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  1. #1
    Senior Member rosland's Avatar
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    Can anyone give me a brief summary of the advantages of SSI versus using templates and PHP-driven includes.

    I saw transio gave a short explanation in another thread with regard to SSI vs iframes.
    But if you use templates and PHP-include for dynamic text, they are still assembled on the serverside, so where's the advantage.
    I'm sure they exist, but beeing unfamiliar with SSI I don't know what they are :dead:

    [My daughter spilt soda over my keyboard, so the uppercase button doesn't work. Thats why there are no questionmarks in the preceeding text. Will get a new one on monday]
    S. Rosland

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  3. #2
    WDF Staff smoseley's Avatar
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    PHP-includes are essentially the same thing as SSI. The only advantage to using SHTML SSI is that it's portable between different server types (e.g. Apache, IIS), while PHP includes are better because they allow you to add more functionality in the future.

  4. #3
    Senior Member rosland's Avatar
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    Thanks!

    I'll stick to PHP then :classic:
    S. Rosland

  5. #4
    Member sopiaz57's Avatar
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    Another great disadvantage is that SSI slows down Apache, with SSI enabled apache has to parse the whole doc looking for server side includes. This is different with PHP because the PHP scripting engine is much faster and knows to parse everything inside the <?php tag

    at least i think.
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  6. #5
    WDF Staff smoseley's Avatar
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    Probably not... remember that <?php initializes the PHP compiler... which is significantly slower than appending docs.

    Besides that, SSI will work without PHP, and will work on Apache, IIS, or pretty much any other webserver with SSI enabled

    EDIT: either way, processing speed is insignificant, because we're talking about microseconds difference here, and processing speed isn't your concern on shared hosting... the other benefits are the ones that you need to consider (i.e. will you ever need MORE than just SSI)

  7. #6
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    I completely agree with Transio. If you ever want to add in any type of dynamicity (I think it's a word) using PHP, you don't want to have to change every page name and link. Since SSI really has no other benefit, stick to the PHP.

  8. #7
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    If it's not a word, it should be.

    Actually, SSI does have one other very small benefit, which I stumbled upon quite by accident with one of my clients who knows some very basic HTML. I created an SSI file containing a simple text-based menu for one of his sites, and he wanted to add a link. He didn't even have to bother me...he just opened up the SSI file with a text editor, popped in the link, and away he went.

    So it can be of some benefit if you're sharing an environment with those who know basic HTML but not a programming language. Mind you, this is probably a pretty rare situation and certainly one that I don't ever intend to encounter again.
    If I've helped you out in any way, please pay it forward. My wife and I are walking for Autism Speaks. Please donate, and thanks.

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  9. #8
    WDF Staff smoseley's Avatar
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    Most intelligent *somewhat* computer-savvy individuals, with enough encouragement, can open up an SSI content page (navigation or paragraph text) and figure out how to alter it. The encouragement process, Adam, is called "training clients," and is necessary with clients who are small enough not to know how they're supposed to interact with an agancy. Just never forget who works for whom ;-)

  10. #9
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    I didn't encourage him. He just went and did it on his own. I'm okay with this because he sends me a ton of business and because this was actually the easiest site I've done for him.

    He knows about 1/20 of what I know as it pertains to design and development and he's one of my two most tech-savvy clients. So if he wants to do that, on the easiest site I've done for him, he can do it until his eyes bulge out of his head for all I care. Someone's still got to do database backends and graphics optimization and search engine promotion and links campaigns and all the other good stuff that makes me the web design equivalent to Ernest "The Cat" Miller. SOMEBODY CALL MAH MOMMA!
    If I've helped you out in any way, please pay it forward. My wife and I are walking for Autism Speaks. Please donate, and thanks.

    If someone helped you out, be sure to "Like" their post and/or help them in kind. The "Like" link is on the bottom right of each post, beside the "Share" link.

    My stuff (well, some of it): My bowling alley site | Canadian Postal Code Info (beta)


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