Archives » September 6th, 2003

September 6, 2003

Downtime

I’ve been thinking about moving my site off of the Windows host it’s on now, Brinkster, and over to Freedom2Operate, a Linux host that’s about half the price. I’ve signed up for their free, low-feature service, and I’ve been slowly converting my ASP site to PHP, and playing around with running Moveable Type. The past couple of days I’ve been having on and off problems with my F2O site, though, and then today I visited their main site to see what’s up. “f2o.org is currently down due to a denial of service attack against our network,” it says. That’s just fantastic. Here’s a company that’s more about altruism than profit, one that is built by web developers, for web developers, and offers low cost hosting as a way to subsidize their free offerings. And people don’t have anything better to do with their time then attack them. What is that? Who would do that? Did somebody get turned down for a free account? Were they just looking for somewhere to host warez or mp3s, and their account got closed so they got pissed off? Seriously, what’s the point in attacking an organization like F2O? When I found out that the Blaster worm was programmed to flood the Windows Update site with traffic, that didn’t bother me. Using the holes in MS’ own software to attack it? That’s funny. Attacking an organization that gives people free hosting so they can play with PHP and MySQL? That’s just vile.

And it also makes me hesitant to switch my regular hosting to F2O. Is this just the first attack of many? Are they going to become a regular target now? If I switch to them, is my site going to be unavailable for days at a time just because there’s some petty little kids on a power trip out there? Brinkster is safe, because they’re not a target. F2O doesn’t seem so safe anymore, now that I know there’s someone out to get them. This attack will blow over, I’m sure, and they’ll go back to their regular reliability. And I’ll probably end up switching to them in the end anyway, since it’s cheaper and my money will be going towards a good cause. But now I’ll always have this nagging doubt in the back of my mind, about when the next attack will come.

In other news today, my site’s hyphenless alter ego is back on the air. www.computervet.com once again points to this site. It used to, earlier in the year, but at a cost of $2 extra every month. $2 for what is basically an extra entry on a DNS server somewhere. That seemed a little steep, so I cancelled the service and let the second domain go dark. But this week I discovered ZoneEdit, which provides free DNS services and “Web Forwarding” for up to five domains. So I signed up with them, and told them to point the hyphenless domain to this site. The domain with no hyphen is the one I wanted in the first place, but it was already taken when I started the site. So I had to go with computer-vet.com, and then snatch up computervet.com last year when it was finally free. But by then it was too late, since every bookmark and link on the Web now points to the hyphenated domain. Oh well, what can you do? Just set them both up, I guess. So that’s what I’ve done. It might take couple of days to propagate everywhere, but I’m not in a hurry. And mail @computervet.com should be forwarded too, which will make things a hell of a lot easier over the phone.

“Computer dash vet dot com—. Dash. No, you don’t spell out dash, it’s a hyphen—. A hyphen, you know, a minus sign? It’s on your keyboard next to the zero—. Yes, a hyphen. Computer hyphen vet dot com. No no, type a hyphen…”*

Update: I wrote this last night, but when I went to post it, Blogger was down too. I guess I’m out of luck all the way around. Blogger’s working now, but F2O’s still working on theirs.

*Actual conversation with my mother-in-law this week