Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF....

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Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF....

Post by Scott Waters » June 7th, 2010, 10:53 pm

First and foremost, Don (psyon) is to be thanked enormously for his efforts. Not only on the morning of June 7, 2010 in rebuilding this forum after the devastating loss over the weekend, but for all that he does here and with http://www.naherp.com.
The NAFHA data is completely separate from FHF, so it is NOT affected by this loss over the weekend. We thank you, Don! I'm sending a bottle of expensive scotch to your door. If you don't drink, it'll make a nice gift. :) That said, people are emailing me asking what happened. Here are the facts as I know it, along with some heart felt words from me about this place and what the future holds.

June 7, 2010......This has been devastating for me, well, up until Don reinstalled the forum and you began posting! Your kind words about FHF mean a lot me, they really do. I've been humbled all day long. Most importantly, this was NOT about money or anything like being dumped due to not paying or something like that. I pay my bills. This is about something else, as I will explain.

My perspective on the history of FHF, data loss over the weekend, and the future.......

Almost 6 years ago FieldHerpForum was created. It was promoted via emails and phone calls, usually like this, "Come to this new forum and join the community!". Many people did, and as they say, "the rest is history." FHF (what many users call it) fast became the place to discuss field herping, all because of the will of YOU, the users. I looked at my role as simply a host for this community, getting involved only if I had to and ALWAYS fair and consistent. Yes, I spent some money, but I didn't care. It was worth it to see this community (not a forum, as the name states, a community) grow and become THE place to be! So year after year FHF grew, all because of you and your passion for field herping.

Some people who are now in college were posting here in their early high school yearsI I get emails all the time about it. Very moving, to say the least. The pride I've felt in what I've seen flourish here is unmeasurable.

So, as time went on and this place grew, I went to a virtual private server. I had to because no host would have us since we were too big for a simple hosting account, we needed more so I got it. The VPS is basically a tier under a completely dedicated server. I went with a company called "Ipower", and had a decent relationship (for the most part) with them over the years. Beginning earlier this year, they notified me of "email phishing violations", so a few times they shut down our server to get it resolved. This meant we had to let them know we changed our admin passwords, etc, to help keep hackers from getting in to the server. So we did, and it seemed like everything was fine after that. These things happen, so it was not uncommon at all for a productive and growing set of websites (I had a few other sites on the server as well) to experience this type of hack. I was told today by a few tech people from here on the forum that these are fairly common.

Jumping forward to recently, we had some down time with the forum, as you probably know since you're here all day! This past week I had the server shut down by them a few times, so I would call and I even put in a ticket late in the week. I restated the container every time it was down, then everything seemed fine. But this happened a few times in a week, which was not ordinary at all. Seemed like something was up, so I contacted them again and they told me it was about a "server migration". I assumed that meant they were moving some stuff around (unrelated to us), and that was causing some down time. Fair enough, these things happen, I'm a reasonable person.

I go to L.A. for weekend and come back (after not logging on all weekend, it was my son's birthday) very late sunday night to see the forum is down yet again. I go to the server and it won't allow me to do anything. Very disturbing, but I'm thinking, "Well, they said a migration was going on, so maybe this more of that." It was not. I called and was told, "your account has been DELETED, we are sending you a refund". I asked about it some more and the guy told me that it was more of the "email phishing" violations. I explained (rather upset at the time, of course) that the issue was dealt with back in jan and feb. He said that it happened again, and gave me a few more dates. I was shocked since this was the first I had heard of it. Didn't matter, he said, "It's all gone, your account has been deleted". I pleaded with him to hear what I was saying, that I had no idea what he was talking about! I sat stunned and crushed, thinking of you guys and what you've put in to this place over the years.......not me. Sure, my loss is painful, but it pales in comparison to the archives of FHF. My heart is ALWAYS on what can be provided for you, like a fast server and a reliable ISP, etc. I thought I had that security, but I was wrong.

