About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

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About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Sun Mar 30, 2014 5:00 pm

[If you're reading this, you're on the new server! Don't panic about this post, it doesn't apply to this server.]

[If you find yourself unable to reply to this thread, please use this link. The forum automatically stops you from replying if you go into this thread by the archives or the Announcements forum.]

Before I say anything else: If you haven't read the announcement made by Fast Eddie, please do so. Basically, TV Tropes can't afford to pay the fees for it any more, and the deadline to move everything to other servers is April 15th.

Firstly, I want to reassure people that all of the sites and data will be safe, including xovr.net. I'm backing everything up as we speak and nothing will be lost. In particular, we still have all the files for xovr.net.

Secondly (and this is preliminary stuff, so don't rely on it): I'm getting in contact with people who might be able to host the ARG sites. I myself will probably be hosting the forums, although I'm considering splitting it into two separate sites: one to host the forums currently in the "The Wall Will Fall Archives" section (The Game, Post-Mortem), and one to host the forums currently in the "General" section (Announcements, Off Topic, Adminverse Discussion, Metaguard Projects, Roleplaying). This way, we can hand the archives over to the people I'm getting in contact with rather than me hosting them myself. I'd appreciate input on this! (One idea I have is that it might be better to have the "Announcements" forum in the archive as it was used during the ARG too. Again, input would be appreciated.)

This is all very up in the air right now, and I apologise. I'll update this thread as soon as I have more to report. In the meantime, please don't panic. <3
Last edited by Sophira on Thu Apr 17, 2014 7:46 am, edited 5 times in total.
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Re: About the server shutdown

Postby EdwardTheAwesome on Sun Mar 30, 2014 5:10 pm

Hey now, what happened to this being my site?

[I've made this thread global for you, though.]
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Re: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Sun Mar 30, 2014 5:12 pm

Don't panic, Ed. :) And thank you!
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Re: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Pixelmage on Sun Mar 30, 2014 5:22 pm

I have no problems with the split of the archives / active parts into two different hosts. If anything, any idea that makes the move more manageable is one I can get behind. :)

And thanks for the awesomeness getting to this so fast and on such short notice! We were only mildly panicking, I swear, only mildly. :P
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Re: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby narrativedilettante on Sun Mar 30, 2014 6:14 pm

Thank you Sophira!

Since the TWWF archive is locked anyway, I would have no problem with it being fully split from the still-active parts of the forum.

And, I want to note that I'm more grateful that this forum has been here for me all this time than I am upset about the thought of it disappearing. But I would still much rather it not disappear.

And Ed? If you can take care of hosting for this site yourself, feel free. :P
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Re: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Scarab on Sun Mar 30, 2014 7:08 pm

What Dilly said. We have loved having this forum around, that you continued to keep it open for us for so long was very, very appreciated and we thank you all for it :) It'd be lovely if we can keep track of all the stuff done (not least for the GM's portfolios), and I'm sure we can come up with a place where we can continue chatting.

You've all given us something pretty darn awesome, and we're grateful :)
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Re: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby The Wild West Pyro on Sun Mar 30, 2014 7:56 pm

I did love this forum, but if we can move everything and still keep it alive, I'm a happy man.
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Re: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Mon Mar 31, 2014 8:01 am

Last night I made a complete backup of the stuff on the server that I found relevant. The stuff backed up includes these sites:

*.ezblog.co (including database backups):
  • ezblog.co - just the files; no database used
  • bensmanga.ezblog.co
  • cf.ezblog.co
  • efp.ezblog.co
  • erik.ezblog.co
  • fm.ezblog.co
  • gulliver.ezblog.co
  • hef.ezblog.co
  • juliet.ezblog.co
  • londontales.ezblog.co
  • mindsandmatters.ezblog.co
  • romeo.ezblog.co
  • taracoulson.ezblog.co
  • westwitch.ezblog.co
Everything else (everything in this list has had at least its files backed up):
  • fictionalthreat.com - just the files; no database used
  • forum.watchthefootage.com - just the files; I already have a database backup and will make another just before the move
  • holmesinvestigations.net - just the files; no database used
  • littlegreycells.biz - just the files; no database used
  • lerouxproductions.com (and its database)
  • pheeble.net (and its database)
  • watchthefootage.com (and its database)
  • xovr.net - just the files; no database used
In addition, I've exported the database of belgianamongtheenglish.wordpress.com, so we have a backup there of the posts, comments, etc.

