Saturday, July 18, 2015

Mystery Solved! Sitemeter Sunk, Sank Same

Some of you will remember last May, I was having some problems with my page getting hijacked (Proof Positive Poaching Problems??) I tried all kinds of anti-virus software, anti-malware, etc. It thankfully didn't seem to be contagious, but it was bugging me, and I developed a workaround that solved the problem around 99% of the time.

Finally, I went to a priest for help. Figuratively, anyway. Sitemeter, my long time companion at the bottom of the page has been awfully buggy lately. When it was available at all. The meter at the bottom of the page hadn't moved in three weeks. The info I used to glean from the site was all zeroed out for weeks, when it wasn't giving me the "Please check back in a few minutes" messages that would sometimes last for days.

I loved Sitemeter. I've used them since 2008, nearly the entire existence of my blog. I was even a paying member, accessing more info than you get on the free version. But, back to our priest. In the past, I had visited the Sitemeter mother ship looking for some kind of "Pardon our dust" or "Repairs in progress" or something to explain the wonky, glitchy, absent performance of late. Nada. So I finally Googled 'Sitemeter', visited several pages with no joy. Then I saw there was a #Sitemeter Twitter tab. A Tweet lead me to Fr. John Zuhlsdorf's blog, with the following headline:
A Blog Bug squashed: SITEMETER compromised, malware
There he described the same types of hijacking and redirects I had been experiencing. I said a tearful goodbye to Sitemeter. Okay, it wasn't tearful, since it was imbedded in my blog's HTML code, as opposed to a simple widget I could delete. I am not fluent in HTML, but I can make simple requests like, 'Where is the library?', 'Where's the men's room?' and 'Do I have the right to an attorney?'.

So, when I finally separated what was Spock's brain from the rest of the planetary complex this morning, I abandoned my workaround and have been standing in figuratively darkened digital alleys, daring someone to hijack my page. So far, no takers.

If you have Sitemeter, caveat emptor. If you've had any unexplained redirects on your blog, 86 it. There are other stat counters available. If you spelunke down to the bottom of the page you'll see one of them there, sans the nearly million hits that Sitemeter had. Revolver maps, of the spinning globe in the sidebar, said I passed a million hits early this week, so I'd been wondering about the accuracy of Sitemeter before it crapped out entirely.Now I just have to make sure they don't renew my subscription...

Sic transit gloria Sitemeter.

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