June 30, 2006

Awstats Round 2

Well Awstats seemed to work for me yesterday afternoon for a short while, but is back down again. I keep getting this screen shot:

Error: Couldn't open config file "awstats.everydaystranger.mu.nu.conf" nor "awstats.conf" after searching in path ".,/home/helen/tmp/awstats/,/etc/opt/awstats,/etc/awstats,/etc,/usr/local/etc/awstats": No such file or directory

- Did you use the correct URL ?
Example: http://localhost/awstats/awstats.pl?config=mysite
- Did you create your config file 'awstats.everydaystranger.mu.nu.conf' ?
If not, you can run "./../../tools/awstats_configure.pl" from command line, or create it manually.

Check config file, permissions and AWStats documentation (in 'docs' directory).

Have I done broke it, or is Awstats done broke regardless of me?

Posted by Everydaystranger at 03:43 PM | Comments (14) | TrackBack

June 29, 2006

OK seriously, I can't post on Jawa

Well, I can post. It's just that it never shows up on the blog. I get the message indicating that changes have been saved, and I looked to make sure the post status was "publish." The list of recent entries includes my post.

But it never actually shows up on the Jawa Report.

Do I need to take a pill, and if so which color?

Posted by Demosophist at 09:03 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack


Rusty is back in business!

Posted by Pixy Misa at 11:48 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack


I've turned the blacklist back on. We were getting overrun.

The next person to break it will be shot.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 03:44 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Fighting the filthy spammers one blog at a time

As SR Noted in the post below there's a thingy (highly technical computer term) that can be added to your Templates to help fight spam.

Add the following line:

<MTCloseComments old="7" inactive="3">

Just before the </MTEntryIfCommentsOpen> line will close any posts that are seven days old and have been inactive for more than three days. For more information see this post.

Posted by phin at 03:15 AM | Comments (13) | TrackBack

Spam Removal Not There

Pixy - I'm getting spammed to shit and the tagline that usually appears that allows us to remove spam comments is not on any of them.

Any suggestions????

Posted by Old Cloots at 03:02 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 28, 2006

Alright Then

MT Blacklist was screwed up yet again.

I've turned it off.

That means you will get more spam. Possibly lots more spam. But only for a couple of days. Then the new comments system will be in, and it will go back and zap the old spam for you automatically.

Sorry about this, but if people won't pay attention when they're using Blacklist it just screws things up for everyone.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 11:16 PM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

Posting problems

Wow, I just seem to be running through the problems lately. Today I tried to publish a post and got this message when it tried to rebuild:

Writing to '/home/oorgo/www/archives/183794.php.new' failed: Opening local file '/home/oorgo/www/archives/183794.php.new' failed: Permission denied

Posted by Oorgo at 04:33 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack


Is it only me, or is Awstats broken?

Posted by Everydaystranger at 10:03 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Feature Set Makes Pixy's Head Hurt

Minx June Update

Okay, brief rundown on the state of play for Minx:

It's up and running here.

You can make it work for your blog (or any munu blog) just by changing the blog= number. You can find your blog number by looking at the address bar when you're logged into Movable Type; it should say something like: http://blog.mu.nu/cgi/mt.cgi?__mode=view&_type=entry&blog_id=14

For example, here's Ace of Spades in Minx. Note that for anything other than Munuviana, Minx is running off the default template set, which isn't as pretty or as well-tested. I'll be pushing some of the Munuviana template features back into the default set over the next few days.

You can view your blog as a forum - though that's only set up for Munuviana right now. All that is, is a different page template; the form= option selects the alternate template.

The Minx user interface is also entirely template-driven. If you don't like it, you can overrride everything.

Minx recognises Movable Type users, MT login cookies, and MT comment cookies. Well, there might be a glitch with the MT comment cookies, but that will get sorted out, and they mostly work.

Posts and comments entered in MT show up immediately in Minx. Comments entered in Minx don't show up until something triggers a rebuild in MT. I have a database table set up to record Minx activity so that MT will know when to rebuild, but it's not live yet.

Comments in Minx have very simple spam protection, and don't use MT Blacklist at all. I'll be applying the same sort of automatic statistical filtering as I have with Snark, which nailed something like 99.5% of spam with almost no false positives before it died during the DOS attack. What will happen is that comments will be accepted with just a simple IP/name filter, and then the statistical filter will come along once a minute and zap anything that turns out to have been spam.

We'll also have registration for commenters - this is nearly ready now. If you already have a munu Movable Type login, that will work for comments as well. If you're registered, you'll be able to edit your comments - though I may set a time limit on this to prevent abuse. You'll still be able to edit comments left on your blog, of course. Posts and comments that belong to you, on your blog or elsewhere on munu, will have a little edit link next to them. Click on the link, edit away, and you're done!

Format Format Format!

You can still enter HTML by hand if you want to, or the good old mix of HTML and blank lines. Minx handles that just fine.

You also have a fancy-pants WYSIWYG editor, though it needs to be smacked around the head until it stops using bloody <span> tags. The editor works in Firefox/Mozilla (except that it uses span tags), Internet Explorer, and Opera 9. Under Safari, Konqueror, older versions of Opera, and other browsers, you'll get the standard text box.

I'm also adding three (maybe more, but at least three) markup languages: BBCode, WikiText, and Textile. BBCode is up first, and will probably be in place today (though not complete). All of these do automatic filtering of your tags to make sure that the resulting HTML is valid. If you forget a closing tag in BBCode, for example, it will automatically fix it for you.

BBCode will also be supported for comments.

BBCode in posts can also be used to process simple template tags into the body of the post. I don't know exactly why you'd want to do that, but you can. You can do that with macros too (remember macros?) And you can mix HTML and BBCode (and macros), and you can use BBCode (and macros) in the WYSIWYG editor, though they won't be very WYSIWYG then.

Oops, gotta run, back later.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 02:09 AM | Comments (12) | TrackBack

Results Of A's J Customer Satisfaction Survey

In case anyone's interested about how the recent DOS attacks and spam attacks have affected one representative blog, I conducted an informal non-scientific survey over the weekend.

You can see the results here.

This is not intended as a criticism, I was just curious about how blog visitors perceived the various problems er challenges we've been hit with recently.

Posted by annika at 01:14 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

June 27, 2006

A Lack of CPanel Cooperation

Eek! I'm trying to get into CPanel to use the file manager---a couple of shots to upload---and it seems a bit wonky. In detail:

1. It doesn't think I've set an e-mail address. OK, fine. Do that, and it still thinks I haven't set it.
2. Last login: Never? Nuh uh.
3. When I try to use the File Manager, it gives me this in a new browser window:

Unable to change directory to /kei/home/cpundit/.trash! You do not seem to have access permissions! (System Error: Permission denied)

All I can figure out is that something not-on-my-end isn't happy, and I can't figure out how to fix it, or the continuing problem I'm having with intra-Mu trackbacks to TexasBestGrok. Clicking on the TB link for JohnL's poll gives me this in the new window:
An error occurred: Fruitcake error: Unknown database 'mt_db'

The original tab changes to that as well.

