Dec 13, 2008 ~ Lisa Sabin-Wilson - Comments Off

Server Migration 12/13 – 12/14 2008

Server Alerts: for those clients whose accounts are on the following servers (*):

  • OZ - 72.51.46.32
  • TALIS - 72.51.38.154
  • BUBBA - 72.51.34.113

We are performing a server migration to new, more powerful server system.  Skipping all the geek speak – basically it means more RAM (memory), more processors (CPU) – which means better, faster and more powerful, overall.  Accounts backups to an offsite location have been completed and we expect very minimal (if any) downtime for accounts on those three servers.  If you experience any problems with your site, please understand that the server migration is necessary to upgrade the equipment across all our server systems to better serve our clients and improve performance, and ultimately your hosting experience.  The migration will be taking place in the wee hours of the night/morning – we chose these times because they are the lowest in terms of web traffic and readership (when *most* people are sleeping..except me, I’m always awake when the rest of the world sleeps.  heh)

Currently, we are having an unrelated hardware problem on the TALIS server that our techs are working on, as I type this.  The migration of the accounts off TALIS to the new server will remedy the problem – however, we are working on getting TALIS fixed to remedy server load issues in the meantime.  As always, we appreciate your patience and your support!

Over the next 24 – 48 hours, our techs will be prioritizing questions and requests for support on an ‘urgent‘ basis only.   Questions and support requests requiring urgent attention will be attended to immediately.  General inquiries, requests for design assistance, upgrades to software, etc will be attended to starting Monday morning.  This weekend, our focus is on making the migration go smoothly for everyone and emerging on Monday morning with some powerful new systems over here!

* – If you do not know what server your account is currently on – you can locate the IP number of your server in the left menu of your CPanel.  Compare your IP number with the three I’ve listed above to find out which server your account is currently hosted on.  Or, leave a comment on this post and I’ll do my best to help you determine your server assignment.  Thanks!

Nov 25, 2008 ~ Lisa Sabin-Wilson - 1 Comment - Add Yours »

WordPress 2.6.5 Security Upgrade

The WordPress team announced a security upgrade to 2.6.5 that fixes an exploit only affects IP-based virtual servers running on Apache 2.x.  Fortuanately, for Blogs About clients, this only affects our clients on only one of our servers.  If you are hosted on our Kiwi server (IP 76.74.159.114), and are running WordPress on your account, you will want to upgrade to WordPress 2.6.5.  Our Kiwi server is running Apache 2.2.9.  ( The IP of the server you are on is listed in your account CPanel, in the left menu – if is 76.74.159.114 – you’re on Kiwi)

The security issue is an XSS exploit discovered by Jeremias Reith that fortunately only affects IP-based virtual servers running on Apache 2.x. If you are interested only in the security fix, copy wp-includes/feed.php and wp-includes/version.php from the 2.6.5 release package.

2.6.5 contains three other small fixes in addition to the XSS fix. The first prevents accidentally saving post meta information to a revision. The second prevents XML-RPC from fetching incorrect post types. The third adds some user ID sanitization during bulk delete requests. For a list of changed files, consult the full changeset between 2.6.3 and 2.6.5.

Get the WordPress 2.6.5 files from the official WordPress site.

Oct 29, 2008 ~ Lisa Sabin-Wilson - 2 Comments - Add Yours »

Has Your WordPress Blog Been Hacked?

Our client, Anita Campbell from SMBTrendWire wrote in with a valuable resource that I want to share with you. It’s an article written by Aaron Wall at SEOBook.com called WordPress Blog Hacking Checklist. Aaron’s article points out some great pointers and tips on how to find out if your WordPress blog was hacked, and what to do about it if you find out that it was.

This is also a perfect time for me to emphasize how important it is to keep your WordPress software upgraded to the most recent version. Old versions of WordPress are vulnerable for exploitation, simply due to the fact that the older versions have an old code base that is no longer being developed. This means that bugs and/or vulnerabilities that existed in old versions were fixed in the new versions – – so, if you’re using old versions… you’re also using the bugs and vulnerabilities, too!

Take control of your WordPress blog and don’t let his happen to you by upgrading as soon you can after you hear about a new WordPress version release. For those of you keeping up – WordPress 2.6.3 is the most recent version available right now. WordPress 2.7 is due for release on 11/10/08.

I use this handy plugin that allows me to easily, and quickly, upgrade my WordPress blogs from within my WordPress administration panel – – no uploading, no configuring, no messing with the file structure at all: WordPress Automatic Upgrade. Give it a shot – it will make your WordPress experience much more pleasant!

Oct 20, 2008 ~ Lisa Sabin-Wilson - Comments Off

Server Alert: Jingles RAM Replacement [Updated x2]

This alert is for clients on our Jingles server – IP: 66.135.55.41

( The IP of the server you are on is listed in your account CPanel, in the left menu – if it matches the one listed above, your site is on Jingles)

We are upgrading the RAM on this machine today.  The server is functioning fine right now – although we did experience a minor 5 minute outage earlier this morning.  The RAM upgrade will occur overnight – during times of lower traffic and readership.  The integrity of all backup files will be maintained in our system, but you may experience some maintenance downtime in the very late hours of the night tonight, if you’re like me and are still awake at that hour!

Grab a book.  Catch up on the news.  Relax – have a good night of sleep, you probably won’t even notice.  Will provide updates here when it’s done and dusted!

UPDATE: 11:15 PM (CST/GMT -6) -> We’ve confirmed the time of the hardware maintenance on this server to be between 12:00AM (Midnight) – 4:00AM (CST/GMT -6).  That’s not to say the server will be down for the entire 4 hours – – but that is the window of time that the maintenance is scheduled for.  Will update here again with progress as it happens!  Hang tight – we’re getting there!

UPDATE #2: 10/21 – All is well and good in the land of Jingles!  Our Jingles got herself some brand new, shiney RAM – as well as a new chassis because we suspected the box had some I/O issues, as well.  Pretty much everything was replaced except for the hard drives and she is running smooth and we expect to hear ZERO whining out of her!  If you even noticed the downtime last night between 12:00AM (Midnight) and 4:00AM CST – we thank you very very much for your patience.  If you didn’t notice – all the better!  The intermittant problems we’ve had with Jingles are resolved and we expect smooth sailing out of her from here on out.  Yay!

Update 10/21 - We have worked with the fine folks at CPanel about a licensing issue for the CPanel software.  During/after the repairs to Jingles, our authorized license did not get transferred and access to CPanel was limited for a small amount of time.  The license has since been transferred over and we’ve not experienced any CPanel access issues since then.  If you have, or continue to experience problems accessing your CPanel – <a href=”http://tickets.blogs-about.com”>please file a ticket in our Help Desk</a> and let us know so we can get it resolved for you.  Thanks!

Oct 20, 2008 ~ Lisa Sabin-Wilson - 6 Comments - Add Yours »

Have a look at the new WordPress 2.7 Dashboard

Here it is in all its glory Ain’t it pretty??

For those of us who *just* got used to the new dashboard that came with version 2.5 – prepare yourselves for yet another dashboard change for 2.7. It’s refined. It’s friendly. It’s really beautiful, I have to say!

Here’s a screenshot so you can see what I mean:

For those of you following my book, WordPress For Dummies – We are releasing the 2nd edition of the book that will shortly follow the release of WordPress 2.7. We (Wiley Publishing, my publishing company) are making every single attempt at closely following the actual WordPress development schedule as much as possible. It’s more than a job. . . it’s an adventure!


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