I have no idea what happened, I just don't. I put my trust in my ISP. But they told me today that it was up to ME to back up the server, even though I clearly thought they would have redundancy since this was a fairly expensive account, not just a basic hosting account. I'm guessing that is fine print stuff. No one ever told me that they did ZERO backing up for a VPS account. Shocking, to say the least. Or why not just take my server taken off line with a notification sent that I must get my data in a set amount of time before they dump me as a client? I did not get that courtesy. Seems beyond harsh, and certainly unprofessional. I have no problem with a host saying they needed to dump me for whatever reasons, it is business, they need to do whatever it is they feel they need to do. But to just purge ALL data and then tell me what they've done? Wow. Pretty harsh.

I made a devastating assumption about data backups with my provider, and I apologize to you all. Shouldn't data remain the property of the client, regardless of why they want you to leave? There is absolutely no reason to just kill off all the data. Me as a client? Sure, but not the data, not before me getting a chance to recover it. Wouldn't any reasonable person assume this to be the case? I think so.

Like I said, I cannot apologize enough for my role in the data loss, meaning I should have had a local copy done every 24-48 hours, or so, and now I will. Again, I assumed an account that cost so much would have this done. I was wrong. Don is now our host and is setting up some awesome redundancy for this to NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN. You have my word. That is about all I can tell you. I'm hoping this was not a hack from someone in the community, I really do. Trust me, there are some people who are enjoying this situation, people who hate the idea of this forum being so popular and a forum that is NOT about the admin or just trying to make some money. I'm not in it for those reasons, as I've proven over the years. I really hope that is NOT the case, but I have my suspicions, I can't lie. Doesn't matter though, since YOU guys and gals aren't taking it laying down. You've demonstrated a fighting spirit today, one that inspired me. We are a community, as I was reminded, not just a forum. "Our house burned down, but we will rebuild", as one member put it. I agree.

I'm in this for the long haul. Whoever or whatever caused this to happen, along with the server being deleted inappropriately will NOT bring us down. You've made that clear. FHF will now become even better than before, you've really lit a fire today! A very emotional day for me, to be honest with you. You are helping me accept what has happened, to learn from it, and to push forward even stronger. I thank you and I PROMISE it will never happen again.

Up until a few days ago, we had a few thousand users and a few hundred thousand posts. We'll get there again, you're demanding it! I'm with you, and proud to be a part of this community.

thanks,
scott

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by Mike Pingleton » June 8th, 2010, 6:33 am

thanks Scott.

Monday was an interesting day, a watershed day. The wrappings of technology were stripped away to reveal the community within.

-Mike

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by Andy Avram » June 8th, 2010, 6:39 am

What I find confusing is how someone "email phishing" (which to me looks like it comes from hackers) is any way blamable to you? Why do you, and subsequently us at FHF, get penalized for hackers which is really beyond your control?

Either way you cut it the server company definately gave a low-blow. I am glad you called them out by name.

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by ahockenberry » June 8th, 2010, 7:09 am

Scott

Thanks for your post. Well, maybe this is the time to thank you for the many years of offering this valuable service and forum for the education and edification of us all. Obviously it is more than just a website. It is a community of herpers who will continue on.

Content can be replaced - the community cannot. Perhaps some of the more important information can be re-uploaded by various members and whatever data could be replaced can be now.

In any case, we all learn valuable lessons in life - but I think what we all learned here is that the relationships and the commitment to the community of learning and sharing information and images is what matters most.

Regards
Ashley
Toronto

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by jonathan » June 8th, 2010, 7:35 am

google "ipower" and "complaints" and behold the plethora of unrest on the web.

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by dezertwerx » June 8th, 2010, 7:55 am

Scott,

Im not that old of a member... joined mid-last year, but I love this place.

Definitely got hooked and love seeing everything contributed by fellow herpers from everywhere out there. You have created something special... and I doubt that will change.

