Cascading panic

I know this feeling entirely too well:

“Well, maybe I should just try to bluff my way through a back up before anything goes really horribly wrong.”

And then, of course, everything went really horribly wrong.

So yesterday morning, when I couldn’t so much as post a comment here, my heart sank, not that it was all that elevated to begin with — I never could get the hang of Thursdays — and the first thing I did, once I managed to crawl into the WordPress Dashboard, was to start the backup routine.

Which crapped out at 2 percent complete.

I fired up a machine that goes Ping, turned in a trouble ticket to the seriously-green surfer dudes who host this site, grat my teeth, and started the backup routine.

Which crapped out at 3 percent complete.

This was progress of a sort, but I had a feeling I’d see Fiats built in Canada before I got the backup finished.

And then I heard from one of the surfer dudes. There are, as is not unusual with shared hosting, ten users on this particular machine; one of them — not I, you may be sure — was sucking up ten thousand percent* of the available CPU slices. The offender was dealt with in some unspecified fashion, and things quickly returned to normal.

I still did the backup, though. Just in case.

* More precisely, 10,176. Srsly. I didn’t come near that the day I got 13,000 hits.


  1. Lisa Paul »

    5 June 2009 · 11:39 am

    Et tu, Dustbury. Must be sun spots. Or someone’s turned the Romulan Death Ray on the Blogosphere.

  2. McGehee »

    5 June 2009 · 1:17 pm

    Ever since my CMS dropped its own backup utility and I started using MySQLdumper, I’ve actually started to almost enjoy doing backups.

    Not enough to do them every day, but…

  3. CGHill »

    6 June 2009 · 10:09 am

    This bit from Smitty seems to sum it up nicely:

    IT rule one is that it’s always someone else’s fault, even though IT rule two says that it’s your own better than half the time.

    The courage of one’s compilations, I always say.

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