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Two Simple Modules: Favicon and Incoming

One thing I do while developing Drupal sites is make frequest trips to the "Recent Log Entries" page (admin/reports/dblog) to see what kind of trouble any custom code (or rouge themes and modules) I've added is causing. It is a quick "sanity check" to make sure things are moving in the right direction.

A pet peeve of mine when using a custom theme has always been the "page not found" log entry for the "favicon.ico" file. When using a custom theme (or an overridden favicon.ico file), while Drupal outputs the correct path for the link tag that specifies the file, some browsers still look for the favicon.ico file on the root of the web site. Normally, I "fix" this issue by making a duplicate of the favicon.ico file and placing it on the root of the site.

The teeny-tiny (29 lines, including comments!) favicon module takes care of this by automatically redirecting the /favicon.ico path to the site's actual favicon.ico file. Once enabled, there's no configuration, access permissions, nothing. Superfantastic.

The brand-new Incoming module is something that every site owner should hope that they need. This module, only available for Drupal 6, will send you an email alert you when traffic on your site suddenly increases. You set the alert thesholds based on a change in number of visitors over a specific time span. For example, it can be used to send you an alert when your site gets 100 more users in the last 10 minutes than it got in the previous 10 minutes.

The module also does an admirable job of staying out of the way. It includes a "probability limiter" that lets you set how often it samples traffic. You can set it to only sample on a certain of all page views - this way it won't be running on every page view (and thus reducing overhead).

I haven't had a chance to test it in a real-world situation yet, but just the idea of it is enough to put it on my "install on every site" list for now.

Submitted by michael on Fri, 09/05/2008 - 10:31am
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not good for performance

It should be noted that there is a performance cost to this approach. This method requires a full bootstrap and an http redirect to produce the favicon. The old way of using a symlink or duplicate file in your Drupal root, means that Drupal is never loaded to generate the favicon, it's just a simple apache delivery.

Good Call! The favicon one

Good Call! The favicon one will be added to my 'must install' list.