More randomness in the form of an entry.

Bits and pieces I’ve been meaning to get off my chest, but can’t manage to write a full entry about:

  • Apparently Apple has released their new iMac G5 and it sure is purty. It’s very futuristic looking and manages to cram the entire computer into the flat panel monitor and is probably still way too expensive for me to justify even thinking of owning one. Besides, if I were to become a Mac user I’d lose out on all the satisfaction that comes from building my own PCs.
  • Thank goodness that the Republicans didn’t try to politicize the hell out of the 9/11 Terrorists Attacks during the opening night of their convention, eh? What’s that? Oh… never mind.
  • I’ve already upgraded one of my friend’s blogs I regularly help out with, Jinxed Minx,  to MovableType 3.1 and installed the latest and greatest version of MT-Blacklist. Overall it went fairly smoothly even though one of the two upgrade scripts reported an error and I wasn’t able to figure out why. Much like Sekimori, I just plowed ahead with the second script and it appears to have worked just fine. Visiting the site you won’t see much that’s different yet as Minx still needs to get herself set up with a TypeKey account before I can enable that aspect, but it should help her maintain the site better now.
  • Speaking of MT-Blacklist, the 2.01b release makes upgrading to MT 3.1 a worthy undertaking almost singlehandedly. It now automatically downloads updates from the SPAM clearinghouse once a day removing a small bit of drudgery in keeping your blacklist up to date. Jay Allen deserves a Nobel Peace Prize for this plugin, but at least he won the Six Apart Plugin contest.
  • A final thought on MT 3.1: Anyone else find it somewhat ironic that in order to use the new Dynamic Publishing options in MT3.1 you suddenly have to have PHP on your server? Granted, this isn’t a problem with most webhosts as they usually provide both, but I remember a great deal of debate awhile back over whether MT should move to PHP as opposed to Perl and it pretty much being stated that this would never happen. From reading the documentation the dynamic aspect feels like a tacked on afterthought rather than a well developed new feature like it’s being promoted by Six Apart. Given that it breaks some plugins I’m not inclined to recommend it anytime soon, but we’ll see how it plays out.
  • I’m working on a major entry that will discuss some of the reasons why I eventually left Christianity behind, but it’s slow going at the moment. I decided to write the entry because I’ve never discussed the reason in any great depth previously and I thought it was time to do so, but every time I go back and re-read what I’ve already written I end up being overly critical and trying to rewrite major chunks of it. If I ever get it into a shape I’m happy with I’ll go ahead and post it.
  • I’m also working on a few entries for ExpressionEngine users who were formerly MT users and are confused by the way that EE handles multiblogs and templates. I just finished helping out Zak over at Translator’s Notes with setting up a second blog on his site in addition to upgrading him to EE 1.1. The way MT and EE do things is different enough that it can be very confusing if you’re familiar with the former so hopefully I’ll come up with some helpful tips on how to adjust your thinking.
  • Lastly I need to tack on that I’m still looking for a new home for SEB. We’re still exceeding our bandwidth quotas and I’m really nervous about the over charges that’ll bring with it. I was looking through various hosting sites last night and some of them seem too good to be true whereas others don’t offer enough stuff to make the jump. I’ve also been told that I should consider going with an inexpensive reseller package that fits my needs and just not resell any of it. Ideally, I’d like to get set up at ServerBeach as I’d be able to host my own game servers there in addition to my blogs, but their cheapest package starts at $99 a month which I just can’t afford at the moment. The search continues.

OK, that’s all for now. More later.


19 thoughts on “More randomness in the form of an entry.

  1. What about getting a second account and instead of getting a new domain…just use one of the existing SEB subdomains? It can be done, easily. You’d be in the same server environment, you would have the bandwidth of two accounts to work with (keep SEB on one and move the forums and much else to the second, for example), and it would be less than the $99 you quoted from ServerBeach.

