IMPORTANT: The following journal is intended for the use and viewing of approved persons only and may contain information that is confidential, privileged or unsuitable for overly sensitive persons with low self-esteem, no sense of humour or irrational religious beliefs. Any dissemination, distribution or copying of this work is not authorised (either explicitly or implicitly) and constitutes an irritating social faux pas. Unless the word ‘absquatulation’ has been used in its correct context somewhere other than in this warning, it does not have any legal or grammatical use and may be ignored. No animals were harmed in the creation of this journal and a minimum of Microsoft software was used. Those of you with an overwhelming fear of the unknown will be gratified to learn that there is no hidden message revealed by reading this warning backwards.

Year View| Summary| Highlights| Month View| Friday 30 January 2004 (Day View)

30.01.2004Friday 30 January – Site Moved

What an ordeal that was. I woke up to find that Robert had moved my site over to another server, as promised, because with the crazy random problems they are having on the new SolidInternet server, he wasn’t willing to mess around trying to get Expat, mod_ssl, Zend and Sablotron to co-exist peacefully.
  I updated my site to use all its XSLT features again, but my syndication feeds update script gave a “404 File Not Found” error. This seemed odd because the file definitely existed. After some messing around, I realised it was actually giving a “500 Internal Server Error”, but due to the way I’ve handled unfound pages, that gives a “404 File Not Found” error.
  Once I’d figured that out, I thought it would be easy to fix, but no. First, I discovered that every time I attempted to execute the file, it caused a 10 MB core dump in its directory. This was exciting but unhelpful. I rewrote the script – several times. I then tried copying other existing scripts I had that did almost exactly the thing, and modifying them to work – but they didn’t. I figured it must be some sort of file permission problem, probably caused when my files were copied from the other server, so I chmodded them to every known permission, changed the directory they were in, changed their name and type, overwrote existing files, used rename() to copy them to other files, and anything else I could think of, before deciding it must be something else.
  I then attacked the XSLT file that performed the transformations, thinking that perhaps this server had a different version of Sablotron installed, which was having problems with something – but it’s such a simple transformation that I couldn’t really see any problem with it, there’s just nothing that I could change.
  Fortunately for my sanity, I had the rather obvious brainwave to change the input data file to a last year’s journal – and it worked. This narrowed down the possible problems to this year’s journal data file, which seemed very odd and hence why I hadn’t considered it could be a problem. Once I’d worked this out, it was easy. I truncate the output to 30 words, by trimming on word borders, and if I’ve an element in the input that is the first content element for a specific day, and has only one word, it tries has a heart attack and dies. My shoddy coding I guess, although I’m not quite sure how to fix it yet.
  I skilfully changed the one word element “Sleep” into the two-word element “I Sleep”, by the dexterous placing of a single “I”, and all my troubles went away. Or rather, they should have... I tested it and it worked, so I fixed up the original files, copied over the working code from the files I’d been testing it in, and uploaded everything. Clunk. It all died. Totally. Everything stopped working. FTP didn’t work, XSLT died totally – it was a shambles.
  I was just about to give up and go back to using HyperCard on a Macintosh, when I remembered the 10 MB core dumps. Now that I’ve deleted them, and freed up some space, everything works again.
After a walk out to the halfway spot while it was drizzling and a nice warm shower when I got home, Mum and I watched “Born Romantic”, which Mum quite enjoyed. I liked it too, but it’s not really my style of movie. British comedy is usually good though – leaves for dead that incredibly obvious rubbish the Americans call comedy.

Add your comments

You may leave a short comment, not longer than 800 characters.

Be Amused

Printed on 100% recycled electrons
W3C CSS 2.0