Getting Started

Administrate is released as a Ruby gem, and can be installed on Rails applications version 4.2 or greater.

Add the following to your Gemfile:

# Gemfile
gem "administrate"

Re-bundle, then run the installer:

$ rails generate administrate:install

The installer adds some new routes to your config/routes.rb, and creates a controller at app/controllers/admin/application_controller.rb

In addition, the generator creates a Dashboard and a Controller for each of your ActiveRecord resources:

The Admin::ApplicationController can be customized to add authentication logic, authorization, pagination, or other controller-level concerns.

You will also want to add a root route to show a dashboard when you go to /admin.

Rails.application.routes.draw do
  namespace :admin do
    # Add dashboard for your models here
    resources :customers,
    resources :orders

    root to: "customers#index" # <--- Root route

The routes can be customized to show or hide different models on the dashboard.

Each FooDashboard specifies which attributes should be displayed on the admin dashboard for the Foo resource.

Each Admin::FooController can be overwritten to specify custom behavior.

Once you have Administrate installed, visit http://localhost:3000/admin to see your new dashboard in action.

Create Additional Dashboards

In order to create additional dashboards, pass in the resource name to the dashboard generator. A dashboard and controller will be created.

$ rails generate administrate:dashboard Foo

Add a route for the new dashboard.

# config/routes.rb

namespace :admin do
  resources :foos

Keep Dashboards Updated as Model Attributes Change

If you've installed Administrate and generated dashboards and then subsequently added attributes to your models you'll need to manually add these additions (or removals) to your dashboards.


# app/dashboards/your_model_dashboard.rb

    # ...
    the_new_attribute: Field::String,
    # ...

    # ...
    # ...

    # ...
    # ...

    # ...
    :the_new_attribute, # if you want it on the index, also.
    # ...

It's recommended that you make this change at the same time as you add the attribute to the model.

The alternative way to handle this is to re-run rails g administrate:install and carefully pick through the diffs. This latter method is probably more cumbersome.

Rails API

Since Rails 5.0, we've been able to have API only applications. Yet, sometimes we still want to have an admin.

To get this working, we recommend updating this config:

# config/application.rb
config.api_only = false

That means, when your app boots, we'll have access to flashes and such. We also don't use your ApplicationController. Instead, Administrate provides its own. Meaning you're free to specify ActionController::API as your parent controller to make sure no flash, session, or cookie middleware is used by your API.

Alternatively, if your application needs to have config.api_only = true, we recommend you add the following lines to your config/application.rb

# Enable Flash, Cookies, MethodOverride for Administrate Gem
config.middleware.use ActionDispatch::Flash
config.session_store :cookie_store
config.middleware.use ActionDispatch::Cookies
config.middleware.use ActionDispatch::Session::CookieStore, config.session_options
config.middleware.use ::Rack::MethodOverride

You must also ensure that the all the required controller actions are available and accessible as routes since generators in API-only applications only generate some of the required actions. Here is an example:

# routes.rb
namespace :admin do
  resources name, only: %i(index show new create edit update destroy)

# names_controller.rb
# Ensure each of those methods are defined