New Software Running ScottOnWriting.NET

Published 27 May 10 10:50 PM | Scott Mitchell

When I started this blog in July 2003 there weren't many available blog engines build atop ASP.NET. One of the more interesting ones at the time was Scott Watermasysk's .Text blog engine (which eventually became part of Community Server. Over the past nearly seven years ScottOnWriting.NET has continued to be powered by .Text, even though the code base was discontinued circa 2004. There were two primary reasons I stuck with .Text for so long:

  1. I could find no easy way to migrate my existing content from .Text into Community Server. I believe there was such a tool created in the early days of Community Server, but I had no luck with it, as I recall. Eventually, this product disappeared and the only migration tools I could find were from older versions of Community Server to newer ones, but none for .Text.
  2. There were URL changes between .Text and Community Server, so switching over would immediately result in a slew of broken URLs. I am a strong believer in URLs as public interfaces and view broken URLs and believe each broken URL makes the Internet that less useful. Plus it makes the Internet Founding Fathers - Tim Berners-Lee, Vint Cerf, and Al Gore - cry. Smile

Well, this week I decided to take the plunge and move ScottOnWriting.NET and its hundreds of posts over to a new blog engine, namely Community Server (albeit an older version of Community Server - when will I learn?). I wrote some custom SQL scripts to (the best of my ability) move over all blog posts and categories (or tags, as they're called now-a-days). I also spent a good deal of time writing some regular expressions and very big switch statements to properly reroute URLs. For example, if you try to visit an old ScottOnWriting.NET URL, like http://scottonwriting.net/sowBlog/posts/145.aspx, you should be automatically redirected to the new URL, http://scottonwriting.net/sowBlog/archive/0000/00/00/162659.aspx. Likewise, if you visit an old category URL or an old moth/year archive URL you should be redirected to the new URLs. If this is not the case, if you find a broken URL or other problem on this site, please let me know.

Note that I did not mention bringing over the past blog comments. I'm still on the fence as to whether I want to spend the time to do this. There were hundreds of comments left over the years, many of them quite helpful and many that added substantially to the discussion. However, I've already sunk a number of hours into this migration and am hesitant to burn too much more time. Plus I still have a number of aesthetic and cosmetic things to do, like update the site's CSS, add in some of the widgets from the original site that aren't part of the default Community Server setup, and so forth. My goal is to eventually import these past comments, but I wouldn't be at all surprised if this is still on my TODO list come 2011.

In closing, please do let me know if you run into any problems with the new blog engine.

Thanks!

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