Posted by Country Pundit at 05:52 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack


I have been drowning in spam (not the only one, based on other posts here).

They all have this form:

IP Address:
Email Address: ykqkp51pac6h0@see.it


<h1>allocating:salivate business grownup!disillusioned,contraption rail </h1>

Different IPs, gibberish email, and a random assortment of words that don't mean anything.

In fact, I can't understand the purpose of these comments at all. They don't seem to sell anything.

Anyhoo, I just got back from lunch, and well over 100 of these guys have attached themselves to old posts.

Any suggestsions? I'd like to know if there is a plug-in that can be added to MT that either automatically or manually (but easily) disables commenting on posts more than, say, two weeks old. That would certainly limit the spam dramatically.

Posted by Steve Janke at 05:24 PM | Comments (8) | TrackBack

Good News Everyone!

The Jawaserver has arrived (it's called Namo, in case anyone's interested), and I'm setting it up now.

It's kind of slow - it's a 1.7GHz P4 Celeron, and it runs at about half the speed of the 2.8GHz Pentium D's that power Kei and Yuri. And it's a single core, so Kei and Yuri (which are dual-core) are effectively four times as fast.

But it only has to host one blog, so it should be able to cope.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 05:25 AM | Comments (32) | TrackBack

June 26, 2006

Many Many Thanks To David

Many thanks to David of Rishon Rishon, who gave up his precious time to help me out of my fix. As you can see, the blog is back looking the way it should.

I really appreciate this David...Thank you so very much...

Posted by Rachel Ann at 01:59 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Fruitcake Error

Yeah, I'm a bit of a fruitcake but I don't think it was an error. I think my position in life is to amuse people with my idiocy. Only I kind of want to wipe the egg off my face and David B. has kindly offered to clean up my site.

But I can't get into my site except through performancing (thank you whoever suggested it) because I keep getting a FRUITCAKE error.

Damned blankety blanks who so mess with the system. Jawa you are doing something so right for them to bash you and everyone else like that. Keep it up.

Anyway. Help again, please...and sorry for so much problem causing.

Posted by Rachel Ann at 06:29 AM | Comments (25) | TrackBack

and no success with fixing my site

as those who have gone there may have noticed....

I'm ready to weep. Or maybe give up blogging I'm not sure which.

Posted by Rachel Ann at 05:38 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

No Mercy

No quarter given till the return of our Jewish brother.

And where is the condemnation of the world?

Posted by Rachel Ann at 05:36 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 25, 2006


My site is neither sending nor receiving trackbacks... any ideas?

Posted by GM Roper at 09:46 PM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

Can Only Rebuild Index Templates

When I try to rebuild all, the Individual archives stick at 1-100 and then the rebuild window goes blank.


Posted by Greg at 02:00 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

June 24, 2006


nvalid [] range "u-a" in regex; marked by <-- HERE in m/-casino|-com.com|-mobile-phones.org|-online\.com|-online\.net|-replica\.|-site.info|-sport-|.+diamond.+os.com|.+shemale.com|.25936.ro|.659459.ro/|.alic2004.org/|.i-shake-u.com/|.ihateapple.com/|.info/skanah01|.loansmarter.com/lendingtree.php|.pridezone.org/|.votegrowinggreener.org/|0-poker.biz|007.nubibianche.com|007box.de|007google.info|00pro.com|0adult|0cartoon.com|0casino|0catch.com|0creditcardtoday.com|0hentai|0manga|0printing.com|0sesso|0sex-too at extlib/jayallen/Blacklist.pm line 3098.

Is keeping me from posting comments tonight. Pixy, Fix it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by Tuning Spork at 05:04 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 23, 2006

Jawa Spam

Er....so I don't have a website, yet the comment spam keeps-a-comin. How is that possible?

Also, there used to be a link at the bottom of all my comment e-mails leading to the despamming menu, now it's gone.

Posted by Rusty at 05:18 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack


I tried to clean up my blog and caused problems instead. How can I get the sidebar back on the side instead of under the posting????

Posted by Rachel Ann at 12:28 PM | Comments (8) | TrackBack

More comment woes

I now get the following error message when comments are left:

An error occurred:

Invalid [] range "L-D" in regex; marked by <-- HERE in m/-casino|-com.com|-mobile-phones.org|-online\.com|-online\.net|-replica\.|-site.info|-sport-|.+diamond.+os.com|.+shemale.com|.25936.ro|.659459.ro/|.alic2004.org/|.i-shake-u.com/|.ihateapple.com/|.info/skanah01|.loansmarter.com/lendingtree.php|.pridezone.org/|.votegrowinggreener.org/|0-poker.biz|007box.de|007google.info|00pro.com|0adult|0cartoon.com|0casino|0catch.com|0creditcardtoday.com|0hentai|0manga|0printing.com|0sesso|0sex-toons.com|0sfondi-deskt at extlib/jayallen/Blacklist.pm line 3098.


Posted by Rhodey at 01:25 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 22, 2006

Cpanel Woes

Hello all! Long time no see!

trying to return to blogging, and went into Cpanel to start fixing things up and when I logged into File Manager what did I see:

"[a fatal error or timeout occurred while processing this directive]"

and below it near the trash can:

Unable to change directory to /kei/home/nick/.trash! You do not seem to have access permissions! (System Error: Permission denied)

Sad! Did I break something?

Also, how much of a learning curve on Minx? I was considering Word Press instead of MT, but noticed Minx is rising into use. Can a neophyte pick it up pretty easy?

Posted by Nick Queen at 08:56 PM | Comments (20) | TrackBack

Comments Upfucked

Whenever anyone tries to comment, this comes up:

Invalid [] range "u-f" in regex; marked by <-- HERE in m/(babes|porn|boobs)[\w\-_.]

I see this is happening on other MuNu blogs. Any news???

It makes me look like a pervert to those who don't comment at other MuNu blogs!

Posted by Old Cloots at 11:49 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Comments Upfucked, Still

I'm with Stevie. I have lawyers and guns, someone else will have to bring money if that's required. This is getting old. Is it still that fuckhead in Turkey?

Posted by Old Cloots at 11:47 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Help, I'm Drowning in Spam! (Updated)

I got back to inspect my emails for comments and found that I have about 1300 new comments, nearly all of which are spam! This brings up a few questions:

1. Is there a quick way to list all of the comments submitted, say, in the past month and then delete those determined to be spam? I noticed that there are a large number from one spammer, so can I add that email to a banned list?

2. How do I shut off comments, until I can figure out what to do about this? I've gone into the blog configuration menu and changed the "allow comments default" to "closed." Will that do it for my old posts as well as my new ones, or do I need to do something else?

