FlockUpdate for May 2017

Show Notes:

  • 15 Year Celebration was Awesome! Thanks! Looking for the winners? Scroll past the show notes!
  • New Live Chat – Need to talk? Get in touch!
  • New Status Page – It’s now linked in the Customer Zone, replacing the old network status page.
  • Jonah Migration Coming Soon!
  • New Products
  • Summer Break is Here! Update your profile and add contacts! (Quick Video Coming Soon)
  • New FlockHosting getting closer!

The Winners Are:

Here they are! Get in touch to claim your prize! Just shoot me an email or use any of the methods in the communicate page! Final day to claim your prize is June 30th, and prizes will go out by end of July!

  • Google Home – Katie A. – Burbank, CA
  • Amazon Echo Dot – Chris M. – Burbank, CA
  • Video Projector Setup (Projector + Chromecast) – Terrence F. – Byron, MN
  • $5 Starbucks Gift Cards – Brenten G. – Gainesville, VA
  • $5 Starbucks Gift Cards – Dell L. – Katy, TX
  • $5 Starbucks Gift Cards – Karen P. – Langhorne, PA
  • $5 Amazon Gift Cards – Bonnie H. – Versailles, KY
  • $5 Amazon Gift Cards – Victoria M. – Grove City, OH
  • $5 Amazon Gift Cards – Cheri F. – Grand Rapids, MI
  • $5 Redbox Gift Cards – Thomas S. – Mount Joy, PA
  • $5 Redbox Gift Cards – Francois G. – Orangeville, ON (CA)
  • $5 Redbox Gift Cards – Joseph M. – Broomfield, CO
  • 15 Years Hosting – Ron K. – Eureka, MO

And if you have made it this far just a heads up – there are still Founders Club Spots left! ūüėÄ

Have a great rest of May! Talk to you in June!

Why Migrations?

I’ve gotten the question a few times:

“Why are we migrating again? Didn’t we just do this last year?”

Yes, we did. So why again? Let me explain.

The Reasons

Most of the time servers just “work” but as of late some performance issues, security patches, software upgrades, and customer complaints have led to this new migration.

A year ago we made the big jump not because I wanted to, but because of the power issues we were having with a data center the move was not desired but required. My priority to customers outweighs my need for sleep, funds, and I have a commitment to ensure things run smoothly.

Now things as of late have been mixed, network issues, blacklists, etc. but these come and go, however, a year ago the plan was to make a big move to new hardware with SSD’s. Having everything on the newest CloudLinux/CentOS so we’d have longer lifespans on software and updates – but when you can’t even keep the lights on, and some clients leave? You move.

Why this time?

Honestly? It is time. We jumped from the old configuration to the same exact thing, just different location to get out of a datacenter who couldn’t keep the lights on, we moved to fresh hardware, but the configuration stayed the same.

This time I have planned this out for over 6 months. I’ve toyed with various methods, trying out the new features of cPanel, Cloudlinux, and I have reviewed the hardware out there ensuring that in all 4 servers moving, things will run smoothly, high performance, and have room to expand if needed without having to do another huge migration anytime soon.

Servers Are Closed.

Now, this is some news I didn’t share in the FlockUpdate, but I’ll touch on it here. Grace, Lilly, Church and Fellowship after the migrations are closed. No more accounts will be added to them. ¬†I have 3¬†new servers coming in after next week’s migration, Church Hosting (Sanctuary), WordPress Hosting (Press) and Standard Hosting (Ezra) – these should go online within 2-3 days of the migrations being done and will start accepting customers right away!

Yes, 3 server types! Here’s what each has different:

  • Church Hosting – Larger Storage to store church email & files.
  • WordPress Hosting – Optimized for WordPress only, no other website types.
  • Standard Hosting – The classic does it all platform.

So things should grow nicely into these new servers. I am definitely looking forward to WordPress hosting, going to open it up for more testing after migrations so stay tuned for how you can test it out!

