For those of you who are not a part of this, I apologize for the waste of space this has taken, but I could not just sit ideally by and say nothing.
I may sound a tad touchy in my response; however after reading your post repeatedly, I have become perturbed by the inflection of tone (of your post), the innuendo, and the accusations. I thought these forums were for folks to seek out advice and share their experiences? I did not realize if you are not a Moodle expert, you would be slammed and torn apart. I guess I learned a valuable lesson here, which is to not post anything unless you already know the answer to your question!
Here are the answers to your questions:
I'm not associated with Kamehameha Schools so not sure why that came up in the discussion; I certainly did not state I was a part of that school! I work for a public school, who has their own server, but unable to install Moodle for a variety of reasons. This forced me to install it with my service provider, so I could get the course up and running. In addition, the course is linked to a URL I have never posted here, and it is not in respect to Maui Kinesiology.
I'm curious to know why you would state that the "lone teacher" should not attempt to use Moodle? I think it is awesome when teachers reach to create a better learning environment for their students, even if that means they have to stretch themesleves. If not for these teachers, where would education be today? Still teaching the way it was 30 years ago, 50 years ago? Educators need to meet the needs of all learners and the current generation. These students are tech-savy, they are growing up with technology as an every day thing, so if we don't find a way to engage them, we will lose them. Students engage when technology is involved, so teachers try to use technology as a tool to assist in the learning process. There is a growing number of virtual students, for a variety of reasons, therefore using Moodle to address these demands is critical to our ever-growing student populations. Yes, there are virtual schools and curriculum you can purchase, but they are extremely expensive and most schools cannot afford to purchase them, nor would spend the money if one of their own can develop an online course.
Basically there were several issues: the download did not function properly therefore creating missing files; the service provider had restrictions on the server so I could not get the database and Moodle to talk to one another; the support information did not match my issues, nor did the steps to install; and I am not a database person no matter how many times I have tried to wrap my brain around it.
I did consider using a Moodle service provider to host the courses, but I cannot afford the fees; they are really expensive and would be coming out of my own pocket, not a school budget. Because the school IT department could not install Moodle on the school server, my only option was to have it installed within my service contract, which is my personal business account. I had to purchase a separate domain name for it as well. Incidentally, I paid the consultant out of my own pocket!
I'm not sure what you meant by "unrealistic evangelizing" so I am not sure how to respond or if I should be offended by that remark, so I'm going to have to let that go.
I did say I was a techy, however that does not mean that I know everything about technology-nobody does. The more you know, the more you know you don't know. I have a small home-based web design firm on the side and do fairly well with that; spend a lot of time educating and re-educating myself in this field. I have been able to fix pretty much everything that has come up on clients' computers from a physical issue to software issues. I have spent a lot time educating other adults and children in the use of computers, programs, etc. I do have my web certification from a college, along with a lot of the MS certifications. Plus, I have built 5 computers on my own. So yeah, I do think of myself as a techy, but again, that does not mean I know everything about technology. So I have not "fallen victim" nor am "clueless" about technology, but this is not the place.
I was able to find the documentation about backing up the course and renaming it, which I have already completed.
Moodle's security...??? Spam Profile...??? At this point these are not a concern for me.
I do understand how the financial side and OpenSource works; all I was saying is that it will be a pain to reorganize the forum topics and maybe paying someone to do it would be more efficient and effective.
Below is the background on the installation issues:
I first installed a local copy, after reading all the documentation and the three books I purchased (which I had to special order). Everything stated that it would be easy to move the local copy to the web-based version; which was not the case. The download was incomplete with each attempt, so I had to search for the missing files and download them separately-it was a pain. I even did the whole rename this and rename that thing, still...
When it was time to move it to the server/web-based version, I created the database on the server just fine; uploaded all the files, etc. but the site did not work. I spent hours reading the forums, user documents, and books. I tried everything possible, still could not get it to function. I did do some posts, which is how I found several Moodle specialists, who would consult for a fee. The person I finally was able to work with was great. He continued to send me information on what step to take next; even sat on the phone with me to do some of it, but it still did not work.
I then contacted the service provider, who would not help with the Moodle installation, but would do what I requested them to do on the database. Not real helpful if I don't know what to tell them to do in the first place. With each new step, I had to contact the service provider, who sometimes fixed the problem and sometimes made it worse. I begged them to allow the consultant access to the server to fix the issues; would only take a short time if that could happen; no could do.
Eventually the consultant used my personal information (I provided it) to contact the service provider, and resolve the problems. The consultant took over 4 hours to get it up and running. This was after I probably spent 60-80 hours on my own and with the support mentioned earlier. I am appreciative of what they did for me, and if they did not help me the course would never have been open for students.