Recently I ran into some problems when I upgraded my server to PHP 7.4. The problems were solvable but I figured I’d revert to my installation pre-PHP 7.4 upgrade and then work the issues off-line. But when I tried to re-install my system from a backup, all hell broke loose.
I upgraded my server to Ubuntu 16.04, converted my websites over to HTTPs, and locked them in using HSTS. It would be a shame to stop here without making one last change: upgrading to the HTTP/2 protocol.
The web has been spinning along on HTTP 1.1 since 1997. It’s been a good and faithful servant. However, the protocol is also showing its age, leading to gimmicks and workarounds just to more readily process today’s web pages.
When I set up my new server and moved my DNS records to my name registrar, I also included records for my server’s IPv6 address (2600:3c00::f03c:91ff:fecf:250d), as well as the familiar IPv4 address (22.214.171.124). Supporting both is known as dual stack.
I didn’t have to support IPv6 since I do have an IPv4 address, but if I’m going to do the shiny new with my site, I’m going to go shiny, new all the way.
Besides, there’s no more room at the inn with the old IPv4 system. We’ve run out of web addresses under the old IPv4 addressing system. The current IPv4 system only allows for 4.3 billion addressed, and they’ve all been assigned.
Yeah, haven’t we been prolific on the web.
I was one of the lucky folks who received an email from Google warning me that it was going to start marking input fields in my sites as unsafe. “Time to move to HTTPS”, it smugly informed me.
It irks me that we’ve given a company such power over us that it can force us into using technology before we’re ready. However, I knew it was a matter of time before I’d have to go to HTTPS, so decided to just bite the bullet and get it done.
But if I move to HTTPS, I’m making the task a component of an overall site upgrade. That was my original intent all along…incorporating HTTPS into a total site makeover. Except my plan was to finish by year-end, rather than October. Best laid plans…
It seems like only yesterday when I upgraded to Ubuntu 14.04, but it’s been several years and it’s time now to move on to Ubuntu 16.04.
Once before I’d tried to upgrade Ubuntu to a new major release in place. In other words, upgrade my current installation.
It didn’t go well.