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Never Give Up in Business

I have to admit, the past couple of days have been a trial for me. But I feel as if I have come out the other end a better person.

Yesterday, I made a small setting change on a Windows Server and my clients' websites all crashed. I knew about this at 5:15am because one of those customers is in Bulgaria.

One quick point to note is that these problems only happen on Windows servers, AB Publish's customers are all on a stable Linux server!

In order to fix my customer's problem, I made a small setting change on the server which updated all the sites with minimal security settings. I had to bring these back on line one by one. I then found a customer who had uploaded some code written by another web designer were causing memory leaks which increased the server crashes to once every two hours.

I monitored the memory all day and rebooted the server when necessary and I spent all the time inbetween searching Google for an answer to my solution. However, for every problem, there are 1 million answers, each one completely different from the other!

It was absolutely depressing and I felt like a failure and almost gave up. But that is when I remembered that each time I push on and try, no matter how pessimistic I feel, somehow the solution always arrives. So that is what I did and out of the blue, I read something which inspired me.

Instead of fixing the memory leak, why not run a job that clears out processes regularly. I then found another article concerning memory pools. They have a default setting to clear out redundant processes every 29 hours.

I gingerly changed this to every 30 minutes and anxiously monitored memory usage. For the first time that day, the memory fluctuated instead of gradually increasing.


I woke up today feeling pretty pleased with myself when I then received a call to find out another customer's account had been hacked. It all stemmed because access to the admin area had an extremely insecure password.

The hacker had been everywhere in the system and it took me an age to track down all the malicious files and restore the site from my back-ups. But still remembering the day before, I stuck with it and I believe I remedied the situation.

And then another client called to tell me their editor had stopped working. Again, my investigations found nothing but mystery. When I felt like giving up I just kept on going and eventually found an obscure problem that some JavaScript files do not work in Windows password protected directories.

I have never had such a succession of problems in my working life. However, I feel i have learned two valuable lessons.

Firstly, I am delighted I wrote all of AB Publish's code to work on a Linux server. It is so much more reliable than windows.

Secondly, it reminded me never to give up. It's often at the point of giving up that you are just about to succeed.

So my message to my fellow business people is that no matter how tough things get, just keep on trying and eventually, success arrives!

Wed 9 February 2011 19:00:18

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