Server maintenance… [update]

This site has just been moved from an unreliable hosting party to a reliable one. In the process the server software changed from Slackware 12.1/Apache to Debian/Lighttpd. The transition was not easy, as there are some quirks that have to be overcome. If you are also moving to Lighty from Apache, here are some very useful instructions and URL’s to help you out.

Note: since i’m a total linux noob i cannot help you with specific issues. Also: these commands might not be optimal if you want a secure server.

Installing lighttpd with WP-Supercache and a working upgrading system

  1. Install lighttpd with lua:
    1. apt-get install lighttpd-mod-magnet
    2. lighty-enable-mod magnet
    3. URL: http://www.howtoforge.com/installing-drupal-6.4-on-a-lighttpd-webserver-debian-etch
  2. Now get WP-Supercache and WordPress redirects working:
    1. You need to create and edit a .lua file
    2. Details: http://tempe.st/2008/04/lighttpd-and-wp-supercache-now-you-can/
  3. To get the WP-Update system working (you need an ftp server thingy):
    1. Create an RSA Key / Certificate thing
    2. Follow: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=707161
    3. or follow: http://www.akadia.com/services/ssh_test_certificate.html
    4. Place the keys in the right directory (with “mv” source target)
    5. Then do this: http://praveen.kumar.in/2009/05/31/setting-up-ftps-using-vsftpd-for-wordpress-plugins-auto-upgrade/
  4. Add a user to the system for FTP usage
    1. Only needed when you have no suitable user yet (e.g: only work with root)
    2. adduser <your username here>
    3. answer the questions
  5. To let the FTP user change your site:
    1. chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/mysite/html
    2. URL: http://wordpress.org/support/topic/266008

Server specific things

Some server related steps also resulted in some issues. In this specific situation the following happened:

  • MySQL needs to be fed a copy of the existing database. This might result in some character-encoding errors and the widgets bar on the side being empty.
  • Lighttpd is very clean and easy about creating vhosts. The vhost for this site is created by simply creating two folders.
  • DNS settings had to be changed to point to the new URL; altering a CNAME record is enough
  • The server needed some tweaks to not crash on excessive memory usage by PHP-CGI processes (a common problem)
    • i don’t know how these are fixed.

Conclusion

With the above 5 steps from above, i got most of wordpress running again. The server side on this story was either straightforward or performed by my provider; nothing to report on that.

In the end: Migrating sites just is not easy. Every time you think it is, your’e proven wrong in the most obscure blocking annoyances or just by trivialities you can’t fix easily because you’re not system administrator/frequent linux user.

Migrating sites just aint easy, but i’ve done it! With the help of my hoster and some friends (THANKS!)

1 thought on “Server maintenance… [update]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *