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The Kompashka Online Journal script has always been one of my favorite scripts for managing content because of its simplicity. For someone like me who doesn't keep a weblog or a journal that encourages daily feedback it is essential because of its ease and because as far as scripts go, it's incredibly light weight. It's also versatile and can be used for a magazine or story because it has an outline or "chapters" and has the ability to run multiple journals off of one installation.

The script works by indexing text files in a directory. It is not browser-based. The script automates the navigation so you don't have to add any links to your text. You upload your entry to the designated folder and it's there in your archive. Each entry has next and previous links at the foot, as well as "home," "contents," "first entry," and "last entry" if you decide to use them. It works with header and footer templates to customize the look.

outline/archive view

Unfortunately, the Kompashka/ZuZuSoft script website has been taken down by Hypermart (because they discontinued free hosting), rendering the script unavailable. The homepage is, however, archived here. I don't think the script's author had touched the page in years, anyway. Every time I visited the site it looked exactly the same, as if it hadn't been updated in a very long time. I Googled the script to see if there were any mirrors but alas, I found not one. Only script index sites that linked to the homepage.

So I've taken my copy, erased all the customization so it's back in its generic form to the best of my memory and packaged it for download. I don't have the original zip file so the readme isn't included but I pieced together some basic instructions from memory.

I'm not a coder so I know nothing about the technical requirements for this script other than it is a cgi/perl script. To the best of my recollection it was considered open source as long as the original copyright and credit links were in tact and it remained free.


Please keep in mind that I'm just someone who likes the script and thinks it shouldn't go up in internet smoke or get buried under epensive fancy PHP scripts. I am writing this from memory and from what works for me when I personally install it. I cannot swear by these nor can I offer any kind of support for the script or installation.

What you will find in the zip:

  • journal.cgi
    • jheader.html - header template
    • jfooter.html - footer template
    • 001.txt and 002.txt - "entries"
  • Once you've downloaded and unzipped the script open up in a text editor. It is in the subfolder named "journal." There are a few things to configure when it comes to how your content is managed. Don't be scared if you're not used to manipulating files, it's really simple and all explained in the script.
  • Once you've done that close and save it. Open up your FTP program and connect to your server. Create the folder you want to put the script in. Upload everything to this folder in ascii mode otherwise it will not work. CHMOD journal.cgi 755 (rwx r-x r-x).

    That's it. You should now be able to call the script.

    The individual entries will be called up like this:

As I said above, this script supports multiple journals. Simply create another subdirectory (like the existing "journal") and upload jheader.html, jfooter.html, and to it, as well as your entries. You call the new folder the same way except you change the name of the folder you are calling in the URL.
Got it? :)

Also, you can change the default folder that journal.cgi calls. For example, right now it's calling "journal" and not "newfolder". To change this, open up and find

$folder_name = "journal";
and change "journal" to whatever you'd like it to be. This also comes in handy if you're like me and the redundancy in the URL annoys the piss out of you :). I like to change the name of the journal subdirectory to "entries" or "posts" so that the URL is

Here's another trick. I like to rename journal.cgi to index.cgi so I can use a subdirectory without calling journal.cgi each time. So I can use
and have the journal come up instead of an index of the directory or a 403 error. (You can also use includes to do the same thing rather than rename journal.cgi if you think it's friendlier for browsers.)

Please check out the archive of the original webpage if you'd like further info.
May the Internet God bless the Wayback Machine.