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Author Topic: Forum database issues  (Read 1218 times)

Bluebomber4evr

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Forum database issues
« on: August 26, 2016, 01:57:28 AM »
Folks, I have been a very lax webmaster.

I have let these forums balloon in size over the last ten years, and while it warms my heart and brings me joy to see that our community has grown so large, it also caused our database to grow large as well, and this has caused our hosting service a lot of issues.

At first I thought it was something to do with a weekly backup, but after investigating, it turns out that there are no weekly backups. We just have too much here that hasn't been pruned, like a lawn that has never been mowed. It was my responsibility to do so, and I did not. I am sorry.

The only way to fix this is to go through these forums like an intervention on an episode of Hoarders. We're going to have to delete a lot of stuff because we just can't keep it all, because trying to keep it all will kill us.

So some particularly old, particularly long topics (for example "Positive Roleplay Experiences") will have to be thrown out and started over.

Older posts in the Tavern will just be tossed if they haven't been posted in for a year or more -- so if there's a particular topic you want to see kept, make a post in there to keep it, otherwise I'm giving it the ol' heave-ho. Same will go for the other public sections of the forums.

Some of the older faction subsections will be tossed as well: PC Wights, Vampire Coven, Wachters, Zeklos Keep, etc. This probably won't matter to any of you who are players since these are invisible and haven't had active players for years, but to our DMs, you'd best go through those old sub-forums (the abandoned factions, not any of the active ones) and move any relevant topics to the DM section of the forums.

I had to delete the search index. Now ordinarily, an index makes searches faster and thus easier on the database. But it was huge because our forums were huge. I will recreate it after the pruning is done and the restriction is lifted, but until this is all squared away, please use the search function sparingly, as index-less searches are a lot slower.

Personal Messages will have to be pruned as well. No one is probably more guilty of this than I am; my inbox had close to 6000 messages! This is, of course, utterly ridiculous. So I've tossed out anything older than a year, and now I have 265 messages. You all should do this as well: when you go to your Personal Messages inbox, on the left-hand side you should see a list. Under "Actions" there is an option that says "prune messages." When you click on that you get a screen that says "Delete all messages older than ______ days." The default is 14 days but you can make it larger or smaller. Set the number of days you like and then click the "delete" button on the right-hand side. I will give you all a week to do this on your own, after that, the biggest offenders on message inbox size will have it done for them.

In fact, all of the above needs to be done within a week. I realize that the "unable to start another process" thing will make this a pain in the butt to do, but we'll have to bear with it. I will write to the hosts to inform them of what we will be doing, as well as the maintenance that Soren has done and hopefully that will be enough for them to lift it.

I realize there are probably some old topics or posts or messages we might be sentimental about keeping, but we can't afford to be sentimental about them. We just have to do it. The fridge has to be cleaned out, and that old tupperware container full of mystery mold has got to go in the trash.

I'm sorry I let things get to this point, I promise I'll be more proactive about it from now on.

Bluebomber4evr: The Justice, not you, since 2002

Bluebomber4evr

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Re: Forum database issues
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2016, 02:06:38 AM »
Addendum: I've already made a backup of the database so it will be possible, though difficult, to retrieve older content that has been deleted. This will only be done in special circumstances, however.

Bluebomber4evr: The Justice, not you, since 2002

Bluebomber4evr

  • Head DM, Developer and Ravenloft Trivia Guru/Community Council
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Re: Forum database issues
« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2016, 06:15:36 PM »
Soren has rebuilt the custom search index, so you can all use the search function again. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Bluebomber4evr: The Justice, not you, since 2002