It’s good to be back! The NotEnoughTech is running again on a quicker and more responsive server, with SSL certificate to be added soon! I want to share a few details about what happened and why the website has been down for 9 days. If you own a website, that you care about, you probably want to give this a read. Perhaps you will learn from my ordeal and spare yourself the days in hell.
I’m no longer hosting the page with GoDaddy, (technically I am, more about that later). I have a Virtual Machine (VM) which runs the self-hosted WordPress with a dedicated CPU and all the customisation I will ever need in the future. A big thank you to João Dias for suggesting this.
GoDaddy hosting issues
Despite having the bandwidth to sustain the traffic (paid extra), the website goes down each time I write something that attracts more views. I’m not sure how I suppose to grow my audience and serve better and more popular content, but the GoDaddy’s support thinks that reverting back to a back up of the page is the remedy that fixes it all.
It’s not really an option, as even though I have daily backups, I don’t fancy rewriting the content again. It’s not what I pay for.
On the 29th of June, the usual happened and the website went offline. Since it has been over 24h since my post, I decided to restore the website quickly so you guys could actually read the stuff I posted without any interruptions. That was wishful thinking on my part, as apparently a week of daily backups was gone. The last backup available to me was on the 22nd of June and with last week being so productive, I could not think of anything worse to happen.
The GoDaddy’s support acknowledged the website is down and the backups are missing and asked me to bear with them for 3 days. I thought they are in the web business and they are aware of what a 3-day downtime is in that industry!? After 3 days of silence, I had to endure 53 min of wait time to get connected on the phone. All this just to be told that they would put my ticket on top of the queue.
To cut the story short, it’s 12th of July and I got 2 emails from GoDaddy since the ordeal started:
- billing confirmation for the new monthly
- update that indeed I have no backups
It’s 12th of July today and the website is still down on their server. No, follow up, no nothing.
But NotEnoughTech is up?
The website has been running for some time now on a new server, first under the designated IP, then once I have sorted the DNS out, all links for www.notenoughtech.com became active again.
Not all went smooth
I have tried several plugins (Duplicator, All-in-one) and manual migration of the website to the new server. After 3 days of playing about and not knowing what is going on (none worked), I started to work with SQL database of my posts. I trimmed everything but the crucial information dropped the unused tables and exported this using All-in-one plugin.
This version of the database finally worked and I had the access to the posts again. To recover the uploads, I zipped the files via SSH and exported the file using Filezilla.
The 3.5GB upload was then sent to my new server and unpacked. I followed the same procedure for folders containing paid for plugins and themes. To troubleshoot any issues, I have done this plugin by plugin, folder by folder. Each time checking if the website is working.
Slowly but surely website has been rebuilt and available as a lovely IP http://notenoughtech.com. While the website was working well, none of the posted links would lead to the original articles. I needed to link the notenoughtech.com domain next. I deleted the old A record and added the new one with the correct IP address.
Propagation should take 48h, but the domain was constantly displaying 404 Error. It took me a 40 min wait and a call to Enom to sort the issue out. The GSuite suggests adding 4 A records for the DNS configuration. This was working ok with GoDaddy, but I have not been able to use notenoughtech.com to load my website. Turns out clearing these, fixed up my DNS issues and the website (with all the links) became accessible again.
Lastly, because the Bitnami uses a different way of interacting with internal files, I had to rewrite the users and permissions to match the specification – otherwise, I would get “no permission granted to parent folder” error. This was something I found out while writing this post.
If you wonder what is the damage caused by the 9-day downtime – let me tell you. I have a bunch of grey hair, several emails from various companies asking why their reviews are down, a lot of your emails asking me what’s up (thanks guys) and the general viewership which dropped by 30%
I’m happy that everything is up and running. Now I just need a good backup solution. I’m terrified as I’m on my own now. There is no tech support this time, and if anything goes wrong – it’s all on me. The new server is faster, more scalable but also much more expensive. If you feel like chipping in – please use the options below.