Blog Trouble Part 2

| | Comments (1)
Okay, I've spent more than enough time trying (and failing) to resurrect Vitalsecurity.org. Here's the current state of play:

It seems despite my best efforts over the last week or so that Vitalsecurity.org has died a horrible death. I'm still not up on all the details, but (as a general recap of previous problems) - every now and again when I'd publish a new post, a few older ones would vanish. I could never work it out, but on one occasion (in 2007, I think) I posted a new article, and it overwrote every single entry on the site and duplicated itself hundreds of times.

That was not a good day.

However, this past week has been far worse, both in terms of severity and also what it means for the site in general. When I first set the site up,every page was a standalone piece of HTML that had to be edited manually. Yeah, that's pretty stupid. So I went with the first blogging tool I could find - Blogger.com - but quickly realised for whatever reason it wouldn't work properly if it sat on the root directory of the site. Instead, the actual blog and its contents were stuffed inside a folder inside another folder. I'm not sure if this is common practice for Blogger blogs, but it doesn't seem to be. At any rate, that combined with a number of privacy services I offer for those that need them (along with an unrelated database or two running in the background) meant that the site itself was never too stable in terms of everything falling apart and (sure enough) last week the entire thing disintegrated.

Thousands of image files went screwy, folders vanished, blog entries overwrote themselves, stuff ended up in entirely the wrong places. In addition to that, this broke some of the privacy services and totally killed one of the databases too.

I do have a backup of the site, but I'm not hugely concerned about that - the privacy services and databases (I know I keep referring to these, but I'm not going to go into details) are far more important. The long and the short of it is, if I put the site back, the whole thing is likely to fall to pieces again - and I really can't be bothered with the hassle of wasting what may well end up being a week or more of time sorting it all out every time it happens.

I'm informed that the best solution would be to host the site elsewhere, but because of the hosting deal I have, I don't think I'm able to kill off the hosting while being allowed to keep the domain - if one gets flushed, both get flushed. Then I think I have to scramble to repurchase the domain before someone else grabs it (actually, I'm not 100% sure on that - I think it might go into a grace period where I get first crack at it).

Even so, once all THAT is done and dusted, I still have to find a different blogging system, learn about it, learn how to install it, install the thing then try and upload an entire website based around a rather odd installation of Blogger.com, making it "fit" the new blogging system I eventually select. I imagine this would involve reorganising piles of folders, contents, html, images and who-knows-what-else and reordering it all for the new file structure required by Wordpress, MT or insert-bloging-tool-of-choice-here.

That is going to take an age, and I'm not sure there are enough hours in the day, night, month or year for that sort of thing anymore. In summary, Vital is probably going to be offline for quite some time, if not permanently. I have considered various options - from starting over to inviting guest bloggers, but whatever option I choose, it's still going to involve a lot of time and effort on my part overlooking everything and making sure everything is as it should be, both in terms of content and stability. By the same token, being free of having to produce anything up to 60+ blog posts across two sites per month opens up more time for research, which is fine by me.

In conclusion, then, all of my security writing will be on SPG for the foreseeable future. If I can get Vital up and running eventually, I will do - but it's not going to be for a while...

1 Comments

Sorry to hear this. I have enjoyed your writing immensely.

Leave a comment

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Christopher Boyd published on October 28, 2008 3:32 PM.

Blog Trouble Part 1 was the previous entry in this blog.

Making Tea At The BBC is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.