Monday, July 12, 2010

Plesk delete domain would delete your entire site !

You read that right, when you delete a domain through Plesk control panel it would actually remove your entire site, including your mysql database. No warning given other than just "Are you sure ...?". For something so destructive like that, one definitely expect the message should read something like "This would delete your entire site including your database ...". Good UI design should closely mimic the real world scenario. When you delete your domain, what you would doing without the stupid control panel is open up the zone file and delete few lines there. Nothing you did there would affect your site code or the database. It just a dns record !

My fault here is I'm assuming too much. I assumed that no sane mind out there would setup the domain record so tighten with the application resources. Turn out that I'm dealing with an 'insane' mind ... sigh.

Here's an example how Webfaction control panel translate the real operations into UI metaphor.
  • You create a domain - The equivalent of adding entries into zone file.
  • You create an application - The equivalent of creating a directory to hold your PHP files or any kind of web framework you're using.
  • You define a website that would associate a domain to application at a given path (most of the time / but not limited to) - The equivalent of creating a virtual host entry in your apache config pointing to the document root or some other handlers.
So when you delete a domain, you just deleting a dns record, not your whole application. Plesk want to be clever though, when you create a domain it would create EVERYTHING so you would get a site up instantly. But when you remove a domain, it would also REMOVE EVERYTHING. The rest is just histrory ....

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