Monitive

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Monitoring Locations Update

Since June 2020, when we launched the new Monitive, we have the same monitoring network of 8 locations. It’s time to expand. The current locations are VPS servers from DigitalOcean and Linode. I like to mix it a bit, so that we don’t rely on a single provider, but not too much, since the administrative overhead of managing dozens of providers is another lesson learned in 10 years of uptime monitoring.

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Quick Test Feature

A feature that’s not available in the Monitive service, but has proven to be a useful helper is the ability to quickly check a website from several locations around the world. Just head out to the homepage and type in a website, with or without https://. Press Test Availability and you instantly get an overview of how your website is performing from several locations around the world.

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New Monitive website sneak peek

Last year, while we were coming up to the date of launching the new Monitive, I wanted a new homepage to go in harmony with the new service. As we were focusing 100% on finalizing the service, there were few resources for the actual website. I only knew the following: So after about a week of research and brainstorming, we decided to go with Hugo static site generator, the Jumpstart theme by MediumRare and just a single landing homepage and the legal pages (privacy policy and terms of use).

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Laravel Monolog Handler for Logflare

For our API, we’ve been happily using NewRelic’s monolog enricher for a while, which sends our application logs to NewRelic at the end of each request, making it light and fast for our system not to be bothered by it. Until it stopped working with the upgrade to Composer 2, and they knew about it for several months and still didn’t do a single thing to fix it. So I decided to move to Logflare. Logflare is a fast, light, scalable, and powerful logging aggregator.

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Document. Don't create.

Reading through the Traffic Secrets book by Russell Brunson I found out about a very interesting tip of Gary Vaynerchuk: Document. Don’t create. For years, the fact that we cannot provide transparency from what we learn as we’re moving along and growing was a constant thorn in my back. Even when we decided to do a marketing (a.k.a. content) push with our blog, it did not bring that much value since I, as the founder of Monitive, didn’t find the time to write.

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How to build a CSS-only responsive website navigation

In the new light of website performance that I’m pursuing, I have learned to avoid Javascript at all costs. Here’s a nice Javascript-less desktop and mobile navigation update that we’ve added to our website. Inspired by Dirk Olbrich’s Hugo Starter Theme with Tailwind CSS this works by displaying a regular navigation bar on landscape tablets and desktop resolutions, but changes into a nice dropdown on mobile resolutions.

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Why we ditched Lumen PHP

Lumen is a stripped down version of the powerful and now very popular Laravel PHP framework, focused on performance and serving stateless requests. I doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of Laravel, but it also doesn’t need them when serving API requests. For example, sessions, cookies and views are not a part of Lumen. It’s not intended for serving websites so everything around that got ditched.