NinerNet Communications™
System Status

Server and System Status

Migration of websites

17 July 2017 07:36:44 +0000

We are moving the remaining websites on server NC018 to server NC031. This will result in automated emails with important configuration information going out to the designated contact for each domain. Please save these emails for future reference.

If you have any questions, please contact us. Our own website will also be moving, so if you have trouble with our contact form please email us at migration201707@niner.net. Thank-you.

NC020: Web server problem

4 June 2016 06:49:09 +0000

The web server on server NC020 experienced a problem at 04:45 UTC on 4 June 2016, and shut itself down. The problem was rectified at 06:00.

We apologise for the problem, and will resume migration of the websites on NC020 to NC031 this coming week. If you have asked us to delay the migration of your website, please contact us if you still need a further delay.

Web server upgrade

12 March 2016 12:33:12 +0000

We’ll be sending out an email shortly to informĀ NinerNet clients that over the next few weeks we will be moving all of the shared hosting websites hosted on servers NC018, NC020 and NC026 to a new server, NC031. While this might look like one server is taking on the workload of three, that’s not quite the case; servers NC020 and NC026 are currently hosting only a relatively few websites that had outgrown the limitations of NC018. On top of that, server NC031 is a shiny new server, running the latest commercially available versions of all software, with far more resources than the servers it is replacing, and an increasing emphasis on secure connections.

The new server is also running a new control panel. The one on server NC018 (Plesk) has served us well. In fact, server NC026 was running the latest version of Plesk when it was set up a couple of years ago, but our experience with the new version has — to put it simply — been disastrous. In fact, we’ve gone out of our way to avoid clients actually using it. We evaluated another popular control panel — cPanel — but we came away with much the same opinion as we’ve developed of Plesk, but for different reasons.

The new control panel we’re using is called Virtualmin, and is based on a control panel (Webmin) that we first used privately in 2006 but which has been around since 1997 … almost as long as NinerNet! There will no doubt be a period of adjustment as we switch — for you and for us, especially as we develop support documentation — but we’re confident that Virtualmin is far better than other control panels that we have evaluated, and we’ve been impressed by their responsive support so far.

With that background information out of the way, here are a few points you need to know:

  • As we set up your domain(s) in the new control panel you will receive an automated email with the log-in information you will need for the control panel and for FTPS (FTP Secure) for uploading files to your server. Please keep this information in a safe and secure place, for future reference. Your website will be moved shortly after that, but not necessarily immediately.
  • Where possible we will move your website without any coordination with you. Where coordination is necessary or desirable, we will contact you at least 24 hours in advance.
  • If you or your web manager, designer or developer would like to contact us in advance of moving your website to discuss any particular needs or requirements, please feel free to do so as soon as possible.
  • We will be starting with websites on server NC026, then server NC018, and lastly server NC020.
  • All files in the “web root” on the old server will be moved. Where necessary (rarely) we’ll rename existing directories if their names clash with directories set up by default on the new server — unless this will cause a problem with your website, in which case we’ll rename the directories on the new server. If you have any files stored outside of the “web root” — the “httpdocs” directory on NC018 and NC026, or the “htdocs” directory on server NC020 — please either download them to your local computer, or contact us so that we’re aware that they need to be moved too.
  • Speaking of the web root, the file path on the server to your website will change. The new path will be /home/USERNAME/public_html , where you will replace “USERNAME” with your actual user name, of course. Most of the time this is irrelevant, but for some web applications it might be important to know this.
  • If the nameservers for your domain are hosted elsewhere — i.e., we cannot access them to update the information for your domain to point it to the new web server — you will need to do this yourself. The IP address of the new server is 173.255.231.250; you will need to know this to point your domain to it after we transfer the files.
  • We will manually check to ensure that your site is online after the move and check a few additional pages, but please check yourself to make sure everything is good. Once a day we’ll email the owners of the websites that were moved that day.
  • Your website will not be down during the transfer. Where there is the possibility of complications, we will leave your domain pointing to the old website until any complications have been resolved.
  • This migration has nothing to do with email in any way. The email server is not involved, and your email will continue to flow uninterrupted while we migrate websites.

