User talk:Timeshifter

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Your ShoutWiki Wiki

Hi Timeshifter! Which wiki on ShoutWiki is yours? Dusti*Let's talk!* 21:05, 9 August 2013 (UTC)

This one: --Timeshifter (talk) 23:53, 9 August 2013 (UTC)
That's definitely a good wiki - and it could definitely be hosted here on Orain. I love the fact that you have a lot of ideas and suggestions. Your technical abilities are also a super plus. Would you possibly be interested in helping out here more? We could certainly use the boost! :) Dusti*Let's talk!* 00:16, 10 August 2013 (UTC)
I may host some stuff here, but right now I don't have the energy. In the meantime I don't know how I can help out much here. Maybe if you start a forum, I can help out now and then.
I am curious as to what it costs to run a wiki farm monthly? Just for site hosting, bandwidth, etc.. Not staff costs. --Timeshifter (talk) 04:15, 12 August 2013 (UTC)
Right now, the costs are extremely minimal as we've only had to take care of the domain name and SSL certificate. I expect that as time goes on those costs may fluctuate. Dusti*Let's talk!* 05:11, 12 August 2013 (UTC)

(Unindent). I tried to figure out what it would cost from this page:

But that page and some of its linked pages baffle me from my cursory examination. I have seen sites like this:

Their web hosting page has some simpler pricing for people like me who do not understand the server end of stuff:

That web host has had huge multi-page ads in PCworld magazine in many issues of the magazine. So they must be big. They are also international with servers spread across several countries. I like the fact that they allow unlimited bandwidth and web space. Web space is important because the Global Marijuana March wiki at Wikia has over one gigabyte of GMM flyers, posters, banners, and other graphics all the way back to 1999. Bandwidth is important because any current GMM site gets slammed for a few months leading up to the event in May. Thousands of hits a day.

I have some ideas. Maybe you, TropicalWikis, and WikiHub can create one wiki farm. Or you could buy them out. Or ask them to donate their sites and domain names to you. So you could redirect those wikis' domain and subdomain names to your site. See:

I am leery of being on small wiki farms. I think most people are. Few want to be one of the first wikis on a wiki farm. People are not sure how they will be treated, what the wikis will be allowed to cover, how much customization is allowed. Many people have had problems with Wikia, and so their fears are understandable.

I think a memorable domain name is needed for a wiki farm. Wikia and ShoutWiki are catchy and easy to remember. I don't like "TropicalWikis". It sounds like a travel agency or something. "WikiHub" is too generic and boring. "Orain" does not have "wiki" in the name, and is hard to remember. "Orain" is not catchy.

If you consolidate all of the wikis from TropicalWikis with your wiki farm, then you are no longer a small beginning wiki farm. People would be more likely to create wikis. Especially if you have a catchy name.

Your draw might be that beginning wikis do not have ads for the first year no matter what. And for as long as their bandwidth does not exceed a certain monthly or quarterly amount. If that happens they have the option to pay to not have ads. has this option, and is very popular. Its Alexa rank is currently 21. See the info here:

--Timeshifter (talk) 21:39, 12 August 2013 (UTC)

I can definitely understand your concerns. I actually held a staff meeting yesterday with the stewards and we've come to a consensus on what content we will and will not host. That information should be uploaded soon - however, I'll go ahead and state it here that we'll be open to hosting all content, regardless of what content it contains - as long as it doesn't violate any laws. We're not about censorship, or will /I/ allow us to start such practices. I also outlined staff expectation and how to handle requests. At the moment, all reasonable requests are going to be approved and acted upon. Requests for extensions that may interfere with our current coding, obviously, cannot be approved. i.e. there was a recent request for User Merge and Delete. That would conflict with CentralAuth.
I've looked into 1&1 and I really like them. I had them before for some hosting and I never really had any major issues.
We're actually in talks with TropicalWikis in regards to merging. The current owner is deciding who he'd like to merge with. While the merger would be huge for us - I don't believe that we have to rapidly grow by introducing <100 wikis to Orain in order to be successful. It's more about expanding content here on meta in regards to what we offer and making our policies clear. Dusti*Let's talk!* 15:33, 15 August 2013 (UTC)

(unindent). Good to hear that TropicalWikis is trying to do a better job than Wikkii in helping their wikis move.

I have been brainstorming trying to think of some good wiki farm domain names. Unfortunately, many good names are already taken for working web sites. If you are interested here are few domain names off the top of my head that are not being used:


A .com address is the easiest to remember worldwide, and offers the maximum flexibility as to donations, opt-in ads, etc.. A .org address is traditionally used for nonprofits, etc..

Some of the above domain names are being sat on. I would ignore any attempts by the owners to sell the domain name for a high price. Offer $50 (or whatever) to all of them. Tell them all that you have offered $50 to multiple owners, and that you will pick the one you prefer in a week or two. They can't be getting many offers for domain names with "wiki" in the name. --Timeshifter (talk) 07:56, 17 August 2013 (UTC)


Sorry, I was answering and posting a lot of messages, wasn't really looking when I posted that information about the Monaco skin, thanks for moving the comment. Arcane (talk) 17:29, 15 September 2013 (UTC)Arcane

Recent Orain Updates

Greetings all,

A lot has happened quite recently (I mean a lot), for those not actively involved in our IRC channel (#orain on freenode), here is a brief update of what has happened recently.

