Cyber attacks continue

malicious hacker

Malicious hacker.

But we’re winning

Well, last weekend was a washout. I got nothing done that I’d planned, dealing instead with electronic warfare and the extensive site disruption it caused. There were glitches turning up everywhere, caused either by the attack itself or by the methods required to combat it.

Almost two whole days were slowly eaten up, but there was no alternative, for exposing climate change misinformation is more important than anything else. Continue Reading →

A DDOS attack takes CCG down

If you tried to access the blog this morning but were blocked with the message

This Account Has Been Suspended

please accept my apologies.

My web site host explains it was a DDOS attack on this and other sites which brought down their network. We’re back online and on my host’s recommendation I’m looking into CloudFlare, which might bring an end to the malicious inconvenience. Continue Reading →

Posting delayed

A personal note

I’ve been laid low for the last three days by a virus (according to my ever-accurate wife it’s a virus, though it might be a bacterium; when I asked her why she calls it a virus, she was nonspecific—so it left me unsatisfied but ended the conversation) which has gone through the family from one end and out the other from babies to grandparents. Nobody said life would be easy.

Your host is back with reduced but reviving vigour.

Chinese cyber attack thwarted

The Climate Conversation web site has been under determined attack by cyber criminals over the last two months. Over 5.5 million web requests and 1.3 million spam messages deluged the server during September and October. I wondered at the persistently slow responses and recently complained. My web host provider was already diagnosing the problem and yesterday brought the attacks to an end, though at the cost of isolating China. Sorry, China!

Our web traffic, already busy, had soared to three times normal, 80% to 90% of it from China, enormously inflating our log files. The SysAdmin told me:

Your logs have been much larger than normal for months, but only caused the server to stop all processing in the last few weeks. Your logs haven’t processed for over a month but others on the server only stopped when yours hung for a week.

Continue Reading →

Plug pulled on extraordinary site activity

I may never know what caused the outage, but much of the activity originated in China.

Checking on the blog late last night, my heart sank when I saw a notice in garish colours (that was bad, but it wasn’t the worst part) saying “This account has been suspended.”

Both my sites were down, along with the email. I imagined people around the world contemplating undeserved doubts about my ability to pay the bill.

Today, after webmail discussions with my hosting provider (they don’t accept telephone calls, but they are wonderfully inexpensive) and puzzling over my email settings, everything was running again.

The server software automatically suspended my sites (wordshine and fastproof) after the activity spiked to over 13 GB in just a few hours. The sites were moved to another server. What were they up to in China?

I’ll probably never find out, but I’m sorry for the disruption and it’s all back to normal. Thanks for your patience.


Well, my additional apologies!

After posting this piece explaining the outage, I went to read it online, as I usually do, just to make sure it worked properly. What further horror to discover that it and all the other posts gave a 404 Not found error!

The gremlin lay in the way WordPress codes its title links and fortunately was the work of moments to rectify, but I apologise to those who might have been frustrated all afternoon.

Well, back to the writing again!

Housekeeping: can we control the conversation?

Huub Bakker admonished us, saying:

Guys,

Much as Brandoch may throw unsubstantiated statements and ad hominems around, the responses are also laden with ad hominem attacks. This hardly does anyone on this website any favours.

Richard Treadgold, I see that you slapped Brandoch over the knuckles for calling people liars but then didn’t do the same when Richard C accused Brandoch of lying. [although Richard C made the point that his “accusation” was merely a spoof of what Brandoch had said, it’s a fair point that I rarely admonish “friends” – RT]

I enjoy reading a good discussion of the facts and putting people in their place using facts and references but we really could do without the abuse from both sides. Please enforce politeness and respect on both sides, Richard. People coming to this site to be informed would be horrified with the slanging that is currently going on here and might conclude that sceptics are no better than alarmists.

I agree with him. But with one enormous caveat: I have no wish to rule the world. One reason there are no “Rules of conduct” posted here is to avoid adding to the rules we already endure. Courtesy is enough. Continue Reading →

Ava is very cute

It was Ava’s birthday yesterday (she’s one year old). There is a party tonight at Diana’s place. Afterwards some of us – probably not including Ava – will watch the Super Rugby 14 final.

