Author Topic: Call For Help  (Read 7983 times)

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Offline Mike Bobbitt

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Call For Help
« on: July 09, 2003, 13:07:00 »
Hi all,

I was hit today with a $237 bill from my ISP, who complained that I was far over my monthly traffic limit.

What does this mean for the site?

Well, I‘m not sure yet. I definitely can‘t afford this kind of a monthly bill, so I can‘t keep things as they are. The *last* thing I want to do is to have to shut down the site, and I‘m going to work hard to ensure it won‘t come to that.

I‘ve had some ideas, ranging in practicality and utility:

* Shut down the site for designated periods (E.G. every 2nd week) - (this idea is clearly not the preferred way to go)
* Transfer some or all of the traffic to a new (unidentified) connection
* Reduce the amount of traffic by scaling back images, etc - this is likely a lot of work for a small gain

In the mean time, I‘m open to suggestions...

Thanks

Offline kurokaze

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2003, 13:55:00 »
I can offer up some bandwidth and space.

Basically I got around 50-100MB/day
worth of traffic and roughly 50-75MB
of disk space.  I can host static stuff
like the little icons and avatars and
some images.

I‘m on pair networks right now, they
have some good deals so you might want
to check them out and see if they have
a package that suites you.

www.pair.com

Offline Mike Bobbitt

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2003, 14:20:00 »
Hi kurokaze,

Thanks for the offer. I know you‘d made an offer before, and I couldn‘t really figure out a good way to make use of it. I now have a bit more incentive.  :)  I‘ll drop you an e-mail and maybe we can figure out some details.

Thanks

Offline Danjanou

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2003, 14:29:00 »
I wouldn‘t be adverse to a small subscription fee myself. Hey I like playing here and besides I feel you offer an excellent service. Mind i can see others who may object, or otherwise not be in a position to pay (students etc.)

An alternative might be simple donations through paypal or something similar from those that can and are able to do so.
NASA spent $12 Million designing a pen that could write in the zero gravity environment of space. The Russians went with pencils.

Offline Mike Bobbitt

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2003, 14:57:00 »
I really want to stay away from a subscription type affair if I can. It changes the whole site in a way that I think would really hamper the sense of community. In short, I‘m looking for other options first.

I do have a PayPal account, and have accepted donations through it before, so that‘s not completely out of the question. However relying on donations is a risky and somewhat annoying proposition. I‘ve tried to reduce that annoyance by giving CdnArmy.ca stickers to donors.

Similar to that, I‘ve recently purchased a bunch of shirts, to be sold as part of the 10th anniversary launch. The original plan was to sell essentially at cost, but I may increase the price by a couple bucks to help cover off the expense.

The real problem is that a monthly cost this high not sustainable, so I‘m going to try to address that issue first.

Thanks for the suggestions, hopefully we can make some headway here...

bradb

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2003, 15:37:00 »
Hello! I am sorry to hear about the bill that you recently received. I would not be against paying a small subscription fee. There are also other ways that you could go about paying for bandwidth...what about offering advertising on the site? I see many open spots that could be available for people/companys to advertise and pay a small fee for doing so. If you would like any help or information please feel free to let me know. Best of luck!

Veteran`s son

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2003, 21:14:00 »
Hello Mike:

Hopefully you won‘t have to shut down the site as there is so much helpful information about the Canadian Army here.

Also, I myself have learned a lot about the Canadian Army and its history with the benefit of the  many  people who post to the forums!

Offline nULL

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2003, 21:18:00 »
Yeah, no kidding. Why don‘t you post an address where people can make donations? A place to mail checks/money orders?

Offline Danjanou

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #8 on: July 09, 2003, 21:22:00 »
T-Shirts sound like an excellent unofficial fund raiser.
NASA spent $12 Million designing a pen that could write in the zero gravity environment of space. The Russians went with pencils.

Offline Mike Bobbitt

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #9 on: July 09, 2003, 21:32:00 »
Thanks, I appreciate the strong response from everyone. I‘ve created a "Donate" page, for those who are interested:

 http://army.ca/donate/

I‘ve also put up a page regarding the shirts:

 http://army.ca/shirts/

For folks coming to the get together on the 26th, you may want to save on shipping.

Unfortunately, the new web site (not yet unveiled) promises to put me further over the limit since it has more to it, so I‘m going to have to re-assess what to do there as well.

What I really need is a good network connection to plug the Army.ca server into, but that could be hard to find.

Again, thanks for your support. I‘m hoping to find a long term solution beyond soliciting donations, as I‘m not sure how maintainable that is.

Offline Mike Bobbitt

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2003, 07:48:00 »
Update: I‘ve taken Kurokaze up on his generous offer to take some of the load, and taken a few other steps to reduce traffic on the site. Thanks also to St.Onge for donating, and keeping us on the air a while longer.

I‘m still waiting for some definitive results on the reduction, but so far it looks like I‘m still headed for an expensive month.

I should have a better forecast by Monday, when I‘ll have to decide what to do.

Right now the worst case scenario is that I turn down the site for a period of time, to keep us under the traffic limits. (For example, turn off the site every 2nd or 3rd day.) The best case is I‘m able to sustain the extra traffic through donations, advertising, etc.

I feel a bit like I‘m "selling out" here, but I‘ve come to realize it‘s an unfortunate necessity. The choice is to limit or shut down the site, or to start covering off some of the operating costs.

I will still attempt to reduce the traffic by other means, which is without a doubt the best approach. Nobody has to pay, and the site stays online.

Etown

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2003, 02:29:00 »
Hey Mike,

I might be able to help you out. I used to work for an ISP here in Vancouver and they still owe me a couple of favours. If you can give me some numbers I can talk to the owner about moving some content or possibly hosting the site.

Basically I‘d need to know
The size of the site
monthly traffic figures
and any script or database requirements.

Let me know and I‘ll see waht I can do for you.

Offline CFN. Orange

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #12 on: July 12, 2003, 05:05:00 »
Hey mike i know i got some free webspace hanging around so if you need some i can try and help you out...
just email me
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Offline Mike Bobbitt

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #13 on: July 12, 2003, 09:54:00 »
This is fantastic guys. I‘m overwhelmed by the amount of support I‘ve received, so thank you all!

The last few days have been very challenging, but the strong responses I‘ve recieved make one thing clear: We‘re here to stay.

Ironically, the new web site design that I‘ve been putting together for the 26th would generate much more traffic, so I‘m now in the process of going back and revisiting that. Shouldn‘t be a problem to scale it back...

Tpr.Orange and E-Town, I‘ve sent you both e-mails.

Thanks again!

Offline PikaChe

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #14 on: July 22, 2003, 11:23:00 »
Perhaps better way is to shut off the site during less active times, like 2am to 11am?

Offline Mike Bobbitt

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #15 on: July 22, 2003, 13:30:00 »
Actually, through a combination of events, I think we‘re going to be OK in about a month or so. I‘ve been working with E-Town to relocate the site to address the issue, and assuming all goes well, that should solve it. Users shouldn‘t notice any changes, it‘ll all happen behind the scenes.

So if all goes well, we won‘t have to do any temporary shut downs. For this month, I‘ll eat the extra costs to keep it online. (Can‘t shut it down just when the new site is brought online!)

Veteran`s son

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Re: Call For Help
« Reply #16 on: July 22, 2003, 23:32:00 »
Hello Mike:

I‘m glad to see that the site won‘t be shut down, even temporarily!

THANK YOU, Mike, for starting the Cdnarmy forums!
The information in these forums is so very helpful for those wanting to learn about the Canadian Army.