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4 Days Left For IsMyWebsite In 20 Seconds Contest! March 26, 2011

Posted by ismywebsite in general.
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All you need to try your hands on this month’s contest is a YouTube account (which is free), some video editing software (also free in many cases), and of course your great imagination and enthusiasm for our service. The prizes are still as follows:

#1 – 5,000 credits.
#2 – 3,000 credits.
Your video can also receive honourable mention for 1,000 credits.

Your goal is to tell an outsider exactly what makes our hosting your hosting of choice. Mention all the features which really make your daily job easier, show off the control panel, mention the uptime you’ve experienced. Here are some unique features you can use:

1) Paid Hosting For Free
You can mention how credits enable you to essentially pay for your hosting, without having to actually pay anything. This allows us to provide a higher quality service, in most cases for free. Credits are essentially real money, displayed in a virtual currency so everyone can participate on a level playing field.

2) Unique Advertising System
Mention how you actually have the full control over your own website’s advertising. There are no pop-ups, no forced banners, and not even a required link-back. You are free to place advertising how you feel is best on your website. This is a better system for both webmasters and advertisers.

3) Transparent Reviews System
What other host pays you to criticism and admonish their reputation? It’s a silly idea that one should hide their problems, rather than solving them. This is the primary reason why all feedback, good or bad, is linked directly from our front page for all to see.

4) Guidance Towards Success
Succeeding with a website is in many cases not very easy. Our unique four stage process, when followed, is the same path we’ve used, and the same path every known successful website has used (some would argue with some level of variation).

5) Always A Server For You
There are some disasters that can destroy your data, never one that can leave you without hosting. As long as you take backups (which is easy with cPanel), you can easily transfer your website between servers anytime you like, in less time than it takes to watch your video.

6) Lots Of Room To Grow
Many webmasters get hooked into this idea of ‘unlimited’ hosting. What they are really looking for is scalability, the ability to grow their website without bound and always find solutions. How many will give you this scalability without uncertainty or large costs?

Of course keep in mind you only have 20 seconds!

You can see an example here, which is submitted by Matheus:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-WMPiRlSHPI

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People Who Helped March 26, 2011

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Thanks John for the idea to add this page to the site.

http://www.ismywebsite.net/thanks

Also there were still DNS Problems on some sites on Node 3 (still referencing their old server) so that’s also been fixed.

Backups And Further Security March 23, 2011

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So we are just moments from finally having our backup system online. Though as usual last minute things are coming up so expect perhaps another week here.

When finished, we’ll keep automated offsite backups of your account, and you can also manually take them. These allow you to restore your account on any of our nodes instantly, should anything happen, or even if you’re just switching servers. I do know the main data (eg public_html and MySQL databases) should be working, however I haven’t confirmed if you’ll have to configure all your domains and webmail again.

Also, every node is now interacted with via our system through SSL (HTTPs), which is much more secure than standard HTTP. Just another layer of security added to help protect your accounts.

Node 3 Reclaimed March 23, 2011

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Okay, so very fast update on the DNS and all sites should now be back online. In addition, I brought us back below quota on Node 3, by removing two accounts not transfered to 4.0:

yourbook (~4Gb)
episxtre (955 Mb)

There is now lots of room for new clients here.

Node 3 Should Be Working March 23, 2011

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So I just received the following:

As you should be aware, all hosting accounts which were offline since [Node 3] went down on Thursday till Sunday, have now all been restored and should all be active. [You will now have to update the IPs manually.]

Now to clarify what happened – the DataCenter housing [Node 3] had a UPS battery failure which let off some smoke on Thursday morning. This activated the fire alarms which in turn automatically shut down all power to the facility as per design. After an hour power was restored via generators once the all clear was given by the fire service and later on that evening full power was transferred back to the mains with UPS protection enabled.

Due to the power issues, the PSU [(power supply unit)] and hard drives on [Node 3] failed. After testing the primary hard drive back in our office it was not even being recogni[z]ed at BIOS level. Hence we reverted to our bare metal backups on our external CDP [(I believe this refers to either Continuous Data Protection or Cisco Data Protocol, not sure which is in use.)] server. Restoring this data took over 24 hours, and because they were bare metal backups we needed to first mount the files/directories on another server to take meaningful backups from them due to the way in which [cP]anel backups are created. Once this was completed, the backups were restored on [the new server] along with the MySQL data.

Now for many of you, this technical information will be hard to follow and most likely will not even be relevant as your main concern is uptime. We appreciate this and sincerely apologi[z]e for this extended outage, but must point out to you that it was totally out of our control and that hardware can sometimes fail. As per design, we had the necessary backups to restore all data albeit after 72 hours of downtime.

[W]e will try our best to ensure this kind of situation does not occur again.

So, things should be back online shortly. I just need to update the DNS to reflect this server change.

Nodes 4 And 6 Reopened March 20, 2011

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It wouldn’t be fair to say anything was reclaimed. Nodes 4 and 6 were well below quota, having lots of space available already. I’ve just opened them up to new accounts.

As for Node 5, I did a clean up of one huge account, notoriou, which was using a whopping 7 Gb. Whole site seemed dead and abandoned. Other users not transfered that I’m looking into deleting:

transmit (2557 Mb)
pesher (1176 Mb)
iixclanc (782 Mb)
olivegre (768 Mb)
midplain (634 Mb)
wwwindol (590 Mb)

Sadly, even once all these are gone we will still be above quota. If anyone on Node 5 wants to voluntarily move to another server that would be awesome. You can save costs by moving to Node 6, or many of the other servers have higher uptime.

Node 3 appears still to be offline. I’m also not sure what was happening with the new Node 9 that Aaron offered a while back. So there are only 3 nodes which aren’t open to new websites.

Thanks For The Browser Icon March 20, 2011

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Just wanted to thank Netcat for the nice browser icon that he gave me for the site.

You can see his masterpiece up on the site when you visit now. The old version 3 icon just wasn’t what I had in mind. Be sure to let me know what you think.

Node 2 Reclaimed March 19, 2011

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Alright, Node 2 is now reclaimed and open for new accounts, but only briefly. There isn’t that much space before we reach the 90% artificial limit. More space will be cleared as we get the webmail cleaned out, which has accumulated close to 3Gb of cron jobs email.

Users removed:
catcry (5367 Mb)
gangland (2395 Mb)

Not removed:
hofshi (1518Mb)

This website was still being actively updated, despite it’s webmasters not having transfered to 4.0 yet

Security Starts With You! March 19, 2011

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I just finished recovering for a client their hacked account. Before anyone panics, no it had nothing to do with any version 4 security (as far as I can tell). Simply put, the password was similar to this:

abcabc123

Our security is only as good as the passwords you use. It does not matter how many levels of encryption I use, how complex of algorithms, how many different checks and balances there are around accounts, an insecure password renders them all rather mute.

Make sure your password contains symbols, numbers, letters in both cases, and minimal dictionary words or common acronyms. Do not write it down anywhere, and please don’t use the same password here as you use for other services.

Not only is someone getting into your account a threat to your data, but it’s a threat to our community if they decide to abuse the trust we’ve placed in you. Please do what you can to safeguard your data.

AP Online March 18, 2011

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The Activity Points system is now finally working. After some messing with things, it was indeed only two lines of code that needed to be reordered.

There is one new feature with this system (as of version 4) which may help a great many of you, but it’s somewhat hidden. Please don’t spoil the surprise.