Go the Chiefs!

I’ll see you tomorrow some time.

UPDATE: Some time tomorrow today

How were you to know that Ava is alleged to be my grand-daughter, one of an alleged six such lucky children. It was great to be hosted so well at our daughter Diana’s place in Pakuranga, with her fiance Carl, and staying overnight let me imbibe an extra glass of wine and tankard of ale while watching the climax of the Super Rugby competition.

And it was of course terrific to celebrate Ava’s birthday – go the Chiefs!

To prove beyond doubt Ava’s extremely high cuteness factor, here’s one of the pics I clicked yesterday.

Ava's first birthday party

Personal update

I’ve been sick in bed for the week with a watery head cold. My wife took very good care of me while trying to keep her distance — nasty and painfully spluttery, it was. Much sleeping, reading and eating went on, all in bed, some of it at the same time.

I’m still not fit for polite company but I’m now catching up with work and trying to catch up with this writing. There’s so much to say, and I still like to pass on some current stories to help keep readers informed, such as today’s on black carbon.

I hope you visit other sites, too, just as I do, but putting stories here gives us an opportunity to converse about them and inform local communities. And somebody has to mention the latest sceptical climate news, since the MSM aren’t doing it, are they?!

Thing is, I just cannot cover them all, so I’m sorry if I left something out or haven’t touched on your favourite topic lately, but I’ll get round to it. Drop me a line, if you like, to remind me or to make a suggestion.

There are some things I want to say about NIWA, our legal case and the abortion that is their latest temperature record.

I hope all this will be accomplished soon, with your help and patience.

Cheers,
Richard T.

We’ve moved

A hard disk drive

WordShine moving tomorrow today

Saturday 14:50: Done. Whew!

After spending two days studying the database material I last looked at about six years ago, altering files, moving files and creating and deleting databases, I’ve finally managed to migrate the WordPress installation without breaking it.

Hurrah! This calls for a celebration!

I’m sorry for the interruption to normal service, and I’ve missed you all! But the advantages of moving to the new hosting company include accommodating all the conversations you could ever want to have, even inviting the rest of the world! And if more disk space is needed, it’s fantastically cheap to add it.

Please tell me of glitches

I should ask you (please) to let me know if you come across errors or anomalies on the blog, because I can’t be everywhere.

Thursday 21:56: Still waiting.

I love it that computer equipment is getting cheaper by the month and competition makes the leading entrepreneurs more creative in attracting customers. Because after being hit with an extraordinary invoice for over $2000 for next year’s hosting, I knew I must change web hosts.

That’s when I discovered how inexpensive web hosting has become!

Annual hosting of the Climate Conversation Group (plus WordShine itself) will cost less than half what it did last year. At the same time, we get unlimited bandwidth! Instead of biting my fingernails as the bandwidth rose inexorably and the end of the month approached, I can forget paying for extra bandwidth and concentrate on research and writing. Continue Reading →

Off-line again, sorry

The doctors wanted to give me a life-saving procedure in the hospital tomorrow (Monday) and I decided to let them. Hope to be home again on Tuesday.

Please don’t worry, I’ll be fine — I’ve done this before. I think the surgeons have, too.

UPDATE 14 JUNE

I’m back with more health than before.

The kind thoughts you wrote here gently overspoke my fears of what could be and my heart lightened.

You didn’t have to do that — thank you.

Briefly in hospital

I’m having tests for the good of my health and regrettably cannot contribute as usual. North Shore Hospital doesn’t provide public Internet access and I don’t have the right gear to connect the laptop to the phone.

I’m obliged to type this on a teensy keyboard little larger than a postage stamp, which makes contributing wearisome.

My apologies, therefore, for a seeming absence. Be assured I am here in both body and spirit, carrying a watching brief with the doctors briefly watching.

Happy Easter break

I’ll be out of town over Easter, visiting the latest grandchild who is to be christened. I expect to be back to the computer on Tuesday night, but don’t expect much out of me until later in the week. If anything crops up, feel free to use this “Easter” thread or use the famous Open threads set up by Richard C.

Good luck to you all.

Richard Treadgold.