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From Nick Kew <n...@webthing.com>
Subject Re: [users@httpd] Question about apache versus XML/XLST
Date Mon, 26 Sep 2005 20:12:40 GMT
On Monday 26 September 2005 20:15, Joshua Slive wrote:
> On 9/26/05, Normand Mongeau <nmongeau@videotron.ca> wrote:
> > Hi All,
> >
> > this is my first posting here, so please bear with me if I'm at the wrong
> > place.
> >
> > I'm looking at Apache to be used as an HTTP server, to access a GemStone
> > database at the back end.  In my scenario all pages will be active. 
> > Ideally I'd like Apache to convert HTTP requests to XML (presumably with
> > XSLT) before feeding them to my database, which would then return the
> > resulting data also in XML, for Apache to then convert that XML to HTML
> > with XSLT, thus returning HTML to the client.

That's a little confusing.  mod_transform and others are available to convert
outgoing XML to HTML, or whatever other formats you may want (and you
might also like to look at the XMLNS framework, which is based on a SAX2
parser and therefore far more efficient than XSLT).  But what exactly are you
expecting to do with incoming data?  Processing that was one of the initial 
objectives of mod_xml, but that basically withered for lack of real-life apps.

> >
> > I looked at different Apache modules but nothing seems to fit my
> > scenario. For instance, the Xalan C++ sample named ApacheModuleXSLT is
> > completely file-based, which is definitely not my case.

I don't know that module.  In the days of Apache 1.x, processing files was
sometimes unavoidable, but anything that faffs about with them these
days is probably not a good general-purpose choice.

> > Is there a way to do the above scenario?
>
> There are various options.  mod_transform is one and there are several
> others listed on http://modules.apache.org/
>
> But to be frank, unless your needs for performance are very high, most
> people would not consider doing this in a C module.  They would use a
> higher level system like mod_perl/tomcat or a CGI/fastCGI-based system
> in your favorite language.

Why?  Since the coming of Apache 2, applications development in C modules
has become very attractive.  It's what drew me into writing them, including
reimplimenting a lot of stuff previously written as CGI or with mod_perl.

> Not that it can't be done in a pure apache module written in C.  It is
> just that higher level languages will often be much easier to deal
> with.

They may be.  But the APR takes away the biggest burden of C programming
(namely, managing resources), and native-Apache has a lot to offer as
applications platform.
>
> Joshua.
>
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-- 
Nick Kew

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