July 23rd, 2023

July 23rd 2023:
I’m making a post here to track progress on the site code work needed this year.

The announcement that the site host was upgrading the servers came right after I agreed to do commission work that took a bit over a month to finish and two months before the 23rd site anniversary. After completing the paid pixel work, I started seeing what could be done with this site’s most popular corner: the Graphics Section. I got everything (other than the graphics generators) working and the only bug I haven’t been able to fix is one that will repeat a picture or line of text in a gallery function. The image generators are probably more complex than every other part of the site put together, and I’ve only got them to a point where the simplest screenstyle, the 3-character MvC group shot, works. I mostly put that work on hold and started cooking up the 23rd anniversary update, which was much smaller than it would’ve been if I didn’t have to do this recoding. But I still chipped away at the image generators enough so that I could test the new characters’ basic features on my new work copy of the site. I also got the ToyBoss section re-coded, because it’s so self-contained that I could update and upload it to the web now and it wouldn’t mess up anything else. Also, the Minus World section was fixed because it’s just as self-contained and barely more complex than the version that was on Angelfire back in the early 00’s.

After July 19th update with the 23rd anniversary newness, I started working on the Info Center when I should probably be taking a break. During a site rewrite about 6 years ago, I merged a bunch of redundant features of those separate areas, and a few other parts of the site, into one system, so it’d be less of a pain the next time I had to upgrade things. Thanks, PrimeOp from 6 years ago, that was a good idea. Anyway, I just finished the entire Info Center a few minutes ago, so I’m going to spend the rest of this Sunday making progress on a custom action figure (she’s both comic-related and game-related), EXP-grinding in SF 6’s World Tour Mode, looking at the SDCC action figure pics in awe, and finally getting some rest.

July 28th: knocked out bugs in the image generator itself and finally got those “extra palettes/sub-palettes/whatever” on the 27th after almost completely rewriting how it works, and it may work a bit better now. That part alone was tougher than reworking whole site sections. Spent most of today getting the menus to work, with those extra palettes being a pain again. About to go back in to the generator again because the MvC endings are causing trouble (probably the background offset feature that pushes them up to fit the text frames). That’ll be the last thing I’ll fix in this for tonight.

update: yup, it was the offsets, something that wasn’t used in any other screens I’d tested yet. Took less than 10 min. to fix. I’m done for the night.

July 29th: taking it easy, seemed to knock out GFX Generator issues with stylemods, mini-logos and more fun with those extra/sub-palettes. Next episode: problems with portraits.

August 10: Made new sprites for a The Revenge of 1989 update on August 9th, so I’ll be easing back into working on the generators. Got the portraits working in the first two menu pages, decided to go through and wipe out some easy-to-find errors for a bit and see what magically gets back to working.

August 11: I have 1 month (minus two days) to finish this before I get charged again for the server fee. Got the portraits and name graphics working in the menus and engine, the SFA 3 Vs. screen and X-Men CotA Vs. Screen now render without errors. I think all the screenstyles work now, but I’ll have to retest them all tomorrow, just in case fix in one place messed things up in another.

August 12: Had to fix a few more things today, nothing big, though. Still need to do more testing and make things more watertight, but all of the screenstyles in the Fight-size generators work. I’ll have to swap the folder names now that it works enough to be the real one and start testing all the generator pages. Big milestone right here!

edit: realized I better check the MSH Spidey background with the special window shadows. Sure enough, one lil’ fix needed. Decided to check the floor reflections again, they’re okay. Good, I’m done for the night.

edit: Tried to use the generator to make a quick pic to describe something, discovered the “true shadow” feature was still busted, so I fixed that. *shrugs* Okay, NOW I’m done for the night.

August 13: Swapped the folder names and changed a line on one page and the dedicated “fightsize” generator worked right away. Just fixed the gfxgen.php page that runs multiple separate generators. Now working on the screenstyles in the Fake Screen set, the Mega Man screens are done and the River City Ransom screens will be next.

August 14: Spent most of today’s work on a goose chase of fixes due to the sub-palettes (again) because of the 8-bit Nekketsu sprites with extra colors. I’m 100% done trying to work on this today.

August 15: Good to be back to errors I can understand. Looks like all of the Fake Screenshot’s options work now. Nice to get that wrapped up this afternoon. Any other work today will probably be making something new.

August 20: Went through a few more lesser-used and dormant sections fixing things, tightened up a few things in the GFX Generators, and redid the fixes on a basic gallery function so now I’m not getting the weird duplication of sprites before some horizontal rule tags. So this is at least 95% done now.

Decided to start working on the main Illmosis site just to see what I was in for and already got the main menu, art pages, and galleries working. The Nutroll and Twofold sub-section main pages didn’t even need to be touched, they just instantly worked. I hope the rest of it goes this easily.

August 21-22: Finished the Illmosis site work on afternoon of 21st, and started working on the Beans vs. Cornbread comic site right after, and finished that on the 22nd.

August 23: Noticed and fixed a new error that happened after fixing the last error. I’ll have to make another run through the updated version of the site and then I’ll back up the current online version. After that I’ll have to upload the new versions of the sites after the hosting upgrade and test everything all over again.

August 28: Tied up one navigation loose end: the gallery set-up was the first thing I got working, but had to temporarily edit out links to related games and a list of credits because both used features that weren’t fixed yet. Now that they’re fixed, they’re back in the mix. I wasn’t trying to rhyme there, but I’m not deleting it.

August 30: Just finished backing up all the published site folders. Back to working on more new content so the site update isn’t just “everything new is a bunch of crap you can’t see, you’re welcome.” That’d be wack.

September 2: Illmosis and the main Beans vs. Cornbread have the new code and everything there works fine, pre-server update at least. I’ve also uploaded the new code for the non-GFX Generator parts of the ScrollBoss site. I’ve only had a chance to check the graphics section and the only problem I’ve had so far is that a linebreak option in the Sprite galleries causes the gallery itself to just stop, an error that doesn’t happen on my hard drive’s copy of the site. So I’ve removed the linebreaks from those galleries and I’ll have to figure out what’s causing that problem later. Then again, for some odd reason those things could work after the server update. But there’s a chance that there’ll be a similar bug in the image generators that I can’t repeat on my hard drive’s copy of the site and that’s going to make it MUCH tougher to fix. If that happens, I’ll have to close the image generators until I can get the crap straightened out.

September 3: Checked more of this site early in the day, everything I saw seems to work. I will try uploading the GFX Generators really late tonight to avoid disrupting anyone. Illmosis and Beans vs. Cornbread both seem to be working all the way. The old pre-comic BvC site ran into a hiccup, but it’s been restored from a back-up. Anyway, the real horror will begin tonight when I try to update those image generators.

September 4: at around 2 AM, the ScrollBoss site made the switch to the new settings and I uploaded the recoded image generators. I tried a few items I had the most trouble with (sub-palettes, image fonts, stylemods) and they all worked. I was so tired I forgot to update this topic before going to bed. I tested the generators more after I woke up, and things seem to be working fine.

There are still a few offline things I need to fix, like update some the offline tools that make it easier to update the generators, but the hard part of this boring project is finally over. Back to the pixel mines!

September 25: Got a heads-up soon after the upload that something was wrong with the palettes. I slowly fixed small errors related to it (or more like exposed by it) until I found the main problem in the menu. I’ll have to see if the problem happens in with the portraits, too.

One Response to “Website upgrade work 2023”

  1. […] the site hosting charge hits my wallet again in September. I started a separate post about that in this link to keep track of where I am in the upgrade […]