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More Server Mayhem

Just when I thought I had finally solved my web-hosting woes by transferring to a virtual private server, I am slapped in the face by the cold realities of server memory limitations. Apparently, WordPress-powered sites are extremely resource-intensive, requiring insane amounts of random access memory (RAM), something which does not concern those of us working from shared hosting accounts. On a shared server, system resources are shared among the various accounts that reside on a particular server. When one of these sites takes a hit and requires extra bandwidth, it “borrows” it from the total amount of bandwidth available for […] Read more »

A Dramatic Week Here at Perishable Press..

..And we’re back. After an insane week spent shopping for a new host, dealing with some Bad Behavior, and transferring Perishable Press to its new home on a virtual private server (VPS), everything is slowly falling back into place. Along the way, there have been some interesting challenges and many lessons learned. Here are a few of the highlights.. The tide may be turning for A Small Orange I am certainly not alone when I say that shopping for a new hosting provider and transferring websites is one of my least favorite aspects of web development. In my experience, switching […] Read more »

What’s Up Dude

Hello! If you are seeing this page via the default WordPress theme (i.e., blue header, based on Kubrick), welcome to the new server! I recently upgraded my hosting to a virtual private server, and finally reassigned the domain name servers to resolve to the new address. So, if you are here and everything seems to be working, then everything went according to plan and I will be able to complete the transfer on Saturday (Lord willing). If, on the other hand, something is busted, throwing an error, or otherwise causing problems, then Saturday may involve more troubleshooting and fixing things.. […] Read more »

Site News: Bad Behavior Spasm, Switching to New VPS Server..

Hello! As many of you already know, the popular WordPress anti-spam plugin, Bad Behavior, caused some problems yesterday, and as a result many bloggers and users were locked out of their favorite sites, including this one. As for now, the problem seems to be fixed, however, the experience of being locked out of my own site has left a rather unpleasant taste in my mouth. Needless to say, I will be reconsidering the continued use of Bad Behavior as a part of my long-term anti-spam strategy. In the meantime, everything is up and running fine again (with Bad Behavior disabled) […] Read more »

Temporary Site Downtime

Just a note to let everyone know that Perishable Press will be undergoing site maintenance for the next several hours. I apologize in advance for any inconvenience this might cause. Thanks for your patience ;) Read more »

Yahoo! in my Blackhole

Okay, I realize that the title sounds a bit odd, but nowhere near as odd as my recent discovery of Slurp ignoring explicit robots.txt rules and digging around in my highly specialized bot trap, which I have lovingly dubbed “the blackhole”. What is up with that, Yahoo!? — does your Slurp spider obey robots.txt directives or not? I have never seen Google crawling around that side of town, neither has MSN nor even Ask ventured into the forbidden realms. Has anyone else experienced such unexpected behavior from one the four major search engines? Hmmm.. let’s dig a little further.. Here […] Read more »

News from the Frontline..

My apologies for recent periods of site unavailability. Apparently, my hosting company is having a difficult time with the server that happens to host Perishable Press. As far as I can tell, the server problems began Wednesday morning (due to a “traffic spike”). By Thursday morning, Perishable Press (as well as a few of my other sites) had been down for a period exceeding eight nonconsecutive hours. According to my log files, Thursday itself was even worse, with server uptime struggling at an embarrassing 78.7%. And, although Friday looked considerably better, the site continues to experience periods of downtime that […] Read more »

Eliminate 404 Errors for PHP Functions

Recently, I discussed the suspicious behavior recently observed by the Yahoo! Slurp crawler. As revealed by the site’s closely watched 404-error logs, Yahoo! had been requesting a series of nonexistent resources. Although a majority of the 404 errors were exclusive to the Slurp crawler, there were several instances of requests that were also coming from Google, Live, and even Ask. Initially, these distinct errors were misdiagnosed as existing URLs appended with various JavaScript functions. Here are a few typical examples of these frequently observed log entries: http://perishablepress.com/press/category/websites/feed/function.opendir http://perishablepress.com/press/category/websites/feed/function.array-rand http://perishablepress.com/press/category/websites/feed/function.mkdir http://perishablepress.com/press/category/websites/feed/ref.outcontrol Fortunately, an insightful reader named Bas pointed out that the […] Read more »

Suspicious Behavior from Yahoo! Slurp Crawler

Most of the time, when I catch scumbags attempting to spam, scrape, leech, or otherwise hack my site, I stitch up a new voodoo doll and let the cursing begin. No, seriously, I just blacklist the idiots. I don’t need their traffic, and so I don’t even blink while slamming the doors in their faces. Of course, this policy presents a bit of a dilemma when the culprit is one of the four major search engines. Slamming the door on Yahoo! would be unwise, but if their Slurp crawler continues behaving suspiciously, I may have no choice. Check out the […] Read more »

Hosting Review: A Small Orange

Perishable Press switched to A Small Orange [ASO] in March of 2007. At the time, I was looking for highly recommended shared hosting with several key features: Update 2011/02/05: ASO is no longer my host. As this article explains, ASO service was great at the start, but after three years quality of service has declined considerably. There are some great people at ASO, but I can no longer recommend them for serious web hosting. For more information, check out my post on switching to Media Temple. Solid customer service and extremely reliable server uptime Unlimited domains with plenty of disk […] Read more »

Compressed JavaScript Compression

In this article, we extrapolate our favorite CSS-compression technique for JavaScript. Below, we outline the steps required to auto-compress your JavaScript documents via gzip and PHP. Two different compression methods are presented. The first method does not require htaccess, but rather involves the manual editing of JavaScript files. The second method employs htaccess to do all the work for you, thus requiring much less effort to implement. In either case, the result is the same: automatically compressed content delivered only to supportive browsers, resulting in reduced bandwidth, faster loading times, and smiling visitors :) Read more »

Even More Server Drama

Several months ago, we encountered some problems with our hosting company and decided to switch servers. Then, after spending countless hours transferring our army of domains, the new server crashed and our databases were deleted. Further, after the transfer we quickly realized the inferior technological quality of our new host. Thus disgusted, we transferred everything back to our old server and hoped for the best. For the past several months since then, our original server has been running as well as could be expected, all things considered. All functions were running smooth, the error logs were empty, and all was […] Read more »

Website Attack Recovery

Recently, every website on our primary server was simultaneously attacked. The offending party indiscriminately replaced the contents of every index file, regardless of its extension or location, with a few vulgar lines of code, which indicated intention, identity, and influence. Apparently, the attack occurred via Germany, through a server at the University of Hamburg. This relatively minor attack resulted in several hours of valuable online education. In this article, it is our intention to share experience with website attack recovery. This article is aimed at website developers, designers, and administrators. Read more »

Have Peace of Mind

Looking for the perfect dedicated server? Well, “Don’t Just a Dedicated Server!” — “Have Peace of Mind!” with Daily Razor Hosting. Have a Peace of Mind Read more »

Migration and Propagation Business

The overly dramatic process of transferring our Online Empire to a new server and then back again manifests several valuable lessons. Please look back your note and observe the following suggestions during any future server migration and/or domain propagation events… Read more »

More Server Drama

After successfully migrating our domains to a new server at WebHostingBuzz.com, we continued writing articles, uploading, embellishing, and fine-tuning everything. Everything seemed fine. At first… Read more »

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