Appeal – Help With A Blog “Distributed Recovery”…

November 17th, 2006 by

UPDATE: Well, what can I say. Thanks to Nick Goodman, Rahul Argawal, Scott Gruber, Peter K, and in particular Andy C, we’ve been able to recover a large number of the most requested or most interesting articles in less than a day. Many, many thanks to all of you, including those that offered after we had parcelled out the articles and made a start. Truly Random acts of kindness, as Scott Gruber put it on his blog, and I’m very grateful to everyone who gave up their time this morning. For the time being now, I’m ok to try and recover the rest on my own, probably using the feed from that Scott Mitchell sent over later in the morning.

Quite a few people have written to me over the last couple of days, offering to help re-enter some of the more popular blog entries that were lost from this site earlier last week – I’m really touched that so many people have offered to chip in and help. So … if anyone’s still interested, I’ve pulled together a list of fifty or so of the most popular pages from October and November, and therefore if anyone who’s interested, and

  • Is familiar with WordPress 2.x
  • Knows how to recover a page, given a URL, from the Google Cache, and
  • Would be able to cut-and-paste the HTML from the cache page into a WordPress posting box (the images are still on the site), and
  • Could do this for five pages

Just drop me a line at, or add a comment to this page, and I’ll give you a site login and a list of five URLs. I’ll do it in order of importance, so if only a couple are able to help, at least we’ll get some of the good stuff. If people are busy now, no problem, but if you’ve got 30 minutes spare, it might help get some of the more relevant content back on the site.

Also, if you’ve got RSS feeds of content (all the images are still on the site, I just need the HTML) or any other backups of good, perhaps older stuff, send it through – if it’s HTML, try and strip out any tags added by Word, or again I’ll give you a login and you can give it a try yourself. Let me know what you’re going to upload though, as it might already be allocated to someone else.



  1. Peter K Says:

    Hi Mark,
    I can help with loading some of your stuff. No RSS feed so will have to get off either Google’s cache or from the waybackmachine.

    Let me know.


  2. Scott Says:

    Hiya Mark

    I’m happy to help.


  3. Blog @ Says:

    […] He posted about his misfortune, and a whole bunch of people suggested potential options for rescuing the situation. Two recurring suggestions were to look in the Google cache and at the Wayback Machine. […]

  4. AndersH Says:

    As I mailed you, I had a little script grab all of googles cache. So if you want the 445 articles found there, just say so.

  5. Wilfred van der Deijl Says:

    Hi Mark,

    Just drop me a line if you have same pages for me to edit. I run WordPress as well so that shouldn’t be a problem

    Hope to see you again at ODTUG 2007.

  6. Matt Topper Says:

    I’ve been under a rock this week and didn’t see that you lost everything until today. I’ll take double duty, just let me know which articles you want recovered. Obviously, I know wordpress already.


  7. A sense of community « Pete-s random notes Says:

    […] Another manifestation is the people that pitched in to help Mark Rittman recover the bulk of his technical postings after his hosting provider had ‘a few problems with back up’ – a slight irony in that I spent part of my week preaching the need to design backup (and far more importantly RECOVERY) into a system and probably as the first part of the physical design. Thanks to all that helped Mark, the larger community is grateful too! […]

  8. Sam Says:

    I remember you using moveable type as your blogging tool, any reasons you shifted to WP in particular.
    I am curious as i am using MT and have been blogging for the last four months,can feel the pian of losing the post.


  9. Tim Hall Says:

    Send me some. I’m up for a bit of copy & pasting. :)



  10. Peter K Says:

    You are most welcome and I think Andy C did the bulk of the work. It is very nice and encouraging to see the offers of assistance from others.


  11. Rahul Says:

    I second what Peter said. There wasn’t really much left to do when I got around to it :)

    – Rahul

  12. mark Says:

    Sam, the reason I moved to WP was that MT was not free for commercial use – you could argue that this blog is an extension of my professional activities, so I didn’t want to fall foul of any licensing issues. Also, WP is “free” software, it’s got a better user community, it just felt the obvious thing to do.

  13. Stephen Booth Says:

    This may be too little too late but, if there’s any gaps it might be worth seeing if there’s anything useful on the Internet Archive. I checked and it looks like they have archived a lot of your blog.

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