What happened to the forum?
I broke it.
There was a huge bunch of spam bots advertising all sorts of dumb stuff on the forum - upwards of thirty a day - and I put on my deft webmaster skills and began to monkey with the new user validation settings.
Naturally, I wound up locking everyone out of the forum, including myself. I can't log in to change the settings.
There are exactly three things that can be done in a situation like this:
1. Pay/Beg someone to fix it. The days of getting a job like this fixed via ScriptLance for forty bucks are long gone. And I'm too embarrassed to ask someone to spend a lot of time fixing it for no pay.
2. Figure out how to uninstall the forum software without totally whacking out the entire site/server. I'd like to say that I want to do this but don't have the time. I don't have the time, but more importantly, I don't want to do it.
3. Make a lame "What happened to the forum?" page and not have a forum at all. To be honest not a lot of people were posting on it, and all the really good questions were coming via email anyhow.
"I feel cheated. I was looking for content, you idiot!"
I feel your pain. Really. But you're not getting any additional content. Instead I'm going to assault you with an FAQ page. You know, the kind where the webmaster makes up questions he'd like to be asked frequently but doesn't ever get to answer.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: Are you really as nice in person as you seem in your videos and on various Internet forums?
A: No. I'm actually nicer. If I wasn't married, I'd make love to you if I thought it would make you feel better. Unless you're a guy. Then I've have to think of something else.
Q: I tried to register on your forum and it wouldn't let me.
A: That's not a question. And if you're asking that question after reading the stuff above the FAQ, the answer is that I got the request and am just exhibiting an unfair personal grudge against you.
Q: Didn't you realize that setting up a membership request process that involved sending an email without having a mail server on the host machine was incredibly stupid?
A: While that's a question - which is a great improvement - the answer is yes, but only after the fact. Thanks for asking though.
Q: When are you going to make your next movie?
A: When I get time. The last year has been crazy with this intense MMORPG called "Real Life" and the Work-Family-Stuff campaign has absorbed every friggin' minute of my life.
Q: When are you going to get more time?
A: About December, when I go on terminal leave. Twenty-two years in the Big Green Machine is enough for me to say I did my part. I have no idea what job I'm gonna get or even if I'm going to look for work, so I should have some time in 2009.
Q: Is that your personal email on the contact page?
Q: So you sort of figured out that the dedicated server couldn't send an email a long time ago, and suddenly turned stupid on the forum thing?
A: Could we move on to another line of questioning? I don't think that would be a frequent question.
Q: Okay, whatever, stupid-head; so, do you answer emails people send you?
A: Usually right away. I think if someone is kind enough to spend time writing me an email, the least I can do is reply.
Q: What if they respond back to your response?
A: I write back again.
Q: So how do they get you to stop writing them emails?
A: When they don't respond to my response. Hey, I'm just trying to be nice and helpful.
Q: So you're not like some email stalker?
A: I can't believe that's a "frequent" question.
Q: You'd be surprised.
A: That's not a question, but yes, I'd be very surprised if a common question about me is whether or not I'm an "email stalker."
Q: How often is the site updated?
A: Content actually gets added quite often, though usually not advertised. Every once in awhile I slug something into the news part of the site.
Q: What happened to the dedicated IL-2 server that used to be on HyperLobby?
A: When the server was relocated to another company they set up a firewall setting that won't allow HyperLobby out.
Q: Do you know that for sure, or is it not just connecting so you have made a simple wild guess?
A: I'm really not enjoying your tone.
Q: That's why you haven't called VIRTBIZ technical support, isn't it? You're too stupid to figure it out but too scared of looking dumb to call them.
A: There's no reason to resort to name calling.
Q: "That's not an answer." Anyhow, what sort of dedicated server are you renting, anyway?
A: AMD Duron processor (1.3 GHz) with 248 MB of RAM.
Q: Oh, that's funny! I thought they were all in landfills!
A: Nope. There is at least one that was hanging in the back room at Colomart and they figured they could rent it out to someone that doesn't need a lot of server computer power. I'm paying about a third of the standard dedicated server rental fee with unlimited bandwidth for this "crappy" server. When VIRTBIZ bought Colomart, they honored both my server and my billing arrangements.