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The Changes

Started by lumpley, June 07, 2010, 10:52:56 AM

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I've split the Forge into a read-only archive and a live, ongoing forum.

The live forum, this one, starts on Jan 1, 2008; it has all the posts since the first on on that date. It also has all the private messages.

The archive starts with the first Forge post ever, and ends with the last post on May 30, 2010. The archive will stay at, since that's where every link in the world points. I'm not going to orphan them all.

It's not going to make much day-to-day difference. Update your bookmarks to and carry on. The only real hassle is going to be searching: searches here in the live forum won't return any posts before 2008. To find older posts, you'll have to go into the archives and search form them there.

Thanks for you patience, everybody! I'm happy as always to answer any questions you might have.



I'm creating a search index for the archives. This is a mostly-automatic process, but it'll take days and days and days yet. Meanwhile, searching the archives may time out a lot. You can give it a try, but be patient with it.

I'll drop a note here when it's done.



There are a handful of publishers' forums that haven't had any posts in them at all this year. I've moved them down to inactive. If you're one of those publishers and you'd like your forum brought back up, let me know.


Eero Tuovinen

Hope you don't mind backseat drivers:

Couldn't you put in a URL redirect to allow the active forum to remain in the old address? For example, all queries to the forum could go through a simple check of thread ID: a query with "topic=X" where X < 29000 (or whichever thread you'd choose as the cut-off point; the thread numbering is sequential, isn't it?) could be redirected to whatever address you put the archive, while the others could proceed normally. This seems like a relatively simple little bit of server script, and it'd allow the active forum to retain the old address, which seems like it might be simpler from a long-term maintainability viewpoint. There could even be a short redirect page informing the user that he's being transported to the archives.

Even if that's not in the cards, at least set the domain url to redirect to the active forum instead of the archive. I would imagine that new users could spend quite a while examining the archive before noticing the links to the active forum. Might make them even conclude that the forum is dead, as it doesn't have any new messages. In fact, wouldn't it be best to set the archive forum's color scheme to something clearly different for usability? I can totally imagine how I might forget after a bit which forum I'm at, if I end up doing serious archive trawling for some reason. Now the two forums look the same for no good reason.

Aside from that, I got some capacity error messages right now while opening some forum pages; remains to be seen how endemic it is. Might be that I'm just hitting an use spike as all us eager users swarm back to the Forge right at this writing.

Regardless: the basic idea of splitting the database is a good one, technically speaking. It should lighten the server load considerably. Some enterprising individual might even make a lighter archive front-end for the old data at some point, as it doesn't need user all the user tracking functions and such that an active forum has.
Blogging at Game Design is about Structure.
Publishing Zombie Cinema and Solar System at Arkenstone Publishing.


I've taken the archives down again. If doing that makes this live forum reliable, well, that'll be better than what we had.

I'll figure out how to make the archives available again once we're stable and happy here.



Please no backseat driving.

Anyone who has a specific idea they'd like to volunteer to try, contact me by email or PM. Anyone who has a suggestion for something I could try, the same. Feature requests, though, like yours, Eero, are at this point most unwelcome.



Filip Luszczyk

I suggest removing The Archives sticky for the time being, or linking to this thread from there. Links in that thread only redirect to unavailable.html currently, which is confusing.



I can certainly appreciate your request to handle suggestions through private channels.

However, before I can make any useful suggestions, I'd need some more technical details. Since I do believe that anyone else trying to help would need these as well, I'd like to suggest putting at least those here in public to ensure you don't have to give them out a dozen times.

So what is going on? You indicated the database got too big, but what exactly do you mean by that? Did it no longer fit on the hard drives? Or did each action take too long to finish due to the amount of data, causing slowdowns?

Also, hardware. How many servers are we talking about, how many drives, what setup?


Quick status update:

I'm building a search index for the archives. It's a lengthy process -- I've been at it for many days, including some interruptions, but according to the search index utility it's only 54.4% created. I hope it's done by the weekend upcoming.

Once it's finished, I'll try opening the archives again.



Eero, I followed your suggestion about the conditional redirect and it seems pretty good so far. Thank you. Sorry for being cranky!


Moreno R.

Quote from: lumpley on June 30, 2010, 01:30:04 PM
Eero, I followed your suggestion about the conditional redirect and it seems pretty good so far. Thank you. Sorry for being cranky!


So, what address should we use in the bookmark? or  ?


(Excuse my errors, English is not my native language. I'm Italian.)