[wp-hackers] WordPress and Websockets

Braydon ronin at braydon.com
Thu Sep 22 05:20:03 UTC 2011

They were doing reverse ajax, "comet", a couple years ago, by holding an 
xhr open for a long time without needing websockets. You would still 
need to have a long running PHP process running....

This seems like something better done in another language, if 
maintaining WordPress interface, you could write something just for the 
front-end entirely in Node.js? I'm really curious to do something in 
this area.

On 09/20/2011 02:21 PM, Eric Mann wrote:
> I've bounced this idea on the WordPress StackExchange, in the support
> forums, and informally to a few other developers via Twitter and in-person
> at WordCamp Portland.  I have yet to hear a solid answer, though ... so I
> wanted to bounce it by here, too.
> I'm working on a plugin that, ideally, would make use of websockets to
> communicate between the front-end and the WordPress backend.  Basically,
> whenever a post is published on the backend, it should trigger an event on
> the front-end for other users.  This can be done using old school AJAX and
> long polling, but the point is more to make use of the cutting-edge
> technology than to fall back on "what works."
> Unfortunately, most users are running WordPress on an Apache server ... and
> Apache doesn't natively support websockets.  There are some modules you can
> add to make it work, but that's not an option for people running WP on a
> shared host.
> One option I have is to use Apache anyway.  It can be forced to work with
> websockets using a few PHP scripts I found, but once the websocket is open
> you essentially steal a persistent connection to Apache (which is itself a
> blocking process).  So while this would work, and would probably work well
> for low-traffic sites, it could easily lock up an ill-configured server or
> crash someones system.
> Another option is to host the websocket part of the system on my server
> (where I can use Nginix, Node.js, or any other websocket-friendly server)
> and have the plugin interface with my server.  The downside here is that my
> system then becomes the bottleneck ...
> My question to you: which option would you take?  Try to make due with
> installed software, or move the mission-critical part of the application to
> your own box?  Does anyone have experience implementing websockets in
> WordPress already?  Is there something I'm missing?
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