1. The AAF forum will close permanently on December 1, 2017. I no longer have the time to manage a project like this, obviously, or give it the attention that it deserves. I still think fondly of the early days in 1998 when this all got started. A small, but eager group of tech savvy 1st and 2nd generation descendants made great friends with the last of the WWII veterans thru the newfangled internet. They're all gone now. It's time for me to turn the page. Thanks for being along for part of the ride. I'm sorry it got so bumpy in the end.
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Where we stand

Discussion in 'Forum Tech Help' started by Scott Burris, Oct 24, 2015.

  1. Scott Burris

    Scott Burris Site Admin Staff Member

    What was the problem?

    There was a critical error in the old forum software. It wasn't "worth the vendor's time" to resolve despite the $$ spent on a yearly maintenance fee and over 10 years of use. We had a few words about that.

    My goal moving forward was twofold.

    1) Cut operating costs.

    2) Switch to forum software with a much broader user base and better support. i.e., something that we can get help with if it goes 'bang.'


    1) I've been able to switch back to our old package and cut hosting costs in half.

    2) Switched to forum software called XenForo. It's written by the former lead developers of vBulletin and has widespread support. Support and upgrade costs are also a fraction of the old software's. It's also very robust. There are forums running this software with post counts in the tens of millions and huge numbers of sub-forums.

    Recovery of the old forum contents.

    That's not going to be so easy. The old database is intact, but it's in a MSSQL db and we're running on a mySQL system now. It's going to take a custom import to resolve and some fancy coding to clean up the link and media embed differences.

    The import of the old contents will happen but I can't give you a definitive time table on when.

    If you had an old forum account.

    Go ahead and create a new account. It will help if you use the same email address as your old account. When the old contents are imported, we'll attempt to merge the account details.
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2015
    steve kelleher likes this.
  2. Dwilma01

    Dwilma01 New Member


    Is there any way we can support your efforts? The site has priceless information about these heroes.
  3. Scott Burris

    Scott Burris Site Admin Staff Member

    There are a couple of mechanisms for support, but I'm slow rolling that until we get some content back into the site.

    1. Revenue from the ad network. It's turned off right now. But ads did a pretty good job of supporting the miscellaneous software/site hosting costs.

    2. Direct support via paypal (and for people hate ads). I setup of a supporter member level on the old forum. It turned off ads for those users and gave a few extra benefits. I need to recreate that in this new forum and pull the user list from the old db.

    I'll post a 'how to support' note before much longer.
  4. Dwilma01

    Dwilma01 New Member

    I will be pleased to support the effort when you get it set up.
  5. Scott Burris

    Scott Burris Site Admin Staff Member

    December 8th update.

    I've been beyond busy of late and unfortunately haven't had the down time to concentrate on the forum import. There's usually a lull right after the New Year and I think that's when we're going to start test importing the old content.

    On the plus side. The new forum software is running smoothly (knock on wood) and people are finding us one again.

    As always, if you have questions or comments, send them my way.
  6. RSwank

    RSwank Well-Known Member

    Scott, good to hear things are still progressing.

    A minor tweak. For some reason I did not catch-on to the fact that if you click on "New Posts" you get the complete list, not just the few displayed under it initially. I wonder if you just change the label to (New Posts...click for more) or something similar, it would be more obvious.

    There use to be a way to list posts with no replies. Is that still possible?
    25Kingman49 likes this.
  7. Lucky Partners

    Lucky Partners Well-Known Member

    Realizing how busy you must be I've hesitated to put in my 2 cents worth for a while now. One thing that you might consider is access to images in posts/threads for 'guests' or others cruising through without being logged in. It's been a while but if I remember correctly in our earlier life images in posts were visible and thumbnails could be opened by guests. Now one gets redirected to the "Permission denied" page. Yes, there are pros and cons but a guest might be more inclined to join if he/she saw a document or photo in a post that they might be able to comment on. Just a thought. Thanks.
    25Kingman49 likes this.
  8. Scott Burris

    Scott Burris Site Admin Staff Member

    Just a quick word to note that we made it past a major tech hurdle today that had been holding us up. I'm reasonably confident (I know, why tempt fate?) that we'll get this licked before March has run its course.

