Off Topic Apache Farm Question

Mike Depot mdepot at
Sat Sep 22 11:21:05 UTC 2007

Memcached is a great tool for dynamic apps, but since you're talking 
about serving static images, there are other caching solutions 
available.  While some web/app servers are great for dynamic content, 
those servers are not always the best choice for static content.  A 
common strategy is to setup a pool of servers that serve the static 
content on their own but forward on any dynamic requests on to a second 
tier of servers that handle generating the dynamic content.  In the case 
of dynamic requests the first tier of servers is acting as a reverse 
proxy for the second tier.  Common in the first tier might be squid, 
lighttpd, or apache (with most of it's modules not loaded).  The second 
tier of dynamic content servers would be setup with J2EE, PHP, mod_perl, 
or whatever your favorite flavor is.  This second layer is where you 
would typically see memcached in use.  The first layer would use it's 
own static content caching mechanism, such as the caching built into 
squid or apache's/lighttpd's mod_cache modules. The first layer servers 
could sync their content directories from shared to local storage via 
cron/rsync, but you might not even need to do this. With good static 
content caching setup you can sometimes serve right from NFS/SMB mounted 
directories because the static content caching modules would already be 
copying it to local memory and/or local disk for it's cache storage.

Dan Miller wrote:
> I have an off topic question. BTW memcache is a great product and we 
> have been saved by it. But my question is what are most people 
> utilizing for a shared web storage.
> We keep all our web content images etc on local disks that are synced 
> when released. But we have common images that are uploaded via java 
> app server and stored on shared power vault unit. The shares are using 
> NFS on linux. We have been experieriencing ussues under high 
> utilization. The powervault is a Raid sata unit using 1gb ethernet.
> What are other people using in an environment where they need to share 
> diskspace across a web farm. Thanks

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