without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
As you surely noticed, the site was completely dead for the last 24 hours or so. This was caused by a hardware issue; the database hard drive crashed, and rebuilding the RAID caused issues with data corruption that took a long-ass time to repair. Sadly, this is an unfortunate disaster completely beyond our control.
If your friends cannot load the site, please tell them to refresh their DNS cache (we have a new IP) and restart their router and/or even their browser; failing that, they must simply be patient for the DNS propagation to take effect.
The site is not 100% yet: images uploaded from March 16th onwards are missing as of this hour. They are currently being synched back from the old server, but the ETA is not certain. Feel free to re-upload missing images, but note that they might be overwritten by a later restore.
IMPORTANT: EMAILS ARE NOT WORKING YET. This not only means the owners's email accounts (webmaster etc.), but also all the email notifications are broken, including the activation emails for the registration of new accounts, and the forum notifications. This will be fixed later. In the meantime, feel free to browse normally.
Once again... thank you for your patience. We'll post updates as soon as possible.
As you've no doubt noticed, the server has once again been plagued with massive slowness, and sometimes even times out.
We're expecting an upgrade to the server in early February. We suspect the search is causing the performance issues, so in the meantime, we've temporarily disabled it for the public while we monitor the server performance. You can still use the Google search, but if you want to use the normal search, you must be logged in.
We apologize for the inconvenience.
We've finally jumped on the Facebook bandwagon. Here is the first and only official Metal Archives page on Facebook. Enjoy!
To your left is a new "random band" link that will, believe it or not, take you to a random band page. Some people find it useful and/or amusing.
Over this way is an impressive collection of statistics about bands, genres and reviews (and more!) based on the site data, compiled by the heroic MA user sisters_of_merciless.
You might have noticed the new "add-ons" link in the menu on the left. This will give you a list of third-party tools relating to this site that have been developed by some of our users. This includes browser add-ons and a couple other things. Some of you might find them useful.
The previously mentioned Metal Archives Android application is now publicly available on the Android Market. Users with Android devices might be interested in checking it out.
Note again though that the MA team is not involved at all in the development of this application, so please don't contact us for questions or support regarding this.
It seems our mail server was having some problems late last month and we lost some e-mails has a result. If you sent an e-mail to Morrigan or myself (including the webmaster address) between October 23 and 29 and haven't received a reply yet, please send it again.
Sorry about the trouble.
We have just passed a new milestone: 70,000 bands in the archives!
Who would have thought there were so many bands even in existence? We are pleasantly astonished. And this is all thanks to your collective efforts. Thank you again, Metal-Archives users, for your great and massive work over the past seven years.
And now we can only wonder: how long before we reach the 100,000th band?
It has come to my attention that there is an e-mail in circulation pretending to be from this website, and asking users to download some software to back up their account. This is evidently entirely false, and you should definitely not use this software. Metal Archives will never e-mail you to tell you to download some program. Chances are, Metal Archives will never send mass e-mails period. If you have a doubt about something, always check the latest news on this page; that's where the real info about any situation will be.
Our server is being moved to a new facility within the data center tonight around 2 AM EST, so the site will be down for a short while. It should be a rather straight-forward procedure and the site is supposed to be back online within an hour.
EDIT: Also, sorry if the site is sometimes unresponsive tonight. I'm running some database tests.
The site is back on the regular server, rejoice... though ideally you won't have noticed any difference.
Hey everyone, we are currently running on a backup server because the main server had a hard drive failure. Hopefully it can hold up until our regular server is repaired, which is unfortunately taking more time than expected. We should have lost very little data as we had a very recent backup of everything.
We will keep you posted.
Metal Archives was victim of a malicious hacker earlier today (starting at around 4PM EST, lasting for at the most 2 hours), resulting in some pages being defaced with hidden iframes linking to malware downloads. We temporarily disabled the site as soon as we noticed, which explains the downtime you may have experienced in the last few hours.
The security loophole that allowed the attack to happen has been patched, and the defaced pages have been restored.
We are sincerely sorry for the inconvenience. We hope no one's computer got infected because of this -- if so, please update your anti-virus/anti-malware software immediately.
Edit: one of our members suggested to follow these removal instructions if you were infected. You may also want to check this thread for useful information about removing malware.
The memory problems have been sorted out. It seems the version of MySQL we were using had some issues with memory management, but it looks like the newer version is running fine. You can report any remaining errors to me.
Sorry about the trouble.
Don't worry, we are aware of the "out of memory" errors you may find, especially when browsing the forums or loading band discographies.
We're investigating what's causing the memory leaks and we'll fix it as soon as possible. Sorry about that, we'll keep you posted.
You might experience some downtime at around midnight (Eastern time) or after that, for hopefully not more than 30 minutes. Just some routine maintenance and optimizations, nothing serious.
We apologize for the inconvenience.
Uploads are back, rejoice.
Good news, everyone. As you have probably realized, the switch to the new server was successful. The new machine has been handling the site's load quite well over the past week and the real site search is back to (hopefully) stay.
Oddly enough, a few people have said to actually prefer the Google search, so I have added a "Google" option to the search drop-down, if for some unfathomable reason you still want to use it and are too lazy to actually go to Google.
Also, I will now be disabling image uploads for some time while we transfer the images from the image server to the new site server. This will take a couple of days I expect, sorry for the inconvenience.
Once again, thank you very much to everyone who has supported the site and made it possible for us to get this bad-ass server (two quad-core CPUs and 12 GBs of RAM, for the curious).
Hopefully the last one in a long, long time - this is a real deal.