    My schedule isn't any less hectic, but I've blocked out some time to work on the problem anyway. :cool:
  9. Lucky Partners

    Lucky Partners Well-Known Member

    Forum has been down for several hours tonight. When it came back up it appears that we have lost the last day or two's postings. Any chance of recovery?
  10. 25Kingman49

    25Kingman49 Well-Known Member

    I Must concur with Hal. Most troubling these continuing glitches with such a simple forum "reinstated" format. While touching on this touchy subject what is the new projected schedule to reinstate all of the previous data from the failed old aaf forum.
    In the same light does it bother anyone but me that at any given time lately robot participation outweighs members and guests ten fold in current aaf forum viewing which seems only attributable to a lack member faith. Frankly this forum as valuable as it still is with venerable members it is a shell of what it once was. This is only pointed out as some new members make it obvious they think they are posting for the first time in some of the bomb group sub-forum. Unfortunately they are not aware of the rich history that was once contained in most of these bomb group forums, let alone the content still missing from Ground Commands, etc. etc. etc.
    Beyond those slight concerns everything is coming up roses.
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2016
  11. Airwar

    Airwar Well-Known Member

    Hal,Scott,this is not good. I wait with other postings,

  12. Scott Burris

    Scott Burris Site Admin Staff Member

    There's a mention in the service provider logs of some downtime on the server but no mention of having to restore from a day or two old backup.

    I'll look into it, but if they did that then there's no recovery for those lost posts.
  13. Lucky Partners

    Lucky Partners Well-Known Member

    Just FYI, the system has been down numerous times in the past 12 - 18 hours. Up one minute, down the next. Shame if not recoverable, several interesting threads have been completely lost.

    Screen shot attached.

    Last edited: Mar 5, 2016
    25Kingman49 likes this.
  14. Scott Burris

    Scott Burris Site Admin Staff Member

    I've been out of town most the day, but both times I've checked on my phone it's been down. Hosting service reported some issues last night and into the morning. Obviously, it's still not very stable.

    Not much we can do about it from our end.

    Hopefully the !@#E$ squirrels will have it back on more solid footing before too long.
  15. Hemiman

    Hemiman New Member

    Evening Scott..

    Health and family problems , along with a junk electric chicken, have kept me away for far too long. Glad to see the site up and running!. I sure do hope that you're
    able to rescue the former posts as many that I participated in are now lost to history with the final crash of my old computer.

  16. Airwar

    Airwar Well-Known Member

    Bill welcome back. Your input in the past and now are more then welcome. Take your time and I hope that your family and
    health problems can left behind you.

    Take care, Jaap
  17. WillowRun

    WillowRun New Member

    Evening Scott, Based on having been absent for some time, I've continued to work on some Aviation Groups thru FaceBook as well as continue t0o read and watch on our Site. Unfortunately, a lot of the queries I receive are in the HUGE number of Posts on the FO B-24 Plant at Willow Run. Is there any further update on retrieving old intact posts as yet? I have found a few individual ones thru Google, but as Murphy's Law prevailed, the queries I have weren't answered by any that I found. I'm laid up for a few weeks from a freak fall, so I've done more reading and working on an article. Hope you are doing well albeit busy!
    Bomber Command likes this.
  18. Mike.Simpson

    Mike.Simpson New Member

    Scott: As the new President of the Heritage League of the Second Air Division (USAAF), I would like to check with you about your old MSSQL database. We have the hardware and software to recover your data if you would be willing to allow us access. One of the missions of the Heritage League is to preserve historical information and having been a member of the ArmyAirForces forum for the past 17 years, I have a pretty good idea of the data treasure you have. Please let me know what we can do to help preserve your hard work.
  19. 25Kingman49

    25Kingman49 Well-Known Member

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