Author Topic: Bandwidth Saving Measures  (Read 8441 times)

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Offline Mysterious Benefactor

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Bandwidth Saving Measures
« on: September 01, 2002, 09:29:52 AM »
Shutting down guest access last month was a start in our efforts to curb the forum's bandwidth usage. And, thankfully, our host didn't warn us this month that the forum's server CPU usage went past its allotted 10%. However, not shutting down registrations sooner than we did seems to have contributed to more bandwidth usage because our August total increased by more than 9% over what it had been in July! So, in an effort to further curb bandwidth usage, I've installed some new YaBB modifications that should hopefully keep the forum's host from shutting us down again like they did back in July. :'(

First off, you'll notice that the YaBBC buttons and Smileys no longer appear when you make a new post or edit an old one. This can be reversed by going into your profiles and unchecking the "Disable showing of YaBBC Buttons?" and "Disable showing of Smiley Buttons?" boxes in the new "Fastload Options" section. However, I would ask you to please not do this - or at least that you do it only for short periods while there's some YaBBC feature that you might like to try on the forum that you haven't already. Otherwise, the best thing to do would be to familiarize yourselves with the YaBBC and Smileys codes in the forum's Help section so that you'll be able to type them into your posts yourselves rather than relying on the buttons. ;)

Second, I've installed the collapsible BoardIndex feature. This feature is pretty much self-explanatory, so I'll let you all experiment with it on your own. However, I would encourage you to at least collapse the "General Discussions Archive" and "Why Register?" categories. (Cousins who have access to the Members' Archive are also encouraged to collapse the "Members' Gateway" as well.) When new posts are made in these categories, the "New Posts" icon will appear in front of the category to alert you, so you won't be missing anything by collapsing them - but you will be helping to save bandwidth. :)

And third, you may notice that the forum's pages are downloading faster. That's because I've installed a compression utility which should significantly cut the forum's server CPU and bandwidth usage. However, if you're using a version of IE prior to 5.5, this utility may cause you some problems. I say "may" because it seems that only a handful of people using older versions of IE have reported problems to YaBB. IE 5.5 and 6.0 both work fine, so if you do experience problems, upgrading your browser would be your best bet. There have been no problems reported with Netscape 6.0 and later.

Offline Mysterious Benefactor

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Re: Bandwidth Saving Measures
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2002, 10:57:05 PM »
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I've installed some new YaBB modifications that should hopefully keep the forum's host from shutting us down again like they did back in July. :'(

Well, unfortunately, that was not the case - as our host shut down the forum for several hours this past Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. That incident now forces me to address some issues that I was hoping would rectify themselves:

First: Sadly, only 29 people besides Midnite and myself have bothered to collapse even one category on the BoardIndex. I'm truly grateful that those people are appreciative enough of the forum and what Midnite and I are trying to do here to understand that, by collapsing rarely viewed categories, they're helping to lower the forum's bandwidth usage. As for the rest of you, well...

Second: If collapsing categories were only at issue, I would probably overlook it because (unlike the archive, where collapsing categories will also be installed shortly) the main forum has only 6 categories, 5 of which have only 1 or 2 boards in them, and the BoardIndex is probably the page that gets displayed least frequently on the forum. Collapsing categories on it does save bandwidth, but it doesn't save nearly as much as keeping the "Disable showing of YaBBC Buttons?", "Disable showing of Smiley Buttons?", and "Disable showing of Topic Summary?" boxes checked in our profiles. Disabling these three features alone saves 20MB (or more, if there's heavy usage) of bandwidth per day, and Midnite and I are so grateful to those of you who've decided to do this on a regular basis. However, certain others on the forum, who shall remain nameless (for the moment, anyway), seem to feel that they needn't bother making their contribution to saving bandwidth because they unchecked those three boxes shortly after having read my first post in this topic - and they haven't bothered to ever check them again. Granted, disabling display of the topic summary isn't as important as disabling even one of the YaBBC code boxes or Smileys, but disabling the display of those latter two goes a long way in saving bandwidth on the forum.
Now, I was hoping that after the forum had been shut down again this past week, these people might have said to themselves, "Gee, maybe I really shouldn't have unchecked those boxes," and they might have gone back to remedy that. But that hasn't been the case. So, once again I'm going to politely ask these people to please familiarize yourselves with the YaBBC and Smileys codes in the forum's Help section, either by printing them out or opening the Help section while posting, so that you'll be able to type them into your posts yourselves rather than relying on the buttons. And please go back into your profiles, check the "Disable showing of YaBBC Buttons?" and "Disable showing of Smiley Buttons?" boxes, and then save your profile. And to please consider collapsing at least the "General Discussions Archive" and "Why Register?" categories on the board index. Not only will you be helping to save bandwidth, but you'll be helping your fellow posters by hopefully helping to prevent our host from shutting down the forum more frequently than they already have.

