It turns out that shellx was the target of the attack that affected the Bellevue Co-Location facility at Isomedia. They have black-holed the IP address of shellx to protect the rest of their customers and as a result it was necessary to change the IP to bring shellx back into service.
In the process of doing so, I discovered some missing software and configuration issues that are potentially security affecting and so am working to correct those. After that is done I will need to take the machine down for 25 minutes or so to image it.
The co-location facility where we have our equipment is currently undergoing a denial of service attack. They are working to isolate the source and mitigate the attack. In the meantime it is severely impacting the routing to our equipment.
I want to thank all of you who have clicked on the “Advise Us” link and taken the time to fill out our survey.
The major thing that I’ve come away with is that our website needs to be upgraded in at least four major ways.
1) It needs to be responsive so that it is viewable and operational on smart phones and tablets. This was not only stated, especially where e-mail is concerned, but also implied by the fact that so few of our customers are connecting via a smart phones even though in 2012, they made up over 25% of primary browsers and probably even more today. Those are essentially lost customers.
2) It needs a modern interface. People are asking for features and information that is already present which is a strong indicator that said features and information are too difficult to find. People also indicated a desire for better aesthetics.
3) There is a need for information that currently is not available on our website.
4) There is a desire for web applications to do certain things easily such as leaving a vacation message, configuring domain hosting and other services online, etc.
A lot of the complaints centered around problems that have been resolved for the last year or year and a half. We haven’t had a single crash since we upgraded the infrastructure and there have only a few short unintended outages, the result of upgrades gone bad. Not much I can do about the past.
A lot of people would like us to provide our own high speed access. Unfortunately, the level of capitalization that requires works on a scale of millions of customers but not on a scale of hundreds or even thousands so we are forced to work with telephone companies and wholesale providers.
Virtually all respondents said we needed better documentation.
Somehow the key for scientific.eskimo.com got hurt. In order to connect with NX it will be necessary to re-download the key and re-import it into NX-client 3.5 or NX-player 4.0.x.
You can get the key here: scientific.key
That portion of this mornings maintenance activity that required machines to be out of service has been completed. There is some additional work that will be done later today but it involves machines that are duplicated so will not impact service.
This mornings maintenance is taking longer than expected. Two virtual machines suspended instead of shutting down for reasons unknown and as a result the images were unusable. I had to take shellx down for second time to re-image it and haven’t even started on the web server yet. When shellx comes back up, it will be done for the night, then the web server will go down for about twenty minutes. After that, all the customer affecting work will be done save for some compression jobs which may slow things somewhat.
I will need to take servers down for imaging and to reboot to load a new kernel to address some potential security and stability issues on all of the servers except ‘eskimo.com’, and it will be affected during the time the file server is down. The down time for any given machine is not expected to exceed about 25 minutes but given that every server is affected, the duration of this maintenance activity is expected to last about two hours.
I’ve recently replaced the Google search box with a DuckDuckGo Search Box.
There are two reasons for this change, the first is Google’s total lack of respect for individual privacy. They first had the gall to drive around neighborhoods and take pictures of peoples houses and yards and put them all online. Now for Google Glass there exists a face recognition application that will allow a total stranger to look at you and instantly get background information. This is technology totally out of control.
The second is Google’s recent move not to just index the Internet but to attempt to control it’s content. We’ve had our Google Page Rank manually reduced because Google feels that some of our links are artificial. I haven’t paid anyone to link to me and I don’t feel it should be Google’s prerogative to dictate whom I link to. Call me unreasonable, call me what you will, but that’s how I see it.
Scientific has been reloaded and is again available for use. If you were using OpenNX, NX Player or NX Client to connect, you will need to re-download the key from our website and then re-load it into the NX player or client. The key changed because the software was reloaded.
I am still loading a lot of the applications that were there previously and some that weren’t and wouldn’t work but now do.
The upgrade from Scientific Linux 6.4 to 6.5 did not go well on scientific.eskimo.com in part because of compatibility issues with various third party packages I had installed.
Since only four people have used it to date; I decided that the best thing would be to re-install fresh from 6.5 media, then re-install third party packages, those that aren’t compatible will refuse to install. That way the base installation will be clean.
Please use Shellx while Scientific is being re-loaded.