Out of Office 11:30AM – 1:30PM

     I’ll be out of the office from about 11:30AM to about 1:30PM to get a workout in.  Need this to fight diabetic neuropathy.  Had my first workout in 7+ years yesterday and had my first good nights sleep in about three weeks.  Also had second lowest fasting and after meal blood sugar levels since I started measuring so I know my body really needs these.


     The counter problem seems to have mysteriously fixed itself.  Disabling and re-enabling the PHP plugin then clearing the cache got things working again.


osTicket PHP 7 – No Joy

     Our ticketing system was broken with the upgrade to PHP 7.  We’ve been using osTicket. Their documented requirements are PHP 5.3 and up, well, PHP 7 is “and up”, but their code is not “and up to it” just yet.  I tried the very most recent release candidate, still doesn’t work under PHP 7.

     So I’m looking for a new ticket system that is PHP 7 compliant.  Any suggestions appreciated, send to support@eskimo.com

Web Server Bogged Down

     Something put a high load on the web server this morning to the point where I was unable to login and even investigate.  Upon rebooting operation returned to normal.

     The fact that this happened on a Saturday just like after I upgraded to Ubuntu 16.04, and at about the same time, has me wondering now if the same thing that happened today didn’t happen then and it wasn’t just coincidence that I had upgraded to 16.04.


    Our counter is broken at the moment because the php code plugin for WordPress that allows PHP code to be executed in our page was broken by an update. We are awaiting a fix.

PHP 5.6 -> PHP 7

     A short while ago I installed PHP 7 on our server.  However, the install script did not delete and replace all of PHP 5.6, consequently there were still bits of PHP 5.6 installed and bits of PHP 7 not installed.

     Today I rooted out the remaining PHP 5.6 modules and installed the missing PHP 7 modules.

     After doing so our home page no longer displayed.  I was able to chase this down to our counter script which used mysql_ calls which are deprecated in PHP 5.6 and removed entirely in PHP 7.

     In order to fix this I had to change all the mysql_ calls to mysqli_ calls.  There is one major difference between mysql_ and mysqli_ calls, and that is that mysqli allows more than one database to be open and used at once.  To accommodate this, the mysqli_connect returns a database handler that needs to be stored in a variable, like $dbh = mysqli_connect(yadda yadda yadda);

     And then calls to things like mysqli_query and mysqli_select have an additional parameter and that being the database handler so just add $dbh as your first parameter and otherwise the mysqli calls are pretty much direct replacements for the mysql calls.

PHP Upgraded to PHP7

     PHP on our web server has been upgraded to PHP7:

     php –version –rexinfo
      PHP 7.0.5-3+donate.sury.org~wily+1 (cli) ( NTS )
      Copyright (c) 1997-2016 The PHP Group
      Zend Engine v3.0.0, Copyright (c) 1998-2016 Zend Technologies
         with Zend OPcache v7.0.6-dev, Copyright (c) 1999-2016, by Zend Technologies


     I am going to attempt to upgrade PHP to PHP 7 later tonight while keeping Ubuntu OS at version 15.10 for now.  The performance increases of PHP 7 shaved several hundred milliseconds off of our page load time and lower page load time equals higher Google rankings which for businesses is very important.

     Since many people use our site for development, I believe it’s also important to have the latest tools available for development purposes.  No point developing for yesterday’s platforms.

Ubuntu Restored

     I’ve also reverted ubuntu.eskimo.com to Ubuntu 15.10 because x2go does not work in Ubuntu 16.04 LTS and a server that can’t be accessed is of no use.

     I’ll setup a new virtual machine to test and when these issues are resolved we’ll make a new attempt.