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A Small Orange vs. SiteGround: customer service FIGHT!

A Small Orange vs. SiteGround: customer service FIGHT! published on 2 Comments on A Small Orange vs. SiteGround: customer service FIGHT!

Well, if you’ve been watching any of the sporadic blog/tumblr posts over the past few days, you know I’ve been working on migrating my site. A lot of the reason it took so long is because I had to keep shuttling between two different incarnations of tech support.

I’m writing it up for anyone who could use a case study of the customer service at these two companies. Or anyone who just wants to read juicy details of data migration.

The project: Moving a grand total of 3.7 GB of data, including 3 separate WordPress installations, tied to 2 different domain names plus multiple subdomains.

Original host: A Small Orange. I got an account there in the halcyon days of 2007, when it was just a scrappy startup with chart-topping reviews. Bought out in 2012 by the notorious EIG, but the original staff was kept on and the reviews stayed high…until some kind of shakeup in 2015, followed by the reviews going off a cliff.

New host: SiteGround. I followed a rec to research this small still-independent Bulgarian company, founded in 2004 but having a growth spurt recently. Their reputation is solid, they get praise for customer support, and it’s deeply encouraging to hear phrases like “strong feature set – especially if you are more technically biased” and “it’s apparent that they invest a lot in their employees.”

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So Leif & Thorn was down for a while this afternoon.

So Leif & Thorn was down for a while this afternoon. published on 3 Comments on So Leif & Thorn was down for a while this afternoon.

With an error message that said something about “account suspended,” which was immediately suspicious, because my web host hadn’t sent me any kind of “we are suspending your account” email. (But I’m A Cat Person is on the same host, and had the same issue.)

Well, it turned out it wasn’t a hack. Turns out A Small Orange can just…accidentally put that error on your site now.

I got into a chat with tech support, where the agent was able to fix it. They explained the glitch as “the permission of the website was not set.” What permission? Not clear (although maybe that was an EFL issue). How and why did it come un-set between this morning and this afternoon? No way to tell. Will this happen again? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Last unexpected downtime was less than a month ago.

Long story short, anyone reading this who has a website and is loving the quality of the hosting, please send me a rec. I don’t need anything fancy, just 5 gigs of space where I can install a few WordPress installations and run them in peace.

WordPress plugin: I cannot praise Visual Editor Custom Buttons highly enough.

WordPress plugin: I cannot praise Visual Editor Custom Buttons highly enough. published on No Comments on WordPress plugin: I cannot praise Visual Editor Custom Buttons highly enough.

This plugin has changed my whole posting experience.

Quick background: Because Leif & Thorn has a multilingual cast, the different languages are indicated by different fonts in-strip, and different colors in the transcripts. The colors are put in by wrapping the dialogue in a bit of custom CSS styles. So far, so good.

The catch is, it was incredibly tedious to copy & paste the HTML. Beginning of every line needed a tag pasted in, end of every line needed a tag pasted in, any mid-line uses of a different language needed both tags pasted on either side…it was mind-numbing. I was always looking for reasons to avoid doing it. Say, if a strip was all Sønheim natives speaking Sønska, readers could probably sort out “everyone understands everything” without an extra layer of disambiguation…right?

And then. And then, Visual Editor Custom Buttons.

I went searching for a plugin like this a while back with no success, but a couple months ago the frustration built to a point where I had to do it again, and wham, there it was. Now when I post a new comic, the text editor looks like this:

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WordPress plugins and offsite crossposts

WordPress plugins and offsite crossposts published on No Comments on WordPress plugins and offsite crossposts

img180I’m trying out Tumblr Crosspostr with Leif & Thorn. If you’re reading this on Tumblr, it’s working!

Especially curious about how the image (on the original post, it’s a right-aligned thumbnail) is going to turn out.

(ETA: the image turns out terrible. Will remember to be wary of that in the future.)

Over on BICP, I’m field-testing the much-more-heavy-duty Social Network Auto Poster for Tumblr crossposting. It can do a bunch of other sites too — but I’m already using the nice lightweight Social to broadcast to Twitter and Facebook, and don’t have accounts on any of the rest.

Going purely by the setup options, I’m liking Crosspostr better. It lets you pick a set of default tags to add to every crosspost! With SNAP, you either have to do that manually, or start adding your webcomic name as a tag to every post. On its own site.

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