Hi Fellow Moodlers
Firstly many thanks for the kind help and considerable thought offered.
Where I am at now
1. I am still stuck and will have the same problem all over again when my PHO sessions folder overflows, as I cant find it ANYWHERE - any suggestions I spent a whole evenig looking NOT DATA but the PHP SESSIONS folder_ I have CORE FTP but there is no file or folder search so.... (and the moodle/sessions folder is ALWAYS empty)
2. Moodlers say this sessions file storage issue is Lycos issue and Lycos say "no not interested - its a moodle issue the sessions folder is on your site" (and so go away) (though like I say cant find a PHP folder) So Im stuck between two points of view/ I believe the Moodle folk but try telling that to Trevor Day at Lycos Professional hosting supoort, UK 0870 730 1135 (!!!! hes not listeing to me as Im not a tecky!!)
Responding to (certain posts) Idont want to add to the post mortem some comments really do require further "light" I wont reply to the replies as I really am hugely pressed for time.
1. "One click install. Cant be expected to work" I diagree to some extent. If a company like Lycos feel it has enough user base to add it toits "portfolio" then there should be a reasonable expectation. Product branding is important and I think Moodle is up to the job. Didnt choose Moodle because it was free but because its the "standard" for CM / VLE
2. "teachers" try and install Moodle on a "hosted system" (because in many cases it is a 1 or two button strep) and then get messed up. Yes we do. and there are others on this site. With taxpayers (rightly) watching every last penny of cash (I am on £23,000 after 12 years industry experience and a Electronics degree and a two year teaching post graduate diploma) any new ideas have to come from the classroom and school hate change and WONT pay big bucks.So teachers HAVE to push Moodle we have to experiement and we have to do it in the spare hour or two after 10pm when we have finsihed lesson planning for the nexst days start at 7.30 lesson start
3, "generally it is not a Moodle application fault - but something that someone has done wrong and there are 1,000's of combinations. Martin and the team have done a great job, and yet there are issues to resolve, but issues like this are not grated through poor programming - just inadequate planning, time, skills and knowledge." See my last comments and the next comments. I have been playing with Moodle for 6 months before launch amd dry ran for a week. BEFORE uploading all the resources. No "poor planning" there. Teachers ARE planners. Its what we do (Usually late into the night)
4. "Many cheap hosting companies are GREAT at supporting your environment for your humble $5 - $20 per month" Very true. Thats why I pay £50 a month (three times that figure) for a VPS. Its not dedicated true but Im finding this (£ 700 per annum) rich CMS / VLE out of my own pocket. Not tax payers pounds / dollars as taxpayers dont want to pay for innovation. (yet) But I think the kids deserve the best practices and resources. And this way I may well get the school to see the value and power of Moodle backed by professional Partners (I would be very interested in talking to some recommended trusted UK MPs)
5. "If you program is placed up at the last minute and you have not tested it in the production environment at least (the very minimum) a week before, then purely and simply you are not a professional educator - pure and simple" See my last comments. This is a troubling comment, and dare i say ill judged and as you can now see, not linkedto reality. Unintentional - I know - but now you know
6. Undertake PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT ...I have to pursudae and prove the concept first (see above) Learn about how Moodle works, how to administer it, how to maintain it (yup ditto see above), lean about the operating system (going a little too far there teachers really dont have time to learn PHPO scripting, Apache admin and (so on) , please see this from a teachers POV) you deployed it on, etc etc .. (yup ditto see above)
7. "and if you don't have the spare time, don't get involved in it ." It should be clear that this black and white approach ("if you aint a techy dont touch it" sounds like a passable argument on first reading but one of the opportunities for OSS IS the ability to toe-dip, to gently test and trial, and ideally to move to proper support whether is t Moodle, Red Hat or whatever... The biz model is there. But the way that the real world of education works is that "well it has to be seen to work. In an inner London school, with huge demands for special needs, refugees, EAL, SEN targets, PC sharing, new ideas HAVE sometimes to be rolled out in ways that cant compare with a £20,000 PA "business partner" development programme. Those things never happen sadly.
Lessons to be learned
1. I will try to conceal my utter rage at technology when it completely fails me just when I have spent days uploading content I have to count on.
2. Try and somehow keep things running until the school sees the value (ALREADY they are rather impressed) And THEN find a moodle parnet AND dedicated hosting
3. Take the "you have to be a PHO guru to use Moodle" comments with a well meaning pinch of salt.
4. Tell as many people NOT to use Lycos shared hosting as their upstream SQL servers are a DISASTER in terms of client server response times (THATS why the PHP session folders are rammed full. The SQL disconnect is flooding new sessions all the time) (I just wih I knew where that folder WAS!!
5. MOST IMPORTANTLY - Dont assume that because a site works OK on light test for a few weeks it will work for ONE DAY when Lycos are still learning how to configure MYSQL 5.0 servers to weeks after they SAY they have finished.
Any Moodle Partners PLEASE GET IN TOUCH!! I need some quotes.
(here endeth the rant - hopegully a well mannered, balanced one)
Once again my huge thanks to the replies (most of them!) its just a shame that a lot fo the instructions about hacking into SQL databases with obscure OSS database tools is beyond me. (wahhh)