(no subject)

Kee Hinckley (nazgul@utopia.com)
Sun, 7 May 1995 11:12:40 +0500

>designing WWW sites. I have been asked to explore the possibilites of
>deigning a WWW site that has an user fill-in form that the information is
>then automatically stored in a searchable database.
>I would like to know what questions I should ask service providers before
>we choose one. Any hints you experienced users could give would be greatly

I assume you want the searchable database to be on the server? Most Web
Site providers we have talked to are happy to let you have forms which mail
you the results. However they are very hesitant about letting people write
arbitrary scripts that run on their machines. Just to complicate things,
even if they do let you write such scripts, they probably run their server
with a user of 'none', which means that any files you have your scripts
create will have to be writable by everyone on the machine - a not so
pleasant situation.

That said, it's not impossible. We have relationships with several
providers that allow us to write scripts - but they don't let all of their
customers do so. And the degree of security ranges from none to having to
pass our scripts through their vetting process.

I don't think you'll see the situation improve much until the server
companies start providing servers that run chroot'd as a specified a user.
Then you can have your own partition on the machine and the provider won't
have as many concerns.

(This topic may be better suited for www-talk, I've cc'd it there.)

Kee Hinckley Utopia Inc. - Cyberspace Architects=81 617/721-6100
nazgul@utopia.com http://www.utopia.com/

I'm not sure which upsets me more: that people are so unwilling to accept
responsibility for their own actions, or that they are so eager to regulate
everyone else's.