3. What to do? Is there a way I can allow users to comment by having them use Typekey or go through some other sign in process? I guess Kansas doesn't live here anymore...

Update: Michele, could you email me [demosophia-at-gmail-dot-come]? I can't seem to find your address on your blog. Also, I can't seem to add a comment to this post. I get that same "up-phuqued" error message.

Posted by Demosophist at 01:53 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

June 21, 2006

Foruming With Minx

So, I hear you cry, how do forums work in Minx?

I'm glad you asked!

Forums are blogs. Blogs are forums. (And also Wikis, but we'll come back to that later.)

To view your blog as a forum, all you need to do is add a couple of new templates. For Munuviana, these are:


<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-transitional.dtd">
<title>Minx/MT: Dynamic Pages for Movable Type</title>
<link rel="stylesheet" href="http://blog2.mu.nu/minx.css" type="text/css" />
<div id="container">
[include banner]
<div id="center"><div class="content">
<h2>Munuviana Forum</h2><p>
<tr><th width=50%>Topics</th><th width=15%>Comments</th>
<th width=15%>Author</th><th width=20%>Posted</th></tr>
[posts:here template=Forum.Post]

<div id="right">
<div class="sidebar">
[include recent]

<div style="clear: both;"> </div>




<tr [if post.even]bgcolor="#f8f4e0"[/if]>
<td><a href="[post.url]">[post.title]</a></td>
<td align=center>[post.comments]</td>

And viola! Forums!

To really work like a forum, the posts need to be sorted by date of the last comment, rather than the date the post was entered. Minx can't do that yet (at least not with the MT database), but will.

One little note: the post.even flag is true if this post is even numbered, counting the posts on the page from 1 to N. Yes, there is a corresponding post.odd, and some other flags for breaking posts into groups of three or whatever.

Then, all you do is add the option form=forum to the URL to tell Minx to pick up the mxForum template instead of the default mxPost template, and you're done.

You can use the even/odd widgets to do a two-column blog like this, but it only really works if all your posts are the same length - or if you have a 100-word excerpt for the front page (which Minx can generate automatically, but I need to test that).

Posted by Pixy Misa at 05:27 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

June 20, 2006


With the Jawa situation?

My email inbox is curious.

If I don't find out by 1 pm U.S. CDT tomorrow, I swear I will get on a plane with my family, fly to Orlando, and spend the next 9 days there.

After replying to a bunch of emails with "heck if I know!"


Posted by Vinnie at 06:38 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Time for a TIP Jar

Everyone who comes here that thinks Pixy really needs to put up a tip jar say yay!

Posted by GM Roper at 12:48 AM | Comments (20) | TrackBack

June 19, 2006

Minxlets Mini Update

I've been busy with, well, stuff, but I'll be back to doing full-time Minxwork tomorrow.

But I do have something for you today: forums! Sort of. ;)

Posted by Pixy Misa at 06:08 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Things Will Improve

Sorry about the mess lately. Between the attacks and the various hardware glitches and a couple of screwups on my part, munu hasn't been as stable as you deserve.

Fortunately, my personal chaos of the past week is nearly over, and we have a new server on the way to take over the Jawa Report. So we've downgraded from Chaos Level 5 to Chaos Level 4, and over the next couple of days we'll get back to Chaos Level 2, which is background radiation as far as my life runs these days.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 02:21 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 18, 2006

Blah! Part 37

Both servers got rebooted. I don't know why. The shared drive didn't mount. I know why. Fixed.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 10:23 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Turkish Digital Anti Terror Team

I believe in coincidence but, given the recent DDoS attacks, I did find it odd and/or funny that I (and several other mail recipients at yahoo.ca) received an email from the "Turkish Digital Anti Terror Team." Their alleged email address is turkishdigitalantiterrorteam@fast.fm.

Anyone read Turkish? The sole content was the subject:

Hotbird uydusunu vuracak delikanli araniyor

Yeah, I know. It probably says they have amazing offers for low-cost watches/prescription drugs/penis enhancers/teen girl porno.

But if, by chance, they are selling halva at cut-rate prices I need to know now so I can order me some.

Posted by Debbye at 06:01 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

June 16, 2006

Splat, Again

Kei suddenly crashed. I got the techs to reboot it, and two minutes later it crashed again.

Rebooted again, and currently working, but disconnected from the net while I investigate.

Annika sez: i heard a rumor about a hacker threat?

Yes. It's a group of Turkish Islamist hacker-wannabe's going after The Jawa Report. They can't actually break in, so they've settled for a Distributed Denial of Service attack which takes us offline.

Unfortunately, the shared filesystem I built to keep us going in these situations decided to choose today to drop off its perch, so I wasn't able to bring everything back up on the other server. Right now, I'm copying everyone's files across, one blog at a time.

Which doesn't work for the Wordpress blogs, unfortunately. Which is why I never wanted to host a large number of Wordpress blogs. They're dead easy to set up, but it's a royal pain to manage them all.

Bah. Need chocolate.

Update: Okay, I think it's all fixed, except for The Jawa Report, which will be back as soon as the attack is over.

I have managed to separate things so that when an attack starts, we can just block it, and only The Jawa Report will go offline.

I finally worked out what was screwing everything up - the private network between the two servers went wonky. Now that that is fixed, we seem to be fine.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 11:17 PM | Comments (19) | TrackBack

Minxlets June 16 Edition

Block tags are in!

Sort of. The only working block tag handler right now is comments, but it shouldn't take too much work to get it going for posts as well. Most of the work involved was refactoring the template engine. The requirements for block tags aren't that complex, about fifteen lines of code - but since the template engine had no real support for block tags, I would have had to add fifteen customised lines of code for every new tag.

The refactoring cut that down to four one zero.

Plus, it provides the beginning of a plugin system for template tags, because it dynamically loads the handling routines for the block tags.

Other than that... not much. Busy day. Forms are still coming. More later.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 08:48 AM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

CPanel Don't Like Me!

Hi Pixy,

When I try to get to CPanel, it never gives me the login screen - I never get an error, but it isn't loading for me at all. Can you give me some advice? I know my hubby was having some issues previously, so thought I'd check with you. :-)

Take care!

Posted by Merri at 05:57 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

June 15, 2006

Blacklist Update

Much as Trey Givens' blog was blocking "tr com," it would seem that "br com" is also being blocked.

I have a regular commentor who keeps getting blocked. That doesn't really stop him; he just changes his email address to .net instead of .com, but that dirty pervert is now pestering me to have this fixed instead of for sexual favors.

Let's just say I thrive on routine. Can we do something?

Posted by Flibbertigibbet at 08:27 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Slightly Broken Blog

So is the "old" system still limping along in various states of brokenness, or is it just me? My blog still has issues when posting that sometimes the post doesn't actually make it to the main page until I rebuild all. And sometimes when I make a post, it goes to the main page, but the comments and permalink pages generate 404 errors until I rebuild all. Mostly this seems to be with posts that are posted with deferred, but I haven't been able to narrow it down just yet.

