I’ve just finished mucking about installing an open source ad server called phpAdsNew. Within an hour I had the application set up on my host and connected to my database and ready to serve ads. It took a little poking around the documentation to get my first ad to serve but a little patience was all it took. It’s funny to have led teams of people and vendors through three different major ad server migrations over the course of months and to now essentially mimic the core process in 60 minutes.
As for the ad server it certainly appears capable, nothing that you would confuse with a full featured paid system but more than adequate for running sponsorship ads on our company blog.
I REALLY like that you can set ad text in the ad server application (this is the text that reads ‘Julians.name Sponsor’ right below the ad. In my experience with enterprise ad servers this wasn’t an option – you could code it in to your ad tags but that increased file size so we avoided it (performance and cost issues). Many content management systems address this but it’s much easier to populate it in the ad server since customizing the message is useful.
My only complaint is that the UI for the software seems to hiccup on the Mac. I’m surprised by this since the app is supposed to be stable in Mozilla and I rarely see differences between FireFox on the PC and Mac platform.
For now, you can see my live test on the bottom right of my sidebar of Julians.name where I have an MMC ad running (and IAB standard 125X125 that I ripped off CNET). Go ahead, click on that ad. The company will no doubt take the free traffic. 🙂 I think I need to change the sponsor text to read “Looky Looky!”