The following sites have not been backed up:
  • flamingorarebooks.wordpress.com (thus far I've been unable to find the password, but I'll keep looking)
  • sites.google.com/site/baskervillecommons/ (ditto)
  • new.livestream.com/accounts/1210453 (no need; the one video it streamed and hosted is in Joe's second-to-last WTF video)
  • All the Twitter accounts,
  • Pan's Facebook account.
While I haven't specifically backed up the YouTube channels, I still have all the videos that were uploaded to them as long as they were put onto the Google Drive by the end of the ARG (fellow PMs, let me know if there are any videos that *don't* fit these criteria). However, since I can't see YouTube dying any time soon, it's probably safe to not have to worry about that for now. :)

If I've missed any sites in these lists, let me know.
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Re: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Scarab on Mon Mar 31, 2014 9:52 am

Thanks a lot, Soph. Let me know if there's anything I can help with. I don't have much tech savvy, but since I'm in the same country as you, that might help somewhat? Dunno how, but it might...
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Re: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Thu Apr 03, 2014 3:25 pm

After discussion, the people I was talking with are quite reasonably saying that they'd be okay with hosting the archived sites only if they don't use software that's likely to have widespread, automated exploits. Since WordPress is likely to be in that category, we'd need to have converted the pages to static HTML before they would be willing to host them.

Given how much work this is going to require and how little time we have to do so, I'm holding off on that for now. Instead, I'm going to see if I can host everything myself at first so that we have an archive from the original files that works exactly as it did in the ARG, and revisit the static HTML plan later if I need to, or if it slows down the sites too much.

This will probably require some maintenance to keep the site software up-to-date. I may be able to get something up and running whereby I can update all the WordPress blogs in one fell swoop, which would cut down on this maintenance quite a lot, but we'll see. For now, though, I'm going to worry about getting everything on my server.

More updates when I have news. :D
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Re: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Sat Apr 05, 2014 1:00 pm

I'm going to install a plugin that'll show global announcements like this on the front page too, so people can see whether there are any unread messages here without having to go into a forum. I'm also going to downgrade the ArgFest thread from a global to an ordinary announcement, so it only shows up in one forum.

[edit: Done! You should now be seeing this global thread from the main page.]
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Sat Apr 05, 2014 6:05 pm

I have a fresh, new Linode now ready for stuff to be put on it. I'll be testing and configuring the box and making sure everything will work okay with it.

Now would be a good time to discuss my plans for the move!

I know that Dryu said earlier that he'd want everything to look identical - same domain names, etc. While I believe this should be doable, we did have 8 separate domains during the ARG, and that's not an insignificant cost. If that's what is wanted then I'll see what I can do, but it might involve me having to ask for donations more than I would have to otherwise.

So, my plan for now (but this can be changed!) is to register a single domain, twwf.info (which I've already done to make sure that no domain squatters can register it first), and then we can make it so that to get to a site used in the ARG, you can simply use its domain name followed by ".twwf.info". For example, the Wicked Witch's blog might be westwitch.ezblog.co.twwf.info. This means we only need to pay for 1 domain instead of 8, and it also gives us an easy homepage at twwf.info that can be an index of all the sites.

I'm also thinking that we'd split off the post-ARG content from http://watchthefootage.com/ and http://forum.watchthefootage.com/ and put it directly on twwf.info and forum.twwf.info instead. This means that the archive will be pristine and untouched by the later post-ARG content, such as the forums we're posting in now and the "Post-Mortem" post made on the front page of watchthefootage.com. The forums then available at forum.watchthefootage.com.twwf.info would consist of the forums used in the game and maybe the post-mortem forums - I'm dithering a little over whether we should move the post-mortem forums onto forum.twwf.info or whether they should be kept on forum.watchthefootage.com.twwf.info, and I'd love to hear your views on that.

This is all assuming, of course, that people like the idea of twwf.info in the first place. If you'd rather have the original domains, I can see what I can do.

What does everybody think?
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby narrativedilettante on Sat Apr 05, 2014 6:13 pm

I wouldn't mind at all seeing most of the websites absorbed into twwf.info.

For me personally, it will be annoying having to learn a new url for the forum, because I'm used to navigating to forum.watchthefootage.com, but after a while I'll get used to it and my browser will start autocompleting it for me and it will be okay.
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Sat Apr 05, 2014 6:23 pm

I've had another idea - to save on typing, we could make it so you don't have to type in the last part of the domain name (".com", ".net", ".co", etc), so the domains would be things like westwitch.ezblog.twwf.info, fictionalthreat.twwf.info, and forum.watchthefootage.twwf.info.

