IT Services provides both a shared self-service web content and application hosting environment, as well as a discrete web hosting service for clients that require dedicated server resources. Another important function of this infrastructure is to provide web proxy and redirection services. Since this is a shared web application execution infrastructure, scalability and security are the two most important aspects of this service.
IT Services will also provide integration with external search services in support of public web content indexing. The vision for web search also includes integrating search results from multiple search engines (i.e., federated search); this vision will also include federated search across access-controlled content.
Technologies in this section
The web presence of the many different research, professorial, student, and administrative groups at Stanford is their principal public communications tool. By providing core web infrastructure for web content delivery and web application execution,IT Services helps the members of the Stanford community project the best possible public face. Expectations of the central web infrastructure are becoming more sophisticated and require modernization of IT Services' offerings in these areas.
- Deploy discrete web application hosting service based on virtual machine technology.
- Offer some facility for federated search across Stanford access-controlled web content repositories
- Develop custom configuration form for authorized Stanford clients to order their own web hosting environment; tie into automated provisioning service.
- Pilot OpenSocial gadget gallery, offering range of Stanford services and external services of interest to the Stanford community; evaluate OpenSocial containers.
- Address known issues in the web applications infrastructure around scaling, proxy services, enhancing performance of cgi-bin execution.
- Specify the virtual machine (VM) web application hosting model; work to prioritize this given its value to Stanford community.
- Improve web-based service controls (i.e., Control Panel).
- Investigate potential support for additional execution languages.
- Conduct additional pilot of federated search implementations across centrally offered web, wiki, and blog services.
Measures of success
- Broader adoption of web application infrastructure.
- Fewer websites running on departmentally hosted servers.
- Increased ease of configuration and deployment of web applications into infrastructure.
- Performance improvements on shared web environment.