Client Side Aggregation vs Server Side Aggregation
In WebSphere Portal V6.1, there is a new feature available called the Web 2.0 theme. 

Till the previous version, all portlets on a page use to get the rendering aggregation done at the server side-also called Server Side Aggregation(SSA). 

The Web 2.0 theme allows what is called the Client Side Aggregation(CSA). The CSA is made possible by using AJAX. The CSA provides definite advantages over the SSA

  • Faster rendering and Performance - since the theme is already pre-compiled and ready, the theme gets rendered to the browser immediately. From the browser, requests are invoked for individual portlets. Overall, gives the impression of faster loading of page to the user. Also, as the aggregation does not happen at server side, load on server also comes down
  • Better user experience - since with CSA, the entire page need not be refreshed, only the relevant portlet area is refreshed where user activity takes place. Giving a better user experience
For the enterprises that are planning to migrate to WebSphere Portal V6.1 and want to make use of the Web 2.0 theme, the existing portlets that can used with the theme and they can also make use of AJAX calls for getting their portlet area's refreshed instead of the whole page.

For the user's who may not have JavaScript enables, the theme defaults to Server Side aggregation for such scenario's.

To take advantage of all the functionality provided by CSA, IBM has introduced Client Side Portlet Programming model. The Programming model provides additional tags to handle portlet preferences change, changing portlet window state, changing portlet mode on the client side itself.
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