Archive for the ‘Announcements’ Category
Today we celebrate a major milestone! Ten years ago we opened our doors and signed up our first web hosting customers.
Originally operating as D.I.Y. Web Hosting, we created a niche servicing bands and musicians with their web hosting and design needs. We quickly grew within our local market and shifted to service all types of clients as our popularity grew nationally.
In 2009 we rebranded as Varial Hosting in an effort to expand internationally. Today we host tens of thousands of websites with customers across the globe.
We want to thank all of our customers, family, friends, and coworkers for making our dreams come true!
We intend to celebrate over the next month by throwing a party, launching a new website, and of course, having a killer sale.
We’ll start with that last item first!
Get up to 50% off your first three years of hosting!
Order a web hosting plan using the coupon code “10YEARS” and get 50% OFF your hosting fee on your first invoice. This promotion applies to all available billing cycles so if you decide to pay monthly, you will get 50% off your first month, however if you decide on an annual, biennual, or triennual billing cycle, you can get up to 50% off your first 3 years of service!
Click here to order now!
* Offer is valid until June 30, 2013 and applies to new orders only.
A highly-distributed brute force attack on WordPress installations is currently affecting web hosts across the globe. The attack is very widespread and vigorous with over 100,000 IP addresses being involved.
Varial’s Apollo server was targeted by this attack yesterday morning which caused high server loads and performance degradation throughout most of the day. The attack ceased in the evening as we were investigating the problem but resumed again early this morning. Soon after our Luna server began to be targeted by this attack as well.
Upon discovering the source of this problem we have taken action to mitigate this attack by temporarily disabling WordPress logins to ensure the security of our client’s accounts and to maintain the performance and reliability of our servers.
If you require access to your WordPress administrative area today, please contact our Support department for more details.
This attack is not limited to Varial and is affecting web hosts worldwide. This post will be updated with more information when available.
Update #1: We have restored access to WordPress logins this morning in favour of an alternate mitigation tactic. The attack has currently ceased but logins may need to be disabled again if the attack returns in a different form.
Update #2: In light of this attack we recommend that all WordPress users change their admin password to a complex value. We also suggest installing a plugin that limits login attempts such as: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/limit-login-attempts/
Effective April 1, 2013 the following GST/HST tax rate changes will go into effect:
For customers residing in British Columbia, the 12% HST rate will be replaced by a 5% GST tax rate.
For customers residing in Prince Edward Island, the 5% GST rate will be replaced by a 14% HST tax rate.
Changes will be applied to invoices generated on or after April 1, 2013.
As previously announced, our native installation of PHP has been upgraded to the latest version of the 5.3 branch across all servers.
If you encounter any new errors on your website, your PHP code may not be compatible with PHP 5.3. You may rectify this by changing your PHP version back to 5.2 or by updating your PHP code to be PHP 5.3 compliant.
If you wish to change back to PHP 5.2 you may do so by logging into your cPanel and clicking on the “Select PHP Version” icon under the Software/Services heading. Next, select PHP 5.2 and click on the “Set as current” button. Finally, click the “Use Defaults” button to select our recommended PHP modules and then hit “Save”.
Since PHP 5.2 has been discontinued, we strongly recommend that you update your PHP code to be 5.3 complaint. We suggest that you start by upgrading all 3rd party applications (including all addons/plugins) installed into your account to their latest available versions. If you have custom PHP code, more information on the changes between PHP 5.2 and 5.3 can be found at http://www.php.net/migration53.
If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact our Support department.
Effective April 1, 2013 our native installation of PHP will be upgraded from version 5.2 to the latest version of the 5.3 branch across all servers.
While PHP 5.3 has been stable and available for some time now, we have delayed its upgrade due to many incompatibilities introduced between the versions. Now that most popular web applications have been updated to address changes introduced in PHP 5.3 we feel that it is now safe to upgrade all servers to this new version.
Rather than forcing all clients to use PHP 5.3, we have deployed a tool called PHP Selector which is available in your cPanel which allows customers to choose between using PHP 5.2, 5.3, and 5.4 which we have been testing in public beta since November.
If you have concerns about your website being compatible with PHP 5.3, you can test it now by logging into your cPanel, clicking on the “Select PHP Version” icon, and changing your PHP version to 5.3. If you discover any issues, simply select PHP 5.2 from the list to remain at this version even after our global upgrade on April 1st. If you are adventurous you can even upgrade to PHP 5.4 to be at the cutting edge of PHP development!
If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact our Support department for assistance!
Happy New Year! May 2013 bring you happiness and prosperity!
2012 was a great year for our company and we’d like to thank you for your continued support and share with you some of our highlights from the past year:
- Like each year before it, 2012 was our most successful year that saw a significant increase in sales and revenue. Our continued growth led us to expand into a larger office in The Two Twenty that we happily now call home.
