Somewhere around mid-October (estimating) we started having congestion issues with the NC system causing lag and disconnects – and this led to additional problems with the MV Chat system as well. For many weeks our visitors have likely dealt with slow connections, and some down time. We’ve been working to sort the issues, tried several things, and had some patches, but things are just not as smooth as they should be.
It may be that the old code for the NC is just not going to make it much longer. We’ve tried patches, and updates, but this old code base was made with different hardware and software in mind.
Many things have changed around the world, and the folks that put together most of the code for the NC abandoned the project long ago. I really want to keep the NC going, as we’ve invested a lot of time and money into it, and even if it is not the main system of the future, it has served as a damn fine backup system for many years, with lots of premium features.
I don’t know if it’s old code that is having trouble with the ways that web browsers are changing, or something just got screwey on our chat server. Maybe it’s just not meant to run with so many users at the same time – most sites that deploy chat systems don’t have to worry about 100MB databases and a hundred people texting each other at the same time.
Maybe our server got hacked, and some spammer is piggy backing on some old code or a file folder or something – I’m not sure what the exact cause is at this time, and I’ve been hunting through files and watching active cpu threads for weeks now. Testing things, researching things, and I want to find the cause, but it’s become obvious that the issues are wearing thin on our visitors patience.
The Coming Newer Chats
We’ve been tinkering with a few newer chat systems, built with more modern code. These newer systems are fast, but they have not been tested with hundreds of users at once. They also don’t have all the features of the ‘new chat’ yet, so I’ve been reluctant to put them out there until we get some more modifications added. We may go ahead and roll out one of systems we’ve been experimenting with to get feedback from everyone on what we should modify first.
We’re also working on mobile apps that connect with these newer systems, and looking for ways that we can get these out to the general public in different ways.
Web browsers are changing, computers are changing, and the devices that people use to connect with are all changing. We’re working on things that take advantage of these changes, but our older chat systems are not going to play well with them.
I was reading earlier that windows is going to be blocking flash by default and putting up some screen that says it’s blocked. Microsoft will force users to “click to allow” it (flash) to play soon. Not sure if this is going to be a windows 10 update only, or if they plan to push this to all people using the edge browser, or all versions of windows in the future – but it’s another nail in the soon to be coffin of flash, which the OC and the NC require – it’s something that the MV chat was built with and the flashy chat as well.
We have been seeing issues with firefox and chrome occasionally stopping flash from working, and we know that the browser makers will be making things less “flash friendly” in the future. There has been talk in many of the geek circles about killing off flash from running completely, so the days of our older flash based chat systems are certainly numbered. More and more people will be connecting with devices that do not play well with flash – and we need to move on to completely different systems in the future if we are to include many of the newer devices and newer users going forward.
Luckily we have an ‘html5’ version of the flashy chat and mv chat systems – so people who go to those pages will still be able to use the chats without flash – they just lose some of the features that the full flash version makes possible.
Soon I will invite people to test out our upcoming “teckor” chat system and give feedback about what it needs to be the best sexy chat system.
The New Chat is Old.. the Old Chat is New?
While I am working on getting this new beta test system open to public for testing, I’ve been thinking about bringing back the old chat / original chat for a couple months. While I was digging desperately for file issues with the NC code, I found something I had though was lost to us forever – more about that via another blog post.
This post was mainly to explain what’s been going on with the NC and stuff. At first I thought we could fix it with some down time here and there, however the problem is worse than I expected – and at this point it’s unlikely that we’ll be able to fix it.It may be that the NC / new chat / peeps cams chat finds it’s end of life at the end of January however.
Just to keep it running as a backup I would need to drop another $1000 in servers on Feb 1st – and that would just keep the computers spinning – it would not get any code updates – so it’s likely going to keep lagging out and crashing every so many hours.
We shall see.
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