Charles Brown

just a simple blog

PS:186 – Travel Day – Ugh.

Today was a travel day, the idea was simple Train to Sacramento -> Uber -> Airport -> Rental Car -> Carson City Bound. So let’s go step by step.

Amtrak

Awesome as always, people to talk to, no driving for me, and got us to Sacramento on time. And that’s where it went downhill.

Uber {Fail!}

Uber was the big talk online, even their site talks about car seats, however apparently no one in Sacramento has one. After 3 failed attempts I found a lady who claimed she had one, and came right away. However upon arrival she tells me she does not, then proceeds to bill me $5 for the cancellation. sigh then we gave up, trekked 2 blocks or so to the 042A bus and took a 30 minute bus to the airport, a shuttle to the rental cars for the fail.

Budget Rental Car {Fail!}

They got my money, then lost my car. Yes. Lost my car. It was coming to the front, had a car seat, and they lost it. I think it was over an hour (it all becomes a haze in heat + exhaustion + frustration) but finally a manager swooped in, gave me a SUV upgrade at the base car price, and got us on our way (woot!)

Traveling

We swing through Truckee -> North Lake Tahoe -> Carson City and crashed out for the night (please note there were activities, I’m just too tired to write anymore so I’m wrapping up) 🙂

Let’s see what tomorrow brings!

PS:185 – Still not done.

Took longer. Here we are at 4am, I’m rolling as much work in as I can while I finish up the final bits. So far I’ve helped 2 other server customers with issues, resolved a BIG issue one one customer’s client’s server, twas crazy glitch, someone who setup the server (wasn’t me) did NOT know what they were doing, but all things said and done, it’s ready for a reboot tomorrow.

I wish I could be in bed sleeping, but for now, I have only about 12 more sites to review – have a MASSIVE image optimization going on at this moment, JPEG took about 30 minutes, still doing some wild stuff with PNG files, but much quicker this way vs. 3rd party WordPress plugin, did it in dev, pushing it to live, going to have it be a twice daily cron on any files newer than yesterday, so should keep it running lean from here on out, customer uploads anything within 12 hours it will get compressed and tuned up.

Back to it. Minor break to breathe and write is now done.

PS:183 – Faster.

The great thing about servers is they can be pushed to limits. Saves money, and allows for a decent density of customers, but at some point you hit limits. Things won’t go faster.

I’ve always been one who is not a “SMUSH EM IN!” type of business. I don’t oversell. I have limits on each box and I stick to them, not even a “Well this customer isn’t really using it…” type of line, if they are a user, they are taking up resources. Plain. Simple. Easy.

So this weekend I’ve been moving folks from one set of servers to another. A fresh new VPS cluster not using Virtualizor but Proxmox which seemed a little more “Grown up” to me. It’s been around for ages and finally just decided – transition = something new.

Things thus far are running insanely well. I was able to migrate a number of mail servers over with so far 0 issues. 0. As in none. This re-structure thus far is going great!

This blog even just finished it’s move over and it’s a bit more snappy network wise, pure SSD setup is snappy, and all of my settings carried over just have to shift a cPanel license as soon as the remaining two sites are fully migrated and then it’ll kick this out of “Trial Period” mode and onto full production.

An insanely busy week ahead. My body isn’t having it – long hours, high stress, deadlines galore. I’ve gotten a lot of things on my plate as of late as I noted with these contracts, one of which is going to live in a small Linux virtual here on my laptop so as I’m traveling the code goes with me and I can test in a dev environment which requires no network connection.

Thankfully the trip the first part is about 5.5 hours to Sacramento, which has WiFi, so occupy a small child, do some work over the VPN (which also is rebuilt and on this speedy network) and have hotspot in tow just in case – a lot try to squeeze into the next 3 days – thus why I’m posting the blog at just about 1AM vs. later tonight. Go Go Go. Lots to get accomplished and it feels more and more like so little time.

Have a good week all!

 

PS:182 – Same thing…

This is the 5th server install and build-out in the last few days. Thankfully all have been insanely quick, easy and functional!

Super happy with the new digs – I’ve worked with many data centers over the years and these guys are an awesome setup. I hope that doesn’t change as I was with one company for nearly 7 years and towards the end, there were new faces, old faces who kept  things running smoothly disappeared 🙁 so hoping my account manager and others stay on and keep it good!

More servers to build out but now to sync 8 to 40GB of data! Happy Sunday All!

PS:181 – Big.

I’m really trying to grow my business. I want it to be big. Granted I’ve had some offers come across my table which were “ideas” that if I’d sell it off and have a full time gig then running an entire division for a hosting company so they could focus on other things (they have a pile of clients too) but since nothing has come about, no sense waiting around ever in a holding pattern!

This weekend I grabbed some more continuing education, I have a pile, and since I can’t do a TON of work on the train this coming week as we take Lilly to her capital trip, I plan to download a few of the videos to the iPad, some of the reading as well and just dive in.

