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Diagnosing...

We're currently diagnosing server issues. I have a support ticket in with our new host.

In transition

The Vulpine Imperium is currently in transition to a new host. Meanwhile, please enjoy our original placeholder. I'll post updates here as the site progresses.

Saturday, 6:10pm: And we're back! The database and code migrated without any hiccups - you should be able to log in again.

Saturday, 5:43pm: Despite being cleaned up, the database is still very large, which is making it awkward to actually move between hosts. I'm on strategy #3 for getting it working now, so I hope to be up and testing soon. Again, thanks for your patience.

Saturday, 5:06pm: I'm currently cleaning up the database, in preparation for moving it over. There were around 4 million empty journal pages, due to a tricky-to-track-down bug with buying journals. I might have finally found it, though.

Saturday, 4:40pm: It looks like the DNS has propagated to most places, so most people will be visiting the new host. Welcome! Things should be up and running soon.

Saturday, 2:48pm: If you're seeing this page, then you've hit our new host! I'm still working on getting the code and database setup on the new server.

Saturday, 12:48pm (posted at the Bilge and Bucket): Hey all, I noted this on the front page, but I figured I'd post about it here as well, and expand a bit more:

The Vulpine Imperium will be moving to a new host this weekend, following some technical difficulties at our current host earlier this week. There may be some downtime, and some posts/changes may be lost (I'll do my best to keep everything intact, though). Thank you all for your patience while we transition!

We've been hosted at LunarPages for the last...well, forever. I've had an account there for 10+ years, and it's hosted this, RWL, and others. For a long time, LunarPages had the best prices and the best range of offerings. Then we ran into some resource constraint issues, and it was easier to upgrade our service than look for a new host. Over time, the service level has steadily degraded - my sites have been hacked more often, LunarPages support has capriciously suspended my account for things I can't control, and LunarPages support has grown less and less useful.

In the last week, this has brought me to a breaking point:

It's still not clear who was disabling the index.php for this site. LunarPages support says that they did not do it, but I don't entirely believe it. We've had hackers before, and they usually add malware or deface sites, not disable the most-used script on them.

When I tried to login to the admin section for my site with the wrong password (I've had the account for 10+ years - it's gone through a few passwords), they silently banned my IP address from accessing the server, without notifying me. This meant that when I tried to fix the issue with the index.php page, I couldn't. It took three days of back-and-forth with support to fix this, which is unacceptable, and I still can't access the site through FTP.

In talking with support, I discovered that they store customer account passwords in plaintext, which is a major security issue.

After making a backup of the site while thinking about a server move, I got a notification that I had exceeded my disk quota, which is surprising because I have paid for unlimited disk quota for the last five years. I have also not been getting many of the other features of the account level I have been paying for.

The end result is that I resigned myself to a weekend of moving servers, and went in search of a new host that didn't suck quite so much. Many of these hosts, like LunarPages, have shifted towards terrible support models and a focus on "enterprise" customers, whom they can overcharge for basic services, while disregarding smaller websites like ours. However, I found one (A Small Orange) which has a very nice support staff and offers more features than LunarPages, for about 60% less. Their plans aren't "unlimited", but the limits are far above what my sites have been using.

I'll be in the process of moving the sites to the new host this weekend, and once the sites are moved over, I'll transfer the domain names. That will mean that there will be a period of time as the domain names propagate that you could hit either the new server or this server. I'll try to post notifications so you can differentiate them, but if I don't get FTP access to this site again this weekend, I won't be able to do more than that.

Again, thanks for your patience with the technical glitches, and during this move.