No worries, the title is kinda click-bait’y I ain’t shutting down this rodeo – yet. But in all seriousness; you might have seen that the forums link displays a fancy maintenance page for a few days in a row now. Let me fill you in why that is.
When I first published the forums, I was in search for a both lightweight and nice looking solution that didn’t suck like the rest of the dated ecosystem of bulletin boards… So I settled for Flarum. It runs on your typical LAMP stack (although in my case Nginx since the beginning ) with PHP 7 and MySQL/MariaDB. It did so fine for over a year now. But recently I switched to a new server at a new hosting provider where I wanted a fresh start with latest OS and frameworks so I went for PHP 7.3 and whatever’s the öatest version of MariaDB.
Turns out that wasn’t the brightest idea. It’s apparently not compatible with those for whatever PHP-ish reasons and on top of that it hasn’t received new updates for quite some time now which also worried me. I then tried to simply utilize Docker to run it in an “older” supposed-to-be-compatible containerized environment and I couldn’t get it to work there either. Now my entire career is based on IT infrastructure and my fuse to bullsh*t has shrunken quite a bit over the years. So my final decision fell: change the damn forums engine. So I did that. Couple of hours more wasted and with even less hair now than before I settled for NodeBB. Containerized, of course
I’ll tinker with it for a few more days in private, make sure all the plugins I desire work and especially mail notifications are rock-solid and then we’ll see if I manage to even port over the old content… Oh dear
Oh yeah, and the blog! I plan some minor re-designs there as well, trying to craft a nice landing page replacing the blog post history so I don’t scare newcomers a little less in the future.
That’s it for now, bye!