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Web Hosting - Changing Web Hosts, Pitfalls and Planning
At some point, nearly everyone finds it necessary to change web hosts. It may be just a migration to another server, or it may be changing web hosting companies entirely. Either way, the process is fraught with potential dangers. But there are ways to minimize the odds of problems and maximize your changes of a smooth migration.
Plan, plan, plan.
Make a very detailed list of everything that is on your current system. Review what is static and what changes frequently. Note any tailoring done to software and files. Be prepared to remake them if the systems aren't transferred properly or can't be restored. Keep careful track of all old and new names, IP addresses and other information needed to make the migration.
Backup and Test
Backup everything on your system yourself, whenever possible. Web hosting companies typically offer that as a service, but the staff and/or software are often less than par. Often backups appear to go well, but they're rarely tested by restoring to a spare server. When the time comes that they're needed, they sometimes don't work.
Do a dry run, if you can. Restore the system to its new location and make any needed changes. If you have the host name and or IP address buried in files, make sure it gets changed.
This is often true of databases. SQL Server on Windows, for example, picks up the host name during installation. Moving a single database, or even multiple ones, to a new server is straightforward using in-built utilities or commercial backup/restore software. But moving certain system-related information may require changing the host name stored inside the master database. Similar considerations apply to web servers and other components.
Accept Some Downtime
Be prepared for some downtime. Very few systems can be picked up, moved to another place, then brought online with zero downtime. Doing so is possible, in fact it's common. But in such scenarios high-powered professionals use state-of-the-art tools to make the transition seamless. Most staff at web hosting companies don't have the skills or the resources to pull it off.
Prepare for Name Changes
One aspect of moving to a new host can bedevil the most skilled professionals: changing domain names and or domain name/IP address combinations.
When you type a URL into your browser, or click on one, that name is used because it's easier for people to remember. www.yahoo.com is a lot easier to remember than 22.214.171.124. Yet the name and or name/IP address combination can (and does) change. Still, specialized servers called DNS (Domain Name System) servers have to keep track of them. And there are a lot of them.
There may be only two (rarely) or there may be a dozen or more DNS servers between your visitors' browsers/computers and your web host. Every system along the chain has to keep track of who is who. When a name/IP address changes, that pair has to be communicated to everyone along the chain, and that takes time.
In the meantime, it's possible for one visitor to find you at the new place, while another will be pointing to the old one. Some amount of downtime will usually occur while everything gets back in sync.
The Little Gotchas
But even apart from name and IP address changes, there are a hundred little things that can, and often do, go wrong. That's not a disaster. It's just the normal hurdles that arise when changing something as complicated as a web site and the associated systems that underlie it.
Gather Tools and Support
Having an FTP program that you're familiar with will help facilitate the change. That will allow you to quickly move files from one place to the next to do your part to get the system ready to go or make repairs.
Making the effort to get to know, and become friendly with, support staff at the new site can be a huge benefit. They may be more willing to address your problem before the dozen others they have to deal with at any given moment.
Ok. On your mark. Get ready. Go.
Free Blogging Resources to Save Money and Maximize Net Exposure Blogging is one of the new hot activities on the Internet. What is blogging might cross many peoples mind and to put that mind at ease, here a quick explanation s to what a blog is and what it does. A blog is a part of a web site or a website itself, where most commonly entries are displayed in reverse chronological order. It is a website where either news on certain subjects or personal entries can be made and then displayed and read by others. One important feature of many blogs is for readers to leave comments on the site. Currently there are more than 110 million blogs as per some of the blog tracker engines. Therefore blogs can be used for many different things; one of them might be to save money and to maximize net exposure. Many online web pages offer free web hosting space to people or offer a web blog that can be built into one?s own homepage. Blogs are a great tool to get feedback from friends, customers and anyone who visits the page. Blogs can help with net exposure due to the popularity of some blogs. There are two essential ways a blog can get popular and give one greater exposure. The one is the citation of the blog on certain major homepages visited by many, and the second is through affiliation. Whole blogging communities exist, where people almost chat with each other about certain topics. One can save money by using blogs that are offered for free or by actually boosting one?s own site on some of the popular blogs that allow such content in their text. Some of the blogs are used to post money saving tips on a regular base. These pages will post deals, finds and more in their blog for others to check out. These blogs are created and then added to by many. It is easy to find these blogs using one of the blogospheres. Blogoshperes, blog content search engines can help Internet users to find a blog with a content that they a re looking for. Major financial companies offer blogs for financial tips. This is a way to save money without having to have an own paid financial adviser, but the blog can act like one. Some of these financial blogs also offer help and assistance to people. It is a community of people that have had similar problems and where one can get help if necessary, Of course it is always dangerous to release too much information about oneself on the Internet, but when handled with caution, these blogs can be a great help for personal finances and for saving money. Blogs for saving money offer many categories. Some money saving tips on these blogs is about health care, baby products, student life, buying cars and more. These informative pages can help anyone who takes the time to read them save big bucks or even make money. Help is often given to people with these pages in the form of others that have experienced similar things, experts in the field or just general advice. Blogging is as easy as writing and e-mail and therefore can be done by anyone who has a working PC that is connected to the Internet. Blog generally offer an entry form and an option to read the entry before it is posted. There is also a way to respond to certain post by posting another blog entry. All the entries are generally public and available to anybody and therefore it is important to know that there are consequences and liability when writing blog entries. Even though some are anonymous, many blogs require the posters name.
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