I'm excitied about the new system, but I'm going out on vacation for a couple weeks very soon and I hope to have deferred posting going on for that whole time I'm gone -- so I'd not want to switch over (unless I have to, I suppose) until after I get back...

Thanks again, Pixy!

Posted by Ogre at 02:22 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Minxlets June 15 Early Edition

I got the form processing framework in place this morning. This includes customisable template-driven forms and a dynamic system for form handlers. That allows us to have plugins that add entirely new processing features to Minx, and can be installed or uninstalled on the fly, per blog.

(We don't have plugins for new template features yet, but I will be adding that.)

Later today I'll implement forms for comments, searches, and (if I have time), post, comment, and trackback management. Once those are working, you'll just about be able to switch over to Minx completely.

The last big thing left to implement is block tags. These are fiddly because to implement them fully I need to dynamically construct SQL queries from the options specified in the template, but think I can get a fair way by just validating the options and plugging them into a set of pre-defined queries. I can probably get that in on the weekend.

From there, it's all about features, more features, more more features, and lots of testing and performance tweaking, but the basic system will be in place.

Update: Just replaced the template loader with a template cache. The new forms system will lead to a lot of new templates, even if you don't normally look at them at all, and it doesn't make sense to load them up every time. So templates are now loaded on demand and cached.

The new templated comment form will go in tonight, and more forms will follow tomorrow.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 01:49 AM | Comments (14) | TrackBack

Pixy, Urgent Question!!

Were the movies Airplane! and Airplane 2! really released in Australia as Flying High and Flying High 2? 'Cuz, like, if they were, that would be kinda really weird n' stuff. Thanks in advance for the info! :)

Posted by Tuning Spork at 01:25 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 14, 2006

one more blacklisty thing

Evidently "blogsome.com" is being rejected now. Can we get this rectified? I have a couple of regular commenters who would like to leave their URL/blogmail.


Posted by caltechgirl at 07:19 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Trackback spam

Can trackbacks on the edit page where the "5 most recent pings" are recorded be configured to take us to the appropriat post rather than as a link to the site of the spammer. That way, we could do our own blacklist perhaps on our sites based on the ping and/or delete the ping from the post in question.

Posted by GM Roper at 06:22 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Technorati issue and promoting a blog

If you look at my blog, you may notice that a part of the search button is blocked off. How would I fix this (being not as experienced in HTML is everyone else)?

What advice or articles would you direct a person to to learn how to promote a blog?

Posted by Matthew at 11:50 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Optimising SQL For Fun And Profit, Part The First

I replaced the separate comment counter for each post with this combined query:

do_sql('select *, count(comment_id)
from mt_entry, mt_author
left join mt_comment
on comment_entry_id = entry_id
where entry_blog_id = %s and
entry_status = 2 and
author_id = entry_author_id
group by entry_created_on desc
limit 20 offset %s',
Result: 27 queries taking 0.01 seconds, 121 records returned.

20 down, 20 to go.

Okay, I made the comment routine a little smarter: Don't query the database for the comments for a post when you already know there aren't any.

Result: 19 queries taking 0.01 seconds, 111 records returned. (There are less records now because a post with 10 comments have been bumped off the front page while I was testing.)

Posted by Pixy Misa at 11:49 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Minxlets June 14 Edition

New stuff today:

The SQL query manager I mentioned before is in. You'll see at the bottom of the page a line like

47 queries taking 0.06 seconds, 157 records returned.
Which shows you the number of SQL queries sent, the elapsed time spent performing the queries, and the total number of records retrieve. I'd like to reduce the number of queries... In fact, I'm not sure how it even gets to 47. Unfortunately, if you're displaying comments inline, Minx needs to issue a separate query for each post to fetch those comments. It seems to perform reasonably well anyway; once the data is cached, the time for those 47 queries drops to 10 milliseconds.

Ah, I've worked out where the 47 queries comes from:

1 query to read the blog record.
1 query to read the site record (which is something I've added to the standard MT datbase; it holds extra settings for Minx/MT).
1 query to load the default templates.
1 query to load the blog templates.
1 query to validate the user, if he/she has an active login.
1 query to load the entries for the page.
20 queries to count the comments.
20 queries to load the comments.

Uh... that's 46. I have no idea what the other one is. But I can definitely reduce that number.


Like templates for your posts! You can define a macro such as - say - {DWL}, and whenever you write {DWL} in a post, it gets turned into <a name="DWL" title="Don't write letters!">DWL</a>, which looks like this:

(Mouse over it to see the popup description.)

Macros also support field expansion, so you can define your {DWL} to be something like "Don't write letters $1", and then when you use it in your post, you can have something like {DWL "and this time I mean it!"}. The parameters that you put in your post get substituted into the macro, and expanded version replaces the macro call in your post.

With me so far?


Well, macros can do more than that: They can also pull template tags right into the text of your post. If you define {comments} as "This post has $1 comments", and then write in your post {comments [post.comments]}, the correct value will get plucked from the database and put right into your post, wherever you want it.

Currently, the actual macro text doesn't get template parsed, but that would be an easy to do if I decide it would be a sane thing to do. There's such a thing as making a system too flexible.

Simpler Stuff

If that broke your head, then never fear, there are some nice simple things in today's release as well. New magic tags:

[quote:random template]
[quote:cycle template opt_time]
[image:random template]
[image:cycle template opt_time]

[quote:random] pulls a random quote out of a selection stored in a template, one quote to a line. You can't have a line break inside a quote, but you can format it with HTML however you want. I've put one of these on the demo version of Munuviana, though I've forgotten what most of our tag lines were.

[image:random] does the same thing with images. Just put the <img src="blah blah"> tags in the template, one to a line. Great if you have a set of rotating banners (and I know some of you do). No PHP or Javascript hacking required!

[quote:cycle] cycles through a list of quotes, changing by default every hour. opt_time optionally changes this to however many seconds you want.

[image:cycle] does the same thing for a list of images.

I think that's all right now. I'm still working on the forms processing module, and unfortunately I just got a big distraction dropped on me so the pace of development will slow down until next Tuesday. There's still lots more goodies to come, though, and I'll try to keep releasing an update every day with at least one new thing.

Update: Oops. I edited the program on my notebook, uploaded it to the staging area for testing, got it working, put it in the live area - and then, instead of copying the new live version to mu notebook, I copied the version on my notebook over the live version, wiping out an hour and a half of debugging.

Of course, I had a backup. I always have a backup. Sometimes I manage to really screw up and overwrite my backup too, but not this time.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 08:27 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


blog.mu.nu is now back on Yuri. If you can see this, that should mean it's working. Unless it isn't. You know how these things work.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 07:44 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Test Test

Testing new Minx features {test}...

