The ChaosGrenade

Quick & Dirty Tabletop Role-Playing Games

Death and Return of The ChaosGrenade

2020-10-12 Blog R.E. Davis

The old blog site is dead. May this one endure.

Last week I was made aware that adware had infiltrated my site. Certain pages and methods of access (like Google) resulted in redirects to spam and phishing sites.

I have no ill feelings towards Wordpress, except as someone who infrequently blogs it was becoming a chore to keep up to date. Several times in the past I’ve had issues with plug-ins, themes, and even the software updates themselves.

In this particular case ā€” one of my plug-ins that I used for file management had an exploit that I was victim of. I wasn’t even aware of it, until I saw news in passing while looking up something else entirely. I was late to the patching game, and despite my efforts to clean house the damage was done.

I’m sure if I was a professional web developer I would know all the cool things about automating updates or how to prowl through my files to find the problematic code. Guess what? I’m not. I’m a full time Dad and Husband who quit trying to keep up with that stuff over a decade ago. I have, tops, 3-4 hours total daily that I get to spend on projects, and I’m usually dead-ass tired when I get there.

So now I’m trying a new approach ā€” Hugo. It’s a static site builder, which means this blog is no longer dependent of queuing databases or plug-ins that require frequent updates. This makes the site faster and more secure.

It’s definitely not a turn-key solution ā€” it entails running a server locally that takes content written in Markdown files and applies them to a theme template to spit out HTML. There’s a syntax learning curve, both from formatting posts in Markdown and learning the shortcodes to implement web content into them.

But it’s right at my level of technical understanding to work with, and it gives me control over my content. And it’s substantially less likely to be exploited or infected if I leave it sitting there for a couple months.

Going Forward

I’ve recovered my old posts, and have tried to apply the most relevant to my site (My oldest posts go back to 09!). I’m slowly combing through and attempting to fix the formatting. I apologize if anything in particular you’re looking for or linked to is currently 404’d.