  • Upgrades
    • Orain updated to the latest stable release of MediaWiki, 1.23.
    • All extensions which have updates for 1.23 have also been updated.
    • We've moved over to MediaWiki 1.23's json style for i18n.
  • Downtimes
    • We have experienced a few downtimes over the past month. These include service failures (10 minutes in total), upgrade issues (5 minutes total) and issues with our host (15 hours).
    • We have looked into all downtimes and put into place methods we can use to prevent these reoccurring again.
  • New Stuff
    • After a few downtimes, we introduced Nagios to our infrastructure. Nagios can be viewed by any user on prod1.
    • We also introduced an IRC RC bot. All RC feeds on public Orain wikis are now sent to #Orain-feed on JDNet ( Users can join the channel manually as well as introducing bots to the channel.
    • We now have a twitter account! Follow us

We know the past two months have been rough with a few matters which have been occurring internally with our staff but we are working to resolve all issues which we are aware of as soon as possible. I thank you for your patience and I hope we can continue to work together to build an awesome wiki farm! Also, Orain will be 1 year old on July 12th 2014.

Thanks, on behalf of all Orain staff, John (talk) 21:21, 12 June 2014 (BST)

This message was sent using Orain's mass messaging system. If you have a concern regarding this message, please alert the steward team at the stewards' noticeboard.

Orain Site Update #1

This can be called the official first monthly site update hence the #1 so; let's get on to what has happened during the month of July!


During July, Orain added two new servers to the cluster, there were two incidents and one long term fix.

  • prod5 was added as an additional webserver which we plan to use to help distribute the load of web requests and as a fail-over so if prod4 fails, we can continue to provide you all with your wikis.
  • prod6 was added and is still in the setting up stage. It is planned to take over the role of prod1, a server we are planning to decommission eventually.
  • We had a small security issue regarding ElasticSearch on our prod3 server. No unauthorized access to the data stored on the server was seen and the server has since been made more secure. As a security precaution, ElasticSearch was removed from the cluster and wikis were defaulted back to MediaWiki search.
  • From July 30th to August 1st; there were issues with out going MediaWiki mail. This has since been resolved however incoming mail to all addresses are still not functioning as of August 3rd.
  • A long-term issue with images was resolved on July 15th.
New Features
  • A wikicreator group was added to metawiki so community users can handle new wiki requests which is one step into delegating new roles and responsibilities to the community. Wikicreators are chosen by system administrators using their discretion.
  • Cyberpower678's tool was given access to some database tables on public wikis. As a result the UserAnalysis tool works on all public Orain wikis.
  • UrlShortener was enabled on all Orain wikis to allow shorter URLs to be used. Currently URLs follow the form of 'https://$$id'. If wikis want to use a shorten URL of their choice; please make a request to the system administrators.
  • Private wikis may now (on request) use image authorization for their wikis. This means images are made web-inaccessible as to preserve the security of images uploads while still being accessed by users with 'read' access to your wiki.
  • Orain now allows the use of OAuth. Please see the OAuth page on MediaWiki for more details. OAuth requests can be made on any wiki and will be approved by a system administrator on metawiki.

On behalf of the Orain staff, John 17:35, 3 August 2014 (BST)

Orain Site Update #2

This is an update of all technical changes and issues during the month of August.

Technical Changes
  • prod1 was removed from active maintenance on August 6th and removed from the cluster a week later.
  • Orain migrated from RamNode to DigitalOcean. The work began on August 17th
  • We moved away from Memcached to Redis for session and general caching on all Orain servers.
  • We added prod7 to the cluster during the migration. It is responsible for Redis and static content hosting.
Technical Issues
  • The job queue did not run any job for 4 days as a result of permissions errors with Redis. We have rolled back to using the database for this for now.
  • All wikis experienced database issues shortly after the migration as a result of MariaDB cache taking up excessive disk space. To fix this in the long term, prod5 was recycled as a new database server.
  • For an hour on the 25th of August, users occasionally got caching errors and log in issues as a result of Redis taking up excessive disk space.

On behalf of Orain staff, John (talk) 22:02, 6 September 2014 (BST)

Happy new years

  • Hi,happy new years!--Msnhinet8 (talk) 12:19, 26 December 2014 (GMT)
Hi! --Timeshifter (talk) 17:31, 26 December 2014 (GMT)

Orain's FIRST donation drive!!

As many of you may have seen, Orain has been undergoing some significant changes. To be frank, we've outgrown our current home. With 288 communities, 1,000+ users, and sites like All The Tropes growing daily - we're beginning to look at the long term future of the project. With current funding levels, we can last four more months after we upgrade to some new servers. Our last server change wasn't that long ago, yes, but it was done to improve the overall stability and functionality of the site.