Posted by Pixy Misa at 01:43 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Cpanel woes

Pixy, I get this when I click on the File Manager in Cpanel:

[a fatal error or timeout occurred while processing this directive]

Posted by Vinnie at 12:27 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

June 13, 2006

Disk write test failed

When I try to add an email forwarding in cPanel, I get:

The disk write test failed. You may have exceeded your quota, or the disk is full.

Posted by David Boxenhorn at 04:02 PM | Comments (6)

One More Time

During the Great Blog Whiteout of last Friday, I moved the blog.mu.nu site from Yuri (where the blogs live) to Kei (where the blogs really live) because I thought that was part of the problem. It wasn't, but since then all the blog processing has been happening on Kei. Ace of Spades HQ and The Jawa Report are now also hosted on Kei, because Yuri was running out of bandwidth. The result is that Kei, which was lightly loaded and generally zoomy before, now grinds a bit a times.

I'm going to move blog.mu.nu back to Yuri, leaving blog2.mu.nu on Kei. That should balance things out a bit. There might be a hiccup or two while this is happening, but I'll do it during the day, my time, which is the middle of the night for the US, so most of you should miss the excitement.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 01:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Minxlets June 13 Edition

What's new in Minx today? Well, I cleaned up the code, splitting up a big chunk of code into nice, easy-to-manage procedures... and breaking everything in the process. Then I fixed that, which got me back to where I started, function-wise.

Added smilie support. You can see that in action now. See: :) :D ;)

You can configure any smilies you want using your mxSmilies template:

Smilies Template
:) <img src="http://www.mu.nu/Forums/images/smiles/orange_smile.gif">
:( <img src="http://www.mu.nu/Forums/images/smiles/orange_sad.gif">
:-) <img src="http://www.mu.nu/Forums/images/smiles/orange_smile.gif">
:D <img src="http://www.mu.nu/Forums/images/smiles/orange_biggrin.gif">
:p <img src="http://www.mu.nu/Forums/images/smiles/orange_razz.gif">
:-p <img src="http://www.mu.nu/Forums/images/smiles/orange_razz.gif">
:P <img src="http://www.mu.nu/Forums/images/smiles/orange_razz.gif">
:-P <img src="http://www.mu.nu/Forums/images/smiles/orange_razz.gif">
;) <img src="http://www.mu.nu/Forums/images/smiles/orange_wink.gif">
Just put the smilie code, for example, :), followed by a space, and then the img tag that will replace it. One smilie to a line, please!

Added gzip support. This makes pages download faster - 10 milliseconds of compressing can reduce the HTML file to one quarter the original size. As far as I know, all current browsers - Internet Explorer, Mozilla, Firefox, Safari, Opera and Konqueror at least - support this. It also saves bandwidth on the server, which means we can host more blogs at munu without sending Pixy bankrupt.

Working on form processing. Currently the comment entry and search routines are separate programs; I'm merging them into the main program and adding full template support for both forms and form results. That will probably be in place tomorrow.

Also, something I did yesterday that you might not have noticed yet: If you are logged in to Movable Type at blog2.mu.nu, Minx can now pick up your login, and confirm that it is valid against the MT password file. This means that Minx and Movable Type can share logins. Also, since Minx knows you're logged in even when you're just reading the blog, it lets me do things like allowing users to edit comments. No more oopsie, I made a typo and now I'm stuck with it - you can go back and fix it. Well, right now you can't, but tomorrrow for sure.

I was digging around in the code for the first version of Minx (or possibly the 0.2 or 0.3 version; I can't remember which is which) and found that I had already written a much more powerful conditional processing system that is 95% compatible with the new template engine, so I'm going to patch that in as well.

That's all for Minx for today; see you all tomorrow. I'm off to watch cartoons on my new TV.

Oh, that's the other thing I was doing: A database wrapper that tracks the number of queries executed, the time each one takes, and the number of records returned. Useful for tuning your templates and for automatically aborting templates that run out of control.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 01:25 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tracks Are Back

Hi all!

Trackbacks are back in business. Some of them were lost during the attack, either rejected immediately or logged and then overwritten, but we do have about 50,000 that made it through and were waiting to be processed.

And that's after the stage 1 and 2 trackback-blocking methods (1 is changing the name of the trackback script; 2 is blocking the worst of the bastards either in the firewall or in Apache, before the trackback is even recorded). All told, the number of trackbacks arriving at munu is something like 100,000 per day.


Anyway, of the 50,000 that made it through, 49500 were rejected by Snark, leaving 500 to actually update the blogs. Normally Snark rejects about 99.8%, but since 80% of the trackbacks now don't even make it to Snark, that's probably about right.

One minor hitch - I lost the latest copy of the Snark blacklist, and had to go to an old backup. Since Snark builds its blacklist on the fly based on Snarkian probabilities, that's probably not too much of a problem. If someone sent us 200,000 trackbacks before but got lost along with the blacklist, they will very quickly and automatically find themselves back on it if they try that again. (And the worst thing they can do is try to get lots of trackbacks through very fast. Anyone who sends more than 5 trackbacks in a minute gets blacklisted temporarily; send 50 in 10 minutes and Snark makes it permanent.)

Snark is currently crunching away updating blogs with the new trackbacks... Which takes forever. The sooner we move to Minx, the better.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 01:09 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Missing Files

Ever since the server craziness, I've gotten the following message after clicking on any file I uploaded with cPanel:

Not Found

The requested URL/[folder]/[file name].[extension] was not found on this server.

Additionally, a 404 Not Found error was encountered while trying to use an ErrorDocument to handle the request.

Apache/1.3.36 Server at www.sithoughts.mu.nu Port 80

Again, this only happens with cPanel, as I can still get to files that were uploaded the conventional way.

Suggestions? Sorry if this has been covered and I missed it somehow.

Posted by CD at 07:31 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Yes, I Know What It Looks Like

What can I say? I like that design. ;)

Posted by Pixy Misa at 04:42 AM | Comments (12) | TrackBack

June 12, 2006

Assitance, Please? :-)

Hi Pixy,

I was getting some reports yesterday that people couldn't see any of my posts on merrimusings.mu.nu beyond 6/4. On my end, all was okay and eventually those who said they couldn't see them could see them later. When I logged in this afternoon, I am now only seeing posts up through 6/4...all the remaining posts and comments beyond 6/4 to present are MIA. Anything you might be able to do to help me out? Thanks so much for anything you can do to assist! :-)

Posted by Merri at 09:58 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Minx 101

Some time this week - assuming we don't get torpedoed again - I will be switching Munuviana over to Minx.

Yes, Minx.

