About yesterday's outage

As you might've noticed, our website and all our subdomains like the Forum and Documentation were offline for the entire day yesterday. Needless to say, we're very sorry that this happened, and that it took so long to get it fixed. As you can understand, we are very, very disappointed in our hosting provider. Foremost because our site was offline for TWENTY-EIGHT hours, but also because of their inability to communicate about it. In fact, they still haven't given us an explanation of what happened, apart from boilerplate crap like 'we strive to improve your Dreamhost experience'.

We've been working on plans to migrate our sites to a more solid hosting platform for a while, but the events of yesterday have us working on that with renewed vigor. In the upcoming weeks we'll move each of our subsites to new servers, with as few interruptions in service as possible. 

An unfortunate side-effect of yesterdays outage was that a lot of users had issues with a very unresponsive Dashboard screen in their PivotX setups. This was caused by the 'Latest PivotX news' block, that we use to communicate about important updates and the like. Even though this feature fetches the newsfeed from our site via an asynchronous process, it still could cause the helper script to stall, until a timeout occurred. In the upcoming PivotX 2.2.5 we've improved this process, so if an outage should happen again, your daily use of PivotX won't be affected by it.


Posted by Bob den OtterWednesday 16 February 2011Comment
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PivotX 2.2.3 released.

We've released PivotX 2.2.3, as a maintenance release for PivotX 2.2. This update contains some updates for used libraries, some minor improvements, and a few bugfixes, including two potential XSS issues. This update is recommended for all PivotX users. The list of changes is as follows: 

  • Bugfix: Removed two XSS vulnerabilities from the search form tag. They were introduced when the placeholder was made dynamic on search pages. 
  • Changed: Two small changes to the debug module: PivotX now removes the debug file, if debug is disabled, and we make sure the file can't be read, without being logged in. 
  • Bugfix: Blocking reflected cross-site scripting vulnerability.
  • Bugfix: before_parse hook in renderSearch() didn't pass the modifier to the extension.
  • Bugfix, mainly for Chrome: Make sure the 'humanmsg' notification dialogs go away after a few seconds
  • Bugfix: Properly set the $modifier['uri'] when using search. 
  • Minor fix in rendering: Make sure that modifier['action'] is set properly for both example.org/weblogname and example.org/weblog/weblogname. 
  • Updated: jQuery UI was updated to version 1.8.9. This fixes some issues in Chrome. 
  • Updated: The Plupload library was updated to version 1.4.0.

Note: Some people missed the announcements earlier, but we've dropped support for PHP 4, starting with PivotX 2.2. This release will not work on PHP 4! If you're still stuck on PHP 4, you should really put some pressure on your hosting provider to upgrade your environment.

The release can be downloaded from this location: pivotx.net/files/pivotx_latest.zip (or pivotx.net/files/pivotx_latest.tgz, if you prefer .tgz files). For setup instructions, we point you to our documentation: Getting the files & installing. If you're having trouble downloading the files, you can also download them from our sourceforge mirror.

Posted by Bob den OtterMonday 31 January 2011Comment
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PivotX 2.2.2 released

Today - right after we released version 2.2.1 - we were notified about three security related issues in PivotX. Even though these issues are not directly exploitable by ill-willing people, it is our policy to fix any and all security related matters immediately. This 2.2.2 release, which comes hot on the heels of 2.2.1, fixes these issues, and as such it is a recommended upgrade for all users of PivotX 2.x.

The release can be downloaded from this location: pivotx.net/files/pivotx_latest.zip (or pivotx.net/files/pivotx_latest.tgz, if you prefer .tgz files). For setup instructions, we point you to our documentation: Getting the files & installing. If you're having trouble downloading the files, you can also download them from our sourceforge mirror.

Posted by Bob den OtterTuesday 11 January 20113
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PivotX 2.2.1 released

We've just released PivotX 2.2.1 as a maintenance release for PivotX 2.2. This release fixes some quirks and issues that were found in 2.2.0, mainly:

  • Uploading images in Chrome should work better now
  • You can upload multiple images at once in the gallery now
  • The executed MySQL queries are no longer logged to the debug log, unless specifically set in Configuration
  • We fixed two bugs in the Minify module, and in the setup routine. 

The release can be downloaded from this location: pivotx.net/files/pivotx_latest.zip (or pivotx.net/files/pivotx_latest.tgz, if you prefer .tgz files). For setup instructions, we point you to our documentation: Getting the files & installing. If you're having trouble downloading the files, you can also download them from our sourceforge mirror.

Posted by Bob den OtterTuesday 11 January 20112
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PivotX 2.2.0 released.

We're happy to announce that PivotX 2.2.0 has been released as a stable release. There are quite a few new features, that make PivotX even more stable and easier to work with. Some of the new stuff is listed below, and you can find screenshots at the bottom of this entry.

