Over the weekend Podango sent out an email to their users stating that the official switch of the GigaVox system to their own servers was going to take place. Sadly, the notice came about 24 hours before the switch. I’d hoped to have time to offer more tips and guidance on the matter BEFORE the switch, but time didn’t allow. Here are a few pointers for those of you who still have questions or just haven’t gotten around to making the necessary changes.
The server switch is part of the acquisition of the Gigavox Audio Lite technology by Podango. It affects anyone who has been using the GigaVox Audio Lite system (now Podango Show Builder Lite) to publish their podcast. Until you make these changes, none of your GigaVox Audio/Podango Show Builder Lite published episodes will download or play.
There are three things you need to do.
1. Download the New Uploader
The first step is straight-forward. Download and install the new Podango version of the uploader. Don’t forget to uninstall the GigaVox Media Uploader.
2. Change Your Login Bookmark
From now on you will go to http://cms.podango.com rather than http://cms.gigvox.com to login to your admin. Change your bookmark or whatever it is you use to go to the control panel. Your username and password are still the same.
3. Update Your URLs
This part is the trickiest. You need to make sure that any URLs in your podcast/feed/blog no longer point to GigaVox servers. How you do this depends on which of three methods you use to publish. Find the one below that matches your case.
Scenario 1: If You Use SmartDelivery
SmartDelivery is the part of the Show Builder system that automatically updates all your archives if you change an ad or your show script. If you don’t remember whether you are using SmartDelivery, login at cms.podango.com and go to Configuration > Hosting/Delivery. Look to see if you have checked the box next to Use SmartDelivery.
If so, then you need to change the URL for any MP3 that has been published through the GigaVox system. Inside your feed, blog post or PodPress you need change every URL that contains media.gigavox.net to use media.podango.net instead. The example given by Podango is that http://media.gigavox.net/R/561/2134/33121.mp3 would become http://media.podango.net/R/561/2134/33121.mp3.
If you have a lot of MP3 URLs that use GigaVox, this could be a tedious process. That’s where the Jesus Geek blog comes to the rescue of WordPress users with this video. He shows you how to do a quick search and replace in your WordPress database to instantly change all your URLs.
He method uses two easy plugins. The first is to backup your database before making changes. I use the database backup plugin on a regular basis anyway and so should you. Second, he points you to the Search and Replace plugin that does the heavy lifting. Follow his video tutorial and you’ll be able to make the switch under five minutes.
Scenario 2: If You Use CNAME
If you don’t know what CNAME means, then you aren’t using it and can skip this section. The CNAME setting can be seen in the image above. This allows you to use something like media.podcastingunderground.com in place of media.gigavox.net so that your MP3 URL is branded to your own site.
To set this up you would have gone into your hosting admin or talked to your hosting support to set up a type of forwarding. In my case I set up media.podcastingunderground.com to point to media.gigavox.net. To make the switch I just had to go back in and set it up to point to media.podango.net. Once you make that one CNAME switch, you’re done.
Scenario 3: If You Don’t Use SmartDelivery or CNAME
In this case you should already being using MP3 URLs that link to your own site/server. You don’t have to change a thing. Although, I would encourage you to look into using SmartDelivery since this is the real power of the Show Builder.
A Final Word for Podango (Just a Quick Gripe)
I have a request for Podango. The next time there’s a big change, please give us more notice than a day. The email went out Thursday night. The server switch happened just over 24 hours later. There’s a good chance that many customers didn’t see the email until later on Friday or even until the weekend.
Making these changes takes time. Even in my case where it was a simple CNAME switch, it still took 24 hours for the forward to propagate 100%. I had a day of down time for several episodes while waiting for the change to take hold. Not only that, I have more than just my own podcast to attend to. I have many students and clients to help, too.
So, next time can we please have a month’s notice? Then maybe I could have posted these tips and offered help before rather than after the fact. In the end, I love the flexibility and time-savings that this system offers me and it’s worth the trouble. But there’s a bit of feedback from a user.
If you have any questions or comments about the switch please post them below.