I’m back

Apologies to loyal readers for the monster crash that took down this blog for the last month. It happened shortly after I accepted the automatic upgrade to WordPress 4.0 (which had nothing to do with it evidently). One day the site was throwing off a “suspension” notice courtesy of my ISP — Meganet Communications in Fall River, the former Cape.com — and when I called Derek at Meganet operations he said the blog was throwing off a gazillion errors to the point where it was dragging down the performance of every other customer site on the shared server, including my beloved Cotuit Kettleers.

I made a few attempts to get into the site through cPanel to grab a backup so at the very least 11 years worth of posts wouldn’t be lost (nearly 7,000 posts) but the site was so sluggish it was nearly impossible to even log in, let alone run any file operations. Derek and I went through the file structure and there were simply too much crud in there to begin to make an educated guess what was taking it down. My suspicion was some old WordPress builds I had sloppily conflated into the main MySql database were overloaded with spam and hadn’t been weeded out in years. So I deleted those but still the problem persisted.

Finally there were some signs of life. Meganet migrated me to a new server to stop Churbuck.com from killing their other customers and the old Churbuck.com homepage came back to life, but not this blog. Last night their techs identified the culprit as a broken Twitter plug-in. That was disabled and here we are.

I love WordPress — I’ve been on the platform running my own build since 2004 when Om Malik persuaded me to stop blogging on Google Blogger and move over. From those early days of the Kubrick template and the first version of Mullenweg’s masterpiece to the most current version, WordPress was the tool that cured my cacoethes scribendi. But I’ve been a bad admin and taken it for granted and let the side rails get cluttered up with dumb, unused plugins and finally one has bitten me in the ass.

Author: David Churbuck

Cape Codder with an itch to write

4 thoughts on “I’m back”

  1. dave
    welcome back. I was afraid you had renamed yourself IShmael and left for a stroll on the wharf with little money in your pocket and thence to search for Starbuck.

  2. Funny thing about people who blog: They assume their absence of blogging is missed. They devote about 10% of their page and feed real estate to blogging about software infrastructure issues, hosting, versioning, plugins, upgrades, or general tinkering, etc. And take pride overcoming pains such as yours. Just kidding. 🙂 Although it’s kind of true.

    But seriously, someone needs to create an affordable WordPress service that maintains secure, guaranteed hosting for when one walks away — whether for a short period, a long period, or forever (like when you die). I’d love for my website to remain as a legacy once I leave earth, but I can almost guarantee you — at least at this time — that my site will not last, due to versioning, hackers or hosting failures.

    We need a foundation that will take over hosting and archive all the blogs that are currently self-hosted, self-funded, and unstable in the long run. So when you’re not present to mess around with all the technical glitches, humanity can continue to enjoy your work.

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