Im pretty sure this site will only get better and better with time... thanks for all you've done!

Richard

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by erik loza » June 8th, 2010, 8:31 am

Wow, that is unreal. Thanks for the explanation. Look how many have rallied in just the last 24 hours.

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by Paul White » June 8th, 2010, 10:49 am

I'm new so this may not carry as much weight as from some...
You've got nothing to apologize for. You provide what seems to be one heck of a place to talk field stuff. I'm enjoying it immensly since finding it last week or so.

Thanks for the place :D

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by hellihooks » June 8th, 2010, 11:48 am

Scott..
I bet if you threatened the server Co with a class action lawsuit, by several thousand people wanting their data/achives back... they'd find a way to retrieve it... :D Where's the 'DOH!!!' icon...I seem to need it the most... :oops: :roll: :D ... jim

"There is no such a thing as a problem...Only Opportunities for Improvement" (original quote and life-view from your's truly... :mrgreen: )

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by RenoBart » June 8th, 2010, 12:27 pm

Thanks for the post, Scott.

It just makes me wonder, what if this site WAS your business and your livelihood. What if it contained all of your 'customer and order history' for example? I mean, this ISP seems to have a flagrant disregard for their customers. Jeez, you would think they would worry about getting sued over something like this! I can't believe they would just wipe your data out with NO communication to you at all. Crazy.

The other thing, is that I host several sites myself, and I find it VERY hard to find a 'good' ISP that doesn't sell all my email addresses to the spammers of the world. To mean, blocking out scammers, phisers and spammers is as much a responsibility of the ISP as it is the admin of the website. I'm just shocked that a company would pull something like this.

Anyway, thanks again for taking the time to let us know what happened. It'll be bigger and better this time around. :)

Bart

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by carlo bongio » June 8th, 2010, 12:43 pm

Scott, I just wanted to say much this forum has enriched my life.Its enabled me to meet some great people and herp from California to Arizona,Florida and back. this could not have been possible without this great forum.Thanks again for all you do to keep this going into the future,and thankyou Don (Pyson)for getting this up and running so fast. Cheers ,Carlo. :)

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by kevinb » June 8th, 2010, 1:19 pm

This site has meant a lot to me and I checked it a few times a day to catch up with you guys. The variety of species and the quality of the photography has left me in awe. Together we can rebuild this, with bricks from all over the world.

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by FunkyRes » June 8th, 2010, 1:38 pm

This post is not meant to make me sound like a know it all, but I'm in a similar situation of running a virtual host, and these are the things I do. I use linode.com - no clue how they compare with others. My registrar is godaddy. I make it a point to have the registrar be completely separate from the host, there was an issue I had with a host that was also my registrar and it was a PITA to get them to release control of the domain name, even though I paid for it. So by having the registrar a separate company, if I switch hosting companies, I just log in to godaddy and point to the new DNS for the domain.

phishing usually means someone found a way to use your domain as a relay, or found a web interface to your mail server.

My virtual server runs CentOS with automated nightly updated via yum. CentOS (RHEL clone) does not do radical changes to packages, they often don't even fix superficial bugs, though they sometimes do. Thus automated updates are unlikely to break the server. Security bugs though get fixed and pushed fairly quickly. In addition to main CentOS repository, I only use EPEL. EPEL is the only third party package repository I trust. I do not use any others. The only deviation I make is for php, where I build my own RPMs (RHEL php is too old for what I want to do). So that's one piece of server software I have to personally check for updates and patches, the rest - yum updates the system nightly for me. Only thing I need to occasionally do is restart the web server.

