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Bob the Rebuilder v1.2.1

By Steve Cook
Posted March 30, 2009, in Rebuilding.


When publishing an Entry in Movable Type, the related templates are also published: the entry, a category archive, monthly archive, and main index, for example. Often in large multiblog installs, however, circumstances arise where some templates aren’t republished when needed.

Bob the Rebuilder provides a way to republish a blog or website (or a part of a blog or website) on a recurring schedule. For example, create a job to republish an entire blog every 24 hours, or create a job to republish all index archives every 10 minutes. An unlimited number of jobs can be created to republish any blog (or part of it) according to a number of set frequency choices.


To install this plugin follow the instructions found here:


Bob the Rebuilder is configured at the System level (Tools > Rebuilder). “Jobs” are used to rebuild a website/blog or part of a website/blog on a schedule, and can be enabled or disabled as needed.

“Create a rebuilder job” to get started: specify a website or blog, what you want to republish, its frequency, and save it. Done!

It’s important to be aware of the load you may be placing on the server — many jobs each republishing an entire blog every few minutes is goint to take a lot of resources. Planning site architecture is outside of the scope of this document, but the goal should be to publish efficiently. Only publish what needs to be republished, and republish as little as possible.

Tip: if a blog’s archives need to be republished, republish each archive type with a different job using a different schedule. Weekly, Monthly, and Yearly archives almost definitely don’t need to be published every few minutes or hours, however a category archive may need much greater frequency.


This plugin is not an official Six Apart release, and as such support from Six Apart for this plugin is not available.


  • run-periodic-tasks must be running


Movable Type versions: 5.15.2





Arindam Ganguly on April 6, 2009, 12:05 p.m. Reply

could you please provide installation instructions.


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Ferris Chia on April 9, 2009, 2:17 a.m. Reply

I’ve managed to install this without instruction. Simply place the entire folder in your MT path/plugins directory and go to it will auto detect and install the plugin.

Even though I managed to installed and configure it to rebuild at 1 min interval, the plugin doesn’t run at all. Status of “last rebuilt” is always N/A and there’s no error log.

Steve Cook on April 9, 2009, 5:05 a.m. Reply

Bob uses run-periodic-tasks to perform the rebuilding; unless RPT is running, Bob won’t do anything. See setting up run-periodic-tasks for instructions.

austin h on April 29, 2009, 12:52 p.m. Reply

I also have the same problem with Bob the Builder. I use RPT (and have for years, it works fine…) but Bob simply doesn’t do anything. I’ve got 10+ jobs setup for it to do, 2 of which it decided to do randomly, but RPT never picks up on the Bob tasks for whatever reason.

Would be happy to test new versions if there are any available!

austin h on April 29, 2009, 1:01 p.m. Reply

To add to the fun, Bob seems to run VERY randomly (it’s run a total of 4 times after being installed for 15+ days). It certainly doesn’t run every minute like it’s queued to to.

I’m not sure if this is complicating things, but we run MT on many different servers and have RTP running on a dedicated machine for rebuilds.

I’ve tinkered around with the times in the DB rows Bob creates hoping I would be able to manually trigger a job, but had no luck.

Also, when it did decide to run a certain job (#3 got it’s first run right after I posted that last comment!), it throws this warning:

Use of uninitialized value in hash element at /home/dynamic/ line 84.

rdouthit on May 4, 2009, 12:20 p.m. Reply

Not seeing where to “add” pages to the Bob the Builder queue. Or, is it just all pages that are set for Queue Processing get rebuilt? (Even a sentence from the developer on how this is supposed to work would be tremendously helpful.)

rdouthit on May 4, 2009, 12:26 p.m. Reply

Interesting, RPT worked fine, but after installing Bob, I now get this error:

Use of uninitialized value in numeric ge (>=) at lib/MT/Template/ line 6498.

Steve Cook on May 6, 2009, 3:13 p.m. Reply

To follow up on the comments:

  • Based on an followup email Austin sent, the problems he was experiencing were from a time-syncing issue (bad ntp config on his database), leading to Schwartz issues.
  • To answer rdouthit’s question: go to System > Manage > Rebuilder, and you can add rebuilder jobs to your heart’s content.

SayItAintSo! on February 4, 2010, 8:53 a.m. Reply

Can anyone confirm that you actually need a new entry for this to work? I am trying to use this on a dedicated blog that has no entries. All it does is agregate a feed from all the blogs in our system and displays the latest entries from OTHER blogs. And this plug in does not seem to work at all for this.

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