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NOTICE! BOARD UPGRADE THIS COMING SATURDAY!


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Update on the ongoing struggles with upgrading to the latest Invision Power Board


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#1 frostfire

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Posted 03 December 2018 - 12:20 PM

As many of you may remember, a while back I took over the forum with a promise to get us upgraded (finally) to the latest IPB software, which offers a range of new options and features. 

 

I got a test copy of the board working after a successful upgrade some months ago that we tested a bit and announced ready to go... The only problem being the skin, which I worked on when I had time over the last several months. 

 

Well, low and behold in that time another version has been released, making the last obsolete.... and the new version does not like us very much. It seems it thinks we are worthy only of a 500 server error and nothing more. (no logs, no way to find the root of the problem, etc).  lol. 

 

Today I was cut off from IPB's tech support with them saying that they would agree to perform the upgrade on our live site only, and not on a test site that I set up to make sure it works. I am simply unwilling to do that at this point for a number of reasons, the foremost being that I want this site moved to a server with more resources (more RAM and HD space available). I am going to continue working with it over the next few weeks in hopes that I can find and fix whatever issue is causing the errors so we can move forward with the live migration. Once that time hits, I will try to warn everyone ahead of time and schedule it to minimize downtime. 

 

So... the fight continues. 

 

Frosty


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#2 martini9946

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Posted 03 December 2018 - 06:33 PM

Good luck i done envy you one bit    i get lost signing in to facebook  5555


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#3 Bazle

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Posted 03 December 2018 - 09:05 PM

Thanks for your efforts, Frosty.

 

Best of luck.


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#4 frostfire

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Posted 03 December 2018 - 11:56 PM

And another quick update. Spent all day on this for the first time, and with good results. Found all the issues stopping the upgrade (again)... I am happy to report that their latest version actually fixed over half of the issues I had last time! I did send them a report about that when I was going thru it, and it seems they put in some very good fixes, which is great! Unfortunately they missed one huge glaring and stupid issue right from the start. For you developers out there, get this. Their "Get ready for IPB4 test script" did not test to make sure json was enabled on your php installation. My initial issues were because json_decode() was failing. Apparently its not installed by default with LAMP on CentOS7, and their script to test your servers compatibility did not test for it. 

 

So I sent that in to them, along with a list of the other errors I had to fix by hand. SO far so good.

 

Now the bad news: The total upgrade process including the copying of the data is going to take 3-6 hours, during which time the site will be down (in maintenance mode) to prevent anyone posting anything. I was thinking about waiting until Christmas to do it to minimize the impact, but I suspect with all the custom steps I have to do that It might be best to do it right away as soon as I feel confident in the server working properly and all the little pieces fitting together right.... so do not be surprised if I take the site down suddenly in the next few days to handle the upgrade. Not much I can do to warn you... I might post under the FLB Bar facebook group when I start it. Many of you are on there. Other than that, just keep a eye open for everything to look different all of a sudden lol. 

 

Frosty


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#5 forcebwithu

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Posted 04 December 2018 - 12:34 AM

Good luck with the upgrade. If you are able to do this in under a day, a big pat on the back to you.


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#6 keyman

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Posted 04 December 2018 - 07:47 AM

And another quick update. Spent all day on this for the first time, and with good results. Found all the issues stopping the upgrade (again)... I am happy to report that their latest version actually fixed over half of the issues I had last time! I did send them a report about that when I was going thru it, and it seems they put in some very good fixes, which is great! Unfortunately they missed one huge glaring and stupid issue right from the start. For you developers out there, get this. Their "Get ready for IPB4 test script" did not test to make sure json was enabled on your php installation. My initial issues were because json_decode() was failing. Apparently its not installed by default with LAMP on CentOS7, and their script to test your servers compatibility did not test for it. 

 

So I sent that in to them, along with a list of the other errors I had to fix by hand. SO far so good.

 

Now the bad news: The total upgrade process including the copying of the data is going to take 3-6 hours, during which time the site will be down (in maintenance mode) to prevent anyone posting anything. I was thinking about waiting until Christmas to do it to minimize the impact, but I suspect with all the custom steps I have to do that It might be best to do it right away as soon as I feel confident in the server working properly and all the little pieces fitting together right.... so do not be surprised if I take the site down suddenly in the next few days to handle the upgrade. Not much I can do to warn you... I might post under the FLB Bar facebook group when I start it. Many of you are on there. Other than that, just keep a eye open for everything to look different all of a sudden lol. 

