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The Rust List: Status
(Archive 2: 1997)

Postings below in reverse time order. Newest status is at the top.

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The Rust List: Status -- December 30, 1997

What Happened Yesterday

Turns out the server where Rust runs was "upgraded" without a specific warning yesterday. I knew it was going to happen, but wasn't told exactly when. Unfortunately it happened while I was cruising down Florida, so by the time I saw it, it was over. Glad there weren't any residual side effects (other than a few post-hyper-Rust-withdrawals. :-)

The upgrade should speed up the distribution a bit...
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- December 12, 1997

Rust's Server back on-line

As of 2:50pm EST, the Rust server is back on-line. Seems a cable had mysteriously unplugged itself...
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- December 12, 1997

Rust's Server is down

As of 1pm EST, the Rust server is down for unknown reasons. I'll post here when I know it's back up.
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- December 5, 1997

Novia Era postscript

Now that Rust has been off Novia for well over three months, I'm severing the remaining ties with them. They graciously allowed me to keep the Rust config files in place over there after we moved, so that I could set up to intercept requests and posts sent there and send personal notes to those who did so (telling them of the move). I'm sure that a number of you didn't know about the move until you sent something to Novia and subsequently got one of my notes...

Today Novia will be de-Rusted. Long live Rust@RustList.org!
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- November 15, 1997

More AOL Hell

Just to let y'all on AOL get an idea of how flakey the mail delivery is at AOL right now...

On Friday, a Rustie decided to change his AOL userid, and let me know right after the change. So I unsubbed him from the old ID right then. (Actually he should have unsubbed himself before the change, but that's okay since he let me know...) Anyway, ever since that ID "went away" I've been getting bounced mail back from AOL that was on its way to it.

All this mail that is bouncing was sent on Wednesday and Thursday! It's still bouncing to me today. That means the mail had made it inside AOL but got stuck somewhere inside AOL for several days before being delivered, now, after the ID is gone. And it's not all coming in one big chunk due to some big blockage going away -- it's trickling in. That means that there are some REALLLLLLY big mail queues currently inside AOL that are VERY slow in delivering to the individual AOL mailboxes.

Since most one-to-one mail goes through pretty quickly, it appears that AOL has seperate mail routing for these "multiple destination" mail items (like Rust mail). It's that path that's getting so blocked up.

Complain to the powers that be, people!
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- October 1, 1997

Historic Day on Rust

Between Monday midnight, September 29 (each individual poster's local time) and Tuesday midnight, Rusties posted 219 posts! That was the most posts in a one-day period ever (if you ignore a few "mailstorm" days during the pobox period driven by some severe technical problems).

The main topic was My First Concert, of course, but contributing to the load were the tail ends of the trading ethics debate and the ruckus stired up by the Rustie formerly known as Sarah/Melody/Ophelia/etc. Later in the day the discussion of Neil & Bob (and just Bob) also contributed.

With the addition of a few large informational posts interspersed in there, those posts ended up generating EIGHT digests (and part of the end of the one before and the beginning of the one after). This too is a record (ignoring the mailstorm-inflated digests).

The downside is that I've gotten lots of "mailbox full" bounces since yesterday afternoon. :-(

I know this is a quirk due to the personal appeal of the First Concert topic. The average digest rate has been running closer to 4 per day. However, just as a courtesy, it'd probably be a good idea to consider twice right now before posting way-NNC stuff, while the load is so high. Maybe save it until things slow up a little. A lot of people with straining mailboxes will really appreciate it (including me!).

I have to say that despite the "work", this was one of the most enjoyable Rust days in quite a while.
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- September 29, 1997

Juno Mail Problem

All mail bound for folks on Juno is bouncing with "unknown user" errors. This is a ton of stuff to weed through, but I'm not going to unsub any of them since I'm sure it'll be fixed eventually (hopefully sooner than later!)
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- September 16, 1997

Rogue Rust Digest

Somehow the last post of digest 54 got repeated as a digest (numbered 55) all to itself. That digest can be discarded (see the last post of 54 for the same info). Another full-length REAL digest 55 follows. Sorry about any confusion this may cause...
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- September 2, 1997

Rust Move Complete

As of now, the root DNS update has propagated and most all mail systems will have no problems locating "RustList.org" on the net. This brings the Novia era of Rust to a close. It was pretty reliable, but our load (way over 100 Megabytes of outgoing mail per day) was just too much for them.

