An Upgrade? That's simple right?

Bob Hubbard

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When we first launched MT back when life was simple way back in 2001, upgrading the site was a simple matter of download the new files, update the config file, upload everything and run a script, then login and go.

Today, it's a bit more of a pain in the ***.

Due to the size of MT, and the growing complexity of things, I have to go through more steps to make sure nothing goes wrong, or so wrong it can't be fixed.

A recent attempt to import another site caused significant damage when backups failed to import due to corruption.

So, today's updates work something like this:

Download new files.
Update config file, including disable all plugins code.

Log into server.
Close forum.
Export out -2- full backups of database. (3GB each)
Do test import of each to a dummy database to check integrity.
copy entire web folder to backup (1GB)
upload new files.
run updater.
update all plugins.
remove abandoned ones.
upload new config file reenabling plugins.
fix or remove plugins causing issues.
fix broken template bits.
test site on 4-6 browsers and platforms.
run another backup of database and code.
reopen.

watch issues come in from members running different configurations, attempt to fix issues, often running blind from issues that only seem to effect -1- person and cannot be duplicated.

Find issue notes in the strangest of places as people forget there is a suppoprt forum and suddenly mention greyed out text in the middle of a karate thread I never read. Get PM note a week later complaining issue never resolved. Debate stopping by users house and throwing my fatter cat at them, decide scotch and scooby more important than airfare.

Spend 4-12 hours pouring through support forums for issue fixes, often finding fix to be 'in next version', 'deemed unimportant' or 'must be a conflict, you're on your own'.

Debate chucking it all and retiring into the woods.

Once certain site is reasonably stable and secure, delete most of the excess backups to free up server space.

Attempt to pacify irate member who misses feature removed by software designers, or whose coder has abandoned that isn't compatible with current version due to X. Get told 'well X has that feature and you suck', in about as many words.

Reread thanks from members who appreciate it all and decide that the woods can wait a bit longer.

Deal with expected influx of forgotten user names and passwords as a result of cache clearing and cookie resets.

Drink way too much soda, tea and coffee, avoiding checking blood pressure so as to not break machine.

Periodically rewind video playing in background to double check latest clue found by Velma.

Spend an hour trying to do something in vB4 that took 5 minutes in vB3 only to realize that software designer was probably stoned, drunk or being buggered when coding and ended up hiding the 1 bit needed to make things work and no one's ever looked for it so good luck finding it.

Decide a pay rise is over due, and debate making site pay only. Decide begging for scotch more likely to work.

Gradually kill bugs, develop workarounds and fixes for member complaints, and within a few days be back to normal.

Until next time.

When all the fun starts over again. :D
 

jks9199

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And Vb 4.15 comes out next week, so you can start the whole thing over again, right? LOL
 
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Bob Hubbard

Bob Hubbard

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:drinkbeervB, it can drive you to drink. :D
 

Jenna

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Bob, surely all this should be transcribed in your blog somewhere? Ah ok, the blog function is not fully working yet right? lol just joking. Well done for persevering and not disappearing to a mountain top to meditate and for managing to pull everything together so well (niggles aside). Wow, it sounds as if it was some complex changeover. Of course next time you could always kick us latecomers out and go back to rollin 2001-style when the forum software came with an "Upgrade to New Version" button and nobody even batted an eye come switchover. Mind in them days there were only 10 users running 56Kpbs dialup and dreaming of the day that smileys were animated :D Ah we've come so far :) Hat's off to you Bob, go have a nip of that scotch now :) Jenna
 
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