Oh sh*t, continued

I’m usually fairly good at keeping backups of my data. But as I looked through my various vaults I realized that I had numbers of copies of the files for my weblog but I didn’t have any copy of the data. My laptop died in December and I think I might have had a copy there.

So my second attempt at getting back my deleted blog posts was to get my web hosting company Mondo (formerly known as DHT) to recover the database from the previous day. I was naive enough to think that this would be a courtesy action and a fairly simple operation to perform. I was wrong.

Tue, Mar 10, 2009 at 22:41 from mondo support:

Dear Michael Carøe Andersen

Thank you for sending your support request regarding: Rollback of the database on gelle.dk. Your request has been assigned the case id:  227037

A technician will take a look at your case and will get back to you as soon as possible. You are welcome to include any other questions/comments when you reply to this mail. Any new information will then automatically be added to your case.

Wed, Mar 11, 2009 at 08:30 from support mondo (my translation):

It is possible but it will be at a rate of 150 Euros plus VAT per hour.

Reality strikes and I see that this might cost me some dough.

Wed, Mar 11, 2009 at 12:04 from me (my translation):

Hmm ok. I will consider that.

How long time would you think it takes to dig out a database dump from march 10th and uploading it?

Wed, Mar 11, 2009 at 12:08 from support dht (my translation):

Well that depends on how big your database are, so it is hard to say. Do you know approximately how big it is?

Wed, Mar 11, 2009 at 12:23 from me (my translation):

The database is gelledk on server2 with 113 tables and a size of about 5mb before compression.

I’m getting impatient and again thinking that it can’t be that big a deal. So I keep fishing for an estimate.

Wed, Mar 11, 2009 at 16:49 from me (my translation):

Can you give an estimate of how long you would think it would take to roll back the database gelledk on server2 to the state of 9th (or 10th of March before 9pm)?

The database is gelledk on server2 with 113 tables and a size of about 5mb before compression.

I would think it would be easiest to take the whole database and just recreate it. But if it has to be more specific it is these four tables I would like to have rolled back:

blogging_gelle_postmeta
blogging_gelle_posts
blogging_gelle_term_relationships
blogging_gelle_term_taxonomy.

It feel’s like ages and I’m getting a bit desperate and want to get something started in terms of a recovery. I’m still thinking it will take 15 min.

Thu, Mar 12, 2009 at 13:04 from me (my translation):

Hello again,

It does not seem like You want to provide an estimate of how long it will take (or how long You will be invoicing me) to recreate the database.

Let me flip it over and say that if you can do it in half an hour then please start. If you expect it to be more I will probably have to do it manually, but please give me a response.

Thu, Mar 12, 2009 at 13:29 from support mondo (my translation):

I am afraid we cannot make a backup of a single webhotel on the server where you are hosted. If we have to make a backup we need to recreate the whole server and that would amount to an enourmous bill.

Ok, they could have told me that before. I’m not going to throw hundreds of Euros after this project (at least not yet). So this halted the idea of a quick solution with the help of my host.

Next up is to try and team up with some hard core perl coding friends and see if we can restore the posts from Google and Yahoo’s caches.

Lesson learned: Review your backup routines.