Just an update on the missing photos
#1
As most of you know by now, last weekend we had a major blowup of our forum software and Packey, our webmaster, had to reload the software and the database. He had a lot of problems getting things to work after that, but with perseverance and long hours, he managed to restore everything but our archive of photos. So, just so you all know, here is where we are right now. There are some 23,000 photos that have been posted here since we opened in Dec 2008, we've always encouraged people to post photos, what good is a model train forum if we can't see what everyone is doing, or get some exciting prototype shots to look at? Those photos still exist in our database, but for some reason, the phpBB forum software that we use just doesn't want to access them. All these photos are in a directory on our server. New photos go in the same directory. We can see no difference between the old and new ones, yet the new ones show, but the old ones don't and we are not sure why. We have reinstalled this photo database with one we know had worked in the past, it is a bit outdated, but better than nothing, but it won't work either.

The bottom line is that we have not lost all these photos, they are in our database, we just can't access them for now. We're not sure if we will ever be able to, but we will not stop trying to find a way. There may be some hidden key or piece of code we need to add, and all will be well again. In the meantime, new photo uploads do appear as normal, so do not hesitate to attach new photos to your posts. Also, any links to off-site photo storage like Photobuckets are still alive. We are implementing a different method of automatically doing our backups so that we don't have to rely on uploading a new version of the software along with a database that had been downloaded at some point in time. Storage will also go to the cloud in the event that our server goes awry as well. In the even that something gets corrupt, we will be able to restore it with much later data.

The basic cause of all this was with a recent updated version of our software not working right and taking us down, and it's hard to protect our data against things like that. We stand a better chance of a full recovery when things are stored off site and in the cloud. We are all upset about this, but it is what it is and we will do our best to get back what we can. No guarantees, but we will try our best.
Don (ezdays) Day
Board administrator and
founder of the CANYON STATE RAILROAD
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#2
Just as an afterthought, I probably could have said that we've got most of those photos, but they're locked in a vault and we can't find the combination. Nope That kind of analogy sums things up in a heck of a lot less words and gets the point across just as well. :roll:

Hmm, maybe we need to call a locksmith.... :wait:
Don (ezdays) Day
Board administrator and
founder of the CANYON STATE RAILROAD
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#3
I would recommend that none of us tamper trying to restore pictures as this might corrupt things even more. Glitches like this if left alone sometimes heal themselves, but tamper with the data and it could close the door and melt the key. We have time to redo if a miracle doesn't happen. My advise to Packey is still to keep cool, go take a nap. Cheers
Charlie
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#4
Charlie B Wrote:I would recommend that none of us tamper trying to restore pictures as this might corrupt things even more. Glitches like this if left alone sometimes heal themselves, but tamper with the data and it could close the door and melt the key. We have time to redo if a miracle doesn't happen. My advise to Packey is still to keep cool, go take a nap. Cheers
Charlie

Yup, sometime things heal themselves and that's one option we have. But there is others and we have no plans on doing anything that would risk any data. What we have is secure right now, just not accessible and we will leave it that way until we are sure we found the solution. :wait:
Don (ezdays) Day
Board administrator and
founder of the CANYON STATE RAILROAD
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#5
Whatever the final outcome I appreciate all the hard work! :clap: :tada: Cheers
Mike

Sent from my pocket calculator using two tin cans and a string
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#6
One more update, a bit of good news. Packey was able to recover about 17,000 of the corrupt photo files. Anything that was posted from Dec 2008 through around July 2013 is now intact and visible. Photos posted between July 2013 and June 2014 are still corrupted and may not ever be recovered. Photos posted after June 2014 and last weekend, May 15, are lost and there is no hope for recovering them. The crash and the corruption of the files were all due to a quirk in the way our phpBB software did it's update. Our webmaster, Packey, spent the best part of three days trying to recover from this update fiasco and finally resorted to going back to an older version that we know worked. In the process, the photo files got corrupted and he had to dig deep in the archives to find some that were not.

The good news is that he has restored about 5 1/2 years of photos. The bad news is that we've lost the past 22 months, and may never be able to get them restored all together.

Just a thought, if anyone has a thread that they want to get any of these photos restored in, let either myself (ezdays) or Mikey (ngauger) know and we can set your permissions to temporarily allow you to edit these threads to replace the bad photos. We don't have to restore them all, but if you have a few you'd like to do, just let us know, it would mean simply going back and uploading these photos again.

Again, we are grateful to Packey for the work that he's done in recovering not only the photos that he did, but the forum itself. Worship And don't worry, he's taken steps to avoid this ever happening again so don't be reluctant to post new photos, the system is working properly again. :tada:
Don (ezdays) Day
Board administrator and
founder of the CANYON STATE RAILROAD
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#7
Hi all, thanks for your hard work on this.

