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Old May 14th, 2013, 07:41 AM
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Default Re: Official release of the unofficial Dominions 3 Wiki

Quote:
Originally Posted by Larz View Post
I have been trying to update the wiki but it now appears to require email confirmation for edit access. I tried requesting access and even changed my email address and tried requesting access again but I never get the confirmation email. Any idea how to resolve this issue?
Hello all, long time no see - the site tells me that my last activity here was half a year ago. You all are probably aware that I am not active in this community anymore, the only reason being that I have no more time for that. I've kept the Wiki running, though I haven't looked at it much lately, and again I thank Soyweiser for his tireless work on the site.

I am aware that new users aren't activated anymore, but I have had no time to go in and fix that, sorry for the hassle. I won't have much time to care about this in the future, too, but I hope that I can address this at some point. What surprises me even more is that apparently even though users can't confirm their accounts anymore, now and then there are still spam bots slipping through which still manage to leave some spam on the Wiki. If they can confirm their accounts, why can't other users do that? Strange... In the meantime, I did ponder ways to prevent spam bots from registering. As there are a couple of them that can easily be identified (by a human) from their registered user name, looking like "", I started working on a module which would automatically ignore registration attempts with names like that. This would just be a temporary fix in the weapons race with spammers ofc, and I didn't get to complete the programming, testing and setup of this.

Ideally, I want to disable user registration and have it replaced by an application system. I already did some research on this, probably half a year back, and found out that there exists a wondrous MediaWiki extension called ConfirmAccount which would allow just this. In order to get it installed, the Wiki software has to be updated to the latest version, though, before it isn't stable for the current one, and this always requires some amount of work by hand, there's no "install update" button that I can click. So, my ToDo list for the Wiki looks like this:
1. Upgrade to 1.17
2. Install and enable ConfirmEdit extension
3. Tidy up the old user accounts

Now, something else. There were two donations to the Wiki site, one at the start of the year and another one a week or two back or so, thank you to the donors. I am using the server that is running the Wiki at home for nothing else but hosting the Dom3Wiki and through some occurrence I have started pondering just how much this hosting costs me. The costs were zero when I still were able to host this at the university, but I am no longer able to do this since years. One factor of the costs would be the monthly costs for internet access, though we're running this from our home and can use the existing internet connection that we have, anyway, so we can ignore that. The other factor is power consumption and I have never looked into that, but I have now, and to be honest, it did surprise me. The Wiki is hosted on a laptop with a 72W power adaptor. The server is running all the time, electricity is about 25 cents/kWh as a ballpark number, I don't know exactly, but according to Wikipedia this is about right. Putting those values into an online electricity cost calculator results in costs of about 157 EUR per year, and with a projected 28.5 cents/kWh for this year according to that Wikipedia table (power ain't cheap in Germany, folks!) this is trending towards 180 EUR per year. I was really surprised by those numbers, and after previously ignoring alternatives to hosting from home, I am now looking into having the Wiki hosted elsewhere. Professional solutions cost money, of course, and a first look into Wiki hosters showed me that I'll pay about the same for professional hosting - no longer for the electricity, but for the software etc. While the pledges that llamabeast's wonderful PBEM server has collected are exceptional, I don't expect that donations will cover the costs of that.

One Wiki hosting company called Wikkii.net stands out, as it is offering free Wiki hosting. Who knows for how long, but what I know right now is that what they ask for is very reasonable: Have their banner displayed, next to the unobtrusive default MediaWiki one on the bottom right of each page. It's no popup, nor will there ever be one according to their FAQ, so while the Wiki operated with zero advertisement so far, I'd be very willing to have the Wiki moved there for the prize of one small 88x31 pixels graphic being displayed on every page. The best thing is that disk space and bandwidth isn't limited and the hoster leaves a lot of options to configure the Wiki open to me, instead of having multiple levels of options to choose from, and having to pay more for the better ones. Providing solutions like that means that if there are lots of other users of this hosting then load times might increase for the Dom3Wiki, of course, but I expect that these people know how to deal with that. I've had a look into a site hosted by them, the Asheron's Call Wiki (with an interesting history to it), and browsing around that Wiki has shown me that it seems to be very usable and the advertising banner is indeed not annoying at all when doing so.

I'll be interested in getting some feedback from you guys what you think about that, feel free to respond here. If you want to contact me directly, then please don't send me a PM here, but instead click on my name next to that red "offline" button and send me an email to the email address which is being displayed in the comments on my page. Thanks!

P.S.: Please don't think that I intend to pull the plug on the Wiki. I do plan to preserve the Dom3Wiki and I will continue to host this from home until I have found a viable new home for it. Glad that you like the Wiki!
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Last edited by lch; May 14th, 2013 at 07:59 AM..
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