Building an Extranet with Confluence?

Is it possible to allow external access to a confluence space from outside the internal network - without putting the whole server in the DMZ. We have a number of subsiduary companies in the group that are spread over europe.

Also wondered if the solution might be to provide a server and confluence instance per country - with central content management in Uk - how would the content get synchronisered

2 answers

Hi,

I take it from the question that the subsidary companies do not have access to the internal network? What you can do if you don't want to have the Confluence server in the DMZ is have the Confluence server on your secure internal network and have Apache or IIS in the DMZ proxying requests to the Confluence server - see http://confluence.atlassian.com/display/DOC/Setting+up+Confluence+with+IIS and
http://confluence.atlassian.com/display/DOC/Running+Confluence+behind+Apache for details. Or if you have a Netscaler, Big-IP, etc. load balancer/IP sprayer in the DMZ you can use that to proxy requests to Confluence on the secure internal network.

For content synchronisation there's nothing built in to Confluence that will do that and I could see that getting very messy, very quickly. There is export/import of Confluence content (http://confluence.atlassian.com/display/DOC/Site+Backup+and+Restore), but that's a manual process, or you could look at http://confluence.atlassian.com/display/DISC/Synchronizing+Confluence+pages and
http://confluence.atlassian.com/display/DISC/Offline+Confluence+Access

Hope that's of some help?

Andrew.

0 vote
Joe Clark Atlassian Team Feb 16, 2012

Confluence has a 'clustering' mode, that allows multiple Confluence instances to connect to a single content database, but it's really designed for multiple Confluence nodes in a single location - I imagine the performance of hooking up nodes all across the globe would be abysmal.

If you want these external parties to be able to view the content, but not necessarily edit the content, there is a plugin for Confluence that can periodically export all your content to static HTML files suitable for serving via a simple HTTP server like Apache or Nginx - Confluence AutoExport plugin. You could then farm out this static content to other servers and I imagine the performance would be quite good.

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