Nairabytes – the original story

1

August 28, 2009 by Administrator

I mentioned a little intro in my getting back on track post. I just thought I should clarify things.

Its been about 7–months(Jan2009 till date) since I made payment for the domain name: www.nairabytes.com with Web4Africa. Before jumping into the wagon, I made several enquiries(email, live-support chat, yahoo msngr) to ascertain this host understood my requirements, which were not too far fetched. I could feel the courtesy flowing through the mails and chat. I asked for references, websites/blogs I could see / check out, etc. The only reference given(by David) to me was his blog – for which I thought was a modest gesture(not wanting to spill out his ‘satisfied clients’). You bet, I made specific enquiries: that I needed a weblog and wanted to update using blogging-client apps. All this host gave me were: “yes, it can be done, we have done it before, we do it, blah, blah blah.

My constraints, which I expressed in my enquiries were simply:

  • my client’s request was to be able to compose his update at home, and later upload in the office / any internet source, much more like pre-composing emails Microsoft Outlook and sending them  later etc. If things went well, the site would open up to more contributors who would be able to use one or more free apps to make regular updates.
  • low bandwidth: a very slow internet connection for the person updating the site. It would take forever to use WP’s writing / control panel to write a post, directly and online.
  • images – with a slow connection, attaching/uploading images first and then composing text, and lastly re-arranging things up will be next to hell.

Since I run some blogs myself and update using third parties, I felt with a yes to the above, I would soon get the job done.

As of this writing, the job isn’t done, coz my webhost has held me to ransom. Its been a long story, so don’t bother about telling it all over, but honestly, I’m trying to find a better word for ‘dissapointment’. After getting pissed and forced to look for an alternative solution for the end-users the webhost says he’s not even refunding the payment I made.

Why? Its only in Nigeria that things like this work:

– a customer pays for a service for which the service provider consents he can provide,

— the service provider doesn’t provide the required service, and can’t find it in himself/herself to make an apology and refund the customer his cash.

Did I hear re-branding?

The following is a screenshot of my wordpress installation, about 2–days ago. Pls note the actual challenge (2nd pix):

1

 

1_a

I use Blogdesk v2.8

While the first line is an ordinary text “test post”, the second is bold. The challenge is not that the text does not upload at all, but its not well formatted – the above is really not acceptable, is it.

And after reading through the many instructions on WP-Forums, and Web4Africa directing me back and back again to WP, as if there was something wrong with WP software, I discovered the above still persists even on Joomla / Drupal installations only on this particular webhost. Ive installed all the provided software services, tinkered around and found the same to to be true.

Kindly, if you can assist with the above, pls holla back!

What did the webhost say to all my complaints:

  • once I worked all night, only to mail back a complaint in the morning. I was informed that security on the webhost’s servers were upgraded overnight, thats why things were not working. I thought, ‘finally’.
  • next he informed me the blog was moved over to a new server, blah, blah, blah,
  • then third, he tried talking about a wrong installation procedure. So I told him to set things up for himself and see how it goes.
  • a host of ‘back to WP’ referrals, that…. ‘Web4Africa doesn’t provide support for WordPress’,
  • he then came up with the ‘we can’t vouch for third party blog updating tool thingy, to which I replied –  rather than he condemining a tool, he could as well install one, and see what works and what doesn’t.
  • lastly, he has ‘advised’ that the only possible way is for me to go update ONLINE. My reply was then: why did you give me an affirmative when I informed you that I wanted to use 3rd party tools, for which I gave examples as Blogdesk, Scribefire, Windows LW. I really don’t know how I could have made my self clearer.

How do I feel about all these: scammed in broad day light – 2009!

And after the long road to nowhere, I sought the permission of a friend who has a blog on his own domain to use Blogdesk for test-posts on his blog. Whew, it worked fine, without any problem or hassles. I even tried images and they display properly, not with Web4Africa. My final request was for my friend to install WP in another DIR, other than his main so I could see if things worked with a brand new installation. Yes it worked.

I said earlier, that I tried my hands on Joomla and Drupal, and made similar observations. Text was garbled, images could not be displayed. Could the same issue be particular to them all? I have tried speaking to, mailing, chatting with the webhost several times to no avail.

Anyway, while I’ll leave David to himself for the meantime, its very clear he doesn’t know what to do, and he would rather not admit it. And rather than giving me a refund, which I’ve demanded for since May09, he says he can’t give me a refund.

Its been 7–months and I’ll rather find a way to solve the problem. Perhaps, I could apply the knowledge gained for some other future client. 

The above is a short summary of why this blog started. No offenses give, non taken.

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One thought on “Nairabytes – the original story

  1. LOL

    If you weren’t so pissed and taken time to read my post (http://www.strictlyonlinebiz.com/blog/best-cheap-nigerian-webhosting.html) very well, you would have noticed that I tackled this issue as Problem No 2 which was solved using this plug-in http://josephscott.org/code/wordpress/plugin-libxml2-fix/.

    No vex too much abeg.

    One thing you’d have to again understand is that for the price he’s offering his services, he can’t afford to run a customer service a la the big shots like Hostgator. Personally the guy dey try pass the goats @ http://www.strictlyonlinebiz.com/blog/utiware-web-hosting-experience.html

    Hope this helps solves the friction between you guys. I totally understand your frustrations but trust me on this; David ain’t the I Go Chop Your Dollar type.

    Have a lovely day.

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