Brian Micklethwait's Blog

In which I continue to seek part time employment as the ruler of the world.

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Wednesday November 03 2010

Incoming from Michael J:

I can only connect to your blog from my home ISP about one time in 20.  The rest of the time, it times out and I get an error. If I use my dongle or my phone or my iPad, I can see your blog, but it is still sometimes slower than connecting to most of the rest of the internet.  There is something very weird.

In addition, your blog’s comments system still eats comments from time to time. This is more likely to happen if I am trying to leave a comment from inside a corporate firewall, or from inside a country that has an authoritarian government that likes to censor the internet. There are also issues with the Turing code system for reducing blog comments, which often rejects comments despite the word being types correctly.

Both these things can only be due to your hosting service having set things up in a very strange way.

Things like “HP has encountered an Access Violation at 01BEA37F” can only be due to server configuration problems and/or problems with the database behind the server.

Bluntly, whoever is hosting your blog is doing a dreadful job of it.  Things are probably going to get worse.  These are not one off problems that will clear up in a day but are ongoing.  This is annoying your readers as well as you.  You need to do something about it.

Okay first things first.  Before I take this any further, does anyone else recognise any of the above?  I occasionally get complaints about the comments system.  But what of the other stuff?

The thing Michael refers to about “HP has encountered an Access Violation at 01BEA37F” was me, commenting on this earlier posting, which was unlike most postings here in having been concocted and then posted remotely, using a laptop and a dongle.  Not a satisfactory experience.  But this kind of nonsense doesn’t happen with my home computer.

I am aware that I am potentially in the somewhat ridiculous situation of saying “everyone not here please raise your hands”, because of course difficulties of this sort could turn a possible regular reader completely off. If only for that reason, I would be especially grateful if anyone, who can confirm what Michael is saying, does.

It occurs to me that I might usefully put a small posting at Samizdata, linking to this posting, asking people to report problems.  That way, those who wouldn’t want to come here normally, or better yet, people who have tried in the past but been put off by problems such as those described above, might be able to report these.  I’m very busy right now, but yes, I might just do that, Real Soon Now.  Many might just try to link to here, and report how it goes.