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Old 7th August 2002, 11:51 PM   #1
Jason is offline Jason  Australia
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Default diyAudio needs a new server

Dear friends,

Well, the free ride is over. My company which has kindly hosted diyAudio for free for the past 3 years is now getting billed for bandwidth at US$3 / GB.

diyAudio uses 20GB a month presently and is growing at 2-3 GB per month. Last month the site served 1.3 million pages. That means I need to find AUS$200 a month (AUS$2400 a year), increasing each month, or find another host that will host it for free whilst at the same time providing a great level of service.

As I manage the box this is on (I am a linux network and sysadmin who specialises in Apache/PHP/MySQL) I know that the site is rarely down, that the drives are RAID, there are offsite tape backups, etc.

I would hate to move to another host with a lower level of service.

If I can't find a new host within a month I am going to have to either shut the site down (over my dead body!) or find some way to make it pay for itself. I simply can't afford $200 a month in my current financial situation.

I have been thinking about different kinds of advertiser sponsorship models, getting the community to donate, maybe some cafepress diyAudio Tshirts with a decent markup (US$1200/pa could be paid for with 120xUS$10 tshirt profits (or 60x$20).

But ideally I would just like to find another (decent) host.

Any suggestions welcome!
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Old 7th August 2002, 11:58 PM   #2
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I would like to have a new DIY-Audio Tshirt every year.

Or direct donation over the PayPal $10-15 with pleasure every year.

Trigon.
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Old 7th August 2002, 11:59 PM   #3
cowanrg is offline cowanrg  United States
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i would be willing to donate.

but, i dont think advertising is out of the question at all. many people complain about it, and say how great no advertising is...

i personally think it sux. you need to make money (or at LEAST break even) for your efforts here.
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Old 8th August 2002, 12:28 AM   #4
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This is my first post. I have been gathering lots of info over the past few months and I would be happy to pay for it if necessary(as long as the price is not out of my reach).
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Old 8th August 2002, 12:30 AM   #5
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Jason,

You've done a fantastic job with this site and I have to first thank you for your efforts and dedication.

On to business.

My suggestion is to first post (in a prominate spot on the site) a formal request for donations. This could be of the thread form or just a link to an information page or donation form. Collect donations for a week, or a month, or how ever long it takes to determine if this method would be sufficient to support the forum. If it works the first year, you could repeat it every year like,... yeah, like PBS! if a donation is greater then $XX dollars then the contributor receives a "gift" like,... yeah, like a t-shirt!

Or, let us know where to send it and I'll pitch in.

If 20% of the members contributes $5 each, you'd be covered for a year (just make the T-shirt $15 or $20).

Regards,
Rodd Yamas***a
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Old 8th August 2002, 12:34 AM   #6
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Yeah I'd be willing to shell out AU$40 on a diyAudio.com T-shirt. Suggest you run it as a business dealing rather than a collection as the later may be difficult for some people in some circumstances.
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Old 8th August 2002, 12:36 AM   #7
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I'm with roddyama. That is a great idea.

Glenn
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Old 8th August 2002, 12:53 AM   #8
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Jason,
You've done a marvelous job with this site and I'd hate to see it go away.

-Donations. Only problem is that people usually don't donate on a regular basis. But, it would definitely be a great idea to have it in addition to another form of diyaudio income.

-Ad banners. Please please please no popups; they are an undeniable pain-in-the-***, and rightly despised by all. I don't mind banners, though, so long as they are tasteful.

-Souvenirs. The only problem is coming up with new ideas people will buy after they've already bought the old idea.

-Membership. You could provide a membership area for accessing special resources. If you collect schematics, pcb layouts, etc, I'm sure lots of people would be interested in checking them out. Or even a "forum pictures" section, which would allow the quick browsing of all the (very useful) pics.

Going on that idea a bit more, you could use the forum hierarchy so people could better navigate the collection. In addition, add a description text box on the posting form, so the description can be displayed in the forum pictures section. I'm thinking one would list the threads with pictures in them followed by the number of pictures in parens. When one clicks the picture thread, it displays all the pictures as (pregenerated) thumbnails, with a link (with an optional description) to the full-size pictures. The full sized pictures could be linked to the thread they came from for context.

Also, if you utilized the search engine to show psuedo catagories, that'd be cool. "Quick Search," or something. For instance, you could have a list on the side showing ESP, Leach, Pass, various popular tube designs (not sure what they are), DSP, projectors, projector screens. One would click them and it'd just utilize the search engine (ESP would use the search terms "ESP", "3A", and "Elliott Sound Products") without the highlighting.

A notifier which emails you when given search terms are in a new post (perhaps restricted to a given section), I think might be useful. Again, sort of a search engine thing. If done right it might not gobble up all your system resources. Ie, have a compilation list of all members' search strings to look for, and upon a post submission, send that list to the user who is posting, do a client side search, and have them send back a list of matching strings which can be compared with each member's list. Also, put a checker to make sure all the search terms sent back were sent in the first place; you don't want to have a DOS exploit.

-Optimize. Instead of showing picture attachments in the forum, show a text link to the picture, or a pregenerated thumbnail. Make the search engine more effective (or encourage it's use), so less browsing is done.


That's all I could come up with off the top of my head. It might be more trouble than it's worth to do all that programming, but either way, making a site profitable without being intrusive is tough.

Best of luck,
Will
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Old 8th August 2002, 01:08 AM   #9
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i would be willing to donate.
me too - count me in! (but PLEASE: no advertising)
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Old 8th August 2002, 04:08 AM   #10
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I think banners are a good option (PLEASE, no popups. Popups are the devil!); and donations would help a lot also.

And, once again, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR ALL YOUR EFFORTS. I love this site, and aprecciate the work and time you put into it.
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