Chapter 2. Architecture


  • Understanding the Content Application Server and its embedded content repository

  • Learning about the Alfresco Web Application Framework, including Spring Surf and Web scripts

  • Exploring deployment options

  • Integrating with the enterprise infrastructure

Alfresco, the product, has grown rapidly since its inception and therefore offers an extensive set of technologies and building blocks for implementing an ECM solution. You can use this chapter as a map for navigating your way through Alfresco and as assistance for choosing the correct approach to solving your business problems.


When Alfresco started in early 2005, the founding engineers were very fortunate to begin with a clean slate, which is a rare position for software development teams these days. Many of the engineers had previous experience building content management systems, so it was an ideal opportunity to step back and think deeply about how to approach building a product to support modern-day ECM requirements. Before diving into designing Alfresco, the engineers first set out the following architecture principles, which are still in use today.

Supporting ECM Requirements

Enterprise Content Management (ECM) covers a broad range of applications, including Document Management (DM), Web Content Management (WCM), Records Management (RM), Digital Asset Management (DAM), and Search. The Alfresco architecture is driven by the need to support the requirements of all these ...

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