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I am working on a number of geoprocessing services to be accessed solely by web clients. The traditional method of encapsulating this type of stuff in toolboxes and then publishing the toolbox just won't work. For example, I would like to send some binary data (zip files) back to the client, and that is not possible. I know I could store the zip file on the server, and send the url to the client, but I really HATE that approach for many reasons.

I am thinking about writing a traditional python based gp script, and making that available to a web client via mod_python and Apache. I haven't even tried it yet to know that its possible, but I can't imagine why it wouldn't be. However, is the use of the geoprocessor in this context legal (I do have valid AGIS Server license)?

Any thoughts,comments,suggestions welcome.

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Could you do this? Possibly.

Would you want to do this? I don't think so. mod_python has essentially been deprecated by the Python community, and the Arc* geoprocessing environment is known to do wonky things to the Python environment. Additionally, mod_python does wonky things to the Python environment as well. In the cases where things start segfaulting, erroring out, or just not working, you only have the ability to debug one side of the equation, and even then it will be a mess of multiple threads and Python interpreters inside an Apache process. Short of chemotherapy, I can think of no finer way to loose all of your hair.

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thanks for the heads up. i was getting desperate towards the end of today but am staring to get better ideas now. –  user890 Jun 20 '11 at 23:26

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