Or mostly Minx. What I've done is adapted Minx to the Movable Type database. That way, you don't need to import your posts, change your logins, anything. You can keep using the existing Movable Type interface until the Minx interface is up to scratch. It just works.™

Except for templates, which are a bit different. Here's a quick overview of how templates work in Minx. There are (currently) three main templates that control the layout of your site: The Page template, the Post template, and the Comment template:

Page Template
<title>Minx Dynamic Pages for Movable Type</title>
<link rel="stylesheet" href="http://ai.mu.nu/styles-site.css" type="text/css" />
<script language="JavaScript" src="http://blog2.mu.nu/cgi/showhide.js"></script>
<div id="container"><div id="center"><div class="content">
Very simple. You start with a standard HTML/XHTML page, and the Minx tags are marked with [square brackets]. If you have something in your template that's in square brackets that's not a Minx tag - intentionally or unintentionally - it just gets spat out unchanged. (The divs look a bit odd, but that's because I'm using an unmodified MT3 stylesheet for testing.)

We can see three types of tags here:
A simple tag, [blog.name], which just looks up the matching database field for the currently active blog and inserts it into the page at that point.

A here tag, which is used to simplify block processing. The [posts.here] and [comments.here] are the most common examples of this. Without any parameters** they loop through the posts or comments using the default settings for your blog and the default post/comment template, as appropriate.

The Post and Comment templates look like this:

Post Template
<p class="posted">
Posted by: [post.authorlink] at
<a href="[post.url]">[post.time]</a>
| <a href="#" onClick="ShowHide('cc[post.id]'); return false;">Comments ([post.comments])</a>
| <a href="http://blog2.mu.nu/cgi/mcomment.cgi?post=[post.id]">Add Comment</a>
| Trackbacks (Suck)
<div id="cc[post.id]" style="display:none">
<p class="posted">
<a href="#" onClick="ShowHide('cc[post.id]'); return false;">Hide Comments</a>
| <a href="http://blog2.mu.nu/cgi/mcomment.cgi?post=[post.id]">Add Comment</a>

Comment Template

<div id="c[comment.id]">[comment.text]</div>
<p class="posted">
Posted by: [comment.authorlink] at [comment.datetime] </p>
Again, we have regular HTML, with just a bunch of simple tags to insert the desired values. The Post template might look a bit complicated, but it is handling inline comments; a Post template without comments might be just:
<p class="posted">
Posted by: [post.authorlink] at
<a href="[post.url]">[post.time]</a>
| <a href="http://blog2.mu.nu/cgi/mcomment.cgi?post=[post.id]">Comments ([post.comments])</a>
| Trackbacks (Suck)

Minx is intended to let you have full control of post and comment selection from the template, overriding the default settings, but those tags are more complex to process and don't work yet.

Finally, we have magic tags. We have two examples of this, the pager and the stats. Magic tags do magic stuff that isn't necessarily available using regular template substitution. The pager lets you go to the next/previous page of the blog (a fancier pager is coming); the stats show performance information (and a fancier version of that is coming too).

The central idea is to make as much of the feature set as possible available without making the templates scary. So you don't need to have a complex nested structure of post tags and comment tags. Just put [posts.here] in your page template (with maybe some optional parameters) and [comments:here] in your post template. Set the appropriate settings on your blog options screen and you're in business!

Maintaining Your Templates

Minx pulls its templates dynamically from the MT database. If you create index templates called mxPage, mxPost, and mxComment, Minx will use them to override the default templates. (Which are loaded dynamically as well, from blog number 1 - the old Ambient Irony blog.)

You can just use Movable Type to do this right now, but in the next week or so we will have a very nifty WYSIWYG (well, WYSIMOLWYG) template editor, which should make things a lot easier. No need for rebuilds to see your changes, either; it's in-stan-taneous!

Advanced Features

You can also include templates using the [include template] tag. The template to be included must also begin with "mx", since Minx only looks at those, but you don't actually specify the "mx" when you use the tag. So, for example, you can create a blogroll template called mxBlogroll and include it with the tag [include blogroll]. (It's not case-sensitive.)

Minx supports conditional processing with if and ifn. if and ifn can be used with any simple tag to test whether the value of that tag is "true" or not. A tag is true if it is a non-zero number or a non-empty string, otherwise it is false. Any text between [if tag] and [/if] is included if the value of the tag is true. And any text between [ifn tag] and [/ifn] is included only if the value of the tag is false.

You can't nest if tags, though you can nest an ifn inside an if and vice-versa. If you want to get more complicated than that, for now you'll need to use sub-templates with include.

For example:

[if post.comments]| <a href="#" onClick="ShowHide('cc[post.id]'); return false;">
Comments ([post.comments])</a> [/if]
[ifn post.comments]| No Comments [/ifn]
That will show the inline comments clicky if there are comments, but just the test No Comments if there aren't.

More tomorrow.

Although... If anyone can work out why the examples have gone all shrinky in the test version of Minx, that would be much appreciated. It's the same stylesheet as my blog, but the examples there are normal size.

Update: It was the DTD?! I didn't know the DTD could do that. What. Ever.

Update: Fine now in Firefox, but still squishy in IE 6. But then, so's pre'd text on my blog, so at least it's consistent. Fine in Opera. Fine in Konqueror, so probably also fine in Safari. Weird in IE7, which resizes the entire page.

I blame Microsoft.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 01:13 PM | Comments (13) | TrackBack

June 11, 2006

Sneak Preview

Right here.

Far from finished, but coming along nicely. The production version will use a different web framework that is about five times faster; I hope to set that up in the next week or so. In the meantime, play around!

Update: Special cached version for high-volume web sites here. The cached version is now standard! However, Minx doesn't cache pages for you if you are logged in. That means that if you are updating the site (posting entries or comments, tweaking the templates) you always see your changes immediately. But if you get an Instalanche or Slashdotted/Farked/Digged/whatever, 99.9% of visitors won't be logged in, and will get the fast cached version of the page.

Pages are cached as they are generated, and if the cached version is less than five minutes old it coughs that up instead, which can be a lot quicker.

For example, processing time for Ace's blog is 0.12 seconds. Retrieving it from the cache is less than 0.01 seconds.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 07:20 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

June 10, 2006

Trackbacks out of kilter

I've gotten a number of links (and the author said trackbacks too) but none have come through. I checked my setup to insure I'm accepting trackbacks and I am. Can this be fixed?


Posted by GM Roper at 02:05 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

June 09, 2006

File Manager Error

After I tried to login and upload and image in to my file manager, I get this error:

[a fatal error or timeout occurred while processing this directive]



Posted by Sacramento Republicrat at 03:17 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

I am unable to publish.

After the mysterious disappeance of my blog last night, it was back this morning.

I attempted to publish a post and the system bounces me out to the login page rather than publishing the story.

It is saved as a draft, but will not upload.

Posted by Sactodan at 02:08 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


I don't know which is worse, those bastard denial-of-service attackers, or those bastard spammers.

Just die, will you?

