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Archive for the ‘General Announcement’ Category

Postgresql and Django

Thursday, October 8th, 2009

Postgresql has been upgraded to 8.1. As part of the upgrade process all databases had to be exported and imported. If you see any issues with your Postgresql database, please contact us.

This upgrade was required to allow psycopg2 to work correctly with Django.

Should any issues arise, please contact us.

Downtime last night and this morning

Saturday, October 3rd, 2009

Last night we experienced about an hour of downtime and this morning we were down for about an hour and a half. The server required a reboot each time in order to come back online, but we are still investigating the root causes of these crashes.

I’ll post again when the issue is resolved.


Sunday, September 20th, 2009

We expect 1-2 minutes of downtime at approximately 8pm PST tonight.

Idle Accounts

Sunday, March 29th, 2009

Since this service is free members rarely notify us when they stop using their hosting account. Because of this we periodically do an audit of sites to clear out the idle accounts. Sites that are obviously inactive are disabled without notice. Sites that we suspect are idle will receive an email from one of us asking the member to respond in order to keep the site active.

If your site is no longer accessible please contact us, we may have erroneously disabled your account and can quickly and easily reactivate your account. If you are no longer using your AmbitiousLemon account please let us know so we can disable your account and thus make room for new members. If you received an email from us regarding the status of your account please respond so we know whether you are still active or not.

Web Mail Update

Monday, March 16th, 2009

We updated the software running our webmail service (roundcube) tonight. This update was more substantial than recent updates so I wanted to announce it and encourage everyone to report problems should you encounter any (not that you shouldn’t be reporting issues in other cases). My own testing uncovered no bugs, so anything you find is noteworthy and should be reported.

Rails users prepare to become passengers on a wild ride

Wednesday, February 25th, 2009

For the past few years we have been using fastcgid to deliver rails content. This was not ideal. Last night we turned off fastcgid and switched rails to Passenger (aka mod_rails or mod_rake). All rails apps on AmbitiousLemon are now being served via Passenger (an apache module).

Deploying a Rails webapp will remain the same as before. You will need to create a symlink (aka alias or shortcut) pointing to your rails app’s public directory. You can set this up however you like; with your app accessible from a subURI (mydomain.com/myrailsapp/) or accessible from the root (mydomain.com).

Directions for Deploying to the Root:

  1. First you need to rename the existing public_html directory to something different (like public_html.old) This command looks like this:
    mv public_html public_html.old
  2. Create an alias of public_html that points to your app/public directory. The command to create the alias (symlink) looks like this (where “app” is the name of the directory housing your rails app):
    ln -s ~/app/public ~/public_html
  3. Next you need to move the web statistics directory out of the old public_html directory into your rail app’s public directory:
    mv public_html.old/stats ~/public_html/stats

Directions for Deploying to a Sub URI:

  1. Create a shortcut of myfabulouswebapp (or anything you want) that points to your myfabulouswebapp/public directory.  The command to create the shortcut (symlink) looks like this (where “myfabulouswebapp” is the name of the directory housing your rails app):
    ln -s ~/myfabulouswebapp/public ~/public_html

How to restart your Rails App:

Create or modify the file tmp/restart.txt in the Rails application’s root folder. Passenger will automatically restart the application.

For example, to restart the example myfabulouswebapp application, we type this in the command line:

touch myfabulouswebapp/tmp/restart.txt

You can find more information about how to use Passenger to better manage your rails applications by reading the Passenger User Guide.

Email Aliases for abuse, postmaster, hostmaster

Monday, January 19th, 2009

Members will notice that we have added a number of email aliases to each domain: abuse@yourdomain.com, postmaster@yourdomain.com, and hostmaster@yourdomain.com now forward mail to our mailboxes.  Please do not delete these, but feel free to add your own email to the recipient list if you care to.

Please report problems

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2008

It has been smooth sailing here at AmbitiousLemon for the second half of the year, but this weekend we had a bit of a hiccup.  Disturbingly a small number of accounts were deleted in an error we are still investigating.  All deleted accounts were restored with no data loss immediately after the problem was reported but we are concerned that some members are not reporting problems.  I know that many of you are hesitant to report problems since this is a free service, but we need your help. If we don’t know that you are having trouble we can’t fix things for you.

If your your site become inaccessible after Dec 21st or if you are experiencing any other difficulties please do not hesitate to contact us.  You can email me directly, Instant Message me, or use the email form on the website.

Hello world!

Wednesday, August 27th, 2008

Its been a few weeks since our major server failure and things are beginning to return to normal. While we got the server back up within 2.5 days of the failure we were plagued with tons of small problems for the past several weeks.

The most notable of these problems were the loss of a handful of mysql databases. While most users suffered no data loss, even losing these handful of databases was unacceptable and we are now implementing changes to our backup processes that should prevent similar loss in the future.

Another major issue we have been struggling with has involves DNS issues with a handful of sites that caused the sites to be inaccessible from a small number of ISPs. We believe we have addressed this issue, but since it only involved some websites and some ISPs we will remain watchful on this issue.

Remaining issues involve rebuilding and reconfiguring our spam filtering software. As all of you who choose to use our email servers are aware by now, we are not currently filtering spam in the same way we did prior to the server failure. While it is extremely inconvenient to receive large amounts of spam, addressing this issue was not a priority until we had resolved the previously discussed issues. Having resolved all other known issues our attention has returned to the spam problem and we hope to have the new filtering system in place soon.

If you are still experiencing any problems accessing your website or any of your member tools please contact us as soon as possible.

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