For some time now, my cms was reminding me there was an update available. The host that it is hosted on however was still running CentOS 6, which has an older version php among other things. At first I was inclined to start using the rackspace users repository which enables you to choose between a number of releases for just about any hosting related software and more. Including later releases than normaly supported by the default CentOS/RHEL repositories. But around the same time CentOS 7 was just about to be released, so I decided to wait and migrate the hosting to a new host running CentOS 7.

I was quite unfamiliar with the new CentOS/RHEL release. The shift was more major than the transition between 5 and 6. But after a few weeks of testing I decided to start migrating the first part of my hosting which is located at home. This 'project' gave me an opportunity to look at few procedures as well, most importantly the backup scripts. I had to redo a migration at least once and I must say the backup scripts had been working quite well so far. I mostly did some standardizing and update the documentation on wiki.

I had been putting of the migration of the second half of my hosting for a number of reasons, not least of which we moved. To a wonderfull new location which has a XS4ALL 100/100 Glasfiber connection :D. After the dust and woodparticles settled I had some time to start the migration of the sites hosted at my colocation in Amsterdam. Lessons learned in the first migration project enable me to do this one a bit more smoothly and so after about an hour the sites where over and I switched the firewall rules. 

On this second migration I was migrating both a web and a database server each of which was running on a separate virtual machine. Out of prudance and a bit of separation of concern I was contemplating splitting the migration in 2 parts. First either the web or the database server and then the other remaining service. But then I would still have to change settings on any of the service, and I would have to do it twice. So seperation of concern was kind of muted because it would create two occasions for things to go wrong. In the end I decided to migrate both services at the same time.

As for the Joomla update. As soon as the migration was done, I logged into the cms backend and started the update. The update was finished and what do you know.., succe.., nope, blank website. What the? Page source gave me only 1 line, a line number and then nothing. Nothing in the logs, no error of any kind. I let it rest for a few days.

I tried it again after a couple of days, still no succes. I started to look around the directory and did notice a few files that were suspect. But I still couldn't figure out how these could effect the working of the frontend, the cms backend was still working. Under the assumption that all the frontend was, was the images directory and the database, I set up a test vhost and installed the latest joomla version. I was expecting to see missing packages notifications but none were given. I then rsynced the images directory and imported a dump of the database into a new database. And except for the missing template the site was running again. Conclusion at least for now, the former joomla instance had been contaminated. Perhaps because of the migration from 2.x to 3.x, or maybe even hacked. Althought in case of the latter I would have expected to have received some kind of takedown notice or at least some higher load because of malicious scripts that where running.

For now, this blog of mine is running the latest version of joomla again and has a new template. The previously used template is not entirely compatible with this release of joomla. I'll probably tweak a little more on the appearance and navigate abilities. For now this is it. I hope some of the articles will help you, especialy the ICT related ones, in any case happy reading. 

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