There you have it! The reasons, the plan, I actually wanted to type this out because if I talked about it all in the FlockUpdate, we’d all still be watching it as it’d be hours long! ūüôā If you have any questions about migrations or input what-so-ever, post a comment or get in touch with me!

 

 

2014 Mid-Year Rundown!

So, here we are at the 6 month mark, and it has been a busy first 6 months of the year! The last post was posted with some of the usual “goals” that FlockHosting has. The big deal that is coming up is change. What will the last half of the year bring? Here’s a quick rundown of what’s on-going and coming up!

  • Farewell Enhanced Email ¬†…. ¬†Greetings Enhanced Email! Confused? Let me explain.¬†For years we’ve used another provider to provide the service for our Enhanced Email product. However, due to some changes in their system between billing and security, that system will be retired and our new system brought online. If you currently use the service, more information will be coming to you via email by month’s end with full instructions on how I plan to make this migration quick and painless.
  • Email Filtering Service¬†is coming back! While you’ve probably read posts or managed your ASSP settings, Spamassassin Settings, and more, you‚Äôve likely never heard of the original email filtering service, but it’s coming back! Using the great platform from Mailcleaner, one server has been deployed and has been actively tested in relaying clean email. It quarantines and filters email easier than ever! Gone are the days of complex filtering options. Now, you can view your quarantine of spam, viruses and exploits and choose how you want to proceed. Interested? Open a ticket and it’ll be added; because the service is 100% free, it simply needs to be requested!
    quarentine report
  • New Servers¬†are on their way! Why? Security with up-to-date software! While PHP, Apache, nginx, SSH, kernel versions and such may not mean much to you, for me I want to ensure you have the latest and safest¬†to use with your websites! I want to also add¬†new features that come with newer software & hardware. How do you get moved over? Just hang-tight because servers will be spun up and folks migrated slowly but surely. One is coming soon named “Lilly.” This new kid on the block is already rolling with some big specs! Lilly has more RAM than any server to-date!
  • Crowdfunding for Church Hosting¬†is coming… no really. Launch date: June 20!
    fh-crowd
  • Plan Upgrades¬†will be launched the first of July! More storage will be automatically added to your account and free enhanced email filtering will be offered as a free upgrade at sign-up! These upgrades will be passed on to all of you at no additional charge.
  • Plan Pricing¬†is getting a touch-up. For years, I’ve always offered low monthly options starting at $5! Cheaper still if you go for a year! Previously, it was $54/year for Personal and $108/year for Business. Today? Shave it down a bit to $50 a year¬†for Personal and $100 a year for Business! Let’s make it even more affordable to get hosted for a year! Pricing starts Friday¬†on all new accounts! There‚Äôs no better time to get started with hosting!
  • Backups, Backups, Backups!¬†Safety of data has always been a concern, so I’m evaluating some backup systems. I hope to have by year-end a new backup system that you will have complete access to! If I have a backup, you’ll be able to see it from cPanel and restore/manage files! No more are the days of sheepishly opening a ticket asking, “Uhm Chuck… I deleted file XYZ.ABC, can you restore it?” You’ll have access to what I have!
  • WordPress Themes¬†are a staple for a lot of FlockHosting customers, so I’m going to be updating the KB, which has been long silent, with a list of great themes and plugins. I’ve considered a wiki or a forum to let others contribute, but previous attempts have fallen flat. If you would like to contribute a theme or plugin for inclusion in the KB, just email me!
  • FlockHosting.com¬†will be 100% completed by Friday. It will further match the blog and have the latest information, look, and feel. So, stay tuned! Thanks for reading! Stay tuned… more great things are coming very soon!

So, there you have it‚Ķ the run-down of what is to come! I know it’s a lot to read; it was a lot to write. ūüôā I hope to get back to the usual FlockUpdates soon, either via audio or video, but getting some regular info flowing to you guys can be difficult when you’re the Server Guy, Billing Guy, and Designer. Things tend to get busy! So lend me a hand while you’re reading – head over and be 100% sure your account information is up-to-date! Helps make my life easier!

