Yesterday was hectic day for the management of this blog. Between noon and about 2 PM PT the hosting server was overloaded with requests. Memory and I/O maxed out preventing viewing or management of the blog.
The Looking Glass Sim
So, new tools have been added and more IP addresses have been blocked. Unfortunately Go Daddy’s metrics tools do not provide the information needed to deal with an attack in real time. So, it is an arduous process of downloading and analyzing logs. But, with I/O maxed out one cannot download the logs…
Also, most of the standard ‘go-away’ tactics weren’t working. So, I had to learn new ways to regain control. So, when I am fighting off an attack you may see a B&W page announcing the site is down for maintenance. I may pretty the page up… or not. I can usually recover in a few minutes once I take the site down. So, if you see the page, check back in an hour or so.
I’ll be adding more tools so I can more quickly find the attack source and block it. Most of these attacks seem to be scrapping the site for content. Now that I’ve blocked image leeching, using my images by linking to this server, the images are being downloaded using up a LOT of bandwidth. I wouldn’t mind that much except like The Flash they try to grab everything at hyper-speed.
I’m in the process of trying to stop some content scrappers that that regularly hit this site and suck gigabytes of data as fast as they can. It drives the server CPU to 100%, eats bandwidth, and makes this site extremely slow.
In an effort to discourage scraping, I have disallowed ‘hot linking’ of images. If your blog has used images from this site via a link rather than making a copy of the image, let me know. I can allow your site access. Whether I will depends on how you used the images.
Most of the site is cleaned. I am running on all new plugins. Removing others. Everything is only 3 months old or newer. I still have a few to re-install. I’m still trying to figure out which search engines to block. I’m not familiar with European Arabic, and Asian engines.
The software I am using doesn’t organize information as well as it might. Plus timing is fuzzy. But, it is free and has some other features I like, so I’ll keep it.
Today you’ll notice the ads are back. They pay for my hosting. So, deal with them and know I appreciate your patience with them.
I’ve changed over to Google’s ReCAPTCHA. The other company providing Recaptcha was an advertising company and may have been part of the problem with my site. I think it is easier to use. Let me know.
Well, they took out a couple… 🙁 but, next week they’ll look again. Because of the location of the incision, my palm, they are being overly conservative.
I did get a soft bandage. I can bend my wrist and mostly use my hand. I am surprised at how stiff my hand is. I have exercises to do. I can type faster. But, my index finger is really weak and semi numb. They say that may take a few more weeks to return to normal.
Some of you will have noticed the site was a mess for a few hours. I had done an update to WordPress and it did not go well. Go Daddy suggested we move from my Windows Server to Linux to solve some problems. I had been wanting to do that for some time. So, I swallowed and we went for it.
In the move they made a typo. It took a couple of hours to figure out what went wrong.
You’ll notice that most of the images disappeared. I am still sorting that out. I use Shortcodes Ultimate to work with images. Something in that plug-in didn’t work well with the transfer to Linux. So, I’ll have to hunt that change that down.
Plus I have to run through all the ASP pages I used in other sites in this servers and change them out. But, that is another story.