For the firewall, I use the built in firewall, only open standard ports are web (80 and 443) and SMTP for receiving mail. I run postfix opposed to Sendmail as it is easier to configure (er, easier to understand configuration) and outgoing mail is only allowed if connected via localhost. No one, not even me, can use the host remotely as a relay. Access to my mail on the host is done via squirrelmail over https - but I changed the squirellmail apache alias file so that it is difficult for someone to guess should there be a squirrelmail exploit. You can use nmap to check what ports are open, and there are several sites you can use to test to see if you are an open relay.

shell access - ssh only, high non standard port. root login via ssh disabled. Since I changed to high non standard port, my logs have shown only one brute force attempt (use to get multiple an hour when running standard port). That's only 1 in several years. The script kiddies don't bother trying non standard ports for brute force, it isn't worth their time, too many boxes just use standard port so their scripts generally don't even bother looking for ssh on high port numbers.

All web app administration is done over https and I use apache authentication (.htpasswd) in addition to the web applications own authentication. Thus, not only do I have to be logged in to the web app as an admin user, I have to know the apache authentication user/passwd combination. Doing it over SSL (https) reduces the odds of successful packet sniffing, but I don't do admin stuff from wireless networks I don't trust anyway.

It's a little bit of a hassle to set up things that way, but it greatly reduces the odds of a successful attack.

Another issues is phpBB itself. At least historically, it had to be kept current regularly as it had a lot of security holes that kept getting found. I do not know if that is still the case. Many of the holes would not work on a server hardened by the suhosin patch to php, but I stopped running the patch because it interfered with APC (allegedly now solved) and my own custom php classes for session handling and csrf prevention. But maybe suhosin as an added layer to your php is an option for you. I seem to recall there were also issues with MDB2 (the database layer I use) but that might have been something else.

I'm sure you probably got things covered if you are talking with Psyon, but just thought I'd mention some of the steps I took on my own VPS to try and avoid the script kiddies. I don't run a bulletin board though.

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by Biolog_Guy TN » June 8th, 2010, 2:32 pm

This was definately a terrible loss, but as has been shown, we will survive and rebuild. I just want to say "thank you" to you Scott, for this awesome place that you have provided for us as a community. Also, a big thank you to Don for all his hard work in getting us on the road again. Keep up the good work guys and thanks again!!!!!!!

Take care,

John

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by Jason_Hood » June 8th, 2010, 4:07 pm

Scott all I have to say is thank you!!

Jason

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by Gary2sons » June 8th, 2010, 6:45 pm

Certainly was a great loss but with all the activity the last two days this forum will be OK. Nobody is giving up and seems like everyone here wants it to be a success.

Scott and Don have done a great job keeping this thing going! :!:

Special thanks to Don for helping me getting logged on. Been trying for almost two days.

Yesterday was day 1 and today is day 2 of the new forum. We can all make this forum a huge success if we all participate! :)

Gary

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by David Jahn » June 8th, 2010, 7:37 pm

Scott, it was a terrible loss. But as the weeks roll by, it'll soon be as if it never happened. Thanks to you and Don for cranking it back up. I don't know how you guys did that so quickly in between your work and regular lives! If there really was malicious intent somewhere at the bottom of all this, I hope you're able to dig it up.

David (formerly Eastbayherper)

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by Upscale » June 8th, 2010, 8:30 pm

I’m not buying this story. Name names so we know who is responsible for this. These companies usually host a thousand sites. I have a web site, I would like to know what company operates like this? Name names so we know not to ever do business with them. I think it is bull. With stand alone cheap hard disc drives there is no reason to ever have data deleted. Unheard of. Beware of them scamming you that for a big fee they may be able to perform a data recovery or some thing.

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by rosy-man » June 8th, 2010, 8:40 pm

glad too be back again

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by TimCO » June 8th, 2010, 9:02 pm

Adapt, improvise, overcome.

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by Hans Breuer (twoton) » June 8th, 2010, 9:16 pm

Thank you, Scott. You're a true trooper, and as loyal to this community as can be.