Posted by Pixy Misa at 11:54 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Vanishing Blogs

For some reason, Movable Type has started silently failing when rebuilding the static pages. That means that when someone leaves a comment, your blog might suddenly disappear.

If this has happened to you, log in to MT, go to Rebuild Site, and choose either Rebuild Indexes or Rebuild All. Just try not to do it all at once, or the system wil get sloooooow.

I've made some changes that I think will fix it, but they will take a couple of hours to take effect. (Yes, it involves DNS again.) I've also kicked off a rebuild of the main index of all our MT 2.6 blogs, and will repeat that every few minutes for the next couple of hours until I'm sure the problem is fixed.

We have *got* to get off Movable Type. I don't think this is MT's fault, but there are too many things that can go wrong when the intallation is the size ours is - and we can't upgrade.

By a strange coincidence, I start my new full-time job writing our new blogging system tomorrow. (Yeah, tomorrow's a Saturday. But if someone's willing to pay me to write a new blogging system that I can use for munu, I'll work Saturdays.)

Update: CRAP!!!!! It's still broken.

Update: Okay, it seems to be fixed now. Rebuild your blogs at leisure. Report any more problems in the comments.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 03:16 AM | Comments (14) | TrackBack

Denial of Trackbacks


Not that you probably don't already have enough to worry about, but I have noticed that trackbacks on a number of sites do not seem to be working. That is when I click on the their trackback link I get a 404. From my random testing it seems to happen for those of us using a pop up window for trackbacks - like Munuviana.

Posted by Stephen Macklin at 02:46 AM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

My Blog Has Gone Missing

My blog has sudenly gone missing - All I get is a blank white page.

There have been numerous DDOS probs lately, I know, but this time the iother Munuvians that are usually out when mine is are all up and running fine.

Any ideas??? Apparently others aren't able to access it, and I just checked a slew of Munuvians in the sidebar, they are all fine.

Mark - www.knockinonthegoldendoor.mu.nu

Posted by Old Cloots at 01:22 AM | Comments (15) | TrackBack

June 08, 2006

Good News, Dickhead News

Good news first. I've been in contact with the network guys at Insight Broadband, and they've found the problem and fixed it. So if you're with Insight, and you're using the special DNS addresses, please switch back to using Insight's DNS. Yes, the special addresses still work, but the next time mu.nu changes servers, they will stop working, and your internet access will die. (Not just for mu.nu, for everything.)

Dickhead news: The denial-of-service attack is still going. Latest attackers all come from Turkey, and I think I've identified the target.

I can block the attacks and prevent them from causing trouble, but only after they attack. So between the time when they launch their assault and the time I drop the bomb, there could be some hiccups. If you can't get to a blog, give it a few minutes and try again. If anything goes off the air for a long time, do email me. I might already be working on it, but it might be something I missed.

Thanks for your patience everyone! :)

Posted by Pixy Misa at 10:09 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 07, 2006

Blogrolling Question

I guess I'll just ask this, even though I've come across a few references on the internet at large. How does one implement a blogroll in MT 2.6? And if there's more than one way to do it, what's the most efficient/trouble-free/easiest? Well, I know there are tradeoffs between those objectives, of course.

Posted by Demosophist at 09:46 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 06, 2006

Word Press Blogs Down

Pixy I was just over here looking for the latest news and realized you might not have received any email about this... but the blogs using Word Press are down. The page shows:

You don't have permission to access / on this server.


Yada Yada Yada.

Anyhow, thought I would pass that along, because I KNOW you don't have anything else to do with your time.

Damn DDOS jerks.

Posted by Teresa at 02:33 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack


... hello, all.... since the latest changing of servers (thanks for all the hard work, Pixy), my mail is rejecting my login.. I have tried changing my password via controlx panel and get a disk read/write error... and when I attempt to get into the webmail via controlx, I get a database error.... my normal client (Outlook) can't login either.. I am getting username/password message.... is anyone else having trouble with their mail?...

all the best,


Posted by Eric at 01:48 PM | Comments (22) | TrackBack

June 05, 2006

Deferred Posting

I presume that with all the uping and downing of servers that the deferred function has been disabled for the time being. In case it just got missed in the moving and twisting of metal things, here's a note that it isn't working at the moment.

And if there is time to play with it, any idea if deferred pinging might be a possibility in the future?

Thanks again.

NOTE: Sorry abouts sounding callous about the DOS -- I only just now found out about it as I haven't been online -- and my blog and this one appear to be working just fine, so I guess the DOS is over? If not, please send me the home address of the source of the DOS so I can mail them...something...

Posted by Ogre at 12:02 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

DoS Attack Update

Hi everyone.

As I mentioned earlier, on Saturday mu.nu was hit by a distributed denial-of-service attack (DDoS), which took out one of our servers, Yuri - the server that hosts most of our blogs. I posted on Ace's blog because it is hosted on a different server and was one of the few blogs still up.

I moved all the blogs to our other server, Kei, and after a few hiccups, we were up and running again.

About sixteen hours ago there was a brief attack on Kei, and then four hours ago the attack resumed in full force, taking out pretty much everything.

With the help of our hosting providers I have now firewalled off enough of Eastern Europe and East Asia that the servers are more-or-less coping. I'll need to keep a constant watch on things though.

I think - just maybe - we may have pissed somebody off.

Anyway, bedtime for me (it's 3AM here in Oz). See you all later.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 12:01 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

New Search Routine

There's a new search routine in town, and it goes whooosh!

It's a drop-in replacement for the MT search, only it's not an evil pile of crap.

Drawbacks: It ignores your templates, and the links currently don't work if you have customised your individual entry archive filenames. (Beyond the html/shtml/php thing, that is.)

At the moment it only scans the last 500 posts, but once we get both servers running again I'll be able to improve on that.

Update: After a bit more hacking (Ace's blog made it explode) it seems to be working pretty well. Have a play with it and let me know what you think.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 05:46 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

June 04, 2006

New Comment Thingy

I'm testing the new comments system live here at Munuviana.

Because it is 100% 98% backwards-compatible with the standard MT comments, we're running both side-by-side.

Right now, you can't post comments with the new system, only view them. That's why there's a big "DOES NOT WORK" message there. When it does work, I'll remove the message. ;)

Update: Now you can post comments! But it doesn't rebuild the blog page, so the comment count won't change automatically. I'll fix that next.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 11:34 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

June 03, 2006

I've been Blacklisted

Someone has blacklisted the word "online" which happens to be part of my email address. I don't like commenting with a bogus address. I don't even like having to use 0nline. I think that's just rude. It's really annoying when I have to do it on my own site!!

Can someone with access to and knowledge of the black arts of the blacklist set me free.

I'd be most grateful.

Posted by Stephen Macklin at 07:52 PM | Comments (3)

Mail issues

I'm getting a lot of mail at gmroper@gmroper.mu.nu that say "mail undeliverable" but I cannot tell if they are coming to me or from emails that I've sent.