 

Frosty

 

 

 

You might as well have written this in Thai for all the understanding I have of it!  :lol:

Thanks for all your hard work with this, Frosty. We do appreciate it.

 

KM


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#7 Alphonse

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Posted 04 December 2018 - 11:51 AM

Good luck with the upgrade. If you are able to do this in under a day, a big pat on the back to you.

For sure! The Addicts site has been working on their "upgrade" for many months and it still has all kinds of problems. Good luck with the changes and hope it doesn't screw up this site since it is currently working just about perfectly for my needs at least.


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#8 frostfire

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 12:01 AM

For sure! The Addicts site has been working on their "upgrade" for many months and it still has all kinds of problems. Good luck with the changes and hope it doesn't screw up this site since it is currently working just about perfectly for my needs at least.

 

That's exactly why I have taken so long to do it. Its not critical... but it is needed. While the site is working, it has a lot of security holes, and the newer versions are quite nice... and we pay for it, so we should be running it! (yes, I pay them every 6 months, like Martin did before). 

 

More on the update. I am fine-tuning the process now, but it appears that I will be hard-pressed to do the full upgrade in less than 6 hours. 

 

I started another test run today at about 1am Thai time. its 7am now, and I think its just about done with the final portion of the upgrade scripts... after which there is about 30-45 minutes of configuration changes to make before taking the site live again. I know I can shave 1 hour off that time, perhaps 2.... but no more than that. I am going to do one more full port over tomorrow and time it, and assuming I do not run in to any errors, I may do the for-real update the day after. 

 

When I do the upgrade, I will try to keep this site live but in read-only mode - no posting. I am not sure that will work, so it might just say "offline for maintenance". 

 

When all is said and done, the forum will look quite a bit different. Our skin will be gone, and our logo as well, temporarily. I may hire someone to make a new logo - same theme, just higher resolution and perhaps a little more with the times. But the posts will be here, as will the reputation system, users, permissions, etc. Everything we need. hopefully the new look/feel doesnt scare anyone away. it is different... but better in many ways, once you get used to it. 

 

Frosty


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#9 VPI78

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 12:22 AM

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Just a thought ... for the new skin, perhaps an old picture of MM, one in his younger days, either overlaid or popped into a frame. There's at least one here somewhere.

 

Sort of a silent but lasting reminder/memorial


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#10 frostfire

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 10:37 AM

Just a thought ... for the new skin, perhaps an old picture of MM, one in his younger days, either overlaid or popped into a frame. There's at least one here somewhere.

 

Sort of a silent but lasting reminder/memorial

 

Once I get the website moved to the new server (that is part of the upgrade process), there will be a new website going up that will include something for Martin.  The current landing page at www.pattayatalk.com is way out of date, but a technical issue is stopping me from updating it where it is right now... another of the reasons we need this update :)


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#11 Siam Sam

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 01:36 PM

Once I get the website moved to the new server (that is part of the upgrade process), there will be a new website going up that will include something for Martin.  The current landing page at www.pattayatalk.com is way out of date, but a technical issue is stopping me from updating it where it is right now... another of the reasons we need this update :)



Good luck with the software changes. The site is pretty much identical to when I joined in 2007 so some changes are well overdue. Can members have any say on the format of the new look site? Perhaps the addition of some new sections? I for one would like to see a section dedicated to Bangkok.

Edited by Siam Sam, 05 December 2018 - 01:41 PM.

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#12 frostfire

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 01:42 PM

Good luck with the changes. The site is pretty much identical to when I joined in 2007 so some changes are well overdue. Can members have any say on the format of the new look site? Perhaps the addition of some new sections? I for one would like to see a section dedicated to Bangkok.

 

once we get moved, absolutely. 

 

When we first switch over, we will be on a stock template. No customization at all, but with the same forums and sections you can see today. After the move, I am open to any changes that make sense. 

 

Will also be buying an SSL certificate which is something martin never had. that will allow people who chose to the ability to log in via facebook, google, etc. 

 

I will also be trying to find a global chat app of some sort that will let us have a live chat feature for anyone who is online. That will happen fairly quickly after the move. 

 

Also ill be redesigning the landing page, and adding a memorial page for Martin... and likely a few other things. 


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#13 Siam Sam

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 01:49 PM

once we get moved, absolutely. 
 
When we first switch over, we will be on a stock template. No customization at all, but with the same forums and sections you can see today. After the move, I am open to any changes that make sense. 
 
Will also be buying an SSL certificate which is something martin never had. that will allow people who chose to the ability to log in via facebook, google, etc. 
 
I will also be trying to find a global chat app of some sort that will let us have a live chat feature for anyone who is online. That will happen fairly quickly after the move. 
 
Also ill be redesigning the landing page, and adding a memorial page for Martin... and likely a few other things.


Sounds good and the live chat feature is a great idea. A section dedicated to Bangkok would be a good idea in my opinion, hopefully others will think so too.
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#14 Samsonite

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 05:26 PM

From what I've seen of the "new" version on other sites, I much prefer the "old." It is isn't broke, don't fix it.

:)


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#15 frostfire

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 05:36 PM

From what I've seen of the "new" version on other sites, I much prefer the "old." It is isn't broke, don't fix it.

:)

 

Its never quite that simple is it?

 

Support was stopped on this version almost 2 years ago, and there are 32 known script attacks that this version is open to. 12 of those have been noted in US-CERT notifications. Furthermore, we have had almost 1000 fake registrations per week over the last several months. My own scripts are killing most, but not all, of those. Its just a matter of time before someone successfully kills our site with one of the script attacks, and then we will all wish I had updated it. 

 

On top of all that, the server this is on right now is not set up properly. Martin did all the setup himself, and while he was fair with linux, he was not a security expert. 

 

We really do not have much of a choice in the end. We have to upgrade. I know not everyone will be happy with the result, but there is nothing I can do about that. :(


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#16 BigusDicus

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 08:34 PM

It is okay Frosty.  I am accustomed to suffering...  will be happy with whatever you come up with!


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#17 forcebwithu

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 12:05 AM

Sure hope the system here is more stable than what I see over at PA after their upgrade. They're still struggling with issues that bring down their forum almost every week. Just tried to log on now and get an Internal Server Error. Not sure if it's inadequate hardware or an incompetent forum admin.


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#18 frostfire

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 06:01 AM

Sure hope the system here is more stable than what I see over at PA after their upgrade. They're still struggling with issues that bring down their forum almost every week. Just tried to log on now and get an Internal Server Error. Not sure if it's inadequate hardware or an incompetent forum admin.

Likely lack of testing. I've spent well over 100 hours on this already... And I am pretty good with this kind of stuff. I can only imagine how someone without a 30+ year history in IT would handle it.

I am trying to make sure i preempt most if not all of the issues that will come up so that hopefully there won't be any lol.

As far as hardware goes that won't be an issue. The server it's on is empty and has way more resources than any single website could ever use.


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#19 Bushcraft

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 06:44 AM

The problems you describe in #4 are just what I suspected lol, many thanks for your efforts and expertise on our behalf Frosty. 


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#20 jacko

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 06:50 AM

So is it going to look like Thai Visa except with a much snappier server and Mods with a semblance of humour?


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#21 keyman

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 10:35 AM

So is it going to look like Thai Visa except with a much snappier server and Mods with a semblance of humour?

 

 

 

Sod off!  :D


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#22 capdagde

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 11:21 AM

Thanks Frosty.... PT is a lifeline for some (me included)  :allright


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#23 knortyboy

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 02:36 PM

Thanks for all your work Frosty. Perhaps when the update is complete it will prompt those who haven't made a donation yet to do so.
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#24 jacko

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 10:42 PM

Thanks for all your work Frosty. Perhaps when the update is complete it will prompt those who haven't made a donation yet to do so.

And those who did to perhaps make a further one, nearly a year now.


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#25 Butch

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Posted 07 December 2018 - 08:45 PM

And those who did to perhaps make a further one, nearly a year now.

 

I agree, this should be an ongoing thing and perhaps offer those who donate a gift by way of return either as a different posting title or label, and if Mr Egg is willing, for those reaching a certain amount over a year, perhaps a 10% discount voucher to be redeemed on one check bin of drinks over a certain amount at le pub?. 


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