  2. Oh hell, I would only go with ServerBeach so I could run a game server. There are entirely too many decent hosting packages out there for much less than $99 a month that I could use for just the blogs. grin

    If I were to stay with Blogomania I’d have to consider just bumping up to the next level of hosting as getting a second account would actually be more expensive. Bumping up to the next level would increase my monthly bandwidth to 26GB from the current 19GB, but we hit 21GB last month (and that’s not counting the first week of August as I reset the logs on the 8th) so I’m not sure how long it’d be before I’d exceed the new level.

  3. I have no real idea of what your requirements are but you might check out 1&1 Internetservices. They have a very wide array of packages at reasonable prices.

    (How appropriate….the word is ONE….)

  4. Well, as I mentioned, I need something that offers enough bandwidth to cover our current usage and allow for some growth as last month we hit over 21GB of transfer. More elbow room would be nice as well as this current plan offers 325MB, which isn’t bad, but I’ve seen some out there that offer a full Gig.

    After that the plan must offer the option for at least 2 domain names pointing to the same account, preferably without charging extra.  At least 10 subdomains as that’s what I’m currently using between all the sites I’m hosting. Last I need at least three mySQL databases. Pretty much everything else is standard on most hosts such as PHP and Perl and so on.

    Looking at 1&1 it appears I’d have to go with the Developer’s package to get 3 mySQL databases and the other features I want which would run around $20 a month. Not bad and the disk and bandwidth allotments are generous, but the limit mySQL databases seems odd compared to many other services. There’s also no word on if they retain ownership over domains registered through their service or if the customer does. It is nice that they’ll pay for up to five domains hosted on the developer package for as long as you host with them, but that makes me think they’d want ownership rights.

  5. I was thinking along the line of one of their server packages starting at $49/month.

  6. Hi Les!

    Say, not *directly* on-topic, but why don’t you put up a donation link. Lots of us loyal reader folks would chip in a bit every now and then, I’d say. You could call it the ‘bandwidth donation button’ wink


  7. Hi there!  Long time reader, first time commenter (to my present recollection anyway wink

    Have you thought about setting up your own server and getting a business internet account instead of a normal one?

    I’m not sure of the costs for your area, but that’s what I do. I have a second PC that used to be my development test machine, and it’s set up with the latest Mandrake linux and is on 24/7.  I have a business account with my local ISP so they remove the port blocking, and have 20 GB of bandwidth monthly (I don’t need more yet, but I could purchase a bigger package if necessary).

    The upside is that you get control of everything.  You have essentially unlimited storage, as you own the hard drive(s).  You can install whatever you like, from various versions of blog software, to games, to what have you.  You can set up your own web mail server.  Adding domains and subdomains is trivial.  You aren’t limited to the amount of mySQL databases, and everything can be done right on the server so you don’t have to worry about someone snagging your password and altering things from the web admin (or you can have a web admin anyway). 

    The downside is that you have to do all of the stuff yourself, but as someone who likes to build your own PCs and fiddle with different net stuff, I don’t see that as being too big a deal.  Linux isn’t hard if you have someone to help you, and you make a few attempts at it.

    Another downside is that your traffic is now going through your home account, so unless you have a second line (i.e. you use cable, but the “business” line uses DSL, or a separate cable package) then you might see a degradation in performance in your home net usage.  ‘Course I’ve hosted games, a Teamspeak server, web pages, etc, all at the same time and I have yet to see any loss of performance.  You see more long-term traffic than I, but I’m sure that there are at least some points where I’m using just as much as you at any given time with all of my game hosting, so it likely wouldn’t be that big a hit for you.

    Anyway, food for thought.  It’s very rewarding having your own server, and you can use it any way you like without restriction, but it is a fair bit more effort than hosting elsewhere.

