Migration a success

Last month I told you that I had a new dedicated server to play with, well I didn’t have much in the way of sites to transfer initially as I had recently spread some of my sites across various cheap VPS’s and the only sites I wanted to move to the new dedicated server was thevirtualnameservers.com and cgiscripts4u.com, these where transferred easily enough with very little disruption. Then it was the turn of Joby’s customers’ web sites. These where no more complicated than my own but they felt more important as they where sites of paying customers. all sites where moved without a problem within just a day or so and we had very little communication from the customers saying there was any issues.

Then at the end of September I took delivery of a 2nd dedicated server, this is a lower spec server at a far lower price than before and is sold on the condition that the server must be for your own personal use and you must NOT in any way resell the server. I had no real use for this server but for the price it was too good to pass, unfortunately it is no longer available. Two of my kids play Minecraft so I decided to set up a private minecraft server on it for them to use. I have also decided to use it as a back up dns server and for testing sites before they go live. I am not sure how long I will keep it as the spec is low but then so is the price.

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Time to play

After almost 3 weeks of waiting I got my latest server over the weekend so it’s time to play. The other servers I have are all Virtual Private servers or VPS’s which basically it’s like having your own dedicated server but its shared so the resources, memory and cpu etc are shared. This latest server is a dedicated server which means it’s all mine, well mine and Joby’s.

This is the first dedicated server that I have had for a couple of years, and every server I have had has been Redhat/Centos flavours of linux and has had one of the main stream control panels ie plesk or cpanel. This time I’ve gone for Debian Squeeze and the free control panel ISP Config 3 so it’s time to play.

We have a couple of weeks to get Joby’s clients on to the new server before our shared VPS is cancelled. I only have two sites to move immediately as I have moved a number of mine to other VPS’s that I have got over the past few months but I still have to get my head around ISP Config so that I can help Joby move his clients.

Here comes the fun (I know sad isn’t it:))

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What an amazing experience

What a great three days I have just had.

My volunteer role was on the Guest Services desk ensuring the VIP’s knew where to go and if they didn’t then we would take them etc so I wasn’t watching that much of the sport but what I did watch was excellent and when the athletes received their medals the atmosphere was brilliant. I don’t do photo’s as they tend to come out so bad that they can’t be used but I recommend that you take some time to look at the pictures on the Bath 2013 web site.

I had the pleasure of working with Emma and Nina from Sporting Hosts who where one of the sponsors of Bath 2013, Josephene from SOGB, who was our team leader, and a great group of volunteers.

I am looking forward to the next National Games in 2017, or maybe the european games?

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Bath Special Olympics 2013

The Bath Special Olympics is the main reason we are here in Bath as I am volunteering for it over the next few days and tonight was the Opening Ceremony. Wow what a night, I was doing my volunteer role in Guest Services for a few hours this afternoon which involved ensuring the ‘VIP’ guests where fed and watered at the Guests Reception and then seated in their seats in time for the start of the opening ceremony.

Bath 2013 Guest Services team Opening Ceremony and reception

The opening Ceremony was just great, with acts like Susan Boyle and Clyve who wrote and performed the official anthem of the games ‘Living your Dream’. It was great to see the athletes all getting up and dancing to the music and having a great time. There was also the obligatory speeches from some great people including athlete Jason Gardner and ex Football Manager and TV Pundit Lawrie McMenemy MBE who is the President of the Special Olympics of GB Board.

The whole event was a great success and everyone appeared to enjoy themselves, especially the athletes.

The one thing to spoil it was the park and ride that was put on by the bus company, there was clearly not enough buses laid on and athletes families and other visitors where stood for over an hour as two or three park and ride buses came and went.

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Cheddar Gorge

Before we came down to Bath we decided to use some of our Tesco Club Card loyalty points towards the cost of tickets for a day out while we’re away camping. It was a toss up between Cheddar Gorge or Longleat Saffari. We decided to use the Loyalty points for Cheddar gorge as we had enough to get tickets for the three of us where as at Longleat we would still need to buy at least one ticket.

