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WebRing News
16, February, 2002

Here's a quick recap of some of the bigger events of the past few weeks:

  • Bandwidth troubles - We realized in late January that we were greatly exceeding the bandwidth we had contracted for. WebRing was using over 400 KB/s during the peak middle hours of the day. Our daily average had climbed to alomost 300 KB/s. We have been working almost exlusively on this for the past three weeks. By redesigning the default SSNB element, and adding dynamic compression to our HTML output we have lowered this to peak usage of 200 KB/s and an average of about 145 KB/s. It was not easy and there may be some residual problems, but we will deal with them as best we can. This is far better than realizing a trippling of our monthly ISP charges.
  • One fallout of the bandwidth problem was that we were forced to limit the size of Hub and navbar image size that we host. There were *hundreds* of navbar images over 1 MB in size, which is, of course, excessive. Navbar images are limited to 4 KB and Hub images to 25 KB. This may be an inconvenience for some. If so, contact us for ideas.
  • Auto-management and the checker. We received reports of false negatives over the last few days when the system checked sites versus hand checking. The problem has been found and corrected, but auto-expire and auto-suspend have been stopped until Monday, February 18, to give the system a chance to recover rather than suspend sites in error.
  • New features to look for:
    • A change in the "placeholder" SSNB element. We'll have three. One for pending, suspended, and missing. Hopefully this will help those with navigation troubles.
    • Navigation code wizard - to assist members in placing code, SSNB or HTML, properly on pages. We're excited about this tool.
    • Immediate activate - suspended sites will be allowed to become active immediately once they test PASS (or PASS_L) in management, without having to wait for the ring manager or auto-management to process the site. This will be an option for ring managers on the Global Settings screen.
    • Disable auto-suspend on a site by site basis - we'll add a selection to site management to allow you to "flag" certain sites to prevent auto-management from suspending flagged sites. This should alleviate problems where the checker fails to properly recognize code. It will still auto-activate all sites that test PASS (or PASS_L).
  • More checker news. We've reconfigured the checker to check failing sites more often in an effort to speed activation of sites.
  • Abandoned rings - We're finding some of the original owners still and finding good homes for many others. Thanks for stepping up folks!

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