Magnolia 4.5 reached end of life on June 30, 2016. This branch is no longer supported, see End-of-life policy.

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Magnolia is distributed as two web-applications, one acting as the authoring instance and the other as the public environment. This allows for better security by having one application inside your firewall and one outside. It also enables clustering configurations.

Diagram

Architectural concept

Author vs. public instances
Authors work on the author instance. It typically resides in a secure location such as behind a corporate firewall, inaccessible from the Internet. The author instance publishes content to public instances. Public instance receives the public content and exposes it to visitors on the Web. It resides in a public, reachable location. You can have more than one public instances, serving the same or different content.

Public instances serving different content
You can manage multiple sites from the same author instance. Each public instance can serve content targeted for a specific geographical area, for example. Magnolia's multi-site feature provides granularity for content control on multi-language and multi-domain installations. Administrators have the option to direct content authors to the public site through a specific domain. Authors edit only the part of the content structure that resides at the specified domain. To ensure a consistent browsing experience, URLs are adapted to always reflect the domain. You can also configure multiple domains to access the same instance.

Publishing to intranet and extranet
Magnolia allows for flexibility in placing secure and sensitive application instances. The diagram illustrates a possible placement strategy where an extranet publishing instance resides outside the firewall but an intranet instance is inside. More advanced configurations can be built to place intranet and extranet instances inside a firewall, for example.

Instance configuration examples
Magnolia configurations range from a minimal one-machine setup to a standard three-instance production setup and beyond.

  • Minimal. Author and Public instances exist on the same server. This is the default configuration when you install Magnolia on your computer to try it.
  • Reduced. Author and Public instances exist on separate servers. The two Public instances are on the same server or one of the Public instances resides on the same server as the Author instance.
  • Standard. Public instances exist on separate servers. This configuration enables load balancing. Incoming requests can be directed to one server or another depending on availability.

Clustering
Magnolia uses Jackrabbit's clustering feature to share content between instances. Clustering in Jackrabbit works on the principle that content is shared between all cluster nodes. In the diagram, each Magnolia instance uses its own persistent storage (gray databases) for storing the content of website, DMS and data workspaces. However, the comments workspace has shared content that is stored in a clustered storage (blue database).

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