Thanks! :)

The MB

Offline Mark Rainey

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Re: Bandwidth Saving Measures
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2002, 12:01:12 AM »
One thing I've been doing for a long time, even before the need for "drastic" measures, was putting my most commonly used coded items into a text file on my desktop (like the scrolling signature), so that when I want to use it, I just open the text file and copy & paste the appropriate code, modifying it on-screen as desired. Saves time anyway, as far as I'm concerned, since everything's already right there for you.

--Mark

Offline Mysterious Benefactor

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Re: Bandwidth Saving Measures
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2002, 12:08:08 AM »
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One thing I've been doing for a long time, even before the need for "drastic" measures, was putting my most commonly used coded items into a text file on my desktop

That's an excellent idea, Mark. [thumb]


Offline Julia99

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Re: Bandwidth Saving Measures
« Reply #4 on: September 25, 2002, 01:43:30 AM »
MB--if I may .. I will do whatever you need to keep the bandwith down but reading the messages you've written on this topic is difficult (long with too much info and explanation). . Can you make it like EASY STEPS to decrease bandwith and then bullet point it rather than an extra long paragraph?   Then repost it monthly if need be??

Something that is easy-to-read and quick-to-scan may increase folks participation, e.g.

1  Go to Profile:
**Disable smileys
**Disable whatever  and
**disable whatever

That is so much easier to read and understand. . quickly anyway.

I now run to my profile .. to double check my own settings.
Julia99

Offline Mysterious Benefactor

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Re: Bandwidth Saving Measures
« Reply #5 on: September 25, 2002, 02:31:13 AM »
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Something that is easy-to-read and quick-to-scan may increase folks participation, e.g.

1  Go to Profile:
**Disable smileys
**Disable whatever  and
**disable whatever

That is so much easier to read and understand

I understand where you're coming from, but actually, no further explanation regarding the "Disable showing of YaBBC Buttons?", "Disable showing of Smiley Buttons?", and "Disable showing of Topic Summary?" boxes was required beyond what I'd originally said, which was that those three boxes were already checked in everyone's profiles and to please not uncheck them, except for, perhaps, short periods of time when you're experimenting with a YaBBC feature that you haven't previously tried. ;)

If someone followed that advice, then there's really nothing they need to do now. And anyone (on the very short list of people) who went into their profiles and unchecked them obviously doesn't need an explanation of how to go back and recheck them. [wink2]

You've been kind enough to leave those three settings alone, and for that I'm very grateful. :)

Offline Midnite

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Checking and modifying posts
« Reply #6 on: September 29, 2002, 07:45:16 AM »
I have a request that I've been meaning to make for a while-- an easy one, I hope!¢â‚¬¦

When a post is submitted, the program automatically loads the page that contains it.  All I'm asking is that posters glance at these messages once they're on the board and, if necessary, modify them.  I realize that time is a priority for many here, as mentioned in the first couple of pages in the New forum Logo topic on the Testing board, but looking over a post once it's submitted, even if it ended up at the bottom of the page, under normal circumstances takes only seconds.

