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ATARI.ORG STATUS-INFORMATION
March 9, 2003

Background

Atari.Org has been serving Atari sites and people since July 1998. We have provided subdomains, e-mail forwarding, hit counters, atari search engine, news, web site hosting and other services during nearly all this time.

Since July 1998, things have changed, mostly in terms of server and server location. The staff behind Atari.Org is mostly the same as back then, with the big exception of Richard Davey (of Little Green Desktop fame), who left us two years ago.

Back in 1998, Atari.Org was hosted on a 64kbit/s connection at Richard Davey's job (Kaliba in the UK), it went on for half a year until two major server breakdowns forced us to find new ways of hosting the site and services.

Atari.Org then moved to a dedicated server hosted in the USA (Rackspace). After moving, things really got in order. Good uptimes, good net capacity. The Rackspace solution looked solid for the foreseeable future. Then the 'Dotcom' crash came as a bomb, ruining the online advertising-business.
What was previously possible to finance by banner ads was now hopeless in an instant. Atari.Org was in need of a better priced hosting solution, and in February 2001 we 'moved house' again after about two years at Rackspace.

Atari.Org now took the steps from USA to Sweden, we had financed a new machine and a co-location solution there. This time the move was almost flawless, as there was no downtime on the Rackspace machine during the move.

A few surprising events happened at this point; Rich Davey decides to leave the ship and we get an unexpected sponsoring suggestion from Catalog.com of a hosted server machine. Losing one man set aside, Atari.Org now had the best server situation ever. We started to host quite a few Atari-sites and things worked very well, except for some networking trouble in the summer of 2001 (totally out of our control).

That's the status quo, until 2003.


2003: Atari.Org falling to pieces

Here comes the explanation of why Atari.Org has been away, in a stasis or half-working during the last couple of months.

In the first week of 2003, the Catalog.com server got a hiccup. It started to reboot every ten minutes, quite clearly a hardware error, but the Catalog.com folks didn't seem to care, they 'looked' over the machine briefly and it actually ran for a day, possibly due to the machine being shut off for a while and thus cooling down. The machine gets worse until it doesn't even reboot anymore. Catalog.com reboots it for us once, but doesn't do any repairs, leaving the machine alone.

We finally realise that the situation is hopeless, Catalog.com won't help us to get the machine working. Like a miracle we succeed to backup the entire machine and transfer it over to our server in Sweden. What just can't happen just then, happens, the swedish server gets a serious hardware problem.

We quickly come up with a plan to replace the faulty parts. Ready to do the order, we ask the hosting company when they would be able to replace the broken hardware. They surprised us by saying that they won't do that. Without physical access to the machine ourselves, the only thing we could do was to look for an alternative hosting facility. Meanwhile the machine gets even worse, having to be rebooted almost daily and several times the hosting company staff didn't or coudln't reboot for several days. We didn't have a lot of choice until we had a new solution, we had to try to run everything on the faulty machine as long as possible.

Unfortunately it didn't work out, the machine died before we were able to have the replacement up and ready. Thanks to friends nearby the hosting place, we were able to get the machine away, and magically also get all the data off the disks. Thanks a LOT for your help there Stefan.


Getting the pieces back together

It's now March and we have a new server, a new co-location company, and Atari.Org is located in Finland. Mistakes and oversights from earlier disasters are corrected; we have a well priced hosting as well as the possibility for physical access to the machine.

As far as we can see now, Atari.Org should be in 'good hands' - we will continue to offer the same (very successful) services to the Atari community and will also continue expanding our services.

We wish to thank everyone who has helped us during the years, especially Richard Davey, Stefan Berndtsson and Falcon Users Netherlands, not forgetting Catalog.com for their generous offer and good hosting.

Today's Atari.Org staff:
  • Teemu Hukkanen (partycle@atari.org)
    Technical admin.

  • Robert Högberg (baggio@atari.org)
    Economics.

  • Anders Eriksson (support@atari.org)
    Daily services and website maintenance.

We also have great help from:
  • Laurent Fargues (jace@atari.org)
    PHP/SQL-coding.

  • Oliver Heun (paranoia@atari.org)
    Subdomain verification.

  • Janez Valant (swe@atari.org)
    Subdomain verification.

  • Olivier Miquel (mrnours@atari.org)
    Pathfinder maintenance.


Thanks for reading, and we hope that you now have a better understanding of the latest happenings here at Atari.Org.

Atari.Org Staff


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