Note to Mango Blog Users: check your log table if you use plugins

Had a small shock the other day – whilst being all responsible and backing up all my MySQL databases, I noticed this blog’s backup taking a rather long time.

There really aren’t that many entries here, so the .sql dump should be a few hundred k, certainly no more than a few MB.

Imagine to my horror when I discovered that the total dump size was over 750MB!!

Turns out a plugin I’d tried a while back was failing, and Mango blog was logging the fail silently in the database. Annoyingly, I’d not deactivated the plugin, but as I’d not gotten any indication of it failing, it just kept on being logged, on *every* request.

The real problem is that the entire error struct is stored, so  imagine the raw HTML of  a cfdump error struct x 15000+ rows… it builds up over time!!

Now Fully on Railo!

Well, I’ve finally moved everything over to my Railo  VPS, including this blog & website, and all the various sites I host. It’s been surprisingly easy – the biggest challenge has been getting the necessary Linux admin skills, and the initial install of Railo/Tomcat.

Things I’m loving about the move so far:

  • Being on Apache / Centos – if nothing else, this has made the whole enterprise worthwhile; my previous hosting, as good as it was, was simply far too limited in terms of space, bandwidth, and most importantly flexibility. Apache give me .htaccess & virtual hosting, whereas before, I was using ISAPI rewrite, which just doesn’t compare (at least in it’s v2, v3 is substantially better). Disk space and bandwidth on Windows servers is just more expensive per MB, most likely due to licensing costs.
  • Railo – the access to a server / web admin combo is a massive step up from standard CF shared hosting: the ability to have shared mappings (think frameworks, shared customtags, shared error handling, shared CFCs) alone has saved me hours of work
  • Slight ‘smug factor’ of running completely free open source software (and submitting bugs to the Railo queue!).

I’ve also moved this blog over Mango Blog from BlogCFC (sorry Ray!), for a couple of reasons:

  • the lack of an update feature in BlogCFC was killing me – having to redo all the theming every time there was an update was just the straw that broke the camel’s back;
  • themeing in Mango Blog is insanely simple, so simple, the theme I’m using here I decided to release to the wider Mango Blog community (it’s available in the Mango Blog admin as ‘OxAlto Capita’)
  • for speed, I really do like having a Rich Text Editor.

The less good:

  • Well, everyone hits a linux permissions issue at least once, don’t they?
  • Managing to delete the root account on my MySQL install – that was less than clever. At least now I know how to boot mySQL in safe mode and fix it.
  • trying to persuade ntp to use a certain UK server pool

OxAlto Capita – A Free Theme for Mango Blog

As I’ve been exploring some more CF open source apps, I’ve come across Mango Blog which I’m really beginning to like.

So, as an attempt to get to the know the bits under the hood, I’ve written a theme which I’ve decided to release under Creative Commons – so that’s free to use for all you Mango Blog users.

It’s based on the Blueprint CSS framework, so hopefully you should be able to take advantage on the various layout schemes incorporated into that.

The banner image remains property of The Hinksey Studio, but has been released for use in this theme.

Edit: This is now available directly via the Mango Blog Admin interface – Thanks Laura!