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GPF News Archive

First Post Previous Post Next Post Latest Post January 22, 2013

 

Yikes... it's been over a year since my last official News post. That certainly wasn't something I ever intended. But I'll try to avoid apologizing profusely and just concentrate on what's important. I do intend to make a "state of the comic address" at some point to let everyone know what I've been up to, but that will have to wait until later. For now, all I can say is that if you want more frequent updates on what's going on behind the scenes here at GPF, the official and my personal Twitter feeds, the GPF Facebook page, and my Google+ feed are all updated much more often than the News has been. I promise to try and correct this oversight soon.

But for now, let's stick the the important stuff. First and foremost, the main reason I'm breaking the silence is to inform you that the GPF site will be making a quick server move this weekend. This is a planned and necessary upgrade, but it's one that I've been procrastinating on far too long. Because of this maintenance, the GPF site may be unavailable for portions of the day on Saturday, January 26th. I don't plan on the move taking any longer than a few hours. The site should be available during the move, however certain user-interfacing portions of the site will be locked down to prevent changes. Most notably, the Forum will be locked in read-only mode, while the Premium Account Creator, Account Manager, and the Credit Card Order Form will be temporarily unavailable. Thus, no one will be able to sign-up for or renew Premium accounts during the outage, nor will existing subscribers be able to change their site options. Existing Premium account settings should remain in effect, however. All of these features will reopen automagically once your browser starts pointing toward the new server.

There shouldn't be much anyone has to do in relation to the server move, but some folks may have to take minor action:

  • In particular, Premium subscribers will likely find that Premium "stops working" after the move; the ads will return and you won't be able to see Premium content. This is a quirk of the way the Premium branding cookie is designed, but it's simple to fix. Just log into your account on each affected computer or device and re-enable Premium in each browser. Everything should then work as expected.
  • If the Forum, Account Creator, or Account Manager don't become "unlocked" by Sunday, January 27th, you may need to flush your system's DNS cache. Part of this move involves switching the GPF site to a new server with different IP addresses, and your local DNS cache may still have our domain pointing to the old addresses. Please note that clearing the local cache only helps if the DNS servers provided by your ISP point to the new addresses, and sometimes it takes as much as 72 hours before DNS records update across the whole Internet.
  • Some folks prefer to bypass DNS altogether and hard-code the IP addresses for certain sites into their local machine's hosts file. This is an old trick made less effective by modern server farms where a single domain might point to many different IPs, but some folks still use it. If you happen to be one of the folks who still swear by this trick, make sure to remove GPF from your hosts file at least until sometime next week. Once you're certain that you're pointing to our new IPs, you can update your hosts file accordingly. Note that both our IPv4 and IPv6 addresses will be changing.

The other thing I want to mention is in relation to the old News Notification cookie. If you were one of the folks who took advantage of this feature, you may have noticed that the old notification "light" has disappeared from the front page. This is because the notification cookie had an expiration date of one year after the last News post you read, and... well... I haven't posted a News article if over a year. If you'd like to turn this feature back on, just click the "Want to be notified when the News page changes?" link at the top of the page (or the link at the beginning of this paragraph) and you can turn the feature back on.

That's all for now, folks. More News will be coming, I promise.

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