That said, I'd understand and support it if it's felt like those bits should be kept - I'm kind of unsure about it myself. (In either case, I'd have a link from forum.twwf.info to the forum archive.)
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby eli_gone_crazy on Sat Apr 05, 2014 6:35 pm

I am okay with this.
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby The Wild West Pyro on Sat Apr 05, 2014 7:12 pm

Same here-I'm still OK with this.
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Pixelmage on Sat Apr 05, 2014 8:46 pm

I'm for dropping the .com / .co components of the name. Less typing and less fragments of name, simpler names are easier to remember and use. :)
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Hito o kizutsuke otoshimete,
Tsumi ni oboreshi gō no tama,
Ippen... shinde miru?"
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Krika on Sat Apr 05, 2014 8:51 pm

*nods* I'm good with that.
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Qara-Xuan Zenith on Sat Apr 05, 2014 11:31 pm

*agrees*
To throw in my two cents (though we would round that down to zero in Canada now...), I'd say the post-mortem should be with the game archive (at forum.watchthefootage.twwf.info ?), as opposed to with the "active" forum because a) it is all locked, b) it consists of game-canon relevant to anyone wanting to dive into game-nostalgia, and c) it is also relevant for if a GM is using the archives of the game on a resume.
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Sun Apr 06, 2014 7:00 am

Very good points, particularly c)!
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Sun Apr 06, 2014 8:15 am

The first site is up: http://ezblog.twwf.info/ , the new home of what was formerly ezblog.co.

I started with this one because it's a very simple static site; all it uses is HTML, images and CSS (and a tiny bit of non-mandatory JavaScript), thus it's really easy to get up and running.

A note here on how I'm planning to preserve links between sites - at present, I'm using the original source files but with a filter running on the Web server that automatically substitutes the new domains in for the old ones, which means I don't need to touch the original files at all. This does, however, sometimes mean that the displayed archived version isn't quite the same as the original - for example, on http://ezblog.twwf.info/thedeal.html , it says:

We host a WordPress blog site for you. We install it, maintain the database, and do the backups. We provide you with a URL in the form of YOURSITE.ezblog.twwf.info.


The original said:

We host a WordPress blog site for you. We install it, maintain the database, and do the backups. We provide you with a URL in the form of YOURSITE.ezblog.co.


Ideally, I'd like for citations outside of links not to be replaced (so that in this case it would look like the original version), but for various reasons this is actually pretty difficult to do. It does bother me, however, and after I've got everything else up I'll probably try tweaking the filter to find a way of doing that; I'm very much an archivist at heart and I'm in favour of not tinkering with the source material where possible.

I'll probably be doing fictionalthreat next as that's the other relatively simple site.
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Sun Apr 06, 2014 9:07 am

I'm working on getting fictionalthreat up and running.

Unfortunately, one of its images is missing from the archive; it used to be hosted at tvtropes.info (which was also hosted by the server) but it no longer exists there. (It was a picture of Mr A, if I remember correctly.)

Does anyone happen to have a copy of the picture? Try putting your browser into offline mode (In Firefox it's File->Work Offline) and then clicking this link (but don't do this unless you're in offline mode, please): http://tvtropes.info/echochamber/wp-con ... .00-AM.png . If you get a picture, save it and upload it here, please! I can then save it on the server and fix the archive to point at the right place.

(The reason you need to be in offline mode is because the image doesn't exist online, and trying to go there while online will erase any cache of the file that might exist on your computer. I don't hold out much hope for this in any case simply because it's been a year and a half since people here went to the site, but you never know...)
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Scarab on Mon Apr 07, 2014 4:52 am

I dunno if I have the picture but I have a massive folder of twwf stuff, I could just check all the Mister A pictures (if there are any) and send them to you tonight?
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Mon Apr 07, 2014 5:05 am

I'm not precisely sure what the image looked like, unfortunately. However, if you didn't rename the images then the one I'm looking for will have a filename of "Screen-shot-2011-10-02-at-12.37.00-AM.png", if that helps.

[edit: Fixing a typo.]
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Re: Global: About the server shutdown (PLEASE READ!)

Postby Sophira on Tue Apr 08, 2014 7:02 pm

I managed to recover the image (thanks, Fast Eddie!), and http://fictionalthreat.twwf.info/ is now up.

I'm really sorry that I haven't been working on the others in the meantime. I'll get on them.
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