Thursday, January 18, 2007

All change

So there I was, bumbling along happily enough.

Until a few days ago, when I made the potentially fatal mistake of deciding to give into Blogger's pressure and sign up for the New Super-Duper Upgrade. Oh dear.

I had naively believed the hype when they said it would all be smooth and trouble-free, and so was rather concerned to find that the Silent Words Speak Loudest homepage would no longer load properly and the archive links had disappeared - though mercifully the links to archived posts in the sidebar still worked.

So today, in a bid to recover my archives, I followed the advice of the Blogger help page and customised my template - the first significant change to my template since the blog was set up in October 2002. That would explain why it feels like you're in unfamiliar surroundings, then.

The problem with having done that, of course, is that my enormous and carefully constructed sidebar index has been lost. I've set about reinserting the links, but the new interface is a pain in the arse, only allowing you to order your links how you want with extreme difficulty. I've started, and believe me I will finish - but in the meantime SWSL is likely to be something of a building site.

What's more, I've lost all your comments (my comments facility was Haloscan rather than Blogger), and with the installment of the new Blogger facility I think you'll be obliged to sign in, for which I apologise - I wanted it to be as open as possible. And my Sitemeter hit counter has gone too.

The upgrade is supposed to have made it easier and more user-friendly for those who don't want to have to get to grips with the basics of HTML.

Excuse me while I go and pull my hair out.

Normal service will be resumed soon. With any luck.

13 comments:

Lord Bargain said...

that's a tosser. I tried to upgrade a few days ago and it wouldn't let me. It appears that was a bit of a stroke of good fortune...

Richard said...

my sympathies.
i made the change a while ago and have just got it back how I want it. a total pain unfortunately.

which makes the likelihood of me switching to something like typepad or wordpress even more unlikely, because that switch is bound to be worse!

Ben said...

Thanks for the sympathy chaps.

Thankfully I had a copy of the old HTML template saved in Word so I'll eventually be able to reconstruct the sidebar. What's most disappointing is the fact that I've lost all the old comments for good. After all, SWSL isn't just somewhere for me to spout off - there have been some good discussion threads. Arses.

SwissToni said...

they've annoyed me already with their mucking about with comment sign-ons for people who have, and people who haven't moved.

I would have changed though - when they finally put a button in my dashboard and told me to do it... only like Lord B, they couldn't handle my blog.

I guess I won't be hurrying, although I'm also guessing that it won't be long before they force me to.

How do you back up a whole blog, do you think?

In the meantime, you have my deepest sympathies. I admire your determination to get it back to the way it was.

ST

Ian said...

The easiest way to back up a blog, I think, would be to copy each entry into a .doc file as you wrote it.

This is, obviously, still a massive pain in the ass.

Mine's too big for blogger to convert so far as well, but thanks for the heads up - I have a saved template somewhere, but I'll be sure to back it up again before switching.

Ben said...

Yes, back up if you can. As I've written quite a few of my longer more keepable posts in Word, they're already saved as .docs, but once the index is fully up to speed then I'll take the time to make sure everything I want to keep is saved as a Word file.

The sidebar thing is so annoying because it's so inflexible! No idea how I'm going to replicate some of arrangements of links I had in there before (eg for multi-post pieces...)

Of course, as you'll probably have gathered, all this is further complicated by my considerable technical ineptitude...

mike said...

I've heard some awful stories about converting to New Blogger, and this is further strengthening my resolve not to convert until I am forced to. Apparently it's particularly hopeless for non-Blogspot sites, i.e. those who use Blogger to FTP to their own web space and domain...

Betty said...

Oh heck, you had masses of links and archived stuff on the sidebar as well, didn't you?

Some people have said the move isn't too bad, but they tend to have blogs which don't have much archive. I really don't want to move but am a bit concerned that I'll be forced to eventually.

Everything seemed so straightforward with Blogger until about a year ago ... or am I seeing it all through rose tinted specs?

Timbo said...

This is why I fucked Blogger/Google off a long time ago.

Too much unuserfriendliness for me I'm afraid.

And yes, their comments thing is tits too.

Ben said...

Betty: I fear that Mike's right, I'm afraid - getting forced onto the new Blogger felt inevitable to me, and that's why I jumped. Should have waited until I was pushed...

As for the sidebar - well, that'll learn me for having so much clutter in there. At least it's leading to a dead-and-dying blog purge...

Mike: Yes, afraid to say I got the impression from the Blogger Help Group pages that it was FTPers who are having the most trouble with the new Blogger.

Tim: "Unuserfriendliness" - well, not so long ago I (like Betty) would have disagreed with you. But things have changed, and from where I'm currently standing the new allegedly more user-friendly Blogger is anything but...

mike said...

Just one thing: when converting, don't you get a choice between a "classic" template option and a new-fangled widget-based template option?

I'm just wondering whether you opted for the widgets, when sticking with the "classic" might have been less hassle?

Curious to know...

Del said...

I'm intending to be like those folks who stay to the very last when a whole estate is being flattened to make way for the new bypass. Swampy is making himself comfortable in my blogroll as we speak.

Ben said...

Mike: I don't think I had the option. I could well be wrong, though - as you might well imagine, I was rather unsure of it all...

Del: If only I'd followed Swampy's lead...