- In March our music blog Ominocity celebrated it’s first anniversary with a website redesign and by hosting an indie music festival called OMFEST. The event drew near capacity crowds and was a heck of a time! We didn’t stop there, Ominocity also hosted a patio party to coincide with the MoSo music festival and tech conference, booked 16 acts to perform outside of our office during Park(ing) Day, sponsored two CFCR FM-Phasis concerts and even hosted a pub crawl. Ominocity concluded its year by being voted as the “Best Website/Blog” in Planet S Magazine’s “Best of Saskatoon” reader’s poll.
- Our hosting company also saw some love when it was selected as a “Top Pick Web Host” by WebHostingSearch.com for providing the best web hosting services in Canada. We had quite a busy month of October when we acquired the hosting customers of CJamesRun and Boxy Web Solutions. We also introduced a major change to our hosting infrastructure with the launch of PHP Selector which is now in public beta and allows customers to choose between using PHP 5.2, 5.3, and 5.4.
- We got a lot of practice public speaking when we spoke at a WordPress Saskatoon Meetup, a Saskatchewan Professional Marketing Association event, and at BarCamp Saskatoon. We also gave back to our community by being a repeat sponsor of the Halifax Pop Explosion music festival and tech conference and BarCamp Saskatoon.
2012 was a huge year but we have many exciting things planned for 2013! A big hug and thank you for all your support!
You’ve asked for it and now it’s finally here! Varial Hosting customers can now select between PHP 5.2, 5.3 and 5.4 from their cPanels.
We’ve delayed upgrading our native installation of PHP from 5.2 in order to provide a solution that will work for all customers. Users with older, legacy scripts can stick to PHP 5.2 while those wanting to take advantage of newer technologies can change to PHP 5.3 or 5.4 using our new PHP Selector feature which has now been released in public beta.
Please note that PHP Selector is not feature complete and limited support is available for it at this time. All users are configured to use our native installation of PHP (5.2) unless they manually change to PHP 5.3 or 5.4 from their cPanels. At this time PHP Selector is recommended only for advanced users. Once PHP Selector has been released as a stable product we will provide full support and documentation on this highly requested feature.
Once stable, we intend to upgrade our native installation of PHP to 5.3 across all servers and make PHP 5.2 and 5.4 optional choices available through PHP Selector. Considerable notice will be provided to customers before making this change.
Click on ‘Select PHP Version’ in your cPanel to change between PHP 5.2, 5.3 and 5.4!
Select your desired PHP version and enable any additional PHP modules you may require.
We are pleased to announce that we have made arrangements to acquire the web hosting customers of Boxy Web Solutions, our second business acquisition this month.
Boxy Web Solutions is a web design firm from Lloydminster, Alberta that will soon be closing their business. Since they are already a Varial Hosting reseller, Boxy Web Solutions customers will not need to have their data moved and only a change in billing will occur.
As an added bonus, Boxy Web Solutions customers will have their domain renewal fees reduced to match our current rates and their hosting plans upgraded to our closest plan matching their current pricing.
We would like to welcome the customers of Boxy Web Solutions into our family and will provide more information on the acquisition to customers soon!
We are pleased to announce that we have made arrangements to acquire the web hosting customers of CJamesRun, a Saskatoon web and graphic design firm.
CJamesRun is looking to exit the web hosting business in order to concentrate their efforts on web and graphic design and have selected Varial Hosting as the new home for their hosting customers.
CJamesRun hosting customers will be transferred to our servers effective November 30, 2012 and we will match existing plans and pricing and continue to host CJamesRun clients for free for the remainder of their prepaid contract term.
We would like to welcome the customers of CJamesRun into our family and will provide more information on the transfer to our servers at a later date.
Beginning on Saturday, September 15, 2012 we will be migrating all clients back to our Apollo server after customers previously hosted on this server were transferred to a temporary server a few weeks ago in order to allow us to perform a major upgrade to Apollo’s operating system.
For the majority of users, no downtime or action will be required and the transition will be fully automated. Users who are using a 3rd party DNS service instead of using our name servers will need to update your DNS service to point your domains back to the IP 126.96.36.199 when the migration is complete. Customers with dedicated IP addresses and SSL certificates will be contacted individually with additional instructions.
We anticipate the migration of clients back to Apollo to take 2 full days to complete.
Please refer back to this blog post for updates or contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
UPDATE: The migration of all clients back to our Apollo server is now complete. If you are using a 3rd party DNS service instead of using our name servers please point your domains back to the IP 188.8.131.52 at this time. Accounts will remain on the temporary server for a minimum of 3 days before being removed.
Accounts are now being removed from the temporary server. Please ensure you have updated your DNS if you are not using our name servers.