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#1 2009-02-27 05:19:25

Registered: 2007-08-18
Posts: 1,233

Forums Restored ... mostly

blogicon-20090227.gifAs you probably know, the forums recently met with disaster. Without warning, the web hosting company I was using went belly-up and shut off their servers. I have backups ... but the most recent is about three months out of date. That means many memberships and posts were lost -- forever, by initial appearances.

However, despite this setback, all lost memberships have been restored. Lost accounts were recreated using the registration alerts that I received when the accounts were originally created. Join dates and id numbers have been restored but members who originally joined on or after November 30, 2008, will have to reenter all of their profile details. If you are one of these members, and you'll know you are if you can't log in, send an email to xot at this domain for your new password. Please resist the urge to reregister yourself.

As for the forum posts that were lost, I've attempted to restore as many I can using cached pages found in various search engines. Posts I haven't found cached elsewhere will probably never be recovered. My Google Fu was already strong, but I learned even more about search engines while tracking down posts. Tracking down the old posts was tricky, it usually took many query variations and search engines to find any particular topic. Unfortunately, it was also a race against time, as search engines updated their cache from the disabled forum, throwing away valuable information and replacing it with the "under maintenance" message. That was frustrating. To make matters much worse, because of my unusual search patterns, Google and MSN repeatedly misidentified me as a bot and shut me out for hours at a time. In the end, I think a total of 15 posts were lost and most of them look to be easily replaceable. Not bad considering how much damage was done. In cases where I had partial information about a missing post or topic, I have created stub posts for the author to edit, if possible. These are listed below. Any lost PMs are irrevocable.

Finally, because the posts and topics were not restored in the order they were originally posted, and because I reposted everything with my admin account, and because I can't post in the past, a large part of the forums' database had to by manually manipulated at the lowest level. In fact, a huge amount of database work was required every step of the way, restoring dates and member names, and last posts stats, in multiple interconnected tables. The whole process is tedious, error prone, and very probably not worth the effort.

This has been nightmarish from the 'incident' up until now, and I don't think I'll ever attempt a restoration like this again. Obviously, the next thing to address is creating an automated off-site archival backup system so this doesn't happen again. I'm sure it will involve significantly less labor. Restoring the site has taken 30+ hours so far.

MIA posts and topics -- Tiby312 -- Topic: create_sprite() -- xDanielx -- Topic: is_power -- special cases not correct -- icuurd12b422 -- Topic: instance_nearest_notme -- icuurd12b422 -- Reply: mergefromto -- icuurd12b422 -- Reply: Grid Smoothing and Random Terrain Generation -- Burunduk -- Topic: motion_blur -- Burunduk -- Topic: draw_sprite_origin -- Burunduk -- Topic: ds_grid_row -- Burunduk -- Topic: normal_detect -- Burunduk -- Topic: sprite_desaturate

Abusing forum power since 1986.


#2 2009-03-04 16:35:44

Registered: 2009-01-31
Posts: 1

Re: Forums Restored ... mostly -- Burunduk -- Topic: draw_sprite_origin -- Burunduk -- Topic: ds_grid_row


The others are all script mistakes, most of which concern variable declarations.
I'm sure you won't have any problems finding the mistakes again, if you keep that list of problematic scripts.
(motion_blur, normal_detect, sprite_desaturate)


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