kaigou: Edward, losing it. (1 Edward conniption)
[personal profile] kaigou
I manage/design/dev an NFP's site for their annual festival. Last year the traffic was MASSIVE, and we nearly shut down the servers. I told the NFP we'd need to switch to a REAL hosting service, one with mirrored servers who could handle a million hits in the course of eight hours.

Well, they waffled and put it off, and were like, oh, yeah, but still. I ran into issues with the service in October, November, and December, and said, no, we really need to switch. They finally got around to dealing with it early January. After some deliberation, I suggested Dreamhost to them -- should've gone with my own isp, 1and1, even if it's more expensive & doesn't have NFP breaks, WHATEVER -- and it was hell doing the step-by-step process to switch hosting.

EXCEPT. The domain reg company WOULDN'T TRANSFER THE DOMAIN. Even when the domain owner paid $15 and faxed in info to update her email (whut!?), and talked to them ON THE PHONE and when we'd put the request through from Dreamhost, it'd get denied. WHUT!? We tried twice, and finally the NFP was all, oh, we can't deal with this right now, it'll be fine.

Hello, it's 830am on the day of the festival, DO YOU KNOW WHERE YOUR SITE IS.

It's down. Crashed. Gone. Unobtainable. Error establishing a database connection KTHXBAI.

I try all the tricks -- testing the connection, checking the sub-folders (the vendors stuff I built), even logging into the database directly. Works. Page still not up. I reinstall parts of WP, in case that's it. I check the wp-config file. I remove the plugins. I strip out the RSS feed. I do ALL the things. Nothing works.

I call the ISP. THEY'RE CLOSED ON WEEKENDS, WTF OVER. I call the emergency number. I wait 15 minutes, because apparently the guy was in the shower. He asks to call me back once he's dressed. I wait another 20 minutes. I guess he got breakfast, too. He calls me back, fiddles with the site, and apparently the connection info has changed. HOW. I HAVE NO IDEA. WTF OVER. He fixes it, warning me the site may crash AGAIN because now it'll be letting in all the connections.

And the site's up! Then it's down. WAY down.

Now he's got to drive to the server farm itself. I wait another 20 minutes. He calls me, asking if the site's up. No, now I can't even get to the database directly (to copy the festival's schedule, faq, and directions so I can at least post them on Facebook so they're SOMEWHERE). So now I'm waiting AGAIN, and the festival started almost an hour ago.


I told them, and told them, and told them, this hosting service would NOT be able to handle any more traffic than last year -- and they've been promoting like crazy, between twitter and facebook. OF COURSE our traffic is going to jump. Well, it would've, IF WE HAD A GODDAMN SITE. We even got moved on Thursday to a single server (not shared) in prep for the traffic -- and apparently somewhere in there, despite the updated info being put in, it got changed back to the wrong info, which doesn't make sense to me, since he's not touched it since Thursday and I was in Thursday evening tweaking things, and it worked fine all day Friday and Saturday.

Honestly, I warned them. I told them. I explained all the risks. I told them I saw this coming, and knew it would happen unless WE SWITCHED TO A REAL ISP. But nooooo, they just didn't see it as a priority, and now I'm the one person dealing with the endless complaints on Facebook about how the site is crashed.


I'm not even sure who I'm angry at. The domain reg company that refused to listen to the site owner and transfer the domain, and thus threw a spanner into getting us onto a solid and stable mirrored server? The local ISP that doesn't have the time, money or inclination to be a real ISP for a site and FREAKING TAKES WEEKENDS OFF when they KNOW our site is going to have MASSIVE TRAFFIC on a Sunday? The NFP itself for not taking my warnings seriously? Or just all the people who are sitting at their computers constantly hitting refresh and overloading the connections?


ETA: guy messages me on facebook.

Guy: Hi, I'm a manager at [largest server-farm hosting company in city]. Looks like you're having trouble with your hosting. Get in touch with me, we'd love to help out!


(no, actually, I was nicer than that but the general ALL CONNECTIONS BUSY PLEASE TRY AGAIN IN A FREAKING WEEK was probably pretty clear.)
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kaigou: this is what I do, darling (Default)
锴 angry fishtrap 狗

to remember

"When you make the finding yourself— even if you're the last person on Earth to see the light— you'll never forget it." —Carl Sagan

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