Testing Environment

Princeton Site Builder has been designed to be used by non-technical website editors. All site building and content editing is done in the main "Production" environment.

Each site on this platform has three environments:

  1. Production: Where you build and edit your website.
  2. Test/QA (Quality Assurance): This environment is for testing purposes only.
  3. Development: This environment is used by Web Development Services only.

Proper usage of the Testing/QA environment

There are two main purposes of the Test/QA environment:

  1. To test new features or fixes that WDS adds to the platform as part of our platform maintenance. Such updates to the platform are typically applied to the Test/QA environment at least one day before being applied to the production environment. During this time you will be notified by email and can test the changes and provide feedback to WDS.
  2. To experiment with design/content/configuration/layout changes that you are not comfortable making to the production environment.

Any work done in your Test/QA environment cannot be "pushed" to your production site. The changes must be manually reproduced. You should use your production environment to made content changes, or ask WDS to clone your site if you need to make more dramatic changes to your site.

Refreshing Content on Your Test/QA environment

As described in the terms of service, the content in the Test/QA environment is NOT "refreshed" prior to every update to the platform that WDS performs. This means that the content in your staging environment will not match your production environment.

If you wish to have the content "refreshed" in your Test/QA environment email [email protected]. This process involves copying all files and data from your production environment to your Test/QA environment. As such, anything you've experimented with in your Test/QA environment will be lost.

Test/QA URL for testing or implementation of a change

The URL for your Test/QA environment follows this pattern:


In most cases, "SITE" will be the subdomain of your main production site. For example, if you're site's production domain is https://informationsecurity.princeton.edu, the Test/QA environment URL is https://informationsecurity.psb-test.princeton.edu/.

This URL may not be easy to remember, so WDS has provided it as a link from within your production environment. When logged in, click the "Prod" menu item in the top navbar. This will expand a tray that includes the link to the Test/QA environment:

Display of Test/QA toolbar

When logged into the staging environment site, the navbar will be a different color to clearly indicate that you are not on the production environment:

Example nav bar on the staging environment which is colored differently.