Curious what solution Stack Exchange uses for running background tasks, considering they are running many databases and domains, and scale across many machines. Generally that makes windows services relics of the past, if you need to scale job processing over many boxes across many databases.

Can anyone at SE shed light on how they program these background tasks? Originally Jeff blogged about using cache invalidation events as mechanisms for scheduling jobs.


1 Answer 1


We use a windows service that kicks off various HTTP endpoints that run the actual tasks. So the tasks themselves run on pre-defined web servers and are triggered by a windows service on another box.

  • 2
    Sooo... curl and cron jobs, only Windows style? I feel validated, somehow...
    – Charles
    Commented Apr 19, 2012 at 17:47
  • 1
    yeah .. exactly
    – waffles
    Commented Apr 19, 2012 at 17:56
  • thank you, I agree with charles, it's how I've been doing it. With a lot of strange looks from others. But we know how to redeploy websites quickly, and debug them. Commented Apr 20, 2012 at 17:50

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