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Movable Type 3.2

395 words on

There’s a new version of Movable Type out. Version 3.2. Any MovableType upgrade I had to do so far sucked. But this one sucked more than all the others. Not only did it take ages to happen but in addition it made all comments on my site vanish. Without giving an error message. Reading the web suggests that the problem is quite common and not just happening on the Berkeley DB based systems as mine.

What makes MovableType installs so painful is that their whole installation setup is poorly thought out. If they had a clear structure with separate folders for their files, my data, my setup and plugins, the upgrade might be relatively easy to do but as it is now you can’t just replace the whole folder that the software resides in but have to careful to not destroy any of your customisations in the process. That sucks.

What also sucks is that the process of ugrading is destructive. You’re supposed to overwrite your previous installation and your database will be updated/trashed during the upgrade. If anything goes wrong, the software can’t sort things out but you’ll have to be there with the files from your backup.

And even the very process of restoring from backup sucks. I haven’t heard others complain about this, but the reality of web hosting looks to me that you’ll have to upload data through the slow upload channel of a DSL connection. That you’ll have to pay for the bandwidth you use. That the databases that MovableType destroys are quite large files – meaning you’ll waste loads of bandwidth for nothing along with loads of time. And, to make things even worse, that all the servers I’ve worked on used FTP. Which is quite slow. Particularly when you’re having to upload folders containing hundreds of files – rather than a single archive and an install script, say. And once you run into trouble, all the ‘helpful’ geeks keep doing is tell you about terminal commands to run. But unless you’re spending a lot of money on your server, or using some special university or homegrown arrangement, there won’t be any terminal access to begin with…

Eeeek, all of this sucks. Things take too much time and don’t work. Now I had to downgrade again just to keep things working. Comments made in the meantime are lost. Sorry Dave.

September 5, 2005, 1:21

Tagged as software.

Comments

Comment by raul: User icon

My experience exactly.

I lost access to my old comments (they are still there I just can’t edit them).

Blah.

I actually found the new instructions much more confusing than the old ones. It’s very easy to accidentally kill any plug-ins or other modifications you have made unless you are very careful and copy files over via ftp folder by folder. So make sure to back up before you upgrade!

September 19, 2005, 5:07

Comment by raul: User icon

My experience exactly.

I lost access to my old comments (they are still there I just can’t edit them).

Blah.

I actually found the new instructions much more confusing than the old ones. It’s very easy to accidentally kill any plug-ins or other modifications you have made unless you are very careful and copy files over via ftp folder by folder. So make sure to back up before you upgrade!

September 19, 2005, 5:07

Comment by Stu: User icon

My thoughts on this upgrade exactly - what a pain in the ass.

September 26, 2005, 23:47

Comment by Nick: User icon

Well, I’m not even up to figuring out some pretty basic manipulative CSS stuff with 3.2 and I still thinks it super sucks. And all the geek help just drives me unequivocally nuts in circles. My hosting support guy was kind enough to assist me but even he had to explain what needed to be done by writing;

Basically…I changed the word left to right on all of them and then I changed all the alpha to beta and beta to alpha. and then I changed the background color for that right column to…

Is this easy for the layman? Is this user friendly unless you’ve got a Ph.D in Computer Geek Right Brain Science? I can translate Japanese Buddhist Ajikan esoteric meditation instructions to English (and gently explain it to you so you understand) faster than I can make sense out of the MT 3.2 manual.

October 1, 2005, 2:04

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