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by Scott Waters » June 8th, 2010, 10:06 pm

Upscale wrote:I’m not buying this story. Name names so we know who is responsible for this. These companies usually host a thousand sites. I have a web site, I would like to know what company operates like this? Name names so we know not to ever do business with them. I think it is bull. With stand alone cheap hard disc drives there is no reason to ever have data deleted. Unheard of. Beware of them scamming you that for a big fee they may be able to perform a data recovery or some thing.
I did name them in my post. It is up to you guys what you decide to do, I just posted the FACTS of my experience, and that is all I will do. They've already threatened me (when I told one of them that I would have to explain this to my forum users) with legal action. Yeah, they did, believe it or not. Of course, I replied by telling them I will post the facts as I know them to be and that is what I have done. I slander no one, ever. I don't need to, the facts are repulsive enough.

I'm moving on now, I can't expend any more energy thinking about them, it is nauseating. Anyone with any sense at all knows you do not do business this way, even if you want the client to leave. Take the server off-line, give me my data (your data), and we part ways. To delete ALL of the data is simply unheard of, so I'm told by some people with various companies who've contacted me since this happened. They even tried to contact them for me, to talk to them above my pay grade, but tier 1 blocked them out from reaching someone higher up.

I'm done with it, life goes on, live and learn. All I know now is that this WILL NOT HAPPEN AGAIN.

thanks,
scott

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by Paul White » June 9th, 2010, 6:39 am

Someone needs to tell them that the truth is a defense against libel :lol:

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Re: Detailed note about the data loss, and the future of FHF

Post by Upscale » June 9th, 2010, 6:42 am

Didn’t mean to imply I’m mad at anyone here at this site, just the company that deleted the files. That’s just unreal. I’ve had personal hard drive crashes and lost stuff and it is devastating. Any company that would do that on purpose is evil. I was angry just thinking about what that must have been like to go through. I also haven't read all the threads about it so didn't even see what you have posted in entirety. Just feel for you, man.

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Post by craigb » June 9th, 2010, 11:14 am

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by Lloyd Heilbrunn » June 9th, 2010, 7:18 pm

I was out of town, so I did not know until yesterday that something was amiss.

This makes very little sense. You need to have a local attorney look at your contract with the ISP.

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by Ross Padilla » June 9th, 2010, 8:45 pm

It all sounds strange. There should be a law against deleting entire forums like that. Anyway I'm just glad the forum is continuing to go on. You're a good Mod, Scott. I don't like how things work on KS and am thankful this site doesn't run like that.

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by Shane_TX » June 9th, 2010, 8:53 pm

This makes very little sense. You need to have a local attorney look at your contract with the ISP.
I'm thinking the same. Hopefully this is already being pursued. In any case, a big thanks to Scott and Don for getting things back up and running.

Shane

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by Fundad » June 9th, 2010, 9:25 pm

First off thanks Don for coming through once again when needed.. Going to start calling you clutch.

And thanks to you too Scott for all of your efforts, passion, and time spent for the site.. We are way
to tough around here in this community to let a little thing like this slow us down.. :mrgreen:
I made a devastating assumption about data backups with my provider, and I apologize to you all. Shouldn't data remain the property of the client, regardless of why they want you to leave? There is absolutely no reason to just kill off all the data. Me as a client? Sure, but not the data, not before me getting a chance to recover it. Wouldn't any reasonable person assume this to be the case? I think so.
As someone who manages a data center and ISP, this IS NOT acceptable by any stretch of the imagination.
In 14 years, we have NEVER once removed a clients data for ANY reason, including lack of payment. "Disabled" a customers access YES, Held the data hostage for Payment YES, Removed DATA NEVER.

Fundad

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by erik loza » June 10th, 2010, 5:18 am

I wonder if the data is still there and they just didn't want to deal with you (for whatever reason) or there was some technical issue that caused it to disappear and they are trying to put the blame on you, so you will not pursue them on it. Their explanation just does not make any sense. Anyway, glad to see things are up and running again. Stronger than before, it seems. Look how many are on line at any given time, compared to before. Nothing like a crisis to rally the people.