I am guessing that photos that are posted by way of a link (such as BBcode via Flickr ) are unaffected, and will still be visible as such?

Koos
Be sure to visit my model railroad blog at <!-- m --><a class="postlink" href="http://www.namrr.blogspot.com">http://www.namrr.blogspot.com</a><!-- m -->
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#8
torikoos Wrote:Hi all, thanks for your hard work on this.

I am guessing that photos that are posted by way of a link (such as BBcode via Flickr ) are unaffected, and will still be visible as such?

Koos

Yup, they've always been visible as long as the link is good. Sometimes things happen at the other end and we can't control that.
Don (ezdays) Day
Board administrator and
founder of the CANYON STATE RAILROAD
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#9
Wonderful, I did think that but I thought I'd better clarify that.
There are many threads on here that use a similar mechanism for their photos, so there is still a lot of nice stuff to admire for the period we're missing pictures. :-)
Be sure to visit my model railroad blog at <!-- m --><a class="postlink" href="http://www.namrr.blogspot.com">http://www.namrr.blogspot.com</a><!-- m -->
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#10
torikoos Wrote:Wonderful, I did think that but I thought I'd better clarify that.
There are many threads on here that use a similar mechanism for their photos, so there is still a lot of nice stuff to admire for the period we're missing pictures. :-)

You are right, and I'd say that we might be missing 10 to 15% of our total photos. Some people might chose to upload the missing ones and some are in threads that may not ever be searched again like some of the Hobo Camp threads. Still, we'd like to get all 100% of our photos back if we could.
Don (ezdays) Day
Board administrator and
founder of the CANYON STATE RAILROAD
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#11
" The crash and the corruption of the files were all due to a quirk in the way our phpBB software did it's update. "

I would think that the creators of the phpBB software, owe us all, substantial compensation ( double for Packey )
for our losses. At the very least, they should be helping us find a solution to their "failure"....... free of charge........ NOW.
We always learn far more from our own mistakes, than we will ever learn from another's advice.
The greatest place to live life, is on the sharp leading edge of a learning curve.
Lead me not into temptation.....I can find it myself!
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#12
Sumpter250 Wrote:" The crash and the corruption of the files were all due to a quirk in the way our phpBB software did it's update. "

I would think that the creators of the phpBB software, owe us all, substantial compensation ( double for Packey )
for our losses. At the very least, they should be helping us find a solution to their "failure"....... free of charge........ NOW.
Unfortunately, somewhere buried deep in the tiniest of the fine print, there are clauses and statements that exemplify them from any software malfunctions. Crazy Nope :wall1: :wall1:
~~ Mikey KB3VBR (Admin)
~~ NARA Member # 75
~~ Link To E-Mag Information

~~ I wonder what that would look like in 1:20.3???
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#13
I think that they would at least give us a full refund of everything we ever paid them for the use of their software. Nope ... But like Mikey says, we can't start pointing fingers based on what we've paid for it and the fine print that we accepted when we installed it :wait: . Remember, phpBB is open-sourced and so there are a lot of little fingers mixing up the pot. It has done well for us up to this glitch. Someone released a chunk of code that didn't work right and we spiraled down from there. Packey has added another layer of protection to prevent that from ever happening again. :clap:

Ahh yes, the fine print in that long legal narrative that proceeds clicking the, "I accept", button. Crazy Shoot
Don (ezdays) Day
Board administrator and
founder of the CANYON STATE RAILROAD
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#14
While it is a shame it happened, what the group does as a whole is highly commendable. They have developed photo and video software that compares to Adobe that can be downloaded and used for free, audio software, Open office, and of course there is JMRI which works with the DCC systems that enables a lot of possibilities for train operation as well as assisting with programing decoders. This is just a small portion of what the volunteers do for folks. they have even developed a computer operating system that at first I thought was hard to use but if Microsoft does not get it together with Windows 10 I will be using it. At least they do help keep the cost of programs to a little lower level.
Charlie
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#15
When I started with digital photography, I copied my initial pix to a cdRom. When I copied my second set, there was a blip of some sort and the first collection disappeared. Nobody was able to find anything on the disk; all that's left are a few bits that I put on the old gauge.
I now backup to my hard drive then a DVD before I delete from the SD card. And a flash drive that was going cheap.
David
Moderato ma non troppo
Perth & Exeter Railway Company
Esquesing & Chinguacousy Radial Railway
In model railroading, there are between six and two hundred ways of performing a given task.
Most modellers can get two of them to work.
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