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Topic: Announcements
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Posted by: jdowneyadmin on Apr 03, 2005 - 12:02 PM
  Forums Are a Bit Flakey
I tried to import the messages from the "old" forum, and while they are in the database, they don't show up until a post is made. So, right at the moment, the threads may seem a bit wacky. I'm working to resolve the problem.

-Jeff
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Posted by: jdowneyadmin on Apr 01, 2005 - 07:13 PM
  Most Downloads Are Back!
I was able to restore the download section to mid-January status. This is a huge deal, as it added 952 files.

I'm in the process of uploading the files. So, if you get an error, check back in a bit as the file will be there soon.

When the site went down, we had 997 files available. So, if you have one of the missing files, please feel free to add it.

Also, if you uploaded something this morning, that isn't listed in the DL area, please re-upload that as well. I had to re-move those files in order to do the restoration. I think sacrificing 15 files was worth adding 952! :)

If you you notice any problems, or if anyone can not upload, please let me know.

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Posted by: jdowneyadmin on Mar 31, 2005 - 12:42 PM
  The tabletop-sports.com Saga.
Tabletop-sports.com was housed in a data center owned by a company called Dinix. On Friday night, I got an email stating that Dinix had been purchased by Web Host Plus. The mail stated that the Dinix data center was being merged with the Web Host Plus data center in Atlanta, GA. The mail stated that the equipment was being sent via "air courier" to Atlanta, and the site would be down for "approximately 3 hours in the middle of the night, during a holiday weekend". Needless to say, the email was both optomistic and blantantly false.

First of all the equipment was not sent via "air courier". It was sent on a semi-truck from St. Louis to Atlanta. The equipment arrived in the Atlanta data center on Monday morning. On Monday morning, I received another email, apologizing for the mistatement in the original email, and reassurance that all was well, and the servers would be up and running by 7 PM. At 7:34 PM I received an email stating that the server in which Tabletop-sports.com resided was damaged in route, and I would have to me moved to a new server. I replied that would be fine, just get the site back online. At 8:45 PM, I received another email stating that the site backups were corrupt, and I would need to provide my own backup. At that time, I terminated my co-location with them, and started to look for another data center.

After doing quite a bit of research, I decided upon AboveNet, as that data center hosts Google, Sun Micro and Ebay servers. They also offer a 100% data and power uptime guarantee. So, provided nothing really weird happens, the site should be very stable and MUCH, MUCH faster when the DNS resolves.

Now, for the bad news. I had a personal backup from March 15th that I intended to install on the new server. However, I ran into MANY problems. For one, part of the back up was corrupt. But, the main issue was the code itself. It's no real secret that more and more people were having problems accessing parts of the website. Tabletop-sports started out as a pure PostNuke website. As I learned PHP and wanted to add several things, like the ability to upload files, or a message board embedded into the website, I really hacked up and modified the code. The end result was the site comprised of 90% modified PHP and 10% original PostNuke. This became a real nightmare to get working on the new server. Most of the changes I had made, I didn't document as I should have, and I ran out of patience. So, I've had to start back to the very begining.

The downside is that the website will have to be re-built from the ground up. The Up-side, which is huge, is that I've taken the features that I wanted from several CMS's and have modified it into a smooth running, error-free website. So, if you couldn't upload files, before, you will be able to now. If you couldn't download files before, you'll be able to now. I've spent nearly 3 full days writing and testing the core code. It's solid. And it's now well documented. ;)

Until the DNS server resolve, you can get to the website by clicking : http://208.185.243.20/~jdowney3/

Everyone will have to re-register on the website. I'm also asking that anyone that can help by uploading a few files, or reposting a review, to please do so. I can't get the website back to where it was very quickly by myself.

I also want to take time to thank everyone that has helped support the site. Tabletop-sports.com has become a completely user supported website since last August when I was down-sized by HP. Honestly, at the time, I thought the site would go away then, as I couldn't and can't afford the expense of the server out of pocket anymore. Had it not been for the generousity of several of you, the website would be long gone. And I certianly wouldn't have the motivation to survive this past week.

Please do not send me any emails until you can access the site by typing www.tabletop-sports.com and reach the site. My mail won't work until the DNS's are resolving. Also, if you mailed me last week, please re-send it when the site is working through the URL.

And finally, don'e bookmark the temporary link I listed above, as it will likely change over time.

Again, thanks to everyone.
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