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Forum Downtime.

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It probably wont have escaped your notice that we've had some downtime of the forum over the last 24 hours. To avoid any unnecessary concern or speculation, the reason was as follows.


Yesterday evening, following guidance from the company that provides our forum software, a duplicate of the website was taken so that an update could be tested on it. To be clear, this was an update to our existing forum software NOT the application of new software that was mentioned at the AGM and is planned for later in the year,


Unfortunately despite following the expert advice, the upgrade process failed and when a fresh install was run to correct the failure, it actually overwrote the original site.


Attempts to restore the backup then failed due to the size of the files involved. The backup uploaded successfully but were too large for the server to process so it timed out during each attempt. Due to the configuration of the server, we were unable to simply re-upload the backup to restore the site as access to do the restore this way wasn't available.


Today a support request was sent to the company that provides our hosting and attempts were also made to contact them by telephone. Contact was finally made just after 7PM tonight and a full restore back to Monday was done which was completed successfully and the site was back online for a short period around 830PM.


It was then manually taken offline in order to bring the site back up to the point it was just before it went down yesterday so there should be minimal data loss.


Unfortunately this seems to have been a case of despite following the guidance of our software provider, things that they said should have happened didn't and we weren't in a position to fix them.


The committee are already discussing what steps need to be put in place to avoid a re-occurrence of these sort of problems and when this is done, further details will be posted.


Thanks to Stuart for his efforts trying to sort this out. I know he has spend a large proportion of the day on this - time he should have been spending at work.


Thanks also to Matt Augier (matt-moo) from our current web hosting provider for his assistance in resolving these problems.

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