I've not changed anything on the "Horde Options" so I'm not sure what is going on. Any suggestions

Posted by GM Roper at 05:23 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Trimming Apache

I've been adjusting the settings for Apache (our web server) for the duration of our exile from Yuri. Because we're running CPanel, we're sort of stuck on Apache 1.3, which is multi-process but not multi-threaded, and can use LOTS of memory. (Particularly if you have a mix of PHP and CGI apps - which we do.)

On Yuri, Apache was pretty much the only thing running, so it didn't matter if it took over the whole machine. Right now, it does.

I've fairly aggressively trimmed things down to minimize the memory footprint. As a side-effect, you might get a "server busy" message now and then. The alternative, unfortunately, is that the server runs out of memory and it doesn't work for anyone.

So far, it seems to be coping okay, and things are fairly busy right now. I'll keep an eye on it, or if you see a problem, comment and/or email.

(New-born Apache processes weigh in at eight or nine MB. After running a bunch of PHP and CGI apps, a single process can exceed 32MB. We have a maximum 120 Apache processes running. At 8MB each, that's about half the memory used up, which is fine. At 32MB, that's twice as much memory as we actually have, which is a disaster. I've set Apache so that processes have a very limited lifespan. The cost of starting a new processes every ten seconds is far outweighed by the savings in memory.)

Posted by Pixy Misa at 03:13 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

New Comments

I know how much you all love the MT 2.6 comment system and our friend MT Blacklist (cough) but eventually the time comes when you just have to let go.

That time is now a few days from now.

I've pulled the comment routine from the unfinished version of Minx, and the spam filtering logic from Snark, and I'm patching them into a MT sort-of-plugin.

It's fully compatible with existing comments, but much much much much faster. It has automatic retrospective spam filtering, like Snark: It accepts all comments, and then later on comes back and disappears the ones that look like spam. You can even create a template for it in MT, though it's a little different than regular MT templates (read: simpler).

I hope to have a demo version running tomorrow or Monday, and make it available by the end of the week. I'll post more details on how to use it then.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 12:29 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack


Sorry about the explosions, fires, earthquakes and other catastrophes today.

Yuri, the server that runs most of the blogs, got hit by a denial-of-service attack.

After disconnecting the server from the internet (if I left it connected, it would crash), I started copying all the blogs across to Kei, the other server.

Then Kei ran into a spot of disk trouble, and it crashed too.

If you're reading this, it's a sign that things are almost back to normal. Except that the entire load of mu.nu is now sitting on one server rather than two. So I have to pry everything loose again somehow, hopefully without eight hours of downtime this time around.

Update: All blogs have been moved and should be working now. I need to activate Fluffy, and I'm sure I've forgotten a couple of other things. If you run into problems, leave comments here, or email me at andrew -at- pixymisa -dot- net, or both.

Posted by Pixy Misa at 06:09 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

June 02, 2006

Blacklist again....

... howdy neighbors.... I was just informed that this message pops up when certain peeps try to comment...

An error occurred:

Invalid [] range "f-b" in regex; marked by <-- HERE in m/(babes|porn|boobs)[\w\-_.]*\.[a-z]{2,}|(cialis|meridia\b)[\w\-_.]*\.[a-z]{2,}|(diet|penis)[\w\-_.]*(pills|enlargement)[\w\-_.]*\.[a-z]{2,}|(free)[_.\-]?sex([\w\-_.]+)?\.[a-z]{2,}|(levitra|lolita|phentermine|viagra|vig-?rx|zyban|valtex|xenical|adipex|meridia\b)[\w\-_.]*\.[a-z]{2,}|(magazine)[\w\-_.]*(finder|netfirms)[\w\-_.]*\.[a-z]{2,}|(mike)[\w\-_.]*apartment[\w\-_.]*\.[a-z]{2,}|(milf)[\w\-_.]*(hunter|moms|fucking)[\w\-_.]*\.[a-z]{2,}|(online)[\w\-_ at extlib/jayallen/Blacklist.pm line 3098.

... any ideas?....

Posted by Eric at 09:55 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Quit $&*%&*%&^$ing with the *^*#$+* Blacklist

Everytime I try to comment on a munu blog today I get this:
"An error occurred:

Invalid [] range "f-b" in regex; marked by <-- HERE in m/(babes|porn|boobs)[\w\-_.]*\.[a-z]{2,}|(cialis|meridia\b)[\w\-_.]*\.[a-z]{2,}|
(hunter|moms|fucking)[\w\-_.]*\.[a-z]{2,}|(online)[\w\-_at extlib/jayallen/Blacklist.pm line 3098.

(broken up in lines so it all fits on the post)

Can we just set up a system so that only people who know how NOT to ban the entire english language are the only ones who can mess with the blacklist, please? I don't care who did it, I'm just tired of this happening.

I have never had occasion to mess with it, personally. I don't see why most of us ever would. I know there are more than a few who know how not to f*ck this up.

Posted by caltechgirl at 06:46 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Blacklist woe


When did, "ways" become questionable content for a comment?

How am I meant to sing to hannabella in her comments if WAYS is questionable!?! I know my singing is, but the lyrics are sound!


Posted by Tris at 01:53 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack


Ok, so this morning I noticed that I could not access my blog, my friends MuNu blog or even Munuviana. Then this afternoon all seemed to be better... WRONG!

It seems that something has changed my blog. In that my stylesheet seems to be a VERY OLD version.

Did someone do a restore on a server? I have a copy and I can restore it, but I want to make sure that the problem is solved.



Posted by Sacramento Republicrat at 12:49 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

June 01, 2006

Blacklist Weirdness

Usually I can search through the Blacklist when weird things are blocked, find the error and fix it. This time, however, I'm stumped. I'm guessing it's in the wildcard sections which I just can't quite figure out. Right now the following is blocked from comments:


Pixy? Help?

(And there's one other I found earlier...oh yeah:)

us com

Posted by Ogre at 11:46 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

My New Favorite Thing

I know there is furious scrambling (or anime watching) to fix the comments, but Trey Givens over at treygivens.mu.nu asked me to pass along a message to the shiny, happy peoples of Munuviana about his new favorite thing. (The guy has an ego, doesn't he?)

My new favorite thing is the way that my comments prevent me from entering my own name when posting a comment. I have to enter "ey Givens" and then go back to correct it. Otherwise, it tells me that the offensive words I have entered are "com Tr." Apparently, "com Tr" is a new pill for erectile dysfunction, low mortgage rates, and Asian hairless cats or something.

So, there you have it. Trey Givens would like us all to know that his new favorite thing is the his blog is blocking him from commenting. I'll bet he (and the rest of the world) would really love it if it blocked him from posting, but wishes aren't horses, although Christmas is a few short months away. You all know what to buy him.

Posted by Flibbertigibbet at 01:20 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack