UPDATE:  April 23, 2008.  This Urban Semiotic blog — and all of David W. Boles’ domains and blogs are now solely hosted by Pair Networks!  We will give you more information soon.  We are leaving this article online to protect the chain of understanding and we will update this space as necessary.

As you know, we recently moved this Urban Semiotic blog from WordPress to Movable Type 4.1 and we were hosted by the fine folks at Pair Networks. We are grateful for their previous love and support as we announce today yet another move of this blog – as well as RelationShaping.com and WordPunk.com – over to my pre-existing Media Temple 3.5 dv-Rage server and Movable Type Open Source 4.1.


If you registered to comment on this blog over the past few days, or if you posted a comment on this blog in the same timeframe and find your words are missing – you were caught in our database switch from Pair to Media Temple.  Please re-post your comment and re-register.

If you previously registered for UrbanSemiotic.com or RelationShaping.com, you are still registered for each blog.  WordPunk.com will require a whole new registration. 

Speed is everything on the “The Internets,” and Urban Semiotic is a massive blog with 1,200 entries and 30,000 comments and tons of daily readers. 

When we were on Pair, the speed of posting comments and republishing edited articles varied anywhere from 15-30 seconds to a minute.  In “The Internets” time and space those seconds felt like a week of waiting – and that’s a deadly speed loss for a big blog with active commenting and ongoing articles posting.

Pair did everything they could to get us fast on a shared server, but I quickly came to realize the hard truth that the only option to get this blog moving as expected was to get “FastCGI” working on the server to boost the interactive speed of Movable Type 4.1.  

My smaller MT4.1 RelationShaping.com blog ran superfast on Pair – but that blog only had a few entries and a few comments since it was less than a couple of weeks old.  The prospect for growing that blog, or any other blog on Pair, under MT4.1, seemed bleak. 

I asked Pair about getting FastCGI on my account and the only way I could get it working for this blog was to move to a dedicated server.  That would’ve taken my monthly hosting nut on Pair from around $20.00USD a month to over $250.00USD.  Pair also wanted an extra $100.00USD setup fee to install FastCGI and “mod_perl” on a dedicated server.

Pair has a 30-Day Money Back guarantee – so I decided I better check into some other hosting options before my clock timed out on my original advanced hosting plan on their shared server.  I will let you know here how quickly Pair returns my money.

When I checked my pre-existing Dedicated Virtual server on Media Temple, I was pleased to see FastCGI and “mod_perl” were already installed by default!
 

If I moved my MT4.1 blogs from Pair to Media Temple, I could save the $20.00USD a month I was paying Pair by “folding it into” the $100.00USD a month I was already paying for my Media Temple server.
 
Media Temple will not help us implement FastCGI as part of their standing “no involvement” support policy. 

I have asked in the new, private, Media Temple user forums for a “Steps Guide to using FastCGI with MTOS4.1” but I don’t have any responses yet.
 

If you have any clues or advice on getting FastCGI running with MTOS4.1 on a Media Temple 3.5 dv-Rage server – please leave a comment!

I will keep you updated on our progress right here, so keep coming back to read the comments flow for this article.

As well, please let us know how responsive this site feels and if you find anything broken or wanting.  We’ll get straight on a fix as soon as possible and thanks for sticking with us through this sticky transition process from one meme to another!

18 Comments

  1. Why Urban Semiotic Moved from WordPress to Movable Type

    (UPDATE 4/18/08:  We are now using Movable Type Open Source 4.1 on Media Temple.  Here is the story why.)Hello, and welcome to Urban Semiotic!  This blog is now running — racing, really — on Movable Type 4.1 hosted by pair…

  2. Boles on Boles

    David W. Boles currently hails from the urban Heights of Jersey City, New Jersey after finding birth on the hard, crackling, plains of the Nebraska prairie. Books written for Thomson/Cengage Publishing include: Picture Yourself Learning Mac OS X 10.5 L…

  3. The blog is bursting with speed and excitement. I can’t wait to start writing again next week – maybe monday or tuesday, once the hustle and bustle of this “Three Day Yom Tov” ends – because passover begins right after shabbos ends, I won’t be on the computer starting in a few hours and ending… monday night! Whee! 🙂

  4. Thanks for the feedback, my darling Gordon! Have a wonderful time and we will miss you while we honor your commitment! I can’t wait to read more of your fab-o work and get it up an online here.

  5. Glad to be back David,
    I did not get to experience the speed challenges you speak of but I am excited about the quickness the blog is showing. I am looking forward to this interaction with your great group of writers and those who comment. I will see if I can organize some thoughts this weekend.

  6. Thanks for that speed update from India, Katha! That is excellent to know. We’re still working on the back end to find even more speed enhancements. FastCGI is proving to be more of conundrum than a by-default solution.

  7. I’m so glad to hear the blog feels fast enough for you, Greg! That’s a big help and a tremendous change from our recent past. We’re ready for you and we’re thrilled you’re able to move forward with us into a bright future!

  8. Hiya Dananjay! Thanks for the good news on the speed report from India. As you know, we’ve been working long and hard to get MTOS4.1 to work superfast with Media Temple and we’ve found some heartache and some conundrums along the way and it’s good to get this news that things look and feel faster.

  9. That’s probably the best news so far, Dananjay! Having to force a page reload to get a new comment to appear, or to see edited changes for an article, never really made sense. I hope these automatic page refreshes stay with us!

  10. Glad to hear from you Ms. Donna! Oh, I’m with you on the strange duplicate comments bug. That was just plain strange. I, too, look forward to getting everything “just working” so we can begin to add back some functionality and depth to the look, feel and operation of this enterprise!