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Best practice thoughts

Question asked by randomman on Jul 25, 2007
Hi guys. This is a bit of a long one!

I'm evalutating Alfresco with the aim of producing a large content-managed information website consisting of hundreds of downloadable files (word, pdfs, etc) and many (1000+) pages of online content.

I've played around with the document repository and WCM (both getting the WSF running and getting a small test system working on the same principles from scratch). I'm still a bit of a newbie but I'm beginning to get a reasonable idea of how things are working.

I was wondering what people's thoughts are on design best practice for Alfresco. I want to make sure I'm trying to work with Alfresco's strengths rather than against them and have to kludge things.

With regards to the document downloads, should I be aiming to have a system where all the documents are held in the repository with its appropriate workflow and request them though web services (web scripts?) or should I be pushing them into web folders once approved? The workflow for the latter seemed a bit clunky, so i'm guessing it's probably not the way to do it.

Also, I notice the WSF seems to run exclusively off XML files, so all content generated from a web forms is immediately rendered. Traditionally I've captured data and stored it in a database for rendering at a later date; is this now classed as an outmoded way of thinking or are there times when a dual approach is useful? When is one way more appropriate than another?

Would I be best storing flat content in xml files and complicated relational data in a db? If so, should I be aiming at customising the Web Client to allow content editors to update records through it? Can you submit web forms to a script performing db updates or would that be a new thing?

Thanks if you've read this far! I'd appreciate any kind of pointers or opinions you guys might have on this as I never like doing a half-assed job.  :wink:

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