[typo] use cases behind single/multi-blog support

mathew meta at pobox.com
Tue Mar 6 17:29:03 EST 2007

On 3/6/07, Brody Pierre <brodypierre at gmail.com> wrote:
> So a blog-server admin would naturally want to host many bloggers. I'm
> thinking of something like blogger.com , although presumably specialized for
> some niche.
> What motivated the decision to support one blogs (now moving forward to
> supporting a few)? What are the use cases that made Typo and other blogging
> engines work this way?

I'm guessing that it's because building thread-safe code which can
deal with hundreds of simultaneous requests for hundreds of different
users' blogs, and do it all securely, is hard. Much easier to set up a
separate Unix account per customer. That way you get:

- Stronger security, because it's enforced at OS level. You don't need
to worry (as much) about user X injecting some SQL and wiping out 200
customers' blogs from your database.

- Better ways to manage disk and CPU usage (e.g. run 'and' to stop one
user's blog soaking up all CPU time)

- Ability for users to add their own CGI, deploy their own applications

- Ability for users to FTP/FTPS in and edit their web pages and
templates directly (*)

- Ability to scale indefinitely, as it's relatively easy to move users
to less loaded servers transparently if you have to

Building all that into the application layer is a lot of work
requiring lots of attention to detail. People like Google and SixApart
have multiple full-time developers dedicated to their blog software,
dealing with security issues that crop up, load issues, and so on.

The (*) shouldn't be downplayed either. Users expect it. Even cheap
$10 hosting from GoDaddy comes with a Unix account and FTP access, so
why not use those accounts to segment your hosted blogs too?

Basically, unless blogs are your entire business, I think you'd be
crazy to invest in the amount of work required to support lots of
users on a single software deployment.


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