  8. Ingolfson, I’m still resistant to doing that as I honestly think it’s a bit presumptive to have my Wish List up on the blog. Bad enough I give the impression I expect everyone to buy me crap, don’t want to give the impression I expect everyone to pay for my hosting too. grin

    Sam, I have considered that option on many occasions and I just can’t afford to do it at the moment. I know that Speak offers DSL connections for gamers and web geeks that would probably do just fine for this sort of thing, but again they start at around $100 a month.

    Someday, though, once I win the lottery I’m going to do all that stuff myself. grin

  9. Les, your wish list is SO understated, that I was a regular reader of your blog for months before ever once clicking on it.

  10. Wow, 100 bucks a month?  That sounds rather excessive…

    My account is only $75 a month, and that’s Canadian (so say $50 US), and that’s about $35 canadian more than the actual personal account is.

    Speakeasy might be targetting gamers and tech-geeks with such a high price because we are known for spending outrageous amounts of money in support of our hobby.

    My suggestion, assuming you haven’t yet done so, would be to shop around, specifically for a business-class account, and not something that is blatantly targetting gamers.  You get everything you need in a business account, and it’s likely going to be cheaper for you than speakeasy.

    I’ll be heartbroken if I ever have to give up my server.  It has spoiled me smile

  11. SBC offers DSL in my area for $74.95 or so a month that gives 1.5-3Mbps down and only 384Kbps up which is way more than my cable modem service which gives me 4Mbps down and 512Kbps up. Of course, I can run a server on the DSL service, but I’m not willing to pay that much more for a slower connection.

    I will probably just end up going with Dreamhost’s Sweet Dreams package as it’s around $20 a month and covers all my needs:

    1600MB storage and 48GB of transfer
    Unlimited mySQL databases
    7 Full domains and 35 subdomains

    Can’t really sneeze at that.

  12. QM, I went back to 1&1 and checked out the dedicated server packages you mentioned and I have to admit I’m impressed! The $49/month one gives a lot of bang for the buck and allows for the running of game servers too. Can’t argue with 500GB of transfer or the 40GB HD. I have no idea how much bandwidth a game server would eat up a month, but that would be more than plenty for hosting websites on.

    I may have to consider that one once my income improves a bit, don’t know I could convince the wife of it right now, but….

    Hmmm. Perhaps I could persuade some friends of mine to rent some space from me… Hmmm. *sounds of rampant scheming and plotting begin*

  13. Just pull really hard for Bush to win the election and then declare SEB as a ‘church’ outreach site under the new Bush tax strategy.

    Once that’s done you can move SEB into the great web hosting markets enjoyed by Falwell, Hagee, Robertson and the other great multi-millionaire con artists of our time.

    I still haven’t decided on moving but thanks to Elwed’s input I’m seriously leaning toward Lunar Pages

  14. For what it’s worth, I’m very happy with Lunarpages. I have no idea about the quality of their support staff, though, because I never need them.

    The one thing I just now recall is that their PHP configuration is/was a bit odd and I needed a very ugly workaround (that shouldn’t) to get Gallery working. You may want to peruse the support forums or ask pre-sales if the apps you intend to run have any known issues.

  15. Dedicated servers hmm? FreeVirtualServers has some around the $89 mark (100 Gb bw/1.7Ghz,256Mb RAM,30Gb HD), ServerMatrix has a nice range also starting at $89 per month (1200Gb bw/2.4Ghz,1Gb RAM,80Gb HD), and Ev1Servers has some from $99 per month…Oh – and Nocster have some at $59.95/month.

    You might want to also look at VPS (Virtual Private Servers: where it looks like you have your own server, but it’s just one physical box hosting multiple customers in a virtual environment) which are now beginnging to make big inroads into the market – Ev1 did have some available for $39 for 200Gb bandwidth, 20Gb HD.

    Failing all that, have a look at WebHostingTalk and you may find a host/package suitable for your requirement

  16. Those are all a bit on the expensive side right now, but I have been hanging out at WebHostingTalk as of late while doing research.

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