Cloud Update January 2020

by Ryan Thrash

Published on January 24, 2020

2020 is off to a strong start at MODX Cloud. Today we’re excited to announce some enhancements for websites in MODX Cloud, some helpful changes to the Dashboard and reminders of some upcoming changes.

New Cloud Upgrades

We are happy to announce the launch of two new Cloud Upgrades to enhance your websites as needed, with a third to launch in the coming weeks. These are found on each Cloud’s Upgrades tab in the Dashboard.

Performance+

Performance+ improves engagement and can boost your search rank. Our managed CDN gives you faster page loads—you don’t even have to change how you work thanks to an exclusive plugin that purges the CDN cache on page updates. Extra PHP workers provide additional overhead during increased visitor loads.

Security+

Security+ combines the features of and replaces our former Managed Cloud and standalone WAF add-ons to bring better value to customers who care about site security.

Security+ adds fully-managed site security from MODX. We protect your site with a web application firewall, proactively apply critical security updates, and back it up with our exclusive no-hack warranty—which means if your site is ever compromised it's on us to get it back in working order with no extra cost for you. Never worry about missed security upgrades or what to do if your site comes under attack.

Dashboard Changes

We’re working on, and have made progress with, speeding up the Dashboard. For users with a lot of Clouds, logging in should feel a bit snappier. You can expect further improvements to be made in the future as well.

Clouds (List) View

We’ve reorganized the main view when you arrive in the MODX Cloud Dashboard to make it quicker to access your clouds and reduce clutter. Here’s what’s changed on the Clouds View:

  • We moved Groups below the Clouds list. Most MODX Cloud customers never use Groups and in addition, it was too easy to hit the New Groups button when intending to create a new Cloud.
  • We now hide the section where favorites are shown if you don’t actually have any favorites. For customers with only a few Clouds, this brings their Clouds list above the fold to the top of the page. As soon as you favorite a Cloud (by clicking the star at the left of the Cloud in the list) your Favorites will display at the top of the page.

Edit Cloud View

We’ve moved a few things around on the Edit Cloud view, placing related things together on the same tab. Here’s what’s changed:

  • We moved phpMyAdmin to the Summary tab, the first/default tab when you arrive on the Cloud Edit page. You can now add or remove it from the MySQL Section.
  • Adding Custom Domains is now at the top of the Domains tab.
  • On the Web Server tab, we’ve moved Web Rules up to the top as they’re used most frequently. Enabling SSL (Certificates) is now just below the Web Rules.
  • The Add-ons Tab is now Upgrades. This will be the home of new Cloud-level Upgrades including Performance+, Security+ and the soon to be launched Uptime+
  • Backups and Snapshots have been moved to the last two tabs.

What’s Upcoming

  • PHP 7.4.2 is still in progress for release in MODX Cloud soon.
  • In the coming weeks, a unique fully-managed failover solution called Uptime+ will be released, and we’re excited to roll this out. Uptime+ dynamically shifts traffic to a nightly clone of your site in another region when an outage occurs or when our monitoring detects a performance degradation. If this happens, our support team proactively steps in to resolve any problems and restore normal operation as quickly as possible. So whether there is a regional network disruption, a complete data center gets taken out in a natural disaster, or more mundane things like necessary maintenance requiring a reboot has to happen, your visitors will always be able to get to your site.
  • Streamlined plans are coming. But don’t worry, you'll stay on the plan you're on unless you like the new ones better.

Reminders

  • We previously mentioned that IBM Cloud is updating how portable IPs are used in their infrastructure. Customers with custom domains on paas1 and paas2 in Amsterdam (AMS 1/2) and Texas (TX 1/2) will need to update their DNS (if they haven't already) to avoid downtime during the upcoming changeover. For complete details on this change, read the November Cloud Update.
  • PHP 7.1 is being removed as it is no longer maintained as of Dec 1, 2019. When this occurs, Clouds will be switched to a newer version of PHP automatically.
  • MODX Revolution 3.0 alpha is available in Cloud, and alpha2 will be available as soon as it’s released in the near future. MODX developers and site builders can start working with and testing it out in their favorite environment.

Stack Updates

  • Nginx 1.16 was added since our last update.
  • Switching PHP versions is now faster, more reliable, and syncs the command line (CLI) version of PHP to match the web version.
  • For any new Flex Clouds created, the /core directory will not be blocked from being web accessible by default. If you need to change this on existing Flex instances, add a comment or update your web rules to regenerate the config.

We look forward to future updates and bringing you additional features to help you run your sites faster and better than ever before.

Millions Rely on MODX

In 2005, MODX could power a fully mobile-responsive website using HTML5 and CSS3, even though those technologies weren’t invented yet. And with MODX today, you’re ready not only for what you need now but also what comes next.

Try MODX Right Now