For those who've been discarding Rust mail lately and missed the status messages below: you should be sending all Rust posts to "rust@rustlist.org" now. And when you unsubscribe or subscribe, send to "majordomo@rustlist.org". This will be true "forever" now, even if Rust moves again.

I'm already pursuing speeding up of digest mailings. Stay tuned...
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- August 29, 1997

Rust Move almost complete

The rustlist.org address is now pointing to the new server (rather than having posts forwarded from Novia). There's still a matter of the Internet's root DNS pointers being updated, but that's pretty much a formality.

Anyone having any problems, please let me know.

So far I am not especially impressed with the speed of digest delivery. But I haven't yet started looking into what kind of optimizations can be done. If we can't speed it up enough, though, look for another move before long...
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status --

August 28, 1997 (late evening)

Bogus Volume 5 Digest #1

Anyone who received a "Digest #1" for Volume 5 of Rust that's full of duplicated posts, can discard it. The real Digest 1 will be out later. That digest was a result of the earlier "mail-storm" and is being replaced. Sorry about the NetTrash...
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- August 28, 1997 (early evening)

Mail-storm is over

An in-advertant mail-loop was created on the move of the list. It's been fixed now. Sorry about that folks! Remind you of the beginning of the POBOX era about a year ago?   :-(

Next milestone will be a successful issuance of the first digest on volume 5. Cross your fingers....
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- August 28, 1997 (morning)

Rust Moving

This SHOULD be a transparent process, but I want to give you a warning that Rust will change servers sometime between today and tomorrow. If you are already using "rust@rustlist.org" to post, this should all be automatic for you.

You will probably see a few test messages as the cut-over progresses. Some will be from the NEW server, even before the old one is de-activated. You may even get a few duplicate posts from each server. Just take a quick peek at any post from my userid, to see if it's something important.

If by some chance the list temporarily gets hung up during this process, info will be posted here.

The new digests will be Volume 5. There will be at least a few more Volume 4 digests before this happens.

Cross your fingers!
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- August 19, 1997

IMPORTANT: New Rust List Address

In an effort to greatly simplify any future moves of the Rust List, I've obtained a domain name for it. EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY:

Send all Rust posts to "rust@RustList.org" (the capitalization of those letters is NOT required).

Send subscribe & unsubscribe requests to "majordomo@RustList.org".

Please update your address books, nicknames, etc. These addresses will be valid "forever".   :-)
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- July 24, 1997

Digest 904 didn't make it out
There was a mail failure at Novia last night that kept digest 907 from getting out to the world. It's easily available via the Digest Archive at:
If you have a problem getting there, drop me a line and I'll send you a copy.

The Rust List: Status -- July 4, 1997


For at least a week there seem to be BIG problems getting Rust into America On-Line. Most of the problems are ones that result in deferral of the mail (i.e., it eventually goes through after the problem clears up) but in some cases the Rust mail is bouncing. I'm talking about mail that's bound for a LOT of people (way over 100).

Rust mail going to AOL has a big distribution list attached (there are a lot of AOLers on Rust), so AOL's mail system undoubtably routes this mail differently than it does individual notes. I'm guessing that the machines that handle the distribution list mail are also being swamped with SPAM these days (I get MUCH MUCH more SPAM nowadays than even the recent past). This is seriously delaying the Rust mail from getting to AOLers.

There's really nothing we can do outside the AOL gateways. It's up to AOL to boost the throughput of those machines, for one thing. And for another -- they can start BANNING the mail from the SPAM-merchants, much like Compuserve and a couple of others have done.

This IS impacting Rust discussions, since a lot of the AOL folks are not seeing stuff in a timely manner, or in some cases not seeing some discussion at all. If you are an AOL person, please submit your opinions about this situation to the "powers that be" at AOL to help convince them to make a higher priority of resolving the problem.
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- June 26, 1997 (5:00pm EDT)

Novia back on-line

Rust started flowing again at about 4pm Eastern time (an hour after the last "up-time" estimate expired). A few posts WERE lost -- if you don't see a post you made by early evening, resend it. I'm really sorry about this outage!
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- June 26, 1997 (1:45pm EDT)

Novia outage continues

The new "up-time" projection is 2:00pm Central time. Cross your fingers.

