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An Engine with the responsibility of coordinating the whole boot process.


Rails::Application is responsible for executing all railties and engines initializers. It also executes some bootstrap initializers (check Rails::Application::Bootstrap) and finishing initializers, after all the others are executed (check Rails::Application::Finisher).


Besides providing the same configuration as Rails::Engine and Rails::Railtie, the application object has several specific configurations, for example “cache_classes”, “consider_all_requests_local”, “filter_parameters”, “logger” and so forth.

Check Rails::Application::Configuration to see them all.


The application object is also responsible for holding the routes and reloading routes whenever the files change in development.


The Application is also responsible for building the middleware stack.

Booting process

The application is also responsible for setting up and executing the booting process. From the moment you require “config/application.rb” in your app, the booting process goes like this:

1)  require "config/boot.rb" to set up load paths
2)  require railties and engines
3)  Define Rails.application as "class MyApp::Application < Rails::Application"
4)  Run config.before_configuration callbacks
5)  Load config/environments/ENV.rb
6)  Run config.before_initialize callbacks
7)  Run Railtie#initializer defined by railties, engines and application.
    One by one, each engine sets up its load paths, routes and runs its config/initializers/* files.
8)  Custom Railtie#initializers added by railties, engines and applications are executed
9)  Build the middleware stack and run to_prepare callbacks
10) Run config.before_eager_load and eager_load! if eager_load is true
11) Run config.after_initialize callbacks

Multiple Applications

If you decide to define multiple applications, then the first application that is initialized will be set to Rails.application, unless you override it with a different application.

To create a new application, you can instantiate a new instance of a class that has already been created:

class Application < Rails::Application

first_application  = Application.new
second_application = Application.new(config: first_application.config)

In the above example, the configuration from the first application was used to initialize the second application. You can also use the initialize_copy on one of the applications to create a copy of the application which shares the configuration.

If you decide to define Rake tasks, runners, or initializers in an application other than Rails.application, then you must run them manually.


INITIAL_VARIABLES = [:config, :railties, :routes_reloader, :reloaders, :routes, :helpers, :app_env_config, :secrets]


[W] credentials
[W] secrets
[W] config
[R] executor
[R] reloader
[R] reloaders
[RW] sandbox?
[RW] sandbox
[RW] assets
Show files where this class is defined (6 files)
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