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DaedTech Digest: Hosting Woes and Unit Testing Studies

Happy Friday, folks.  Time for another installment of the DaedTech digest, wherein I link out to a bunch of technical posts I’ve written for other sites.

This week, I don’t have any specific personal narrative to relay, per se.  That’s largely because I’ve been working like a dog as we onboard additional clients to Hit Subscribe.  Oh, speaking of which…  we’re opening up the author rolls again, but looking for certain specific column types and topics.  If you think you might be interested, here’s the page where you can get started.

The only other item of note is that I have now successfully switched hosts.  My old hosting provider, Hostmonster, had my site on a server that must have become overloaded several weeks ago.  After seemingly endless support tickets and runaround from their tech support, they settled on three rotating and competing verdicts:

  1. You’re right, our server is overloaded and we’ll fix it.
  2. Actually, no, it’s probably WordPress or plugins or internet or something, whatevs, good luck, %#$& you.
  3. Ah, actually, it is our server, but that’s life and you need to pay more if you want us to fix it.

I got tired of pleading my case for them to listen to the techs that said it was (1), so I gave them an ultimatum: migrate me to a new server, or buh-bye.  They made their choice, and so did I.  I’ll get to the new provider in a second in my picks, but suffice it to say that I’ve measured page load times on GTMetrix, and my identical, migrated site now performs substantially better than it even did on Hostmonster, even before they overloaded the server.  And I’m paying less!

I’ve installed no new plugins on my site or changed its configuration in months. But you’re probably right Hostmonster, this massive uptick in intermittent server errors and timeouts… probably because I wrote a long blog post or something. Couldn’t possibly be a resource issue on your server.

I’m planning to migrate a couple of my other sites as well in the coming weeks.

Picks

  • On that note, my first pick is the new hosting company, Siteground.  It’s too early for me to speak to their long term performance or even support quality.  But, for someone who is too busy to deal with the mundanities of website administration, they are perfect.  I just had to give them my login credentials to Hostmonster, and they took care of everything — not just migrating the site over in its entirety, but taking care of the SSL cert, redirection, moving my DNS, and even taking over supporting my email.  I didn’t see any downtime, and I expended almost zero effort.
  • Also related to this saga, I want to throw a nod out to isup.me, which is a great way to see if a website is down for everyone or if you’re just having a problem.  I took advantage of the “check my site for malware” option (to throw it at Hostmonster support, if they tried that excuse) and wound up chatting with the site owner.  He’s getting into hosting recommendations and other value-adds, so bookmark it and keep your eye on what they do.
  • Speaking of things that abstract ugh IT issues away from me, I also pick LastPass.  I’ve used them for years now and it’s incredibly convenient.

The Digest

And, on that note, have a great weekend!

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Phil
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Hey, nice caption 😁 somehow the image is 404 though.