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Fight Your Blogrolling Woes

I noticed the both Kate and James has posts up about moving or removing their blogrolls due to occasional slow downs at Blogrolling.com. I dealt with this problem last week at Wizbang, so I thought I'd share my tips.

Using the PHP feed seems like a great idea in theory, but in practice the fact that the code executes prior to the rest of your template code means that if Blogrolling.com is unavailable your site will not load until the PHP code times out. This is what was happening here, and it is unacceptable.

Using the JavaScript code (the default choice) to load your Blogrolling.com blogroll eliminates the issues with the PHP version as the code executes from within your template wherever it is called. Using this knowledge it is possible to craft a template that uses the JavaScript Blogrolling.com code which loads quickly even if Blogrolling.com is down.

The key to keeping your site maximally available is to move the Blogrolling.com JavaScript code to the very end of your template. The idea is that everything in your template is executed before the Blogrolling.com code. This keeps your page load times fast and makes your content available without the dependency on Blogrolling.com availability. Your Blogrolling.com blogroll code is executed after your entire page (with the exception of the blogroll) is visible. If Blogrolling.com is unavailable the spots in your layout for the blogrolls will be empty, but your page will be usable.

Site layouts are radically different from site to site, so I can't give you a blanket answer to where exactly in your template the code should go, but if you make sure it appears after the MTEntries block your posts will all be visible before the blogrolls attempt to load. Remember that any code after the Blogrolling.com JavaScript will be paused while the blogrolls are loaded (assuming there is a problem at Blogrolling.com), so you may need to tinker with the location of things like SiteMeter code.

By moving the Blogrolling.com blogrolls to the bottom of your templates you can keep your page load times fast and be protected against slow downs at Blogrolling.com.


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Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Fight Your Blogrolling Woes:

» Amish Tech Support linked with Make your external code fashionably late

» One Fine Jay linked with Amazing Civility

» Electric Venom linked with The Letter Of The Day Is H

» OUTSIDE THE BELTWAY linked with BLOGGING TIPS

» The Encyclopeteia linked with Nerd Info: PHP Includes and Blogrolling

» Amish Tech Support linked with Better Late Than Never

Comments (5)

Excellent advice. All exter... (Below threshold)

Excellent advice. All external references should be as late in the load queue as possible.

That's what I did and it wa... (Below threshold)

That's what I did and it was a great solution.

I did that with my SiteMete... (Below threshold)

I did that with my SiteMeter counter, putting it at the bottom of the page, outside the table. My Blogrolling script--which I used the php for because I was under the impression that it wouldn't have this problem, unlike the default javascript--is in the third column of the table, coming after the tag at least from a reading perspective.

I use the PHP code from blo... (Below threshold)

I use the PHP code from blogrolling and my content loads just fine even when blogrolling is down or slow and have, for a long time, had my content section loading first (a great suggestion).

So it is not at all clear that you need to switch to the Javascript code to avoid potential slow loading due to blogrolling.com. And the Javascript rolls have the unpleasant side effect of your links not being visible to some of the crawlers that forage around for various ecosystem sites (last time I checked this included Technorati).

I'm using the Java Script w... (Below threshold)

I'm using the Java Script with my sidebar on the right hand side of the page. I did notice that that part of my page hesitated at that point where the javascript code was for blogrolling today. I just started my blogrolling.com last night and thought it was the tits. This morning however, I find that I am the biggest fan of Laura's Blog in the blogsphere. now, none of my blogrolling links are available on my site. Is this a normal thing for blogrolling? If it is, then I guess I need to go back to hard coding my links.




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