ALthough I am pleased to say I have been to Cheddar Gorge, I think If I had paid the full online price of £43 for the three of us I would have been disappointed. There are two caves you can go down and you do get a commentary via something that looks like a 1980′s cell phone, you also get access to a small museum about the Cheddar Man, and then an open top bus tour, the bus tour was really disappointing as it takes you half way along the road you have just driven down through the cliffs and then back again. I don’t know what I expected, maybe to take you to the top of the cliffs but to do that you had to go on foot, up 274 steps, and then if you want to see anything you can either climb up more steps in the lookout tower or go on a 3 mile cliff top walk.

Cheddar Gorge is definitely one of those places I think I am pleased we have visited it but I wouldn’t do it again.

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A week in Bath

We have just arrived for a week in the beautiful city of Bath, it’s just Tracey, I and our youngest, the older two boys decided to stay home for the week.

We arrived at our camp site, a newly opened site outside of bath called PitchPerfect Camping. The welcome we received from owners Emma and James was wonderful. We set up our tent in a couple of hours, we like to take out time:), had a cuppa etc and just chilled for a bit. At this point I thought ‘I am glad the older two boys stayed at home’ as the site is just a site, there is nothing for older kids to do or go. This does not detract from the fact it is a lovely little site, it has a small slide for the younger kids and a trampoline, a small shower block and separate toilet block, I say blocks, these are porta cabins but very clean and adequate for the site. There is also a small shop with free use of the freezer for freezing ice packs etc.

When I read about PitchPerfect Camping I read they offered ‘fire pits’, I didn’t think we would bother with these but we have had one tonight, it’s great to sit here around a fire with beer in hand and just chill.

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Domains for a pound – what a bargain

I was looking to register a domain or two last week and thought I would go to my normal registrars HostingtheInter.net and GoDaddy! who between then normally have some great prices and I ordered a .com and .co domain from Godaddy but then I began to wonder if there was a cheaper alternative.

After googling a bit for cheap domains registrars I found Crazy Domains with .co.uk, .me.uk, .com and .info domains for just £1 each (about $1.55USD) for the first year and .org.uk as low as just £0.50 for the first year. There are also great prices for other tld’s. I had to just order a couple more domains.

Obviously during the first year you will need to look to see if you can find a registrar that offers cheap transfers etc for the 2nd year but if you have half an hour to spare at some time during the year it can be well worth your while.

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Goodbye to Google Adsense

Last month I received an email from the dreaded Adsense team at Google. I wasn’t too concerned as I’ve had emails from them before asking me to fix a page on my meta search engine that is against their T’s and C’s and I have fixed it, but this time it was worse, it was an email informing me that due to breaches of their terms and conditions my Adsense account has been completely disabled.

Now, I have had the meta search site for about 6 years, and have had ads disabled on the site but managed to get the decision overturned, this had actually happened just weeks earlier when I had deleted the sites database of ‘bad words’ by mistake, I emailed the Adsense team and gave them full details and they reactivated ads on the site, but this time it was different, they where not disabling Adsense on one site but actually disabling my whole account. It was the last week of July, days before payments of the June earnings where due to be sent out, and as my account is disabled it meant they withheld my payment of about £90 (about $140 USD) and the earnings I had accrued so far in July which was around £110 (about $170 USD) so I had to try and get the decision overturned but to no avail, they have refused blank to reactivate the account so I am at least £200 down.

I have been testing Chitika for the past month as it appeared to be the best alternative to Adsense. It’s earning me a bit, but unfortunately not the same as Adsense. I will continue to look for other alternatives.

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Thumbshots4u

Thumbshots 4 u
I’ve just launched a new site called Thumbshots4u.com. Its another web site thumb shot generator.

The site is up and running and there are currently 6 nodes generating and serving the thumb shots and the number of nodes will grow as required. Users can generate free thumbshots or register for membership from just $1 a month.

At the moment membership is processed manually once the payment has been received while the automated members area is completed and perfected.

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How much would you like a toothbrush?

I know ‘How much would you like a toothbrush?’ is a strange question to ask but heck there I have done it.

Why? I hear you ask? well I have had to re register with PayPerPost and to prove that this is indeed my blog I had to post to the blog and insert the question ‘How much would you like a toothbrush?’ into the post.

They say that this post can be deleted after they have verified it but what the heck I am going to keep this post. It is pointless but it’s out there now:)

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