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by RenoBart » June 10th, 2010, 7:38 am

erik loza wrote:I wonder if the data is still there and they just didn't want to deal with you (for whatever reason) or there was some technical issue that caused it to disappear and they are trying to put the blame on you, so you will not pursue them on it.
I was kinda wondering the same thing myself. You never know if they did something stupid and now they are back peddling and making up this story to cover their own cloacas :lol: . I've seen it before as I've been in the IT business for over 15 years. At very least, this ISP should have daily backups running to tape or something. And personally, I find it VERY hard to believe that they would purposefully delete all of your data AND then also delete any and all backups of your data. It sounds to me that there is some serious negligence/lying/stupidity/etc going on here. I definitely think there is more to this then meets the eye and I personally would get a lawyer to make a few calls for me. And I'm not saying that Scott isn't telling us everything, I'm just thinking maybe the ISP isn't telling Scott everything.

But again, like Scott said, it's done and over and we all need to press on.

Bart

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by Scott Waters » June 10th, 2010, 9:36 am

RenoBart wrote:
erik loza wrote:I wonder if the data is still there and they just didn't want to deal with you (for whatever reason) or there was some technical issue that caused it to disappear and they are trying to put the blame on you, so you will not pursue them on it.
I was kinda wondering the same thing myself. You never know if they did something stupid and now they are back peddling and making up this story to cover their own cloacas :lol: . I've seen it before as I've been in the IT business for over 15 years. At very least, this ISP should have daily backups running to tape or something. And personally, I find it VERY hard to believe that they would purposefully delete all of your data AND then also delete any and all backups of your data. It sounds to me that there is some serious negligence/lying/stupidity/etc going on here. I definitely think there is more to this then meets the eye and I personally would get a lawyer to make a few calls for me. And I'm not saying that Scott isn't telling us everything, I'm just thinking maybe the ISP isn't telling Scott everything.

But again, like Scott said, it's done and over and we all need to press on.

Bart
You said it, not me! Just in case Ipower is viewing these threads. I only presented what I was told happened and will not speculate as to what happened since all I have to go on is what they told me. I had a good relationship with them, up until this year, and then it went haywire. The problems they notified me of (phishing) were addressed, as far as we knew. Then out of nowhere (I received NOTHING that said there were more violations, as they call them), I get an email saying the deletion was chosen, and it was my fault.

I can't lawyer up, you guys, I don't have that kind of money. Plus, I have nothing to get back other than the forum database, which they say is NOT coming back, no matter what. I can't retrieve anything through legal action other than to try and make a point. And again, I don't have the money to do that, so I'm moving forward and learning a disgusting lesson.

Thanks for the thought you guys are putting in to this, I really do appreciate it. I apologize for the incident (me being naive and not reading the fine print of the contract, which I assume states they can and will delete a server with no backup) and the genius psyon is making sure backups are in place to avoid this ever happening again (complete loss, anyway).

Another pathetic part of this is when I received an email the other from them saying, "We're sorry you chose to close your account......" The automated email saying they were sorry "I chose" to shut down my account! Amazing disconnection from their clients. I love automated emails in times like this! Whatever, I'm feeling nauseous again now. :(

scott

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RenoBart
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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by RenoBart » June 10th, 2010, 10:24 am

Sorry Scott, not trying to get you in trouble or anything. :?

Bart

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ricrabt
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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by ricrabt » June 10th, 2010, 10:48 am

As time moves on, this will become nothing more than a distant unpleasant memory...John

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ricrabt
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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by ricrabt » June 10th, 2010, 10:51 am

At some point, could suggestions be heard to help this site?

RobK

Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by RobK » June 10th, 2010, 2:10 pm

scott wrote:I get an email saying the deletion was chosen
I know the whole phishing thing was thrown around by the hosting company, but it almost sounds like a haX0r to me. Wonder if someone hacked in and deleted the account?

