Case Study: Staging environment
Unexpected Cascading Failure
+ ANALYSIS + HOW TO SOLVE
Have you ever experienced this???
You have a simple WordPress site that has a little issue. It’s small — you just know it. So you call your developer and explain, that something is off. And they see it right away. You get a verbal confirmation, that it is an easy fix, it will be solved immediately.
The developer requests your credentials or requests separate login rights to your WordPress admin user interface. You comply with the request, giving admin access to your site.
Unexpectedly while trying to fix your initial issue, 3 NEW things fail.
The developer is shocked, and it doesn’t know how it took place. You do not understand why it happened. Both you and the developer look puzzled at the new issues.
You start jumping over hoops while trying to solve these issues. You contact your hosting company. Finally, they advise you, that a roll-back is the best option. A single small issue is better than the 3 new ones. You cave in, accept the restore. Your initial issue remains. You also have a nasty after taste from this experience.
It doesn’t matter WHAT happened. It doesn’t matter HOW it happened. You’re just unhappy because your initial issue is still unresolved. You’re simply dissatisfied with how things progressed. You’re experiencing the exact opposite of the wow effect. Read the ANALYSIS and then find out HOW TO SOLVE this specific case.
ANALYSIS: Staging environment – Unexpected Cascading Failure
From the point of view of the developer, nothing wrong was done. Your developer is not the owner of the WordPress, does not know what else is going on. Same for your hosting company. Sadly, nobody bothers to see YOUR POINT OF VIEW. You had an issue, that cannot be corrected. Your attempts to solve this logically is impossible, nobody knows what and how happened.
HOW TO SOLVE: Staging environment – Unexpected Cascading Failure
Set up a Staging environment with your hosting company before talking to your developer. Ask them the get it as close to the real environment as possible. Then, ask your developers to correct your initial issue on your staging environment. This will prevent the unwanted end result to be publicly visible. Logs and debugging is more accessible in staging environments. There is no pressure of time or urgency. Developer and hosting company can take their time to figure the 3 new issues. They can tinker with different modules, parts – without the fear to break it even more. This way it’s way easier to debug, identify and FINALLY solve your initial issue.