WordPress is not only the most popular script that we host, it is also most frequently targeted by attackers. While critical vulnerabilities in the WordPress core are relatively rare, they are fairly common in plugins and themes. It is important that these items are always kept updated to help prevent a compromise.
This can be a confusing process because the WP admin interface may not accurately portray certain situations. For example, if you’ve installed a plugin or theme outside of the WordPress repository, it may always show no updates being available even though that is not the case. The WP admin interface also doesn’t warn when something hasn’t received an update in a while, indicating it may no longer be actively maintained. These are both scenarios that require special attention but are easily overlooked.
Further, if a WordPress is compromised due to a vulnerability it can be very difficult to get the site back online in a secure state. Typically, we recommend a complete fresh re-install because there is no easy way to tell what attackers may have modified or left behind. Last modified dates on files can’t even be trusted once an account has been compromised. Continue reading
Back in March, we refreshed our website and blog, making them responsive and far more mobile friendly. Since then, we’ve be revamping are administrative panel and now finally our client portal. It’s taken longer than we had hoped due to all of the server upgrades taking priority but we’re now very excited to unveil our freshly updated client portal! Below is just a quick comparison of the login pages on iOS.
All of the prior functionality within the portal is still present and organized much the same so it will be very familiar. We’re hoping to add a few more features in the coming months. If you have a moment, we’d love to get your feedback either here on our blog or in a ticket.
As many of you know, we like to freshen up our servers from time to time. While some hosts will leave older hosting accounts on legacy hardware until it is nearly failing, we prefer to keep all clients on the latest iteration of our server hardware. This provides consistency across our fleet of servers and gives our clients the best possible experience. Dealing with old, failing hardware is just as a problematic for us as it is for our clients so we do our best to avoid these situations.
The new servers will have faster hardware across the board from the CPUs to RAM and SSDs. Some software updates will occur as well, starting with the OS as CloudLinux 7 will now be the default for all of our hosting servers. Currently, some of our systems are running CloudLinux 6 with their hybrid kernel. We will also be deploying MariaDB 10.3 on all servers (versus 10.1 currently). I know a few of you have been eagerly awaiting the Recursive CTE and Window Function support. Lastly, we’ll also be adding support for CloudLinux’s Node.js selector once all of the upgrades and migrations have settled down.
We expect to begin these server migrations towards the middle of June, with the first batch of notifications going out here very soon. All migrations will be completed by the end of July. You can expect to receive a ticket notification approximately two weeks before your server’s scheduled migration. There will be no downtime during this process and no changes should be necessary on your end as long as you’re using our DNS. If you have any questions meanwhile, please feel free to submit a ticket and we’ll gladly assist in any way that we can.
PHP 7.3 was released early this month and is now available on all of our servers! As with prior versions, you can easily change the PHP version per cPanel account via the “Select PHP Version” option in cPanel.
PHP 7.3.0 comes with numerous improvements and new features such as:
The migration guide is available in the PHP Manual. Please consult it for the detailed list of new features and backward incompatible changes. For 3rd party applications, it’s best to confirm that they support PHP 7.3 before making the switch. However, if you run into any issues you can quickly and easily revert back to your prior version.
We’re excited to announce that we now support Python and Ruby applications across all of our hosting platforms! These have been popular feature requests and we’re happy to be able to announce their availability. These capabilities are made possible by CloudLinux’s Python & Ruby Selector as well as LiteSpeed’s mod_passenger support. Similar to the PHP Selector, Python and Ruby applications can be deployed directly via cPanel under the Software section as seen below.
If you select “Setup Python App”, you’ll be prompted to select your desired Python version, the app’s directory, and the app’s web address (URI). Currently, Python versions 2.7, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5, 3.6 and 3.7 are available. Continue reading
We’re very excited to announce that on Monday, June 4th, we upgraded all of our hosting plans once again. All plans now include 50% more disk space and bandwidth than before, which can be seen on our website. This change applies to both new and existing clients free of charge. The additional resources are available for you to allocate via your WHM account effective immediately.
No compromises have been made to offer these additional resources. Our network connectivity continues to be of the same high quality and all data remains on pure SSD RAID 10 arrays. We hope that you’re able to use these additional resources to better serve your own clients and continue growing!
Over the next few months we will be migrating all clients to our new billing system that is now built-in to our existing portal. This will eliminate the need for you to login to a separate billing system to view invoices, update your credit card information, etc. All of this will now be easily accessible from within our portal.
You will receive an email and ticket notification with further details once your account has been migrated. The first batch of migrations were completed yesterday and another batch will go out around the 21st of each month until every client has been migrated. We expect this to take approximately 4 months in total.
As part of this migration there are two important items to take note of:
- Your credit card information will need to be re-entered. Your card information is currently, and will continue to be, stored in a very secure manner that cannot be retrieved. As such, it cannot be migrated automatically and you’ll need to login to our portal to re-enter it once you receive a migration notification.
- Texas residents will now pay sales tax as required. For the past several years we’ve been paying this out-of-pocket because our old billing system couldn’t properly accommodate this.
We greatly appreciate your cooperation and apologize for any inconvenience during this process. Ultimately this will be a vast improvement over our old, separate billing system. If you have any questions or concerns about this migration please submit a ticket via our portal and we’ll be happy to address them. We just wanted to post this quick update so that you would not be caught off guard or worried about phishing when the time comes for your account to be migrated.
With many hosts your account will remain on a particular server until it fails in some way or another. That’s not the way we do things here at Dathorn. We like to be proactive with upgrading or replacing our servers to help avoid failures that happen more frequently as hardware ages. This also gives us a great opportunity to deploy new configurations, operating system versions, etc. so that we can continue adding value to our services.
Over the next several months we will be going through this process once again. All of our existing shared and reseller hosting servers will be upgraded by means of migrating to a new server. You will receive a ticket notification via our client portal once your particular server has been scheduled. Aside from announcing this I wanted to quickly highlight some of the more important changes that will take place as a part of these migrations.
First up are the hardware changes and the most important of these concerns the local storage. Over the past 13 years we’ve gone from SATA storage to SAS drives to our current hybrid SSD / SATA arrays. Now we’re very excited to be migrating to pure SSD storage. All servers will be utilizing new 12Gbps LSI RAID controllers with a minimum of six 1TB SSDs in RAID 10. The performance that we’ve been able to get from these new systems is simply amazing. While other providers may charge extra for (or not even offer) such high speed storage, all of our clients are being upgraded to it free of charge.
We wanted to quickly wish everyone a very happy and prosperous new year! 2014 was a busy year for us as we deployed a new SpamTitan node, migrated all of our off-site servers, deployed a redundant VPN server, and defended against Heartbleed, Shellshock, POODLE, and a critical Drupal vulnerability.
We expect to be just as busy during 2015 as we continue to further enhance our services to better serve our clients. One of the big things we are in the process of planning is the migration of all hosting servers to brand new hardware. Despite the fact that our servers are still very capable and able to handle anything we throw at them, we like to do a full hardware refresh every few years. This helps us make sure your hosting performs flawlessly and likewise helps us avoid hardware failure rates that inevitably increase as time goes on. Stay tuned for another exciting year here at Dathorn!
A lot of things happen behind the scenes here that aren’t necessarily announcement worthy. We wanted an easy way to share this information with everyone and finally decided that a blog would do the trick. This is intended to simply be an informal blog about the inner happenings here at Dathorn mixed with some industry news, security advisories, etc. This will also give us another opportunity to interact with both clients and non-clients outside of our general support duties. Please feel free to register and jump on in with your own comments!