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Garbage Collection for the Web

If it's not linked, it vanishes.
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How many files there must be on the web that just aren't looked at any more? Than in fact can't be looked at because they're not linked? That are in a sense 'lost', but that somebody still bothers to host.

I suggest a service that uses web crawlers similar to a search engine's, and uses it to build a map of what's accessible. It than matches this against the complete list of files served from your machine, and lets you know when they are unreachable.

So in the process of rearranging your site you delete the link to an image, but don't delete the image itself. A few days later (just to be certain), you get an email:

" The file ....... .png is unreachable from your site or anywhere else on the web. Would you like to delete it? [yes], [no] "

Could save lots of server space.

sadie, Dec 23 2002

(?) MS Frontpage http://www.microsof...e/using/default.htm
[Amos Kito, Oct 04 2004]

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       A noble cause but, I have files on my site that intentionally have no links pointing to them.   

       Additionally, the links may be built dynamically at the time the page is requested. It would be quite a chore to automatically analyze script code, databases, etc. to make sure a link doesn't exist.
half, Dec 23 2002
  

       Isn't this the way MS Frontpage [link] works? Move or remove a resource, and the software fixes everything for you. But then you'd have to use MS Frontpage --- blecch.
Also, what [half] said. I hide all kinds of junk around my server on purpose. But there's a lotta stuff I'm just too lazy to clean up. Looks worse than my garage.
There's probably a script that can tidy the mess. However, a service that does it for me might come in handy. +
Amos Kito, Dec 23 2002
  

       I use Macromedia Dreamweaver, a Frontpage competitor (though perhaps not for long), and it has a feature like this as well.
krelnik, Dec 23 2002
  

       There are servers/hosts that sell space for files that are never intended to be linked. Cleaning can be done by a stadard FTP program.
ImBack, Dec 23 2002
  

       Firstly, I have to agree with others mentioning that sometimes you dont want files looked at. I use my website for personal backup space.   

       Secondly, the files would still be linked to from the google and Wayback Machine caches!
ironfroggy, Dec 26 2002
  

       // the files would still be linked to from the google and Wayback Machine caches //   

       Don't count on it. These machines all operate by crawling - following links from page to page, the same mechanism i'm talking about. If a page is unreachable by links, then the chances are google can't find it either.
sadie, Dec 27 2002
  


 

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