The changes outlined below will go into effect on April 15, 2013.

Backups

A few months ago, I proudly announced that Javabean will be hosting an industry leading 90 days of backups. After careful analysis, we will be making 1 minor change to this backup strategy. The amount of retention is going to remain at 90 days, but the amount of days held in S3 will decrease from 72hrs to 24hr. The reason for the change is that, in hindsight, users don't often require immediate access to backups older than 24hrs. Don't fret, for files, we already have hot backups taken every 4hrs and kept for 30 days. This is just a way for us to reduce some complexity in our backups.

CPanel Stats

Control Panel stats are a legacy and aging feature of control panels. They have a few pros and cons that I'd like to outline and explain. Pros:
  • Analyzes raw httpd logs
  • Accurate
Cons:
  • Slow
  • Limited retention
  • Inaccurate
  • Poor usability

Raw logs and accuracy

The only (and greatest) benefit to CPanel statistic packages is that they have access to the raw server logs. This gives the Control Panel logs the highest potential accuracy of any logging package.

Slow with limited retention

The CPanel stats packages are slow. They are only updated periodically (daily?) and do not reflect your site's traffic in real (or near real) time. In addition to the stale data, data is only retained for a limited period of time before it is purged.

Inaccurate

Wait? Didn't I just praise the stats package for it's accuracy? Yes, I did. However, these raw logs include bots and spiders that crawl your site. Not real users! As a result, the control panel logs are highly overrated numbers and do not reflect real users of your sites.

Poor usability

This is a matter of taste, but I find these packages to not be very user friendly. Given the other solutions out there, I never use the built in control panel stat packages.

Conclusion

As a result of the liited and inaccurate retention of control panel statistic packages, we will be disabling these packages for users on April 15.

CPanel Stat Alternatives

In all honesty, I love stats. They can provide some great insight into who your visitors are and how they reach your site. There are numerous alternatives that I would recommend for users. I would highly recommend any of the following packages for better, more accurate view of your users.

Friday, March 29, 2013

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