Now of course there will be “Cookie” watching as it’s downloaded to the iPad, iPhone, Nexus 6, and Tab A – thank you Amazon for the best kid show with one episode to keep Lilly Distracted! I should get the Give a Mouse a Cookie book as well for the trip, might be a nice low-tech add-on 😀

But back to the business, this big move has been really nice. Shaking some cobwebs of things, re-working FlockHosting & Thrust Networks front’s they will be the same site short of the logo. Heck if I could come up with a way to put in a pre-processing statement into the theme that said:

if ($siteURL = flockhosting.com) {
echo “FlockHosting”;
} else {
echo “Thrust Networks”;
}

Heck that’d be awesome! I really want to echo some of the core design/ideas etc. to work on both sites, then as Thrust Networks I’m moving out of the shared platform a little I want it to focus more on Servers & VPS and FlockHosting I’m still thinking of simply creating a hosting platform for Church Hosting and making it a non-profit, I think that may be the best bet overall, but I want it to grow, but I don’t want folks to simply always go for the free hosting, because even now traveling ministers want free hosting, I know folks want a deal, but Churches are my core focus, for everyone else, $5 isn’t much to ask! It really isn’t!

But I have some great things, even in helping one customer I’ve given him a TON of extras for giving his clients by re-structuring as I suggested, so a lot to do. Not a ton of time to do it in, and I’m strapped for sleep so bad, won’t see much of anyone today, just going to focus, get it done, take a few 15 minute exercise breaks (Elliptical is ready to go!) and drink lots of water to really just clear my system out and get ready for a busy week, leading into a Thursday -> Saturday trip which will add Nevada to Lilly’s list and me squeezing in a Video Conference on a train! Woot!

Anywhoo, as I know not many folks read this aside from you Daisy and a few folks looking for a set of old Ubuntu and Phone guides, here’s to having a good week!

PS:180 – Against a Wall.

Tonight I’ve worked up to the wall, and instead of going through it, over it, or around it. I’ve decided to paint it. At least the wall looks pretty, because I’ve been staring at it for hours now! Even once stood up and realized “I’ve been sitting for over 6 hours” – haven’t done that in a while, sadly I have a lot more to go.

Tonight I’ve so far deployed and built out not only a nice cluster of servers, but setup 4 servers of my own, including but not limited to my own VPN server re-built from the ground up, two original servers from the dawn of Thrust Networks, namely Apollo and Sputnik are both on deck, Homestar too! I’ve got a handful of mail servers, and just a lot of hardware to work with! Some 100GB+ of memory, 4TB+ of storage, and all on speedy SSD drives. If you aren’t a computer person this = fast.

The new server company has been awesome. They have been quick to respond, helpful in sorting things out, and getting things up and running. Even now things on the backend linked up with a nice private network, all at no additional cost. Can’t complain.

So thus for another night I’m sure to be up past my 2am bedtime, digging in, cPanel is installing in the background right now, last copy installed in just about 20 minutes (a little less actually) – this one is chugging along and already about 50% done – at this rate I’m going to call it a night hopefully not much after 2 (probably 3), for some of these moves I can do it silently in the night, no customers should have issue – overall, big growth. Hoping for more on all fronts. Things are going to change.

PS:179 – Contracts.

So this week has so far been a week of new contracts. Exciting. Scary. Exhausting.

Some of the things you’d likely read and say “Uh, you can do that?” I can. I’ve done them before, and I’ll do them again, in fact, I’m doing it with my own clients.

After several larger outages, I’m not only moving all these contracts into motion, I’m keeping a contract with my own customers, one for stability. While the core number of sites to be hurt by further outages from this company are low, I still want those on these machines to have a bit more stable world to live in.

 

Hopefully hardware tomorrow, live Friday no later to get things in place and start some rsync’s going. Going to be busy busy.

PS:178 – Might be a sleep day.

I’ve been going going going, here it is like I said yesterday (some 5 hours ago) it was going to be a late night and here I am. Still awake. I’ve managed to keep Lilly sleeping, had to shut down my big monitor and go only laptop, she’s hurting (growing pains/teething/allergies) and I’ve got her settled, but it’s been a rough couple of days, she had a REALLY bad night at the lake, woke up could not get comfortable – finally had to take her upstairs and hold her at an incline in a recliner to get her calm and sleeping.

Same goes for me, I’ve been going going going for over a week, second day in a row that it looks like I’m going to see Sunrise again. I may sneak out and get a few laps in to cool down and get a little deeper sleep – but likely I’ll just crash out, maybe a shower? I dunno. Long week, more long weeks ahead, I’ve committed to some BIG projects 60 hours on a coding, around 2 weeks on a MASSIVE migration, and already the Up band has told me my sleep sucks.

I need to get some real rest under my belt, maybe today I’ll make it a rest day? Might be a good plan, because I think people are more and more worried I’m going to die, becuase for the 2nd time in recent weeks someone has asked “If you die…” type questions relating to my business. I mean come on, I got a haircut, I look good! 😉

Sleep is needed, need to wrap up, need to get a lot done tomorrow during the day and hopefully that’ll lead to a good night’s rest. Have a good day all!

PS:177 – One Down, 5 to go!

Strangely today I’m thankful that one of my bids I put out has not contacted me back. I sent out several quotes and invoices over the 2 weeks and slowly waiting for them to come in, one normal one that used to come like clockwork, slower and slower to get here – but I hope I’ll survive.

At least my project I talked about yesterday ran fantastic. 2.5 hours to fully complete, once I re-write everything I’m going to re-work that and use a few CLI tools for image manipulation and pull things out of this image class in PHP, then I can just pull all images, run a nightly shell script and simply let the theme assume images are made as such – should streamline things a bit.

Excited though got all my major quotes accepted, a good chunk of time, some is a monthly re-structure, and starting the 1st of next month I take over some servers and get things rolling for a long-time customer. Going to be busy, and going to be a late night, so must get Lilly to bed, then get to it!