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Scott Waters
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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by Scott Waters » June 10th, 2010, 3:42 pm

Renobart.......nah, no worries man! The community appreciates passionate people like yourself!

RobK......Again, I have no idea what happened. All I was told of was the "phishing violation", a similar thing that happened earlier in the year. The recent ones they said occurred did not make it to my desk. If they sent a "warning" email, I didn't get it. Either way, you just don't delete someone's account, it is VERY BAD BUSINESS at the very least. After that, I have no idea what to say.

ricrabt......suggestions are always welcome. Message me anytime. What I can tell you is that the new host, our friend psyon, is WAY MORE capable of handling, backing up, and supporting this forum than Ipower was, from what I've seen. He has things in place that make those "violations" irrelevant, and the back up system is in place as well. Also, most importantly, he won't be deleting the server. :)

thanks,
scott

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by Jeremiah_Easter » June 10th, 2010, 4:20 pm

Wonder if someone hacked in and deleted the account?
Since we are purely speculating here - Why would someone do that? I mean what would be in it for the hacker?

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Attila
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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by Attila » June 10th, 2010, 9:48 pm

Scott,
Thanks for all you do!!!

Jerry

RobK

Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by RobK » June 11th, 2010, 9:52 am

Jeremiah_Easter wrote:
Wonder if someone hacked in and deleted the account?
Since we are purely speculating here - Why would someone do that? I mean what would be in it for the hacker?
Who knows? They were pissed at someone on here, they don't like snakes or they did it just because they could. I was basing that off Scott's statement, "the deletion was chosen" to mean someone other than IPower chose to delete the account.

After reading Scott's explanations again, the e-mail phishing violations were the problem. The hosting company had a threshold and the FHF exceeded that threshold, so they deleted the account. Seems they would take into consideration how long the FHF had been with their company or at least talk with someone live before deleting the account permanently.

Onward

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Scott Waters
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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by Scott Waters » June 11th, 2010, 10:28 am

RobK wrote:
Jeremiah_Easter wrote:
Wonder if someone hacked in and deleted the account?
Since we are purely speculating here - Why would someone do that? I mean what would be in it for the hacker?
Who knows? They were pissed at someone on here, they don't like snakes or they did it just because they could. I was basing that off Scott's statement, "the deletion was chosen" to mean someone other than IPower chose to delete the account.

After reading Scott's explanations again, the e-mail phishing violations were the problem. The hosting company had a threshold and the FHF exceeded that threshold, so they deleted the account. Seems they would take into consideration how long the FHF had been with their company or at least talk with someone live before deleting the account permanently.

Onward
Yeah, we have no idea who or what caused this to happen, they are only saying the phishing was the violation. As a client, I have the right to question deeper, I would think.

The only other thing I can think happening recently was earlier last week (a few days before the loss) the server had a few outages. I simply rebooted the container and all was fine. Not that unordinary to have restart the container, no biggy. But, it happened more than once, so I called them up because I couldn't restart the container, and they said it was because of a "server migration" and put in a ticket. Sounded like they were on it, I felyt confident at that point in time. They said nothing about phishing or I would have been on alert to a more serious problem. The gentleman on the phone (tier 1 support) told me just that, they were doing a "server migration", but did not specifically say that was the problem. Of course, as a client, hearing that leads you to believe that IS the problem! I think that is fair to assume, don't you guys? Why would it be mentioned if it didn't pertain to me? Again, they said NOTHING about phishing or I would have reacted differently.

I went out of town for the weekend, and came home to the deletion. That is all I know and that is all I recall being told. It was over, it was the phishing, they said. But as I've said, and as many others have said, you just don't "delete" someone's information. You pull things off line, notify them of your intentions to ask them to leave, allow them to recover what they want, and you part ways. It is just bad business, at the very least. I'm not accusing them of anything other than how it was handled. They have the right to NOT have me a as client, but deletion? Makes zero business sense. I've been told by many people here on this forum who works in the ISP industry that the proper and commonly practiced procedure in a situation like this is to NOT delete to respect the client's property. But the contract I had with them probably said something more specific about cause for deletion, which gives them the out to delete with no chance of recovery.

