5 Funny Intern Stories with ‘Bad’ Practices in Web Development & Admin

We won’t learn unless we do mistakes. That’s right, so here are some of the mistakes I along with my team members did during my internships while doing web related works and eventually, we learned from them.

  1. Never plan and plan and plan before doing big projects and never evaluate your projects at specific periods. Applicable for any web project. Case: Our Intern team supposed to do a project, a highly customized website project (comprising a dynamic website with custom shapes, comments from specific settings, iFrames for social network and  integration, responsive view etc.) for a design and clothing company. The Danish company sent the design to us, and our team with Paul, me, and Marius decided to use WordPress with Headway theme. Headway theme is a customization theme with a lot of functions. So we successfully created with base design with about 85 percent accuracy. Further, we used CSS, JS to make changes to the looks and functionality of the website. We were good at this stage. Things started becoming weird when we ran a performance analysis of the website using Gtmetrix online tool. Guess what, the size of our home page was giving around 130’s of request to the server and the size in MB was around 3-4. That’s a lot. The loading time came on an average around 6 seconds which is not acceptable at least when you client is paying you 650 DKK ~ $ 100 per hour 😀 . For good website, the loading time should be around 3 seconds . I tried to use compressed iFrames technique but that didn’t work to be fun. Paul and Marius also tried to see what’s the problem, but we just missed something. We started to miss the deadline by some days and then we got another deadline. In between it, we got a check by our project manager Martin. Wow, we got into trouble and asked to report about everything that happened and what were our duties. Finally, we failed to deliver at our deadline and we just had 3 days to deliver the project to our customer. Our senior developers Bjarne, Karsten including Martin asked us to handle the project to them so that they can take care of it. Just after the office hours, they held a closed meeting and starting working on it themselves. I felt really bad that I being an intern felt like I jeopardized the things, so I kept on moving here and there in the office to ask if they need any help 🙂 They worked for the two full days and finally, completed the project. On the weekend, me and my boss Karsten had already arranged a house party, and guess what our Project manager’s girl friend comes and asks me “Anvar, Martin was working all the night and day for two days, what’s the reason behind this?”. I didn’t wanted to say “we inters destroyed that project”. I replied “Martin works really hard for office and I appreciate that for him.”. 😀 So, if you are reading this, please learn something from our failure that to plan things and running assessments is necessary to avoid bulls***** in the future. So, always plan and plan and plan before doing big projects and evaluate your projects at specific periods. – Learned at an internship at Morning Train, Denmark.
  2. Never learn that changing DNS name servers of a domain will also affect email services associated with it. Case: On GoDaddy domain management page, we have an option to change the name servers (this is useful to bind the domain to a server which is used when linking a domain name with a server or say when we buy a buy domain from a company and hosting from a different company. Coming back to the point, let’s say you have a domain registered with GoDaddy and you are using Site builder tool for a simple website. Also, with the domain , you have an email service. If you would like to develop the existing website on a CMS say WordPress/Joomla, then you need a web hosting plan, so there are two options, either to buy from GoDaddy or buy from different company. Now if you buy from GoDaddy, then chances are higher that they can automate the server setup (bind the domain with the hosting server.) If you buy from other company say Arvixe, then you have to change the DNS name servers. (You just need to replace the the DNS name servers of the domain with the one provided with your hosting plan. (The DNS name server addresses look like IP addresses say 172.255.235.210 and we provide two of them in which one of them is primary and other is alternate). So, finally If you plan to change the DNS name servers (addresses), keep in mind that the services associated with your domain such as Site builder tool, email services will stop working 🙂 I didn’t knew this unless I did this mistake and made my boss lost email connectivity. How it feels when your boss deals in Intelligence operations 😀 which I came to later on. Just after my boss lost connectivity I received a good scolding call there after saying “Jamal, tell me what you did to my emails”. OMG I will hell in fear. I said “I have created a new one for you and mailed/messaged you the new password for that. You need to go to this address to login and for previous emails you need to follow the old method only”. He seemed confused. How I solved this, I admitted my mistake, and replace the DNS name servers with the old ones (previous ones with the GoDaddy). So, always learn that changing DNS name servers of a domain will also affect email services associated with it and never ever mess with anyone’s email setup- Learned during my remote internship at Kandu Global, CA.
