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We're so studly

Friday, November 21, 2008 by Dave Winer.

Well, the ProxyPass project met its objective, but not without a few more brain teasers and knife fights along the way. Permalink to this paragraph

The goal was to get the OPML Editor running behind Apache, so Apache could serve the static stuff, and the OPML Editor could do the dynamic stuff. The OPML Editor is running only on port 5337 and Apache on port 80. And all this is running on an instance in Amazon's cloud, a.k.a. EC2.  Permalink to this paragraph

The first problem is that while Amazon is capable of linking a permanent IP address to an instance, so you can host publicly available websites in EC2, the machine doesn't know its public IP address, so when you tell Apache to route requests for the public IP address to OPML it says OK, but it never actually routes anything. I thought "Well this is silly, why does Apache care what its IP address is?" and it turns out it doesn't. Just put an asterisk where you'd put an IP address, and it routes everything. This must have been added after the first release because the docs don't mention it except parenthetically. Permalink to this paragraph

Then I had problems on the OPML side, cause now every request, even those that used to come in on port 80, now use port 5337. It turns out some code cares in some very bizarre ways that I never fully understood. Instead I wrote a hack that changes the port to 80 if it came from Apache, and bing everything works. I call this the Indian Jones method after the scene in the first Indiana Jones movie where the hero kills the terrifying giant sword-swinging Mullah by shooting him. It was funny the first time, after that you see it coming and it's not that funny. But sometimes I forget that you can solve programming problems that way. Who cares if your app invites you to a sword fight if you've got a gun? Permalink to this paragraph

I was so relieved when it worked that I left a comment with a lot of immature words in it. Permalink to this paragraph

Anyway, the headline on this post refers to you, dear Scripting News tech studs, who helped me sort out the arcania of Apache. You guys are the greatest. Thank you. Permalink to this paragraph


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A picture named dave.jpgDave Winer, 53, pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management software; former contributing editor at Wired Magazine, research fellow at Harvard Law School, entrepreneur, and investor in web media companies. A native New Yorker, he received a Master's in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, a Bachelor's in Mathematics from Tulane University and currently lives in Berkeley, California.

"The protoblogger." - NY Times.

"The father of modern-day content distribution." - PC World.

One of BusinessWeek's 25 Most Influential People on the Web.

"Helped popularize blogging, podcasting and RSS." - Time.

"The father of blogging and RSS." - BBC.

"RSS was born in 1997 out of the confluence of Dave Winer's 'Really Simple Syndication' technology, used to push out blog updates, and Netscape's 'Rich Site Summary', which allowed users to create custom Netscape home pages with regularly updated data flows." - Tim O'Reilly.

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