guys, some day I will try to write all of this up - it will be an article 10x longer than any currently on my website - twists and turns and all sorts of stuff - and in the end (end? I think/hope) dreamhost comes through - at least you can go to my website now and it exists - and I still haven't slept (24 hours in a few more and then my new day starts at work - where I still am - hah), but hey, sometimes you have to do what you have to do - which is part of the story though too
anyway, very briefly, a couple of quick points:
wp-cache wasn't enabled b/c I hadn't come to understand it yet - when the site was destroyed and I couldn't get in, well, I couldn't correct it - finally get in and click the activate button (after who knows how many timeouts) and believe it goes through - but nothing is fixed and then, later, I can't get in my site (locked out)
what happens I see is that even though I activated wp-cache, it didn't take b/c not having it active before, I had the other checkbox ticked to do gzip - wp-cache doesn't allow that - only after the site was destroyed and who knows, 20 hours later after jeff's intervention led to a tech getting in touch with me and letting me back on, was I able to go into the admin, check the wp-cache, see the error message, go to uncheck the gzip box, then go back and ACTUALLY activate/enable wp-cache
the times I wrote that I had deactivated all plugins, I had, wp-cache included, but even when I made it the only one 'active' from the plugins page (and it was the only one active) it was not ENABLED and hence didn't help anything - get it?
I wish I had gotten wp-cache before all of this (obviously) but I had tried it off and on at times and found that it made the dynamic parts of my site not dynamic - since I never had much traffic before, it was fine - the day I got traffic, well you read what happened, and then as I'm assessing what's going on I get locked out and then, well you saw
let's see, I am so tired - ok, so now working with cache, understanding it better (turns out that was only possible once I saw what happens with/out it) and some day (not today) I will start trying to figure out how to make my site like it was but with the dynamic parts dynamic and the rest wp-cached - I've seen some tutorials, even in depth ones, and it apparently is quite a beast of a task - so, that might be a while
um, I know I had other details to write - oh, so I was not mistaken, I really was locked out of my account (ssh/ftp) but not because anyone banned me - apparently to deal w/ the out of control traffic, an admin did an unconventional thing of putting a kill loop on all my processes (?) - anyway, that meant that anything that started on my site would get killed in milliseconds - that is an effective way to keep a site causing problems from causing problems - Glen, the tech who followed up on what I can only imagine was Jeff's tip/suggestion/whatever, discovered after some back and forths that this had the unintended but perhaps hard to notice effect of killing my ssh/ftp sessions milliseconds after I initiated them - so, yeah, I really could not then go into the site and try to fix things - I hacked as much as I know how to hack (not much) by coming across the dumb luck thing of getting, within those milliseconds into the backend of my site (reloading hundreds of times), getting to the .htaccess file through manage > files > other, and changing it to get back my static site - not bad for someone who doesn't know this stuff - I just had to load the page until it loaded, make the changes, and keep submitting to have it go through before my process was killed - this worked to get back the static site BUT I wanted to try to further figure things out and kept making changes to the .htaccess - one time my update must have gotten killed midway through, the data was messed up, and that led to any request to my site NOT going to my static page, NOT going to my wordpress (and then dying), but just going to like catjklasdjflkasjdfklajsdlkfjakldsaj.com - that is when I finally was through - nothing else I could do - you see that as my response to jeff because, genuinely, I appreciated his helpfulness/politeness and I just had no more options (going from like, as close to no options as you can get before that but still trying)
so ... glen went back and forth with me on email, replied to ALL my outstanding service requests first (so like it was all the progessively more frustrated emails I wrote coming back to me at once, with polite/detailed explanations of what he could best surmise was going on) and not just that he was sorry things weren't working (although apparently my site was killing the server for some reasons he outlined - again, the no wp-cache thing) but that he really liked my article and wished my site success - so
as I wrote before (not sure on the blogs or just in service emails - some day maybe I'll publish this whole tale) I was always a big fan of DH before today but I guess never really had to use them much (was just a fan of how they helped out with my little things) - then this happened, I got destroyed/ruined, and it really was an all day giant cluster-f that came when for the first time ever my site was being tested - and it sucked - horribly - and it cost me tons of great benefits - so I was pissed - and unable to get anyone to respond to me - so I got creative - so, the morals?
I don't know - well, maybe I have some, but I'll sleep on them (saturday?) plus look at the whole thing with some perspective - it is a very strange series of events that took me from loving DH to hating DH to appreciating them again but still not being satisfied with how this, my first 'real' day online went - a lot could have been done differently but then again it's hard to say that it should have been from any perspective other than my own because, apparently, the site really was trashing my cupcake.dreamhost.com - it's certainly a pickle - short term consequences mean keeping a keen eye to the site (as best I can) to make sure it doesn't start getting choked out again and reducing plugins if it does (they are already reduced/changed, but now that I'm caching working my way back) and longer term learning how to configure the site for wp-cache and the other load-optimizers so I can get back my currently gone functionality, so I can run the site I want but so that it still GETS run and doesn't ever lead to this kind of situation again
again, it's a tricky story and one I still haven't quite yet processed