The End is Nigh

For those of you who still read this blog, thanks and apologies. I’m sorry to say that this blog is on the verge of being suspended and, following that, will disappear. Since the beginning of this month, this site has been experiencing high resource usage and was consequently suspended by its web host MidPhase. It was subsequently moved to Site5 but the problem has recurred despite my attempts to address it. Like MidPhase, Site5 wants to move me to a VPS but I can’t justify spending USD55/mth for a zombie blog that only has an average of 100 hits a day. So, good bye and thanks for all the fish.

For those you who are interested in this kind of thing, I’ll list the actions I’ve tried (and failed) to contain resource usage that was almost double my shared hosting allocation:

  1. Used Sucuri Scanner to check the website for malware – nothing found;
  2. Optimize the database, also deleted the legacy /souomou and /taihendesu blogs – worked the first round when I dropped all the SQL tables for /souomou;
  3. Disabled all plugins;
  4. Installed and activated WP Super Cache plugin;
  5. Changed my theme to Twenty Twelve, and now to the old WordPress Default 1.6 – in fact the first round of problems began immediately after I changed the theme to Twenty Eleven, the second round was when I found that RSS had stopped working and got it back up by saving custom permalinks (same settings) again;
  6. Installed and activated P3 Profiler plugin – feedback was  that it was the WP Core itself that was consuming the bulk of resources;
  7. Installed and activated WP Cron Control plugin as recommended by Site5 technical support;
  8. Installed and activated WP Minify plugin;

17 thoughts on “The End is Nigh

    1. Thanks for your wishes, omo.

      It is totally bizarre. Traffic is so tiny and there are only about 2,000 posts so I just cannot understand why resource usage was so high.

      One theory I’ve come across is that a combination of plugins in the past may have affected the database adversely but it’s also non-specific and doesn’t provide any hints into how to remedy this.

  1. All those imoutos will now cry. That said, stripey must be in Changi.

  2. Zyl! I’ve been a lurker for a long, long time. Five years, maybe? Switch to Laughing Squid – they’ll help you optimize your WordPress installation. Just don’t disappear! You’ll be missed.

    1. Thanks for the tip and your encouragement.

      Resource usage has dipped to 37% and 29% for the two days after I published the post above – it was 145% and 123% prior to that. So there’s been a stay of execution. I’ll try to hang on and to work things out with my current host first but it’s good to know there are other options out there.

  3. Might be worth porting it to wordpress.com to keep those memories alive, and just keep the domain name pointing now to the wordpress version.

    Also, recent conversations with the SSAB host has led me to realize that zombie web crawlers take up a surprisingly huge amount of resources. After years of “just admiring from afar is enough for me” with Bad Behavior, I finally installed it. It made the hits look like they fell by like 60%, but I always thought the visit count looked suspicious compared to the referral list.

    I was getting emails about resource usage every week before I installed Bad Behavior, and while I don’t know that the plugin is perfect, it seems to have helped. Also, the host identified that most of those evil web crawlers were coming from Brazil and blocked them, so it might be worth bringing up to your host support.

    1. Oh and to clarify, it’s not just that they are taking up resources… it’s basically the equivalent of a DDOS.

    2. Thanks for the advice, Kabitzin!

      I will try Bad Behavior first. From what you’ve told me, I think your diagnosis holds a lot of water as the bulk of the traffic seems to come from web crawlers, particularly when I looked at the Latest Vistors log in cPanel and cross-check it with the referrer list.

      Importing into WordPress.com was also something I considered. We’ll lose all the screencaps but at least it can serve as an archive for the posts and the comments.

  4. sorry to hear that.

    hope you can still continue the Adventures of Stripy in Sea Slug.

  5. My focus now is damage control and to keep the blog intact in its current form.

    But even if the underlying problem is resolved (or under satisfactory control), I’m probably going to start afresh over at wordpress.com instead of continuing here. Atm I can really see the attraction of that route over the self-hosted blog.

  6. Hontou niii?? Ah well, you’ll always live inside my heart ;) … one of my favorite blogs with people who (mostly) share my tastes. On the plus side, I see Zyl active on Sea Slugs, so the torch is still being carried!

  7. I recently put haiku anime review back on wordpress.com after an injection attack left me blacklisted by google, and I just decided that I was tired of dealing with it. After I exported my image folder, wiped everything, and reinstalled wordpress I got the site reactivated and hit the export button. The import process is fairly painless, but it does not import images (as you stated, but contrary to what it says on the support site) BUT it does leave your image links intact. What you could do as an interim measure is export the site to wordpress.com, and put an html redirect in your index.php file. That way anything that tries to hit a page here will be redirected to the wordpress.com site and you can still serve all your images from here. Then you can decide whether or not it’s worth it to you to maintain your hosting to serve images, or if you want to manually import the images on wordpress.com. Just something to consider if you’re still being threatened.

  8. Thanks for all your well wishes, offers of help and suggestions. Things seem to have stabilized for now – though, not quite Coast Clear yet, I am still monitoring as usage dips after remedial measures are tried and then starts to creep up again soon after.

    According to Site5 sys admin, the top process (47%) is down to WP Cron making callbacks and the top hits are from the server itself… makes me feel like the blog backend likes touching itself constantly when I’m not looking orz

    For the time being, I am experiencing with various plugins and settings to control WP Cron.

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