Note! Rusties attending Star Lake show, contact the Rust coordinator.
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- June 26, 1997 (11:00am EDT)

Novia outage

Novia.net is fixing "a disk problem" and projects resumption of access at Noon, Central Time. All Rust-bound mail is queued up on it's way there (PLEASE DON'T RE-SEND!) until then.
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- June 23, 1997

Those damn CC:mail bounces

Everyone who's posted over the last few days has been getting a mail-bounce error from some CC:mail machine when your post is distributed to the world. (This has lead some folks to post several copies of their posts, thinking their post didn't get through.) Welllll, I think I just tracked down and removed the offending subscription. The machine didn't use standard headers that simplify such investigations...

Yet another fun thing about list admin... :-)
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- May 29, 1997

1000 Digests

Today appeared Rust Digest 772 of volume 4 (via Novia). Add the 228 digests of volume 3 (via Pobox), and that makes this the 1000th digest since I took on Rust admin duties. Just figured I'd mention the milestone...

Note that with the average digest being about 25 kilobytes in size, there have now been over 25 MEGABYTES of Rust issued since I began 11 months ago. (Those couple of predictions of the demise of Rust seem to have been a *bit* premature... :-)

Further, note that with an average distribution of about 1000 Rusties (nowadays it's a fair amount higher than that), that brings total Rust bandwidth to over 25 GIGABYTES over the net in less than a year...!

Fun facts to know and tell... :-)
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- May 19, 1997 (4:30pm EDT)

Looks like we're back....

Things still look a bit weird, but I was able to get a post through. Does look like most all posts sent during the outage are NOT showing up. Please resubmit anything sent late Saturday night, all day Sunday, and through about 4pm (EDT) on Monday. I'm really sorry about this outage...!
. . .RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- May 19, 1997 (2:30pm EDT)

Novia.net "getting close" as of 2:30pm EDT

Novia is running again and clearing the backlog of incoming mail. Unfortunately the Rust configuration files cannot be restored for about another 2 hours, and their techs claim they can't stop majordomo from THROWING AWAY all mail enqueued to it prior to the restoration of the config files. I myself am getting a steady stream of errors as it does this for each file that was sent to Rust since Saturday night. Anything you send to Rust until the config files are restored will also go into the bit bucket.   :-(

I'll post here (and send a post out over Rust) when it's working again. Hopefully no later than some time between 4:30pm and 5:00pm EDT.
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- May 19, 1997 (7am EDT)

Novia.net still down as of 7am EDT

Novia.net's message hasn't been updated yet this morning -- they've obviously had some problems with their "major upgrades". Hang in there -- Rust mail should start flowing again soon. (Of course now the first 43 posts will be "Is Rust down?" and "Where's my Rust?" and similar... :-)
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- May 18, 1997 (10am EDT)

Novia.net is down

Novia.net is temporarily off the net today, while major system upgrades are performed. Unfortunately I didn't get the word about this and was thus unable to let anyone know ahead of time. Novia support says "We're working as fast as we can, but this could take all day."

I'll report back here when they're up and running again.
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- March 29, 1997

The Guidelines

Last October the Rust List was averaging 5 to 6 digests every day. As administrator, I was seeing as many as a dozen people have to be unsubscribed each day due to their mailboxes overflowing. It was a common thing for folks who were active, regular contributers to Rust unsub themselves in reaction to the load.

I got a fair amount of mail asking me to do something about the Non-Neil Content (NNC) on the list. I always explained that NNC is okay on Rust, because that's part of what makes Rust a community. But I knew that some kind of a compromise between unlimited NNC and zero NNC had to be reached to bring the ever increasing Digest expansion under control, and to reduce the overflow problems for a large number of the Rusties.

The compromise I came up with was fairly simple and for the most part was welcome. (A vocal minority begged to disagree, but I'll leave that story to others.) The guidelines that were set up are on the Intro To Rust page.

