You planned well, used your creative skills, used your knowledge of making money online or whatever, and built up a blog or site over a long period of time. And you were successful, either from the point of view of making big money from blogging or nearing perfection in your other goals.
And on a fine morning, or night, you find that your site opens up to show only blank pages, no posts, no images, nothing at all!
If this happens to you what will be your first reaction?
Unless you are a master of codex, html, and all other bits and pieces of things like MySQL, PHP, other software and database requirements and software technologies, your first reaction will be: NOTHING! Or simply put, your mind also goes blank, as your WebPages are.
Let this not happen to you. And let this not happen to any other blogger or webmaster who took blogging or doing anything online as a serious business. But what if it happens? And if you are not good at troubleshooting in case of such problems, what will you do?
I am writing this after solving one such problem that happened to me, and the affected blog is DollarsTips.com, this blog that you are reading.
First, I could not log in, though the site was running alright. As I was busy with so many other things, I could not find time when it happened. I thought let me finish some other important things before doing the needful. But months passed.
In the meanwhile, I started getting messages at my page at Google Webmaster Tools that my site could be facing security and malware threats if I do not update my WordPress version. And I thought it is a signal of imminent danger of getting a Google ban or other problems.
So, yesterday, I started work to restore the missing login form and to do the other updating work.
The reason for getting blank pages or your site going offline can be many, including not updating software, outdated or poorly built themes and web templates, plugins, or you simply messed up everything by editing the core scripts, CSS, php files, etc.
And the inevitable happened.
What next? I did not panic. I know the work. But if things are more complicated, I may end up losing everything. So, I thought of seeking the opinion of experts at WordPress support forum and other sources. But the advice I got was almost similar everywhere and I already knew what they told me to do. Though the experts gave the correct advice, it was not so easy to implement. And I was about to do the same things before going to the forums.
Maybe, I could have easily fixed the problem. Or, any other expert could have done it easily.
A flash of my hosting company’s support staff’s assistance crossed my mind. And I thought that I will try that first before doing anything.
So, I chatted with the HostGator’s technical staff, and I just provided the answers they asked for. It took almost an hour for the person to fix the problem, and I have the site up and running without going off even for a moment.
And you are reading this post just because of the great customer support from HostGator, the web hosting company for this site.
I will continue the story in my next post and tell you in detail about what (all) happened and why should you avoid such problems.