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Something's gone wrong again

And again, and again, and again...

Blogging has been light non-existent this past week because I've been working on the website for Lawrence Cannon, the Conservative candidate in the Pontiac. If you are reading this soon after I write it (or perhaps even days after I write it, God forbid) you will get a FILE NOT FOUND message. This is because I foolishly chose CYBERUS ONLINE to host the site. They are also know by their other name, THE WORST INTERNET HOST IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD.

Let me back up. Last week, after much indecision, I was given the chance to work on the website. Before that, it had been a static -- though slickly designed -- site, but it was understood that we would need to be able to update the site with news as it came in. I planned to install Movable Type, and build the site around English and French 'news' pages.

So the first thing that went wrong was that the site was already hosted on a Windows server. Getting the software to work on it was possible, but only with cooperation from the host administrators. After many tugs on their chin, they decided not to help, because they didn't want to risk their other customers sites by installing some software they had not tested.

Fair enough. A setback, but not devastating. Time had been wasted, but it was possible to recover. I decided to move the site to a Linux based host. And I foolishly chose THE WORST INTERNET HOST IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD.

Here was my reasoning. I figured they're local and small. I had never transfered a domain before and I wanted to be able to talk to someone if something went wrong. They were charging far more than the big internet hosting companies were, but I was willing to pay that if I could get some hand-holding if I needed it.

I had my account quickly. I set up the site and waited until late at night on Wednesday to tell the internet gods that lawrencecannon.com has a new home. I had heard that sometimes there are little glitches in the process and wanted them to happen when there were as few witnesses as possible.

So. Thursday morning. I call up the site and see an Apache error message saying, 'File not found at www.partypigs.com port 80'.

Huh?

I call Cyberus (THE WORST INTERNET HOST IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD), and after finally getting someone to talk to, tell him what I see. He gives me the whole song and dance about how it sometimes takes awhile for DNS to propagate throughout the internet. "I know, I know, but what about this partypigs thing?"

"Well, sometimes weird stuff happens," he said in a knowing voice. "I'm checking your site and it's working here. Give it an hour or two, and I'm sure it will be working where you are." And then he went back to his solitaire game.

He was lying. It was NOT working where he was because they messed the set-up of their name server. It was not working anywhere. He lied because he was working for THE WORST INTERNET HOST IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD, and that, apparently, is their policy. In the afternoon I called again and asked what was going on. "It's in the queue." "It's been escalated." "Your call is important to us." "It's our top priority." Finally, I gave up at 10:00 last night, fuming.

This morning, more of the same. I won't bore you with all the details, but in the numerous calls I made I found new and clever ways to use basic curse words that I'd never considered before. I also tried to be reasonable and understanding. (It could work, couldn't it?) But still nothing has happened. I see this as a simple problem that is entirely their fault, but they seem to feel it's something to stick in a 'queue' to be tended to by their 'skilled technicians' only when they're good and ready. That's because Cyberus Online (and by extension, their parent company Cybersurf Corporation) is THE WORST INTERNET HOST IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD.

It's almost 4:00 now. I'm going to call them again. What are the odds that this stoopid, stoopid problem will spill into the weekend?

UPDATE: So I'm talking to poor-hapless-help-desk-geek number 8, when I get an email. Oh, it's from THE WORST INTERNET HOST IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD! What can it say?

It's an invoice for hosting charges. That part of the company still works.

Number 8 tells me he sat in on a phone call to the Cybersurf office in Calgary and that they will get to work on the problem. Ten minutes later, the site is up. Hooray!

Maybe the problem was political. There's no Liberals in Calgary.

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