Hardly anyone disagrees with the first guideline, but the second has proven to be problematic because the definition of what's "likely" to start the long NNC debates is hazy to many folks. A lot of folks would rather wait until after the damage is done (i.e., after an NNC debate has gone ballistic) before making the decision. However that defeats the whole purpose of the guidelines, which is to reduce the extensive NNC stuff that adds so significantly to the Rust bandwidth.

Also, some folks feel that such things as lists of "Top 5 guitarists" falls into that category, too. Theoretically I'd agree. But such threads often DO include Neil on the lists or in the comparisons being made. And the individual posts are generally fairly short, too. It's MUCH more problematic to try to fit those threads into the usually fairly easy to recognize 2nd guideline, and thus I won't attempt that myself. I only react to the cut-and-dried ones. (Of course some folks disagree about what's "cut and dried", but that'll always be true no matter how specifically things are spelled out.)

So these guidelines were put into place and have been pretty well adhered to since then. There have been a few major bruhahas over them, but for the most part Rust has trucked on along since then. Despite an increase in subscriptions, the mailbox overflow problems have reduced considerably, there have been considerably fewer flamewars over NNC political debates, (the ones aimed at me increased for a while, but thankfully that's subsided), and in general Rust has "flowed" pretty smoothly.

Looking over the Rust "Digest-Rate" lately, I see that we've stabilized at about a 3 per day average. My experience says that 4 per day (with an occasional 5th one) can be handled fairly well by the Rust populous (ie, without generating a big jump in overflowing mailboxes, etc). So AT THIS POINT IN TIME, the main driving requirement for the second guideline isn't as compelling. A bit of political debate would be less likely to drive Rust "over the top".

Thus as of today, I'm SUSPENDING the Second Guideline. I still feel that folks should follow it, but it's completely optional: I won't comment (on-line or off-line) if folks take off on such tangents.

The only caveat is that, if traffic increases to the point that Rust starts hitting 5 digests a day regularly, I'll post a "Rust Bandwidth Warning". If it starts hitting 6 digests a day, I'll re-activate the Second Guideline.

I honestly feel that this is a reasonable compromise between allowing unfettered NNC discussion (when bandwidth will support it) and keeping Rust bandwidth reasonable.

Note to all the folks who've urged me to REDUCE the NNC: sorry about that!

Note to all the folks who want no restrictions whatsoever: sorry about that!

Note to the rest of you: I hope that this will prove a reasonable balance between open dialog and compassion for those who don't have the unlimited bandwidth that some of us do.

I also urge folks to try to stick to Neil as much as possible. Thanx...
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- March 14, 1997

Bouncing Posts

For the first time since we moved to Novia, we're getting a particularly insidious kind of bouncing posts: a system is sending INDIVIDUAL posts from the last few days back to Rust, with the appearance of them having come from the original poster, other than a message at the bottom about having been found in "the dead-letter box".

I'll track this down and stop it, but there could be a fair number more of them bouncing back and getting reposted before I can make it stop. Please try to resist the urge to post angry "Please stop the old mail!" posts...

And now we return you to the top 5 guitarists discussion....   :-)
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- February 20, 1997

500 Digests on Novia

Today was issued digest 500 of Rust "Volume 4 -- The Novia years". The 500 digests (consuming almost 13MB of disk space) were built from close to 400,000 lines of discussion in only a little over 5 months.

Across those 500 digests, there were only three non-trivial sized SPAM posts, one bounced digest, and one "accidently-posted-a-big-chunk-of-a- digest" post. And there was never a period of more than a couple of hours that majordomo wasn't pushing out rust mail.

Once again, my hat's off to the Novia folks for their good service. And to all the Rusties who continue to keep Rust the best damn list on the net.
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- January 30, 1997

Archive Tweaked

I've divided up the Rust Digest archive into individual months, to make easier for folks to find things. The link there's the same, but you'll see the "divisions" when you get there.
. . . RE*AC*TOR

The Rust List: Status -- January 8, 1997

Archive Expanded Again

The Rust "short term" Archive (link available here on The Rust List page of HyperRust) is no longer "short term". It has been renamed the Rust Volume 4 Archive, and holds all digests in volume 4 (the Novia.net period), through the present.

I hope to find homes for the earlier digest volumes (1=sun.com, 2=fish.com, 3=pobox.com) soon.
. . . RE*AC*TOR

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