2007/03/19

Adminfoo is baaaaaack!


OK, I can't begin to express the angst, frustration, and finally denial states that I went through over the problems with my former web host. So, I won't. But I will direct your attention to the incredible, hulking 107-page thread about this debacle, over on ars technica. It is not pretty - and if you run out of patience long before you finish reading those 107 pages, I don't blame you. I paid those jokers for lifetime service - and the joke was on me.

I have to admit a bit of embarrassment here. I've always preached the Gospel of Backups, and so it's bitterly ironic that I didn't have a backup of the old adminfoo site. Now, this really is something I checked into before signing up with my former host - and they assured me they kept backups in three separate places. So I let that lull me into a false sense of confidence. I should have been keeping my own backups - and I can assure you I will be doing so from here on out. They'll be a simple wget dump of the site - but at least they'll exist.

If you happen to be one of the adminfoo readers who has found your way back to the site after this long hiatus: welcome back! I can't help but feel that I owe you two apologies: one for having dropped out of site for so long, and another for breaking the links to any articles you might have bookmarked. Sorry about that. Really, really sorry about that!

And so, here we are again. Back from the grave, and now hosted on Blogger. I did spend a lot of time looking into other host providers, other platforms, and so on ... and I finally decided to just let Google (who owns Blogger) do all the work for me. Sure I lose a couple of features over the excellent Drupal platform I was using before, but this is gonna save me a lot of work. No longer will I worry about my host provider being down, or how to implement a new anti-spam system, or the overhead of a lot of features that I really didn't need. It has always been my intent to write often and insightfully about the craft of systems administration, and I now realize that I was putting far too much effort into presentation, and not enough into the writing.

Ah, yes, the writing. Over the years my propensity for writing has ebbed and flowed on a schedule all its own. But the dry spells always end, and right now I feel a new wellspring of creativity a-blooming (pardon the mixed metaphor). Coming up, I plan to continue in the old vein, with commentary on strategy, tactics, and tools. I'll also bring back much of the old content, as I've found it's not that hard to just cut-and-paste from my old data to this new copy of adminfoo. It's time-consuming, though, and I have to do some manual reformatting. So I'm bringing back the oldest posts first, and I'll be slowly working through all the old content.

But I have some new stuff in mind, too:

  • The 'So You Inherited A Network' series I planned out over a year ago, and never got around to writing.

  • Map of systems administration knowledge. This will be on wiki.adminfoo.net, which is right now just a twinkle in my eye. The SAKmap is not my idea, actually; it belongs to another fellow whom I hope to convince to write here as well. I'm not sure he's aware of that yet, so I'll keep his name to myself for the time being.

  • OS patch reports. I admin a few Windows servers, and a few Linux ones too. While it might seem boring, I think a lot of people will benefit from seeing a list of patches applied to running systems - and knowing that in at least one case, those patches did or did not blow up the systems. Where I run into troubles or gotchas, I'll let you know - but I expect (and hope!) that most of those entries will be boring, predictable: applied patches foo, bar, and baz. No problems!

  • A few other ideas, which I'm keeping to myself right now. Mainly because, well, I dunno if I'll ever get around to, er, doing them.

4 comments:

rattus said...

Quux, it's good to see adminfoo.net back on-line. I am looking forward to reading more from you again.

quux said...

Thanks. It's good to be back! I guess I'll have to scale the mountain all over again ...

Punkcut said...

Welcome back Quux. Its been far too long.

Links to your site are once again propagating amongst my coworkers :-)

Rekolitus said...

It's really great to see you back. Adminfoo is worthwhile reading and I'd hate to have seen you fade into oblivion.