A Lump of Coal

for all the evil spammers in the world! And that would be extremely generous compared to what I really want to give them this year.

Grumble. When I saw these notices concerning my usually extremely reliable hosting service, I had a bad feeling. The site has rebooted a number of times over the past day or so, which is very unusual.

[Dec 14, 2006, 8:38 AM] ainaz Downtime

ainaz (www221) became unresponsive under high load and needed to be rebooted. Total downtime was about 15 minutes.

[Dec 13, 2006, 3:42 PM] ainaz Downtime

ainaz (www221) became unresponsive while in service and required a reboot. Downtime was 10 minutes.

Today I received a detailed email report confirming my fears; it seems my site was (quite likely randomly) selected for a denial of service (DOS) attack.

Yes, the ainaz web server crashed again this morning shortly
after 8am EST, and there were many instances of this script running at the
time of the crash:

http://path to comment script/

Unfortunately, it appears that your site/script is the target of repeated
denial of service attacks.

I’m really happy with the response of my ISP. They disabled the errant script, and then provided me with full details of the problem, AND, left it up to me to re-enable the script after I make changes to protect against the spam problem. (Of course, if I crash the server again I don’t think they’ll be as patient, which is only fair.) I pay a little more for hosting at pair.com, but they definitely provide good value for the money. (Apologies to any readers who are also hosted on ainaz; join me in wishing only the best to our evil spammer buddies; heck, anyone can join in that refrain.)

And so, once again, I’ve disabled comments on my site. It’s frustrating and sad, because while I don’t get many comments, I really enjoy the ones I do receive.

I’ve some ideas on how to protect against these scourges of the digital world, and given this isn’t the first time I’ve had to temporarily disable comments, I’m sure I’ll be back.

In the meantime, I’ll do something, maybe turn the comment link into a mailto: or something and trust my email spam defenses to continue to provide adequate protection. (and that’s not a challenge, BTW!)

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