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Re: Additions to local web documents

> Jim> /var/www for html files
> Christoph> /var/www is discouraged to be used by the webstandard. Do
> Christoph> not use it unless you have documents that need to be
> Christoph> modified on a regular basis.

There are cases when putting symlinks into this directory is a good
way of doing things.  
> 	What is the rationale behind this? And where do auto generated
>  files go? I think this is a defect in the webstandard, and needs to
>  be addressed. In my opinion the Web standard fails to address the
>  four cases I have detailed below.

Auto generated files should go into /var/lib/<packagename> and a symlink
to /var/www should be used.  That's what dwww does for the auto-generated
menu files and such.

> Christoph> Use /usr/doc/<package> to store static HTML code and refer
> Christoph> to it by using the URL
> Christoph> http://<hostname>/doc/<package>
> Christoph> Register the documentation with the menu package.
> 	This would be fine for documentation, but what about
>  non-documentation files? spescialy packages targeted towards
>  providing local Web services?

I don't think the webstandard say that you can't put static files
under /var/www.   It's just that it's not appropriate to put 
"HTML documentation" under /var/www - that stuff should go 
into /usr/doc.  It's much easier to find there if you're not
using a web browser.

Conversely, I don't think that non-documentation (but still static) 
items belong under /usr/doc.

>  cases:
>  1)   I have a modified MOMSpider that very configurably checks the
>       several local doc tree (it recognizes that different part of the
>       site have different maintainers, so one may configure the spider
>       appropriately). It generates mail messages, and lots of reports,
>       which should be visible from my server. 
> 	If I package this, where do the reports go?

/var/lib/<packagename> - and use a symlink in /var/www

>  2)   I have a common log format gopher/ftp/http log digester that
>       generates a nice povray image of server statistics. Where do the
>       gif files go?

/var/lib/<packagename> - and use a symlink in /var/www

>  3)   LaTeX2HTML converted documents have traditionally refered to 
>       the relative URL /usr/lib/latex2html/icons/X.gif. This worls
>       fine for the base url file:// (when viewing the files directly
>       using lynx/netscape/w3, but if this is to be visible from my
>       sever, I need to create the directory 
>       <Document Root>/usr/lib/latex2html/icons/
>       and populate this with a forest of links.

That's sort of weird - I'd try to modify LatTeX2HTML to refer to the
links as being in <Document Root>/latex2html/icons/ and just have a
single symlink under /var/www to /usr/lib/latex2html

>  4)   I have written a HTML validation package, that consists fo a
>       Perl CGI-script, which puts up a form where users can type in
>       HTML snippets or URL's to full documents, the output is a
>       rendered image of the document, with line numbers added, the
>       output os nsgmls, a list of all HTML keywords found, with
>       pointer to a detailed description (actually, the DTD is parsed
>       into a tree, and all leaf nodes are described, so one may view
>       other grammatical details).
>       All these files maybe periodically updated whenever new DTD
>       files become available; I don't think these files should pollute
>       the doc heirarchy, since they are not documentation.

Do the same things again.  If it's not documentation - I don't really
want to see it under /use/doc.  Contrary to popular belief, I still
read documentation by cd'ing into /usr/doc/<packagename> and by looking
at files using "less".  Having non-documentation is messy, IMHO.

Case-in-point: /usr/doc/info2www - those .gif files aren't documentation.
> 	IMHO it is time we nailed down a document root, and recommend
>  that packages use that for local files/data. Jim said that he uses
>  /var/www for the sytem provided files, and uses /var/something for
>  his other servers; I think that might be a good place to start.
> 	manoj

As long as the user has the option of using a different directory for
their document root (they do have this option), I think that the
/var/www directory is the "property" of the debian www packages.  The
only issue is how to do it cleanly.  If we use some self-control and
only put small items like symlinks into /var/www, I think things will
stay neat and understandable.  Also, I personally think that 
packages such as dwww, info2www and other cgi-based packages should
be able to function even if the <document root>/doc symlink isn't 
there.  That symlink should just be there as a convenience for
accessing documentation.  It's not even necessary if someone chooses
to view the docs via dwww.

That's my perspective anyways.  :-)


 - Jim

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