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An Explanation


You’ve probably been wondering what happened to me and this blog this last week. Me too. I might have more of an idea about it than you do though, so I’ll share what I know. You may have noticed my site has been down from time to time since the beginning of the year. And then it went down for good last Wednesday and couldn’t be resurrected from the dead at all. This could be due to some linkage from some big sites (Thank you OMSH and whoorl), the popularity of my Valentines maybe, my newfound ability to link from facebook (you crazy facebookites) or just plain bad luck. Or it could be spam, which is also bad luck.

That’s what my old server company said it was. They said I was being bombarded with so much spam that they called it a denial-of-service attack. A wha? I never really understood why I would be the victim of a DOS attack. I don’t have any credit-card information on my site. I’m not a bank or a credit-card company. Why would someone want to take me down and mess with this silly blog? I’m not even that big! I have some haters but not that many. Did I offend a troll who had hacker skills? Was someone using my site as a way to get to a bigger site? Maybe the government was taking me down because of the words “secret agent” in my domain name…ooh, conspiracy theory. Who knows. Nobody could really explain it to me.

So I moved to a new server company where hopefully if this happens again they can explain it to me. Or at least be there around the clock to talk to me when I’m freaking out. I switched to Liquid Web and so far I’ve been super super super happy. I even called them at three in the morning and they totally helped me. Nice guys on the phone 24/7. Who needs a husband?! It’s been wonderful.

Except for one little problem: I did not make a complete back-up of my old site before I switched servers. I thought I had. I had manually dragged folder after folder over from my ftp site to my hard drive late into the night. I even went to bed watching bars going across my screen from on my bedside table. I did wake up to a few errors in the wee hours of the morning saying things like a “wpchron” file wouldn’t copy but I figured it wasn’t that serious. I’d check with an expert in the morning and everything would be fine. I also did have some back-ups that I’d done before via my WordPress dashboard. So I figured I could put the pieces back together one way or another.

I was wrong. I did need that wpchron file and a bunch of other stuff that sounded like gobbledygook to me. And now my domain name was pointed at my new server and I had no way to get back to the old server to get those missing pieces. This is when I started freaking out and chewing on my desk.

A few days went by while I pestered all my friends who know anything about programming and WordPress until I finally came to the conclusion that I had to point my domain name back to my old server so I could do a complete back-up. Except I couldn’t do it. Even the great OMSH couldn’t do it. Something was screwy with my files and they wouldn’t copy. Finally, Liquid Web had to pull out some mad ninja hacker skills and the files got copied.

When that was done I pointed my domain name back to the new server and waited. And waited and waited and waited and waited. The dang thing wouldn’t propagate! That’s what they call it when you have a new site and it takes a while to show up on the internet via the many webbings of servers talking to each other. It turns out it did propagate (show up) but there was a “deny all ips” file in my website somewhere that made it look like it hadn’t propagated. Who put that file there? Crazy troll, I’m looking at you!

I know this sounds like gobbledygook. It sounds like that to me too. All I know is that every person who tried to look at my website got blocked so it looked like it was down. Eventually, Liquid Web figured out this was the problem and removed that file. And now I’m all fixed.

Hallelujah! I feel like I’ve aged about three years.

So you know what lesson I’ve learned from all this? Maybe I should stick to paper diaries and photo albums.

Just kidding.