A Slight Mishap

Well, the MON Site has been up for less than a week and already we’ve been on two webservers and had one potentially catastrophic mishap!

We went online last friday only to find the hosting provider had a problem with MySQL and wasn’t willing to fix it. This forced a quick change of server to a new hosting provider (Alternative Web Services)

Exceeded Bandwidth
Today, the second problem occurred, this time involving a cron job.

The site should be spidered at 3:00AM by phpsitemapng – a great little script for creating a Google sitemap.

Unfortunately due to a server error, the job didn’t run once every 24 hours. No, it ran once every 3 seconds!

After running in the background for quite a while I noticed that the page views on Have Your Say was going up a little quicker than it should be…

Some frantic messages to the hosting support people we began looking for the problem. After about 30 minutes of searching through server logs we found the problem…

Unfortunately, by that time the spider had slightly exceeded the sites monthly usage quota. By slightly I mean by 15,069.23MB…

Thankfully, the staff at Alternative are understanding (and quick). Not only has the problem been solved but we are back on the air – metaphorically speaking.

So a big thank you to the staff at Alternative, especially Michael who put up with me while I was extremely frentic to find the problem.

According to some rough calculations – since my server logs are somewhat messy right now the errant bot inflicted about 6,250,000 hits onto the site. The upside of this is that Have Your Say now has some great page view-counts ;-)

Hopefully, future posts won’t be quite as dramatic. At this point I can see Linux server admins worldwide thinking “6.2 million hits… That’s nothing…”