Thanksgiving 2012 Holiday Hours

We will be closed Thursday, November 22nd for Thanksgiving and will have limited online support (no phone support) on Friday, November 23rd.

All web hosting orders placed after business hours on Wednesday, November 21st will be processed on Monday, November 26th.

Discontinuing hosting for .is domains

With our move to a Rackspace cloud hosting environment, our DNS servers will no longer support the custom setup required to host .is domains. The technical requirements for hosting DNS for a .is domain are very strict, as outlined here. Specifically, the nameservers Rackspace uses for our hosting environment are set up as aliases to Rackspace’s main DNS system, which is not a configuration supported by ISNIC, the Icelandic registrar in charge of registering .is domains.

We will be discontinuing DNS hosting for .is domains as of December 31, 2012 and urge you to find a new host before that time. After this time hosting plans for all .is domains will be canceled and all data will be removed from our servers. To find a hosting provider we recommend checking the ISNIC list of officially supported .is hosting providers.

We do apologize for this inconvenience and will switch all hosting plans for .is domains over to free one month before they are discontinued. We’ll also zip up all files and databases for you for ease of moving to your new host.

A WordPress Recipe

wordpressOur friend Mark Krawczuk over at Krawczuk Industries has written a great blog post about how to get started with WordPress. He sums up the differences between WordPress.org and WordPress.com very nicely.

WordPress is like building and owning your own house (you need to do all of the work and all of the chores, but you can customize all you want) , and WordPress.com is like renting an apartment (all of the work is done and a lot of little things are done for you behind the scenes, and you can focus on just creating the content in the environment provided).

He gives an overview of plugins he uses as well as a very kind plug for our hosting services. Thanks, Mark!

PHP/MySQL upgrades for Cloud Hosting

If you haven’t yet upgraded your site to use PHP 5.3 and MySQL 5.1, this is a reminder that these are now available in our Cloud hosting environment. For those that haven’t yet upgraded, you are encouraged to do so soon as we will begin an automatic upgrade to PHP 5.3 on July 31, and an upgrade to MySQL 5.1 on Aug 31.

To take advantage of PHP 5.3 you can do the following:

1. Make sure your site can support PHP 5.3. If you’re running the latest version of WordPress or another actively developed CMS you’re ready to go!

2. Log into the websitesettings.com control panel.

3. Go to the Features tab for your site and click on “Change Technology”.

4. Select “Linux/Apache/PHP5.3” and click the ‘Change Technology’ button.

The change may take up to 5 minutes, and after that your site will be up and running on PHP 5.3. Please note that this change will update your sites IP address to point to a new location. For anyone running CloudFlare, you will need to update your CloudFlare settings to point to this new IP address in order for your site to resolve.

Upgrading to MySQL 5.1 will involve the following steps:

1. Put up a ‘maintenance’ page and stop any database connections to your site. This can generally be done by renaming the config file.

2. Back everything up. Export your database using PHPMyAdmin or other tool.

3. Create a new database. All newly created databases are provisioned to use MySQL 5.1.

4. Import your saved database backup. You should be able to import any database smaller than 16MB using PHPMyAdmin. If you have a large database, open a support ticket and we can help you with the import.

5. Update your config file. The new database will have different login information and a different hostname. Once you replace this information your site should be able to make database connections normally.

As always if you have any questions or concerns about the upgrade process, please open a support ticket and we would be happy to help you out.

Squid 19 Security Update

We will be applying a security update to our Squid19 server today which will require a reboot. This will involve a short period of downtime while the patch is applied. This affects our Standard Hosting system only and will not affect any sites hosted in our Cloud system. This post will be updated when this is complete.

Update 11:45am PST: The update has been applied and all services are restored.