This post is going to be about the Dark Realm Gaming web server being broken, but first, I would like to make a note about how the domain is changed. That didn’t take long, did it? The blog is now hosted on http://coltondrg.com/ instead of http://wordpress.coltondrg.gq/. Pretty neat, huh!? Anyhow, on to the topic of this post!
So, you may have noticed, but the Dark Realm Gaming web server is completely fried. Well, not completely fried, but pretty much fried. I am astonished that I managed to get the blog back up at all, let alone move it to a new domain under these conditions.
Unfortunately, pretty much everything else is still broken. SSL is completely borked, which is the only reason I haven’t installed a cert here! I am a security nut, so I like to have things as secure as possible. I want most, if not all, of my browser traffic running through HTTPS. I was ecstatic when I first heard about Kim Dotcom’s company, MEGA, launching, because they promised to put users’ security and privacy as their top priority, and they’re doing a hell of a job! That’s beside the point though, because we’re not here to talk about how much of a security nut I am, we’re here to talk about the server being borked.
Our web hosting server and many of our domains are run by GoDaddy. If you follow me on Twitter, you might know that I have a love/hate relationship with GoDaddy. I often get ticked off at them for their servers lacking basic functionality, stupid policies, or just plain stupid views on stuff (Really guys? Supporting SOPA? Really? Are you serious?), however, I must give them credit; GoDaddy has EXCEPTIONAL customer support. I have spent literally hours on the phone with them in the last couple days trying to work out all these server issues. They are always super nice about it, and often they make some sort of progress (even if it breaks something else). I am honestly impressed with how patient they have been with me and how friendly their representatives are.
Anywho… I am getting off track again… Where were we? Oh yes! Server issues! The server is still not really fixed completely, and most of the websites are still down. The only things that are functional are itti.cf and this blog. Everything else is still completely borked, or mostly borked. Actually, I lied, you can still get into darkrealmgaming.com by adding &nosec=1 to the end of the URL, which disables SSL, and we’ve already talked about how I feel about SSL (e.g. http://darkrealmgaming.com/home/&nosec=1). That link actually works, and you will be able to get in, and surf around darkrealmgaming.com. I am considering modifying the DynLoad configuration to disable SSL by default until we have this little server problem fixed, so the website at least works. Currently, GoDaddy’s cPanel developers are getting involved because there is something so deeply wrong with my hosting account.
I will briefly run down what is wrong with the system. I use a shared host, which means that all of my websites, as well as hundreds or even thousands of other people’s websites are all on the same machine. Don’t worry, this doesn’t mean the server is slow by any means, it just means it’s a really beefy machine running a lot of websites. Because the same machine is running so many different websites, a single internet connection, couldn’t possibly handle all of that data transfer at the same time, plus it’s never really a good idea to host more than about 150 websites or so on the same IP address, it gets really disorganized, really fast, and it’s a lot of work to keep it all maintained, so the server actually has multiple internet connections, and multiple IPs. Prior to January 21, 2015, my account happened to use the IP address 220.127.116.11. Sometime between then and now, my account got changed to the IP address 18.104.22.168. Or… It should have, but it didn’t get completely changed… cPanel thinks the IP is 22.214.171.124, and the website does indeed resolve at that IP, but on GoDaddy’s backend, my account still has the original IP, and that is causing more than one problem.
The first problem is that it is creating incorrect DNS entries. GoDaddy has a nice feature where it will automatically handle the DNS for any domains you have hosted with them! It’s a really nice feature, because it means that whenever I add a domain, all I have to do is point my nameservers at them, and I don’t have to think about it any more, and if I add a subdomain, I don’t have to worry about creating a DNS entry for said subdomain, because GoDaddy’s backend does it for me. It’s really awesome, but there’s a problem. Since cPanel is hosting my website on 126.96.36.199, but GoDaddy’s backend has the IP as 188.8.131.52, it is creating DNS entries that point to the incorrect address, which basically means that by default, the website won’t work. Luckily, this is easy, although tedious, to work around. I just have to log into the DNS control panel, change the IP, and the domain points to the correct website. No problem.
The second problem, is that I can’t enable SSL, because when I try to install an SSL cert, the server’s backend tries to set up the SSL site on 184.108.40.206, which wouldn’t work anyway, because that’s not the IP that the domain points to. Meanwhile, cPanel already has a non-SSL website set up at 220.127.116.11, which causes an error because the system thinks that I am trying to set up one website on more than one IP address. This results in the following error: “darkrealmgaming.com already has a website on the IP address 18.104.22.168, but you requested to add an SSL website for that domain onto the IP address 22.214.171.124. A single domain may not have websites on more than one IP address.” Now, obviously this is a problem, because it means I can’t install any SSL certs. This may not be a big deal for most people, but it is for me, because I am a security nut.
So essentially, cPanel, and the server’s backend are having an argument with each other over the IP address. I have outlined the two major bugs it causes that are affecting me immediately, but there’s probably something else that I missed that has a negative impact on the operation of the server. I currently am seeking help from GoDaddy’s system administrators and cPanel developers, and I will know more in about 72 hours (or less, hopefully?). Until then, I guess I’m just screwed (or at least stuck with a Jerry-rigged server with no SSL access).
My current hosting subscription goes until the end of March, which is still more than 2 months off. If I was a bit closer to the renewal of my hosting account, I would just back up my data, pack my bags, open a new hosting account and unpack everything there. The best part is that I would probably be able to get everything moved and set up within 4 hours (if my internet wasn’t complete shit, but that’s a rant- er… post for a different day), which means it would be less downtime than I am currently experiencing. Sometimes life just sucks. What I will probably end up doing is get this problem fixed and get the server at least semi-working for the next couple months, and in mid to late March I will just get a new hosting account with a new subscription, then I will pack everything up, move to the new account, and sit comfortably and hope nothing breaks.
UPDATE: drgo.ga is back up, but read-only mode.
UPDATE 2: I woke up this morning to find pretty much everything fixed, so I updated the DNS records and everything is working now! Yay!
TL;DR: The servers are broken. Like… Really bad.