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Blog rebuilt fully with Astro

Posted on:March 31, 2023

This little website of mine has been a static site since 2014. First static iteration was done with Pelican, which I later migrated to Gatsby. I really did not keep the Gatsby setup up-to-date, since the end result was a statically built website so security was never really an issue. All I had to do, was to write new content, push it to GitHub, and Netlify would happily build a new release for me. This was all fine and dandy until recently, when I upgraded my local Node version from 16 to 18, and my trusty Gatsby setup broke :(

I really had no intention to try and fix the old setup, but wanted to migrate to something different altogether. This had been my desire for quite some time already, I just had postponed the inevitable. I looked into multiple static site generators written in JavaScript/TypeScript or Go, my must-haves were quite easy; content must be written in local markdown files, and the generator should be versatile yet easy to use. A few which I looked into were Gatsby, Hugo, Next.js, Eleventy and Astro.

I think when Astro published their big version 2 earlier this year, it caught my attention at the right time. Something just clicked, and choice was pretty much done. Since I am not a frontend developer per se, but focus to backend and infrastructure automation, I hoped to find a well-built theme for Astro, which I think I could maintain myself going forward. After some looking, such theme arise in form of Astro Paper. I love how this looks, and feels. The minimalism, clarity and simplicity is just what I was after. And Lighthouse seems to approve this too: Lighthouse score, pretty much perfect

I hope this setup serves me for years to come, before it might be time to migrate to something else again. Since my content lives in markdown files, the migration from one generator to another is not too bad, it basically requires the frontmatter to be rewritten, and some files to be moved to different places. Overall, the whole migration took me two evenings, including a small Go app which I used to migrate the files and rewrite the frontmatter.