Moving pains

Today the site of Obs De Wilgen, the primary school where my dad works (I created the site), moved servers. We didn't want it to move servers today, but it did.

We did intend an eventual server move. We were previously located at Nedcomp, whom I would qualify as reasonable. Their support level is nothing short of great, but they're quite expensive for very little space. And since XS4ALL were offering a package which was free for schools, offered more space, more bandwidth, more features, and had the stuff we needed (ASP.NET 2.0), we were going to move to them.

But in every communication we had with them, we said: "don't move the DNS; we first want to transfer the site, only then can you change the DNS." That didn't stop them from changing it anyway, so this morning we found the site non-functional, displaying only a generic XS4ALL under construction page. What's worse, we didn't have the password.

After figuring out how to set the password, I quickly threw up a "sorry, we're down" message, frantically downloaded the whole site from the old server, and uploaded it to the new one. Then the trouble began.

XS4ALL are running the site at reduced Code Access Security permissions, which meant that a few of the assemblies I used which didn't have the AllowPartiallyTrustedCallers attribute set refused to load. Fortunately they were all my own code, so I added the attribute, recompiled and uploaded. Then it broke on some of my custom configuration sections, since apparently you need ConfigurationPermission for that which we didn't have anymore. So I had to rewrite some code to use AppSettings instead. Not nearly as nice as a custom config section, but it works.

Then I discovered none of the web services worked, which was due to this issue. Apparently we don't have write access to the temp directory. I sent them a support request on that, and in the mean time I worked around the web service stuff. All of the web services were used in the admin part of the site anyway, so it shouldn't affect regular visitors of the site.

All in all, not how I'd planned to spend my Saturday. :(

Oh, and XS4ALL's helpdesk page says they're running SQL Server 2005, while in fact it's 2000. That's not a huge issue for me, but a bit sloppy about the mistake on the helpdesk page.

Categories: General computing
Posted on: 2007-02-17 21:29 UTC.


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