A New Hope^H^H^H^HLook

Once in a while you’ve got to pull the trigger and actually ship some code.

It’s been seven years (!!!!) since I did anything serious with the way this blog looked and worked. There were plugins that weren’t supported anymore. The old theme had been so extensively customized by me that it wasn’t upgradable, and didn’t really work well with new functionality or WordPress releases. A lot of the new functionality duplicated what I’d hacked into the theme, too. Stuff like Google +1, sharing, etc. Plus I wanted SSL (and not just CloudFlare’s poser Google juice SSL crap, I wanted the security).

I started redoing the site six months ago, where “redoing” meant the cloud-esque “completely starting over.” The synchronization of content between my development site and the live site was pretty involved, and I found myself avoiding writing because I knew it’d just be more to synchronize later. Realistically a few more posts wouldn’t have mattered much, but it became a serious mental obstacle to writing, on all fronts.

Then came some asshats, hammering the old blog’s XML-RPC interface, trying to break in.
If you’ve tried to get to this site in the last couple of weeks and it’s been down it’s because those idiots went from breakin attempt to DoS, essentially causing Apache to use too much memory. The cognitively disabled Linux out-of-memory killer then kicked in, nuking the VM. Thanks, OOM Killer, you’ve been very helpful. Double thanks, jackhole at in the Netherlands. May you rot in hell.

Yes, I could have tuned Apache and Linux better, but the new site is nginx on CentOS 7 and I didn’t want to waste more time on old, tired web servers. So screw it, I pulled the trigger. This battle station is fully operational. Let’s do this.

2 thoughts on “A New Hope^H^H^H^HLook”

  1. Hi Bob,

    The new site looks good, very clean… I see you’re still using Thesis. Was considering a jump to Genesis myself. Be curious if you had any feedback on making the switch to HTTPS/SSL for the few of us considering that change.


    • I’m actually fairly unhappy with Thesis at the moment, I really want something more like Genesis’ menu bar under the header again. While there’s got to be a way to do that in Thesis it might just be worth the $60 to switch to something that does it more out of the box. Thesis did away with most CSS changes, opting to do it all inside their framework, and it seems slow and kludgy. Plus I know CSS, and lament having to learn a proprietary framework, but I’ll probably try to make it work over the next few weeks.

      If I do switch I’d probably look at Genesis (and probably a theme) and Carrington Core as possible new choices.

      With regard to the SSL change, the biggest nicety is being able to set the canonical URL for the site to https://. I used to run a self-signed cert and redirect for just the wp-admin stuff. Anytime I’d use a “view post” link it would hit port 80 and log me out. Now that it doesn’t do that I can more easily run stuff like the Google Authenticator plugins. Worth the $7.99 a year from SSLs.com. 🙂

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