Where are the Gallery Photos? 

What's here? What happened?

You're probably wondering where my photos are. What happened to the Gallery Photos? Well, it's a relatively short story (compared to some of my other stories). I was using a php/sql powered 'Softaculous' application called 'Gallery' to host and display numerous photos (probably the ones you were looking for). Personal photos from vacations, business trips, holidays, etc... 

I started using this Gallery app (a website 'plug-in') back in 2011. It worked great. It was almost as awesome as the galleries created using the old Apple produced iPhoto application (replaced with Photos application - which has fewer/no web-based applications), the MobileMe Gallery (which went away when Apple discontinued MobileMe (another disappointing elimination of a service I enjoyed), or the BetterHTMLExport plugin for iPhoto (which ceased development when Apple discontinued iPhoto and made their Photos application less open (no plugins)).

All these applications (not the Gallery application) allowed me to make client side photo galleries which I then uploaded to my website/hosting service. Unfortunately, all those applications went away, and the only suitable application I could find was a server side application. This was a new (new to me in 2011) Softaculous distributed photo gallery application called 'Gallery'. 

The php/mysql powered photo Gallery application is powerful, but it isn't as elegant or tightly integrated (into the Apple applications / my client side work-flow and applications) as the the aforementioned applications. It's biggest draw-back - and the reason I'm writting this 'apology' is the 'server side' nature of the application.

With a server side application, everything is hosted on your webserver. On the 'server side' - So, when I executed a 'sync' between my computer and the server (in November of 2018), I inadvertantly deleted all the web-hosted photo galleries (along with a bunch of other server-side hosted files). I had a setting enabled which deleted all files that were on the server, but not on my computer (orphaned files on the web host).

Yup - I deleted all the files, and of course - I had no backups; the webhosting service doesn't authomatically back up everything on the server side... I had backups of the mysql database, but without the content (photos and comments), the database structure is pretty much pointless.

I deleted all the galleries. Thousands of photos on the server, along with all the comments on those photos. Comments from me and others. Important data like when and where the photos were taken. What the photos represented, why they were important to me (and Kim).

It's all my fault - All I can say is, Sorry. Sincerely, I am sorry that I can't show you all the awesome photos that used to be stored in my photo galleries. Yes, I'm working to restore all those missing galleries, but it's going to take a while before I'm able to restore all the missing files.

Fortunately, the photos themselves are still on my computer, and it is possible for me to rebuild the galleries/some galleries. I could reconstruct some of the galleries/some galleries using those source original photos. Unfortunately, it will take several years to reconstruct all the galleries. So for now, they're gone. Lost to the digital miasma of a server side implementation. I've learned an important lesson. Server side implementations, while convenient, involve a significant level of risk. The files are not under my control. They're on the server, which doesn't create/maintain an adequate level of back-up, so there's always a greater degree of risk - And as I have learned, that level of risk is significant and permanent.


Rob's World Photos page: <https://www.robsworld.org/photos.html>
Author/Copyright holder:
Robert L. Vaessen e-mail:
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