  • There's a new Debugbar, which will be of great use when you're working on a new website. It shows you the current PivotX modifiers, as well as information about which templates are used, server variables, cookies and more. (see the screenshots below)
  • The Entries screen has been revamped: It has better options for filtering and pagination. Best of all: the filters are more persistent. If you've filtered the entries, and then edited an entry, you will return to the same active filter in the overview screen.
  • A lot of smaller fixes and changes are made to streamline the interface of the PivotX backend, so everything is more consistent. A lot of the graphic elements have been touched up.
  • We're now using the excellent Plupload uploader for all file uploads.
  • There's a new [[searchresults]] tag, which allows you to format and style the search results page to your liking. Documentation can be found here.
  • PivotX now has an Offline modus, allowing you to show an static page with a message to the visitors of the website, while you can still use the backend to do upgrades or work on the website. The switch to turn the site off, can be found under Administration » Configuration. Please note that you will still be able to see your site, because your IP-address will be whitelisted after flipping the switch. Only people from other IP-addresses will see the offline page. 
  • And, there's countless more smaller fixes and improvements.

The release can be downloaded from this location: pivotx.net/files/pivotx_latest.zip  (or pivotx.net/files/pivotx_latest.zip, if you prefer .tgz files). For setup instructions, we point you to our documentation: Getting the files & installing. If you're having trouble downloading the files, you can also download them from our sourceforge mirror.

Now that 2.2.0 is out of the way, we are continuing work on PivotX 2.3 and PivotX 3.0. The 2.3 version which will contain ongoing improvements and fixes, while version 3.0 will be a major overhaul of the user interface as well as the inner workings of PivotX. Once we have organised what we need to do, we will start posting our ideas and thoughts, allowing our users to comment on them, to make sure we're building the best tool possible.

Posted by Bob den OtterTuesday 04 January 20114
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PivotX 2.2 RC released

Just in time for the holidays, here's the Release Candidate for PivotX 2.2. This means that this version is considered to be stable enough to use on live websites, but we're doing one more small round of testing before labeling it "2.2.0 final". Please try this version, and let us know how it goes in this forum thread.

This release contains two new features, when compared to the previous beta release:

  • There's a new [[searchresults]] tag, which allows you to format and style the search results page to your liking. Documentation can be found here.
  • PivotX now has an Offline modus, allowing you to show an static page with a message to the visitors of the website, while you can still use the backend to do upgrades or work on the website. The switch to turn the site off, can be found under Administration » Configuration. Please note that you will still be able to see your site, because your IP-address will be whitelisted after flipping the switch. Only people from other IP-addresses will see the offline page. 

Apart from that, this release contains mostly fixes and enhancements for the new features in 2.2, like the Debug Bar, the new Entries Overview screen, and the new uploader and the new handler for the way PivotX inserts code to certain parts of a rendered page.

The release candidate can be downloaded from this location: pivotx.net/files/pivotx_22rc.zip  (or pivotx.net/files/pivotx_22rc.tgz, if you prefer .tgz files). For setup instructions, we point you to our documentation: Getting the files & installing. If you're having trouble downloading the files, you can also download them from our sourceforge mirror.

Posted by Bob den OtterFriday 24 December 20105
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PivotX 2.2 beta 2 released..

We've just released PivotX 2.2 beta 2. Just like with the first beta, we were one week behind schedule, but there were some quirks we wanted to fix before this release. 

Currently, version 2.2 is feature-complete, so we'll take one more iteration to straighten out the issues that people find with this release, before we consider this version stable. Expect the 2.2 RC in a week or two, and the 2.2.0 final release a week after that. 

In the meantime we're continuing work on new features that will be added in the near future. PivotX 2.3 will have a new feature to easily make (and maintain) multilingual website. Ideas for PivotX 3 are still being worked on, but so far we're exited about the way it's shaping up. 

Back to version 2.2: This beta contains fixes for the Debug Bar, the new Entries Overview screen, and the new uploader. It also contains one important new feature: There's a new handler for the way PivotX inserts code to certain parts of a rendered page. This will make it far easier to add Javascript and CSS includes to the correct locations in your pages, and it is smart enough to do it only when required. 

For now we still wouldn't advise against using this PivotX 2.2 beta on production websites, unless you like living on the edge. If you encounter issues with this release, please post about it in this forum thread

The beta release can be downloaded from this location: pivotx.net/files/pivotx_22b2.zip (or pivotx.net/files/pivotx_22b2.tgz, if you prefer .tgz files). For setup instructions, we point you to our documentation: Getting the files & installing. If you're having trouble downloading the files, you can also download them from our sourceforge mirror.

Posted by Bob den OtterTuesday 09 November 20108
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"Howto" code snippets on Book.pivotx.net

The Dev team is working their asses off to meet the deadline for the release of PivotX 2.2 on november the 23d. Other teammembers (like me) are working on the migration of the PivotX sites to another server with hopefully less downtime.

But in the meantime we still found time to add a new chapter on Book.PivotX.net: 'Howtos - various snippets for special effects'. It's a growing collection of code snippets for various solutions like creating a simple eventcalendar, word count, trim texts and automatically generated metatags. Lots more coming soon.

If you think you have useful additions, please let us know in the comments.



Posted by Peter BoorsmaThursday 04 November 20102
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