If you remember the story about the senior technician who had basically saved our site from our crappy host back in late December/early January (news posts here), well, you can know that for this whole time we have been with him, and you certainly noticed the site being far more stable than it used to be. We were on a sort of semi-dedicated server hosted by this guy, instead of the crappy old shared hosting.
Still, it was not entirely satisfactory. The downtimes were rarer but still annoying, and the old search still kills the site within minutes whenever we try to put it back for everyone.
So we are finally taking the step to go on a very powerful, fully-dedicated server with better support. The migration should be finished today, but in the meantime, the site may suffer from downtime or SQL or PHP errors and the likes. If this happens, don't worry, they will be fixed ASAP. Also there is always the matter of DNS propagation (see the link earlier, it mentions how to flush your DNS cache), so if the site goes down, it may take longer to reappear back to you depending on your location.
About the search: you must realize that the old search was, unfortunately, a complete resource hog that can easily paralyse even a powerful server. It is also very difficult to optimize it further without compromising some of its features. We're hoping the new one can hold its own against the onslaught of traffic, but we cannot know for certain until we test it.
Once again, thank you for your patience and comprehension, and thank you again to everyone who donated or helped us through the affiliation links.
Our image server is in Houston, which is currently out of power due to hurricane Ike, so no images or uploads until they can fix this.
Sorry, blame Nature. :)
EDIT: It has been fixed, just in case someone hasn't noticed...
Sorry about the downtime tonight. We're doing some tests with the search.
The image server will be undergoing some maintenance tonight so the images and uploads will be broken for a bit.
Sorry for the inconvenience.
With kind permission from Arsenic's editor, I have translated and formatted the aforementioned interview into English for our non-francophone users.
You can read the interview here.
An interview with myself and HellBlazer can now be read in the latest issue of Arsenic Magazine (in French only, sorry), for those who are interested. For the Québec residents, the magazine is easily available in specialised music stores such as Profusion and at some local concerts.
More info here: http://www.arseniczine.com/ and in this thread.
I modified the login code a bit so you might get an "invalid username/password" error and need to log in again. Sorry about the trouble.
Report any problem relating to this to me.
EDIT: Clear your cookies if you're having troubles with the login.
EDIT 2: Note that passwords are also now case-sensitive.
Hey, we're running some tests on the server so there might be some downtime or errors in the next few hours. Sorry for the inconvenience.
I have modified the donations page in the menu to the left to point to an updated page, "Support Us", in the left menu.
Basically this page tells you how you can help Metal-Archives in its quest for a better but more expensive server. Donations are still welcome, but you don't even have to give us the money directly - see the link for details.
Thanks to everyone who helped so far, we greatly appreciate it.
I have received reports that email notifications are not being sent. I have thus disactivated new registrations again for the moment, since the activation emails won't get sent out. Registrations will be opened again when this is resolved.
At the moment, it's very possible that you do not receive email notifications about your submissions, and I apologize for the inconvenience.
Thank you again for your patience.
As such, the upload of images has been turned back on. Enjoy.
(Yes, I know the time zone is different, but it's not a big deal so we're not dealing with it right now.)
You have certainly noticed the problems during the past few days. I'm not entirely sure what happened myself, but I'll try to give the gist of the issues to the best of my knowledge...
On Christmas day, the same day our credit card got charged for the hosting, the site went down with a "403 Forbidden" error. I contacted the hosting's technical support, and they underwent the routine of asking my domain name and the problem. When I told them, their response was, to my great horror and surprise, that our domain name did not exist in their database. This made no sense to me, of course, but the technical support was completely uncooperative and said I had to contact the sales/billing department.
Which I did, except, of course, that it was Christmas evening, and everyone was on vacation. I got an auto-responder saying they would be back on December 27th. Of course, when that day came, the site was still down and I still had no response. Then a strange "under construction" sign appeared, which for the record was a placeholder page they had put up - it was not from us.
Then, I saw that a senior technician on my instant messenger contact list (the only one who has ever managed to really help me in the past) was online. So I contacted him and explained everything. Strangely, he does not work for that hosting company anymore, but he still kept contact with his former employer and managed to get something done. He told me that the company had underwent major changes in their services: they had changed their administration control panel platform, but apparently had "missed us" during the migration. We didn't even enter their new billing cycle (which was scheduled to start on Jan. 1st, 2008). How anyone could "miss" what is no doubt their largest client is anyone's guess...
As of right now, I still have no response from the sales/billing. But the site is back online for some of us, thanks to this guy, who is actually hosting us temporarily on his own server. If your friends tell you they can't access the site, tell them to restart their computer or flush their DNS cache (under Windows X, command line, ipconfig /flushdns). It worked for me, but not for others, so I guess it's a matter of DNS propagation or something...
On my end, the images are broken. It's probably the case for many of you. The images are hosted on another server, and fetched via a subdomain, which may be wrongly configured. We're looking into this at the moment. To be on the safe side, image uploads have been disabled until we are certain the images will be displayed correctly. Worry not, though, the image files themselves are safe.
So for now, you can browse and use the site (minus the images, but at least all the data is there). Our contact will attempt to resolve the matter with the host tomorrow, so it's possible that the site goes down again for a bit (I say this because I don't exactly trust them to do it right, for obvious reasons).
Sadly, this isn't completely over yet, so we thank you for your patience. Don't worry about one thing: nobody is trying to shut us down, and we aren't going anywhere. As soon as we are able to, we will get a powerful dedicated server to make sure this does not happen anymore.
Thank you again for your patience and comprehension. Stay tuned for the updates as soon as I get them.