[SPAM] [mod_python] [SPAM] Is mod_python 3.1 good in commercial blogging/CMS programming?

Jorey Bump list at joreybump.com
Mon Nov 7 09:03:00 EST 2005

Anthony L. wrote:

> code since I already am expecting a hard time finding low- cost 
> dedicated hosting with Apache 2 and mod_python 3 support.

You'll really need to know how to configure and administer your own 
server to get the most out of mod_python. The most you could expect from 
a hosting provider is a good colocation or virtual server environment. I 
doubt if I'd be happy with any preconfigured mod_python setup.

> 1. I want to use CGI through Publisher handler, instead of CGI  handler 
> or PSP. Despite the speed increase mod_python gives me, there  is a 
> problem of persistence that can be a problem when dealing with a  site 
> that will hosts potentially hundreds of simultaneous users.

Not sure what you mean. mod_python isn't CGI. Since it embeds the 
interpreter, it's *more* persistent. Could you be more specific?

> 2. I have found nothing to quantify the stability and reliability of  
> mod_python 3, and in the absence of a list of major commercial sites  
> that use mod_python, I am left feeling as is there might be technical  
> (read as stability/security) reasons to favor mod_perl over mod_python.

mod_perl shares many similarities with mod_python, and really big sites 
that use mod_perl encounter the same issues that are often discussed on 
this list. The difference is that mod_perl beginners typically use the 
mode where a script is run once then unloaded, like CGI, but without the 
overhead of starting an interpreter every time (this may be what 
mod_python's CGI handler does, but I've never used it). Since there are 
many, many CGI scripts already written in perl, it's easy to run these 
under mod_perl without modification. But I don't see any stability or 
security advantages to mod_perl at all.

> 3. I am not very attracted to PSP because I want to separate the  logic 
> from the presentation as completely as possible, and PHP and  other 
> template languages including PSP seem difficult to do that in.  Learning 

This is the main reason I use mod_python.publisher.

> template systems like PyMeld is an unattractive option for  me since I 
> don't understand their benefit. Why can't I just use  req.write() to 
> output my markup, relying completely on external CSS  after the fact? My 
> thought is that HTML templates provide a minimum  set of static code 
> that doesn't require extra processing, thus  keeping performance up. 
> However, if I minimize my use of req.write()  will it make a difference?

I never use req.write() with Publisher, I return the final page as a 
string (Publisher adds the headers). Arguably, req.write() can reduce 
memory overhead if you're generating huge pages for a large number of 
connections, but I haven't needed to deal with that, yet.

> 4 A final question, is mod_python 2.7 suitable for use in a  commercial 
> production system? All I'm doing is text processing,  string 
> manipulation, database calls, and some very minor mathematics.  If the 
> Apache 1.3 series mod works fine, can I relieve myself of some  stress 
> and go with that combo?

I use it in production, but I don't recommend it. It's not developed 
anymore, and you need to take some additional precautions. There are 
enough advantages to using Apache 2/mod_python 3 that it's well worth 
moving on to recent versions. Fortunately, they are both fairly easy to 
compile and install if your platform only packages the old versions.

> I'd appreciate some practical advise on this. I am funding this  myself 
> on a small budget with no hard deadline, so it is critical to  me that I 
> choose a language that will minimize my costs. Are my  assumptions 
> correct, or am I falling prey to FUD?

Language choice is personal, so you'll have to determine that yourself. 
I find that I'm more productive using Python, but I also need a lot more 
control over the environment than I do with PHP, which has fewer 
portability issues. Short of making a recommendation, I agree with many 
of your points and use mod_python for most of my projects, so it might 
also be a good choice for you.

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