Offline, online, offline, online

Hi! How’re you doing?

I’m fine. Thanks for asking. I’m better now.

No sooner had the ink of the previous post dried did the blog go offline for a day — at least that’s what the alert message said. A day later it came back, and then it went down again for three days.

All I know is that my hosting company were working on something on the back end because I had two hosting “products” at the time — one of which was a promotional goodie that went bad and took on a life of its own. I didn’t want it, I cancelled the trial.

That was in August. And that was just the beginning my troubles.

A few days later I received an email to say that “Your hosting account is ready. It’s time to build your website.” This would refer to the hosting product which I didn’t request.

By then the blog’s start page (read: subdomain) was fine but all permalinks had gone 404. The other subdomains were unaffected. And I got billed twice. Oh yes, you certainly have my undivided attention now! This clearly was not a good time to have extended the hosting contract, and I even got berated for having done so manually and in advance. How dare you decide to stay with us and our broken, outdated, and no longer supported platform?! How do A-records suddenly go missing? Yeah, I guess I’m the fool.

To add insult to injury, I was busy with other projects in the real world. Then other stuff broke that needed to get fixed.┬áPriorities, dammit, priorities! I don’t have time for this shit.

A few days later there’s another alert: Known Spam detected.

Seriously? Are you kidding me? Where did this crap come from? Who mucked about with file permissions? Do I look like I need more of this shit? Parasite files removed, and we’re malware free again. I think. I hope.

By then this subdomain was a different kind of mess: it redirected to the root domain and presented its content instead. Backup files showed the error was not rogue content nor bad settings on my part. But how do you prove it — never mind fix it?

Isn’t there anyone capable of understanding the issue and seeing it through to the end?

Further calls followed. No person I spoke to would understand (let alone acknowledge) the situation. “User error,” they said. Spoon-feeding via Twitter continued.

Online support: Always friendly, seldom useful.

Much reading and testing followed before I decided to hack into my own blog and got it online again via a kludge. That was early October. Really, I don’t have time for this shit!

It wasn’t until I got hold of a very dedicated support agent by the name of Dominik and created a few dummy subdomains and directories for demonstration purposes that my issue was understood. Finally! Light at the end of the tunnel.

We tried things. We spoke again a day later, and we tried different things to pinpoint the error. Each day the two of us tried something else, every day waiting for the American hosting team to do their back end bit, each day edging closer to a fix. Urgh, time zones!

Dogged determination and latching on to the same dedicated agent every day eventually led to a solution. That’s how its done. Yes!

So, as of last week Wednesday, the blog is back online.

It’s been a good week.

Trump has been voted out, and there’s hope for a COVID-19 vaccine.

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