One other item to note is that we’re really emphasising the importance of complex passwords. These have always been important to us, but our older systems haven’t always enforced complex passwords. Complex passwords are vital to the security of everything you do online that requires you to log in to view private data (such as your email or bank account) or manage services that unauthorised users should not access (such as the back-end of your website). This is why we set longer (a minimum of 12 characters) and more complex passwords by default. To manage long and complex passwords we use and recommend a program called KeePass, which has versions and clones made for all major systems — e.g., Windows, Linux, Mac, Android and iOS (iPhone/iPad). We strongly recommend this program or one like it. It will make your life so much easier, and more secure too.

As always, we strive to ensure that your hosting (and the move to the new server) are without any headaches, and that attitude will apply to this move as well. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or concerns. Thank-you.

Email migration: Update 11

31 August 2015 07:22:31 +0000

Unless you have been advised otherwise, all domains with mixed-case user names have now been migrated to server NC027.

Again, using Bob@example.com as an example:

  • People can still send email to Bob@example.com and you can still use it as a return email address.
  • However, when logging into your account on server NC027, you must log in as bob@example.com, not Bob@example.com.

Passwords have remained the same.

Please also remember to update your email program’s configuration per the instructions at docs.niner.net/email.

Email migration: Update 10

26 August 2015 10:38:59 +0000

The mail migration is, for the most part, finally complete. As mentioned in our previous post, you will know that your domain has been migrated if you can no longer access email accounts on the old server. If that is the case, please start using the settings for the new server.

The only domains left to migrate are those that have user names with mixed- or upper-case letters, and domains that are changing — i.e., where an old primary domain is being replaced by what was once a secondary domain. We will take the opportunity to migrate the remaining domains outside of the business hours of the clients affected, which differ according to the time zones in which they are located, over the next two days.

There are a few additional notes to be aware of or to emphasise, in addition to those contained in Email migration: Update 1:

  • Email addresses with mixed- or upper-case user names have been migrated with their user names changed to lower-case letters. This only affects logging in, and not delivery of email. If you used to have a user name with mixed- or upper-case letters, please change your log-in information to use all lower-case letters — e.g., AB@example.com changes to ab@example.com, and BobSmith@example.com changes to bobsmith@example.com. It is generally best practice to create email addresses in all lower-case letters. Your password has not changed, so please do not edit the password saved by your email program.
  • Auto-responders are now managed through the webmail; they are no longer managed through the control panel. As such they have not been recreated on the new server. If you had an auto-responder in place on the old server, you will need to recreate it.
  • As mentioned previously, accounts that were already over quota on the old server were not migrated. The accounts have been created on the new server, but the contents have not been transferred.
  • If you had what the control panel on the old server referred to as a “redirect” in place, please check to ensure that it has been properly created to your requirements on the new server.

In addition to that last specific issue, please check over your accounts yourself to ensure that all is set up and working as it should be. If you need assistance with anything that you cannot address yourself through the control panel, please contact support and we will be happy to help you.

Thank-you again for your patience during this migration, and our apologies again for the fact that it took longer than we had planned.

Email migration: Update 9

26 August 2015 07:07:00 +0000

Due to the many gigabytes of email saved on server NC018, the migration is still ongoing.

We are disabling domains on server NC018 as they are migrated to server NC027. What this means to you is that, if you find that you can no longer access your email account, it has probably been transferred and you should start using the settings for server NC027. Please see the “Things you need to do” heading in the Email migration: Update 1 post for that information.

Thanks for your patience.

Email migration: Update 8

26 August 2015 00:54:47 +0000

The mail migration is definitely underway this time. We will post updates here as necessary.

Email migration: Update 7

25 August 2015 06:03:00 +0000

We have resolved the network issue preventing the mail migration. We have rescheduled the migration to start at 00:01 UTC on Wednesday 26 August. (As always, please check the World Time Server to convert to your time zone.)

Our apologies again for the delay.

Email migration: Update 6

24 August 2015 23:46:39 +0000

We are definitely postponing the mail migration for at least another 24 hours. Please carry on as usual!

Email migration: Update 5

24 August 2015 13:32:04 +0000

Based on the lack of progress on resolving the connectivity issue at this point, we’re going to say that completing the migration tonight is unlikely. However, on the off chance that there’s a breakthrough before then, we’re keeping our options open.

We will post more here as soon as we know.

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NC023OperationalPing
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This blog provides information about the status of NinerNet Communications systems. Dates and times of posts to this blog are in the UTC time zone, and dates and times given for events are also in the UTC time zone, although conversions may be offered for some time zones common to our clients. Please use the World Time Server to ensure accurate conversion of dates and times to your own time zone.

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