As I've said before, I never edit content unless it violates a forum guideline.  However, I do modify messages for these reasons:  to remove or add spacing, to attribute a quote to its author (especially if the quoted message appears on a different page) or to add quote tags if a quote has nothing to differentiate it from the rest of the text, to remove signatures if they're redundant (maybe this is my hangup, but if the person saying the quote is already listed above the quote, why bother to include it within the quote too?), to repair YaBB codes, and to add spoiler warnings.

So if you can please quickly look over your submitted posts for any faulty code (a smiley that shouldn't be there, a mistyped emoticon, or quote tags that aren't working) or if you see enough blank space to drive a truck through, it would be much appreciated.  As long as you're logged in, you can modify your own posts at any time.  I sympathize that quoting text still is a problem for some, and MB and I don't mind explaining the forum's features, but when users consistently make the same code errors over and over in lieu of asking for help, then it becomes somebody else's problem, and on some days I find that I'm modifying as many as ¼ of the posts I read.  I do it as a courtesy because I don't feel that someone reading your message should have to scroll through a whole lotta blank space (I've seen the blank space in posts fill my screen from top to bottom) to get to the next post or that it should be difficult to figure out who said what in your message, or that readers should have to read through a quote that has nothing to do with your reply, but it's my hope that everyone will be willing to take the minimal extra time required to check their own posts and modify them if needed.

Thanks, and a huge thank you to the posters that have consistently taken responsibilty for their own posts. :D


P.S.  As always, typos and misspellings are mandatory here.  I'll ignore yours if you ignore mine. ;)

Offline Midnite

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Re: Checking and modifying posts
« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2002, 11:45:32 PM »
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I don't feel that someone reading your message should have to scroll through a whole lotta blank space to get to the next post or that it should be difficult to figure out who said what in your message, or that readers should have to read through a quote that has nothing to do with your reply, but it's my hope that everyone will be willing to take the minimal extra time required to check their own posts and modify them if needed.

Please??? [chrmy]

Offline Lindsey

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Re: Bandwidth Saving Measures
« Reply #8 on: October 05, 2002, 06:52:44 PM »
Thanks Midnite for all you do! I never realized how much extra time you spend editing the posts. I always try to go back and check my errors (because I can't stand them), but I realize that I sometimes don't catch them all. I will try my hardest to ALWAYS check my mistakes! :)

-Lindsey
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"That I love you.  No matter how much I fight my feelings, I will always love you."
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Offline Midnite

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Re: Bandwidth Saving Measures
« Reply #9 on: October 05, 2002, 09:00:20 PM »
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Thanks Midnite for all you do! I never realized how much extra time you spend editing the posts. I always try to go back and check my errors (because I can't stand them), but I realize that I sometimes don't catch them all. I will try my hardest to ALWAYS check my mistakes! :)
Aw, Lindsey, you're so sweet!  Please don't be worried about missing something cuz the types of things I'm modifying are really hard to miss, like huge blank spaces, and though I wouldn't mind I don't remember ever modifying one of your posts anyway (oh, you perfectionist types! ;))...  I seem to be modifying posts by the same authors over and over, even after my initial request, and I've resigned myself to the fact that not everybody is going to read these administrative notices :- , so what I might have to consider is bringing back the display within a message that tells when it has been edited.  Then maybe these posters will notice the trend themselves.

Offline Midnite

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Re: Bandwidth Saving Measures
« Reply #10 on: October 05, 2002, 09:49:12 PM »
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I've resigned myself to the fact that not everybody is going to read these administrative notices :- , so what I might have to consider is bringing back the display within a message that tells when it has been edited.
Now that I've read Connie's message, perhaps this won't be necessary after all. :D

(First begging, then quoting myself endlessly... she'll be sending the Windcliff boys in white coats next. ;))

Connie

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Re: Bandwidth Saving Measures
« Reply #11 on: October 06, 2002, 12:28:32 PM »
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(First begging, then quoting myself endlessly... she'll be sending the Windcliff boys in white coats next. ;))


Julia says...

                                               
"That might be a very good idea."

;)

Offline Midnite

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Re: Checking and modifying posts
« Reply #12 on: November 17, 2002, 09:52:57 PM »
See  PLEASE READ: "Last Edit by..." on Testing 1, 2, 3... board.