e.g. earthquake taking the datacentre offline). The choice affects the monthly cost. You can change the level after the Instance is built.

If you choose Active DR, we recommend (but do not require) that the UAT environment also have Active DR. (This costs more, but enables better testing that reduces the risk you deploy code that takes your website down. It also allows you to deploy to production in situations that the primary datacentre is offline.)

Initial site deployed to UAT* Normally, you'll want us to set up an Instance using the "default recipe" of supported code, which provides a number of standard features and standard templates. You can instead, ask us to set up your website based on code you have already started developing (again which should be based off the default recipe), or from a site elsewhere on the Platform. (See next question)
Custom Git repository (if selected above) In you select 'Custom Git Repository' to prior question, ask your technical staff to provide the URL pointing to where this code is inside Gitlab (external link)(external link), and type it in here.
Additional options (extra cost)

Decide whether to have your test (UAT) environment backed up on a daily basis, or not. The choice affects the monthly cost. You can change this after your Instance is built.

Also choose whether you want a premium layer-7 Web Application Firewall.

Purchase Order / Responsibility Code

If your agency needs a purchase order or responsibility code shown on invoices, you will need to provide these here. All invoices go to the same email recipient at an agency, but each Instance can have different purchase order/responsibility codes to differentiate them. Billing will commence within three days of the request form being received.
Instance manager’s name*

This person is primarily in charge of this Instance. See agency roles and responsibilities.

Instance manager’s email* Used for notifications of scheduled and unforeseen outages, and new releases of our software.
Instance manager’s mobile number* We will SMS you to confirm if a deployment can be done to the production environment.
CMS administrator’s name* This person sets up and removes users in the CMS.
Other users in the CMS need not be a 'CMS Administrator'.
See agency roles and responsibilities
CMS administrator’s email*
CMS administrator’s mobile number*
Technical Staff's name These people have access to the code, can deploy code to the UAT server, and can request deployments to production (which are approved by an Instance Manager). This role is often held by several people (enter in this form separated by commas), and may be an internal team or developers at external supplier. You may opt to supply these names later using the 'Add new user' or 'Add authorisation' forms inside the Service Desk.

See agency roles and responsibilities.  
Technical Staff's email
Technical Staff's mobile number

See also: What to do after my instance has been created.

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