We've launched an Indegogo campaign to raise $5,000 to accomplish a couple of things:

  • We would be able to move to a stable, secure, short to mid term server that has the capability to not only host us now but continue hosting us even if we grow significantly
  • Begin the process of investigating solutions that include us purchasing our own private servers
  • Begin working on expanding our current abilities and addressing some of our limitations
  • Developing some extensions, widgets, and potentially a mobile application to improve the end-user experience
  • .. and finally being reaching out to other mid to large size communities and bring them into the Orain family.

To increase the likelihood of donations we've included some incentives that we'd love to send out including t-shirts, hoodies, blankets, and some new userrights - Donor and VIP which will come with their own individual perks.

We appreciate your generosity and look forward on continuing to offer a fun, free, collaborative community for all to enjoy.

For the staff -- Dusti 08:01, 5 January 2015 (GMT)

My apologies on sending this out again, the first messages had an error

Can I ask you for $1?

We're 9 days into our 30 day campaign, and we've raised $537. That's fantastic! The idea of Orain, our message, our purpose - it means something. The belief that there can be a community led, a community ran, and a community funded website that's not ad-driven or profit based works.

Our community has believed in us from the beginning, and I firmly believe that our community will stand by us and continue to support us. It's okay if we don't reach our $5,000 goal. $5,000 was a best case scenario. $1,000 enables us to stay online another year. It enables us to keep looking at alternatives and other ways to stay online and cut costs. $500 halves that time and shortens our research ability. 11% of our goal is better than 0% of our goal.

I've made a pledge from the beginning. I've vowed to never force ads on this community for the purpose of keeping Orain alive. Ads are what separate us from the other farms we compete with. I will give my personal funds before I enable ads by force. Ads are a nuisance that you should have a voice in. We've toyed with and are developing the idea of individual wikis who want ads within their community. Some people can't donate a dollar, and that's okay. That's their way of giving and I'm down for that.

To the backers who have helped so far, Thank you!

If you haven't had a chance to donate so far, please please do. Your $1 will help make a difference in the WikiFarm world. You can help us stay online, free, and ad free.

If you have a little more than a dollar and want an Orain t-shirt, we've got those. We've also got hoodies, coffee cups, and blankets. Most of these things will have to be purchased in bulk so there's likely going to be an online store for the leftover donation drive items once the campaign is over.

As always, I want to hear from you. If you have ideas to help our Indiegogo campaign please send them to me or email me.

With love,
Dustin "Dusti" Muniz
03:01, 14 January 2015 (GMT)

Site news for January!

Hi there! It's been a wild ride over the last few days!!

We went from being dead in a couple of months to being certain of the next couple years to come! We're sitting at $2,100 in our Indiegogo fundraiser, just shy of 50% of our goal. Those of you who have contributed to the cause, I cannot tell you how blessed I feel. To know that the project I helped Kudu create a couple years ago is providing a service that is helping and impacting others makes me feel great.

If there's anything else you're able to give, it'd be greatly appreciated. We don't receive any other funds. We don't receive anything from advertising. We don't have corporate sponsors or government grants. We don't have staff who get paid. We survive because you want us to. Your generosity has ensured that at least for the next couple of years we'll be alive, online, and free. We'll probably have to do another donation drive in a couple of years, but that's the art of being community funded and supported.

With just a couple days left in the campaign, I urge you, if you haven't yet, to enter one of our running contests to win some free Orain gear. We have one via our Facebook page - all you have to do is enter! Also, any person donating $5 or more is entered into a chance to win some free Orain gear too!

Since this campaign has started we've started looking at what we can do to maximize the longevity of your contributions. We've began looking at the benefits of physical servers versus virtual servers and the overall structure and foundation of our setup. This month we welcomed Tanner to our Sysadmin team. Tanner has volunteered with Mozilla for the last couple of years and is a great asset to the Sysadmin team. Tanner will be teaming up with Addshore to lead our Sysadmin team. We also welcomed FastLizard4 from the Wikipedia Account Creations Team. FL4 is one of the roots for the ACC interface and brings a lot of knowledge to the technical team.

We've recently been challenged on the content that we allow to be hosted. Our staff stood firmly by our communities and made it clear that we support your freedom of speech. Over the next few days and weeks we're going to be updating some of our policies regarding wikis and the content they host to ensure that we have something we can point to when disputes and complaints like these come up. We want to ensure that we're giving our community the best while complying with local and federal laws. A wonderful quote that brings this theory home comes from Voltaire:

I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it.

For the staff, OrainMessenger (talk) 09:01, 30 January 2015 (GMT)


You might have an idea about this, if yes, please help: Thanks, Fiala1 (talk) 21:27, 8 February 2015 (GMT) – They're calling you a "hate-monger". --Michaeldsuarez (talk) 23:53, 3 March 2015 (GMT)

Lol. Thanks, Michaeldsuarez. --Timeshifter (talk) 08:08, 4 March 2015 (GMT)
You're welcome. --Michaeldsuarez (talk) 13:48, 4 March 2015 (GMT)

Is this okay? It just redirects to meta now. A Wyatt Man (talk) 11:26, 4 March 2015 (GMT)

It looks like the page was deleted per my request. --Timeshifter (talk) 13:08, 6 March 2015 (GMT)