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Community Rallies to Put Indymedia Back Online!
national | indymedia ireland | feature Friday January 19, 2007 21:24 by IMC Collective
After our hosting provider suddenly cut our database, on January 8th, we were plunged into crisis. We only ever raise enough money to pay our hosting bills and this was completely unexpected. We moved to a new server the following day, but soon realised that we needed a much more powerful system to keep up with the traffic volumes - the new server fell over immediately.
Happily, the indymedia community rallied round in no time at all. Thousands of euros came in through our online donation form, and more came through individual donations, cheques through the post and even from collections at protests. Altogether, within a week of launching our appeal, some 4000 came in - as large numbers of people put their hands in their pockets to keep indymedia online and to secure it's future.
Our techies got busy, and have built us an impressive new network of servers, whirring and buzzing away, scattered across the world, to ensure that the free media will keep on publishing. Due to this new infrastructure, and the huge show of solidarity that we received, we can now offer more features for contributors and readers. You can now publish audio files (up to 20MB) directly on to indymedia and publish PDF files too. In the near future we will be introducing extra features: a new encrypted server, giving users greater privacy in browsing and publishing.
The server crisis - the details
As the volume of traffic to Indymedia.ie keeps on increasing, the strain on our server has kept on increasing too. Since we started five years ago, the volume of traffic has consistently risen, month after month, year after year. In November 2006, we served about 14 million hits - 320GB of traffic and about 5 million pages. About 250,000 different people visited the site. All of this was acheived on a shoestring and relying on a huge amount of volunteer labour.
Now, while we can understand their position - no company is going to allow one of their customers to use such a large proportion of their resources - we feel that they certainly should have given us a bit more notice. Instead, they simply pulled the plug and told us afterwards. This left us in a crisis situation. The site was offline for the first time in years.
This meant that we had to get ourselves a dedicated server to host indymedia.ie. However, these are expensive and we had only raised enough money to pay for our previous hosting in our recent fundraising drive. Still, within a few days, we managed to get back online with a temporary (but expensive and slow) dedicated server. Sadly, as soon as we switched this new server on, we realised just how many resources we had been using - the server simply froze within 30 seconds. So, our crisis got worse. We now knew that we needed serious hardware to keep the site online. We estimated that it would cost us at least 2,000, just to rent servers that were capable of dealing with the load.
This money will guarantee our future for at least the next year. Not only that, we now have a much more robust, faster, bigger, stronger and more secure set up. We've got clusters, RAID arrays, replicated databases, secure servers, multi-processors and a myriad of other technical tools. Most importantly, our bandwidth allocation has increased from 300GB a month to a huge 4TB a month (1TB = 1000GB), an increase of more than 10 times. Our disk storage capacity has increased from 6GB to about 300GB - an increase of 50 times. That means we can now host audio files and PDF files directly on our servers. All of this is thanks to the donations of our supporters and the hard work of our techies.
We're definitely not going away, you know
Some coverage of our server crisis:
Details of the donations to the server fund
Total Raised: 4,357.50
by Kieran Donnelly Sun Jan 21, 2007 22:52
Great to see you folks back up and running!
by Sharon. - Individual . Sun Jan 21, 2007 23:25
Failte abhaile , Indymedia !
by Galway Shell to Sea Mon Jan 22, 2007 00:07
Just testing the new improved image capacity with this recent shot, taking at the Shell to Sea protest outside the headquarters of Ϊdarαs na Gaeltachta in Furbo, Co Galway, where an inspiring 679 euros was raised for indymedia. The protest was over the decision of the authority to allocate one of its premises in Erris to Shell. See link for further details.
by Barra Mon Jan 22, 2007 00:13
Great to see it back online, well done dudes!
by TD - Shell to Sea Mon Jan 22, 2007 01:00
If winter comes, can Indymedia be far behind?
by radical jonny Mon Jan 22, 2007 08:36
God, it was hell not getting any news!
by Lefty Type Mon Jan 22, 2007 09:22
well done every1, it goes to show that when we are the media, we will persevere. Now if only we could have the same response when it comes to defeating FF/PD's/Bush/Blair/racism/Shell/Coca-Cola/neo-liberalism/privatisation/whatever floats your boat
by 16 Mon Jan 22, 2007 09:46
is it a record?
by Clare Mon Jan 22, 2007 10:18
Thanks to everyone that worked to put the site back up and running. Must have been a crazy few days for ye. All the effort is much appreciated.
by Miriam Cotton Mon Jan 22, 2007 11:12
Badly missed. Very unfair that someone would pull the plug they way they did. But, like a Phoenix from the ashes...back better and stronger it seems.
by TC Mon Jan 22, 2007 11:19
Delighted to see you back.
by Hugh Murphy - Sacked by my union ex Belfast Docker Mon Jan 22, 2007 11:38
Great to see you back, it was rough going Cold Turkey without your site and having to depend on fat headed and skinny principled so called newspapers for so called information.
