David A. Wheeler's Blog

Fri, 20 Jan 2012

Website back up

This website (www.dwheeler.com) was down part of the day yesterday due to a mistake made by my web hosting company. Sorry about that. It’s back up, obviously.

For those who are curious what happened, here’s the scoop. My hosting provider (WebHostGiant) moved my site to a new improved computer. By itself, that’s great. That new computer has a different IP address (the old one was, the new one is That’d be fine too, except they didn’t tell me that they were changing my site’s IP address, nor did they forward the old IP address. The mistake is that the web hosting company should have notified me of this change, ahead of time, but they failed to do so. As a result, I didn’t change my site’s DNS entries (which I control) to point to its new location; I didn’t even know that I should, or what the new values would be. My provider didn’t even warn me ahead of time that anything like this was going to happen… if they had, I could have at least changed the DNS timeouts so the changeover would have been quick.

Now to their credit, once I put in a trouble ticket (#350465), Alex Prokhorenko (of WebhostGIANT Support Services) responded promptly, and explained what happened so clearly that it was easy for me to fix things. I appreciate that they’re upgrading the server hardware, I understand that IP addresses sometimes much change, and I appreciate their low prices. In fact, I’ve been generally happy with them.

But if you’re a hosting provider, you need to tell the customer if some change you make will make your customer’s entire site unavailable without the customer taking some action! A simple email ahead-of-time would have eliminated the whole problem.

Grumble grumble.

I did post a rant against SOPA and PIPA the day before, but I’m quite confident that this outage was unrelated.

Anyway, I’m back up.

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