[cairo] Recent web server trouble and loss of the wiki
cworth at cworth.org
Thu May 10 17:23:12 PDT 2007
Some of you have certainly noticed some problems with the
cairographics.org web site (and other services) this week.
The freedesktop.org machine that hosts this site recently started
misbehaving. We should have lost only web and mailing list service due
to the original, but due to various situations we also had some
interruptions to DNS, git, bugzilla and other services.
After the machine was brought back to life, a new series of
mishaps[**] led to the loss of the cairographics.org wiki
I've now recovered most of the wiki from google's cache, and
cairographics.org is now serving the original content, but as static
pages, not through any wiki. At least the following content is still
* The various sub-pages under "bindings", (I just ran out of steam
when pulling things out of google and converting them over). Feel
free to grab a copy from google or elsewhere if you care about
something here. And let me know if you'd like to put something
back before we get the wiki turned on again.
* The recently added answers to the FAQ page, and its
reorganization. This one is really annoying to me---the google
cache only has the old version of this page. If anyone happens to
have a cached version of the page, please send it to me.
If there are other things that you notice missing from the website,
please let me know.
So, for now, things should be pretty much back in place, but we don't
have any wiki software running, (so people can't just edit pages like
they used to be able to).
After seeing the pain that's entailed by an upgrade of moin, I have no
enthusiasm for putting new data back into that beast.
And with the real loss of data here, I'm quite interested in having a
system that distributes lots of copies of our data. So I'm going to be
looking into setting up ikiwiki which will let us maintain the wiki
with git. That is, people that are already using git to maintain
cairo's source code will be able to use it to maintain the website as
well. But people that want to just use a conventional web interface to
edit the wiki should be able to as well.
So stay tuned for more on that, or let me know if you'd like to help
out with any of this. (If anyone with the appropriate talent wants to
contribute a new look to the website, now might be a good time for
 Daniel's description of the original problem and the unfortunate
exacerbation is here:
 The sequence was like this:
* The machine went through an apt-get-based upgrade after someone
mistakenly put in a more recent package repository source than
* The upgrade pulled in a new version of moin (the wiki software)
which broke compatibility with the existing wiki content.
* We worked fast to migrate wiki content for the many separate wikis
hosted by freedesktop.org. With moin it turns out that this is a
very manual, laborious, error-prone, multi-step process.
* As happens with humans and such processes, there was a mistake
that deleted some content, (after a conversion of cairo's wiki
content failed, when trying to start again, we accidentally
deleted the original content instead of the failed, partially
* No worries, we have backups, right? ... Well, as it turns out, the
wikis _were_ all being backed up in general, but some time ago the
wikis were migrated from one machine to another, and somehow we
forgot to move cairo's wiki. So cairo's wiki has been running
without any backup on freedesktop.org, (which, naturally, none of
us realized until now).
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