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Migrating to Netlify, One Page at a Time

This session was conducted at Jamstack conference 2020. The speaker was Taylor MacDonald, partner and CTO, Ample. This session is all about how to migrate you old, monolithic app onto the Jamstack. From this session I was expecting to get information about how we can shift our old server-based web application to jamstack.

Firstly, he introduces us to a concept called gradual migration. This strategy simply refers to standing up a new site and selectively moving over pages one by one over time. With page we are referring to any accessible path on your site. The benefit of this strategy when compared to other approaches, like a big bang cut over for example, is that it carries much lower risk for your organization and allows you to ease into the new solution at your own pace while paying down technical debt as you go.

Then he shows how this can be achieved in real world. For example, we have a website assume that the engine powering the creation of these pages is a monolithic framework like drupal, wordpress or magento. Now the first step towards gradual migration is to stand up a new site and stick it in between the end user and the old site. So, we are kind of migrating a single page first, then run that page from new architecture and let the rest of the website run from the old architecture. Once the whole pages are shifted to new architecture, we can dispose old architecture and run the whole website on newer architecture. This it lowers risk.

When we create files for new architecture we can put redirects for the old file links. If the file is not created yet, then our links redirects them to the old website. So, the whole website is function accurately. Even the hostname does not change when redirecting to the old website. This was we can continuously host the whole website even while migrating to the newer Jamstack architecture.

Overall this session was quite interesting. The speaker even coded a live example demonstrating how this works. Having such an easy transformation to newer architecture such as Jamstack may be really tempting for various organizations to shift their websites from older architecture to newer ones.

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