  3. Never cross check settings after migrating a website specially email addresses. Applicable for WordPress, WooCommerce and email plugins such as Contact form etc. You want to migrate your website, you did all the things right, your new website is working and everyone is happy. But are you sure, your all the settings are good out there. If we use WordPress, we might rely on the migration plugins such as Duplicator ( which is best one I use), it automatically updates the links for the new website during the migration process. (But you can also do this manually using the permalinks options in settings in the WordPress admin, just go there and choose the right setting and click on it.) Till now, there are not problems here. Things become interesting when we use migrate a website from a development server on the local host to the production server or you use plugins for email handling. We often use different settings for testing our web applications on the dev server like different emails instead of the original one and during the migration process if you forgot to take them into consideration, they will remain unchanged which is not good! So, take care of all the settings of your plugins, after a plugin. For the best results, I would suggest to do a proper testing say Migration Setting Test under which you match, find and correct all the settings to their normal level or what they should be. What’s the funny case: after migrating the website for which I also got a reward, I was in the office, and my Boss/CEO just nodded his head and said “Anvar, you did a very big mistake”. I said “Sorry…….., what?”. He says “Which email address you put in the contact form of Olufbagersgaard (the restaurant company)?”. I said “the original one based upon my thinking”. But when I cross checked it I was at fault. So, always cross check settings after migrating a website specially email addresses- Learned during my internship at Morning Train, Denmark.
  4. Never create a backup of your existing website before importing any demo or test content to it. This is generally applicable for WordPress and it’s themes. A lot of themes let you import demo content to it to have a quick look on how the theme might look like. In worst case you can loss complete accessibility to your WordPress website including the admin dashboard and get the 500 Server Error code. My bad case: I thought to use the fascinating OneEngine theme for my personal website www.anvarjamal.com and use the ‘import’ option in the theme to import demo content to it to see how the theme looks when all the modules are enabled. I just clicked ‘import’ and everything messed up. I am not able to access my website, nor I am able to log into my admin panel. I was shouting where is my goddamn website. Guess what I didn’t do that. I wish I had the backup from some point so that I could restore it. In Softaculous App Installer, there is an option to create automated WordPress backup every day, week, or month. If you are developing your website frequently, it is recommended to take daily backups. So, always create a backup of your existing website before importing any demo or test content to it. This might help you in bad times. -Learned in my leisure while developing a website to impress companies.
  5. Never cross check that you are deleting the right domain. Applicable for cPanel administration. If you are hosting a lot of add-on domains from a single hosting account, then this is something to take care of. Things become more fragile if you are working with sub-domains at the same time. The problem is if you lose a little bit of focus while while deleting the domain you wish to, then the sub-domains might look like the domains to the human eyes which is not a good thing. In my case, I wanted to delete www.iwillimpressyoni.today but I ended up in deleting www.impressingpieter.work. This is because I was having a lot of tabs opened in Chrome, I lost focus and the did the mistake. So, please, at least while deleting domains keep your eyes focused and try to minimize the multi tasking. Don’t rely on your hosting provider for the backups, I contacted them and replied me “Sorry, we don’t have backups.” How I recovered from this: actually I didn’t. So, always cross check at least two times that you are deleting the right domain. – Learned in my leisure while developing a website to impress companies.

What ever it is, I, @Anvar Jamal Saifi and my team members @Pavlos Isaris, and @Marius Vaduva admit that we messed with work but it’s also true that we learned.

Thanking @Morning Train for making us learn that and also to my internships.

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An article made to enjoy by Anvar Jamal with Pavlos Isaris and Marius Vaduva 🙂