by an fear sϊil Mon Jan 22, 2007 12:19
as the site disappeared a shiver ran down my spine, when i though of an Ireland without Indymedia, that that thought made me rush to the bank!!!
by guydebordisdead Mon Jan 22, 2007 13:48
All is forgiven.
by Cryptognome Mon Jan 22, 2007 14:25
What is this encrypted server thing? https://www.indymedia.ie ?
by Chekov Mon Jan 22, 2007 15:05
The encrypted server is basically just that - a normal web server, but one that encrypts all communication between your browser and the web-server. It means that anybody who might be eavesdropping on your network can't read any of the data that is sent between you and the website. Since indymedia is an open publishing site where pretty much everything is done in public anyway, it has limited use for most people. It just makes it slightly more difficult for people to monitor what you do on the site, what you publish and what you read. The most important use of the encrypted server is that it allows all passwords and all other activities of the members of the collective to be encrypted over the network so nobody can eavesdrop on them.
by Niall Harnett. Mon Jan 22, 2007 16:17
Great work friends, welcome home. Your constant work behind the scenes is greatly appreciated.
by dunk Mon Jan 22, 2007 16:46 fuspey at yahoo dot co dot uk
by Starstruck Mon Jan 22, 2007 18:34
Welcome back Indy,man organising anything for the past 2 weeks has been a lot harder--better appreciated now eh!
by iosaf .:. ipsiphi Mon Jan 22, 2007 23:15 barcelona. (no where else would have me)
that fecking little green humunculus. But like most Irish problems it only needed money to be thrown at it & after some vague inquiry not without noted frustration voiced by certain reliable citizens it's all ok again. the server is encrypted now. it's all "so s-e-c-r-e-t the aliens can't fk it anymore & you get pdf files up now!".
by Muireann Ni Bhrolchain - Save Tara Tue Jan 23, 2007 00:05
You never appreciate something until its gone. Welcome back guys, so great to have you back. A decent forum for issues like Tara, Rossport and all other ills.
by Kev Wed Jan 24, 2007 01:16
Welcome back. I can't say I've been very active here of late,although they do say that when you really need/want something,it seems to be gone. So I was horrified to say that little green man earlier in the month!
by Maura Harrington - S2S; Davitt League Wed Jan 24, 2007 09:55
Welcome back - great to have the site up and running as it was sorely missed.
by Rose of Tralee Wed Jan 24, 2007 10:48
I'm delighted to see Indymedia (Ireland) is back up and running again, and the openness and transparency you have shown above regarding donations is an added bonus for me.
by Mark C - Teacher Wed Jan 24, 2007 11:44
Indymedia was blocked from our school server (we have an outside filtering system) the day Indymedia.ie came back online. I wonder why?
by Carlo Giuliani Lives - Anarchists Against Spying Wed Jan 24, 2007 18:28 carlogiulianilives at yahoo dot ie
The encrypted server .... encrypts all communication between your browser and the web-server. It means that anybody who might be eavesdropping on your network can't read any of the data that is sent between you...
by Chekov Wed Jan 24, 2007 21:47
"Of course, what this does not tell you is that Indymedia monitor you via your IP addresses and proxy names."
by R. Isible Thu Jan 25, 2007 16:00
Of course, what this does not tell you is that Indymedia monitor you via your IP addresses and proxy names.
by John Kelly - Campaign for Free Speech in Dublin CFSD Thu Jan 25, 2007 16:11
Many thanks to all of you who combined know how, and money to get this site back up and running.
by supertzar Fri Jan 26, 2007 14:10 Langerland
Welcome, welcome, welcome.
by Sean Scholfield Sun Jan 28, 2007 19:00 barton.company at yahoo dot co dot uk 278 Hides Harlow Essex CM20 3QL 07979222300
A truly indepent organisation with intelligent contributors. Keep up the good work. Keep fighting back. Free speech is alive.
by Kieran O'Sullivan - Personal Capacity Wed Jan 31, 2007 13:57
Given the response rate to the appeal for funds there is no doubt that this site is very popular. However it should have never gotten this bad. It was entirely predictable that an ISP is going to demand more money for more bandwidth and if a site starts using more resources then they can expect to pay more.
by R. Isible Wed Jan 31, 2007 14:24
I have serious political problems with this type of organization in that it is not transparent as to how people become part of the collective
by Hugh Murphy - Sacked by my union ex Belfast Docker Wed Jan 31, 2007 15:19
Just a thought about how you could alleviate any impending or unforeseen financial crises in the future.
by anon Wed Jan 31, 2007 15:19
Some the regular users here should really read about indymedia and its history and open publishing some don't seem to want to get it. Open ~ free or an option to do free, some imcs do have an optional log on, giving more weight to recognisable users stories but always leaving the option of anonymity which is essential to indymedia. See
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Further proof that aliens exist!
IMC interview 2.89 Mb