What is Static Publishing?

Static publishing means that all the content of a Mir site is outputted as HTML files with some simple includes.

How does that work?

When you go to publish a story, article, or comment on Mir you are directed to the dynamic site. Here you fill out a form much like you would with Active, and the information is stored in a database. On the next run of the Producers, your submission is written out as an html fragment in the appropiate files.

Why would you do that?

A major advantage is that you can split all the dynamic requests, like publishing, and the static requests, like viewing an article, on to different machines.

* Run a local dynamic server on a cheap, low-bandwidth connection, but serve the content from a high-bandwidth connection. (this is what imc-germany does)

* Run a local dynamic server, but server the content from a network of high-bandwidth servers. You no longer have to mirror the databases. Greatly simplifies the process of setting up mirrors.

* If high traffic, or intensive publishing is running the server into the ground, the other service can go on unaffected.

Also serving static webpages is much faster for Apache. And they can be indexed for search by standard tools like htdig.

Perhaps most importantly, publishing the website as totally static facilitates the wide distribution, and backup of an IMC site, meaning in the case of a hardware failure, or an attack by government organizations, it is very easy to have another web server standing by ready to be turned on and take over. If IMC is doing its job right, then we should be scaring the people in power, and our software needs to think about that.

-- MicahA - 16 Apr 2003
Topic revision: r2 - 01 Dec 2003, SpaceBunny
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