I am restarting the blog as a testimony to the axiom that the expectable happens most unexpectedly. To be precise, I fell victim to technical problems with my hosting provider. I could see it coming, but that’s cold comfort. Nonetheless, an optimist, tucked away deep inside me, believes this is a chance to get rid of loud-mouthed opinionated stuff and to start clean.
I’ve been a customer of SupremeHost for several years. I can’t say I was ever particularly happy with the provider, but it did the job for a ridiculously low price. There were occasional what-the-fuck moments when in the heat of the battle against spam they blocked a couple continents with firewall rules, but those used to be promptly sorted out by their support. Like, say, use port 26 for SMTP (I’m not kidding). In general, though, it was an OK experience.
However, as is usually the case with everything suspiciously cheap, the service was going downhill. At first sending messages via an online support form stopped producing any replies. Then I had to switch to SMTP through an SSH tunnel. Then SSH stopped working because “PTY allocation request failed on channel 0” and I got effectively locked out of my server.
Enter Linode (referral link, if you don’t mind). I confess I yielded to Matt Gemmell’s opinion, and I don’t regret it. VPS is a damn cool thing and if you need more than a dumbed-down admin panel, you’re going to love the freedom. Linode’s quad core Linux nodes (hence the name) start at $20 for impressive 512 MB RAM. I was sold.
So I moved from a traditional LAMP/WordPress setup to Ubuntu + Nginx + Octopress with a bit of PHP/SQLite for several stupid scripts I still need. I decided to use the free flavor of Google Apps for email, because I’m far from being competent enough to run my own mail server. The migration took several days, mainly because I’m spoiled by Macs and, alas, too few things on Linux “just work”. The blog content had to be sacrificed, but I think it was either not interesting enough or just outdated. Everything else should work more or less reliably.