Thanks for reading! Stay tuned… more great things are coming very soon!

FlockUpdate for December 2013

Show Notes

  • Final Update of 2013!
  • New Show Format – Audio vs Video (Podcast Functionality soon!)
  • Year of Growth
    • Church Hosting Growth
      • Send in Feedback! Your review is appreciated!
      • Fundraising/Crowdfunding in 2014!
    • Normal Hosting Growth!
      • New servers packages!
      • Backend software changes in first quarter!
  • 2014 ahead! Keep in touch, Keep FlockHosting in your prayers!
  • Quarterly Update going out tomorrow!

Happy New Year! Welcome to 2014!

Server Adjustments and a Promo!

So some changes coming slowly as I roll out the Customer Appreciation Upgrades – while everyone is getting some additional storage and bandwidth – I am making some changes under the hood to all servers, what are those changes? Here’s a breakdown per-service:

Webserver:

  • Removing Frontpage Support 100% from the fleet – it has not been supported and likely in time will become a security risk. However webDAV support is active on all servers so you can manage/publish your website with Frontpage just need to adjust things to a webDAV connection!
  • PHP Upgrade – Going to move all servers from 5.2. builds (which ended support in 2010) to 5.3 – so a good time to ensure your scripts are up to date! But if you hit any snags, assistance will be available to help get upgraded.
  • Ruby Activated on all accounts/servers – Some have asked about the Ruby Platform, some accounts/servers had it as a new build, however going to roll it out for general use and access. Unsure about ruby? Here is some info about it.

Database:

  • Upgrading MySQL to 5.x builds – will still offer support for 4.x configuration options and password support, however to stay safe & secure in the long-run this will be happening to all servers by years end. If you have any concerns? Please touch base with me.
  • Adding PostgreSQL to all servers, a few customers have requested it, and it is rolled out in a few configurations – this will be added for all, cPanel will reflect options for databases as well.

MailServer:

  • Migration from Courier IMAP -> Dovecot. Uses fewer system resources, and has some great configuration options – too some Blackberry support – and has worked well on newer server configurations.
  • Continued Adjustments on ASSP filtering, going to have a video guide next month of some tips and tricks to get things even more fine tuned for you!
  • Full SSL support with signed SSL certificate for server hostname – if you want to go SECURE¬†connection¬†change your email settings from mail.yourdomain.com to the server hostname, ie. If you login to cPanel and it becomes “shepherd.flockhosting.com” that’s your server’s hostname.

File Access:

  • Begin offering of Jailed Shell to established customers – this will be announced in greater detail soon.
  • webDAV support for WebDRIVE for all customers.
  • SSL FTP – You can connect securely to FTP using the server hostname.

Billing:

  • Continued Growth of Tutorials in Knowledge Base
  • Improved Integration of Communicate Options into your Profile
  • Guides on setting up Authorized Users to your account
  • Loyalty Group for Discounts & Special Sales

But that’s the list – this will all begin working thru the day, watch in the evenings on Twitter/Facebook/Announcements on billing for heads up on detailed maintenance which may require some minor downtime with a server reboot – I will be doing my best to plan these out and try to give at least 7 days lead time so you are aware of something coming up.

The Promo Code!

It’s fall! And why not a promo! Thru November 2nd the promo code¬†ITSFALL¬†will get you 15% off your oder! This is a one time discount, so if you want savings on a larger scale, snag 6/12 months of service and you’ll save even more! No limit on number of uses, share with a friend!

In closing….

I want to say thanks again to all who have showed support for me in the upcoming end of my Day Job, I really appreciate the emails, chats, etc. been very supportive! I know God has a plan for all of this, and I know that I am going to be putting in even more time to FlockHosting, some great ideas coming in from fellow FlockHosters which I want to see come together! So stay tuned! Good things ahead, and your continued prayers as always are greatly appreciated!