Guys I really am spent on this, but I DO appreciate your passion for wanting answers. I don't have anything left to do at this point but to move on and ask you guys to keep rockin' the field herping boat on FHF!

This level of loss will NEVER happen again.

thanks,
scott

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by joeysgreen » June 12th, 2010, 5:26 am

Just thought I'd through out my thanks to the FHF crew and my support for the site.

Ian

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Nick Scobel
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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by Nick Scobel » June 12th, 2010, 6:22 pm

Scott, thanks for everything you've done with this community. I joined FHF a few years back and since that time I've met some awesome people and has some great times that wouldn't have been possible without this site. Many thanks again!

Nick

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by The Real Snake Man » June 13th, 2010, 11:25 am

Hey guys, I'm the old gvtwulaw (which was really my dad's user name). Although it is upsetting what happened, I'm ready to push through with the rest of you. I guess its just time to kick our herping up a notch and rebuild our archives quickly. I'll be posting soon. I hope you guys are looking forward to some Rio Grande Valley herps :thumb:

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by John Kilner III » June 14th, 2010, 5:05 pm

Scott - First, my sympathy goes out to you and everyone involved and hit hardest by this event! I am sorry this happened and that you have been devastated by its occurance. Please do remember however, you graciously provide a gift to us all here for which we are greatful. You continue to show your class and dedication by revitalizing our venue and moving forward. I offer my sincere thanks for what you have done and for what is yet to be accomplished. Time will heal the data loss and I am confident this site will recover with glowing success.

Looking forward to the futrure and in the mean time...happy herpin to all!

Johnny

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Scott Lupien
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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by Scott Lupien » June 15th, 2010, 10:29 pm

Wow, Scott! Now I understand why I couldn't access my old posts or Kevin's last week -- and why my account was deleted. That's really awful, but it won't make any difference in the long run! I've already re-posted the best of my China stuff and will continue to contribute! Thanks for all you do for this community!!
Scott

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by canderson » June 16th, 2010, 5:32 pm

Hello Scott,

All I can do is echo what the rest have already said, a very sincere thank you for all you do. This site helps to keep me connected to something that used to be a much bigger part of my life and now has become a minor hobby (unfortunately).My favorite weekend pasttime is to log into FHF on a Saturday morning with my coffee and see what everyone has been up to and what they've found; I will sit hit from 8 AM til noon sometimes! I am sure we are all ready to just move on and continue what we've been doing all along.

-Chris Anderson

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John Martin
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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by John Martin » June 16th, 2010, 9:54 pm

I'm a relative "newbie" here, but I've already felt the addiction. :D Just wanted to add my thanks to Scott and Psyon too - you guys are awesome, as is the entire following on this forum/family. :beer: I'm blown away by the response to this catastrophe.

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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by devilfish79 » August 9th, 2010, 11:40 am

In my few years of hosting websites, I would have never thought that an ISP or hosting company would ever delete a client's property. I've had pretty good fortune to not have had to deal with crappy companies, but I can completely empathize with you Scott. I'd be heartbroken as well.

I'm very glad that you got the forums back up. This explains now why my account was no longer valid when I came back last month to try and sign in. Thanks for all your hard work!

Cheers,
Erik

PS: It was great to meet you this past weekend at the HerpNation booth. Almost done reading the first issue. :)

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bigdonniebrasco
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Re: Detailed note about what happened, and the future of FHF

Post by bigdonniebrasco » April 7th, 2011, 10:36 am

I am in the IT industry.... your ISP is full of crap! If this server was a VM, they should have had either a DR site or a "snapshot" backup of every single server that they host! That is just common practice, and this allows you to roll back to a previous copy of the server in a snap! They F-ed up!!
Plain and simple!!

Don

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