my favorite way to learn a system inside and out is to play with it 'til it breaks, then rebuild it.

My dad gave me a Windows 3.1 PC in college (a Leading Edge 486DX/33), as an xmas present, and I destroyed a system file before xmas lunch. Had to wait until the next day to go back up to the computer store.

I'm thinking about this today because I just broke a Wordpress install by pounding a little too hard on the plugins. Specifically, I allowed a WooCommerce automated-setup-thingie go nuts, turning on JetPack and installing a bunch of sub-plugins. After a minute or two, the whole database came down.

I was ssh'ed into the system at the time, and tried systemctl restart mariadb but no dice. Only thing left I could think of was rebooting the system from the Linode web control panel.

...which pinwheeled for 15 minutes before I gave up and tried logging out of Linode and back in. ...which I couldn't get back in.

oh good I've broken all of Linode

then I found their status dashboard note:

Linode maintenance screenshot

phew just happened to crash it in a maintenance window. (or did their maintenance chocolate get in my WooCommerce peanut-butter?? πŸ€”)