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Author Topic: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down  (Read 1857 times)

mouser

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Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« on: July 03, 2021, 10:21 PM »
Gizmo's Freeware (Tech Support Alert) website put up a blog post today announcing they are shutting down.

https://www.techsupp...ime-say-farewell.htm

Screenshot - 7_3_2021 , 10_16_04 PM.pngGizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down



I've told this story before, but when I put up the DonationCoder website 16 years ago to ask for donations for a couple of programs I had written, Gizmo's was one of the 2 or 3 websites that were just immediately supportive and friendly, and the community around gizmo's was so encouraging of the idea.

Ian Richards (Gizmo) was always super supportive and friendly and encouraging of independent freeware developers, and gizmo's site has remained *THE* site to send people for recommendations of what freeware to use.

If Gizmo's is really shuttering up shop it will be a major loss to the freeware community, and the site will be sorely missed.

publicdomain

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Re: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2021, 01:16 AM »
Hello dear Jesse. Here are some possibilities/suggestions Gizmo may want to explore before closing...

Contact a niche free software hosting such as FossHost.com; they may be wiling to assist given it's an established community.

Contact a paid host that is known to support free software such as DigitalOcean.com, offering exclusive advertising in exchange of hosting (hey! Exclusive ads are better than no site!).

Keep the site running on a Kimsufi.com or Online.net server.

*Only* buy servers on Black Friday (cheapest pricing / annual plan) i.e. keep the site online for some more months "El Cheapo Way", then move to yearly with quite reduced pricing).

Monitor webs such as Lowendbox.com / Lowendtalk.com / Webhostingtalk.com and similar forums. Racknerd.com's Black Friday deals were great last year!

Run a hybrid operation: mirror as many static files as possible (i.e. downloads) on cheap file-oriented space then run the dynamic parts on minimal-but-capable resources.

Web hosting has come a long way in affordability :up: The dedi from the past is the cheap VPS of today :)
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« Last Edit: July 04, 2021, 07:17 AM by publicdomain »

wraith808

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Re: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2021, 06:00 AM »
Hello dear Jesse. There may be ways to explore before closing...
-publicdomain (July 04, 2021, 01:16 AM)

This isn't about this site- it's about another site.

publicdomain

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Re: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« Reply #3 on: July 04, 2021, 07:12 AM »
This isn't about this site- it's about another site.

Thank you! :) Post edited to make it more explicit the suggestions are for Gizmo to consider :Thmbsup:
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dantheman

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Re: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2021, 08:58 PM »
Think Gizmo's is also short on voluntary manpower... a priceless price tag.

publicdomain

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Re: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2021, 12:15 PM »
Hi guys! after the site went down I began working on a tiny tutorial for saving on web hosting :) (It may help/save other sites)

The basic idea being separation of concerns:

<private file storage> ↔ <public file cache> ↔ <public dynamic web>

With these goals in mind at the time of buying, then going for:

  • Private storage = Cheap disk space deals.
  • Public file cache = Cheap bandwidth deals.
  • Public dynamic web = Cheap "live" space deals.

Buying "low end boxes" on Black Friday + using coupons being the actual spirit of it 8)

All ideas welcome!
Vic



[edit: without CDN's... there are certain webmasters discouraged by CDN's for a medium-sized site, even FREE CDN's! (a la Cloudflare) due to several reasons, such as: 7 Reasons NOT to use a Content Delivery Network]

[edit #2: ...on the other hand, there are plenty of webmasters loving their CDNs, with very valid points for them, even when dealing with small(ish) websites: 7 Reasons to use a Content Delivery Network... "To CDN or not to CDN" that's the dilemma :) Cheers!]
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Thanks & keep on rocking!
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Coding: torrenttools-trackers v0.1.0
--Victor
« Last Edit: August 18, 2021, 02:13 PM by publicdomain, Reason: Edit In favor of CDN »

dantheman

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Re: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2021, 07:58 AM »
Although the situation is not quite the same, James Corbett who was recently "thanked" by GooTube has decided to backup all his work on an IPFS "service".

https://www.corbettr...rick-slopey-on-ipfs/

Not quite sure yet on how this all works but IPFS is sure making the news!
Brave browser seems to be pretty strong on this.

It sounds like a peer to peer thing to me, but if it is reliable and secure... that is the question!

Deozaan

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Re: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2021, 01:18 PM »
Not quite sure yet on how this all works but IPFS is sure making the news!
Brave browser seems to be pretty strong on this.

It sounds like a peer to peer thing to me, but if it is reliable and secure... that is the question!

I started a thread on IPFS about 6 years ago. To me it still sounds like a really great idea. If you're just a consumer looking to download some files or browse some content hosted on IPFS, then it's not a much different experience than the standard WWW.

The problem, as I see it, is when you want to host some content using IPFS. Until it gains much more widespread adoption, it's basically just you running a fileserver on your own system(s). On the one hand, if what you're hosting isn't very popular, then I suppose it won't take much of your system resources (and possibly ISP-limited data cap) to serve to others. On the other hand, if what you're hosting is very popular, then the nature of IFPS is that it will likely be distributed and "mirrored" by many others who can help offset some of the load.

But maybe a person who was adequately motivated could set up some cloud service such as Oracle Cloud Free Tier and have that running an IPFS server for hosting/serving IPFS content without exposing your personal/home PC to the public like that.

dantheman

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Re: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2021, 04:23 PM »
@Deozaan - you were and are still in the know!  :Thmbsup:

Think without user incentive, there will little to help IPFS to really take off.

Wasn't there a browser in the 90's that gave you free internet time if you allowed them to show you ads?

Sounds a bit like what Brave is doing with its BAT incentive.

Think it wouldn't be much of a problem to host somebodies data, as long as you and "they" can never know what's inside.
That, plus a BAT tip of sorts for the extra bandwidth.

Sorry, just babbling i guess.

4wd

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Re: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2021, 06:09 PM »
Wasn't there a browser in the 90's that gave you free internet time if you allowed them to show you ads?

Don't know about a browser but we had a couple of ISPs that provided free internet if you allowed them to show you ads - they didn't last very long.

Shades

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Re: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2021, 06:56 PM »
Back in 1998 I was working for a Dutch ISP. It was very common back then to access the internet by 33k or 56k modem via your land line. Not only needed you to pay for each "tick", you also needed to pay the ISP a monthly subscription fee. That Dutch ISP was one of the first to offer "free" internet. As in, they dropped the subscription fee, but users still needed to pay for each "tick".

A very successful move, the amount of customers increased very, very fast, as did the amount of employees. For legal reasons there had to be a paper trail per subscription, so every 2 to 3 weeks one or more laser printers (professional business ones) needed to be replaced as the counter for its functional life exceeded the maximum. Content creation was important, the occasional sponsored deal was a nice bonus, but the real money was made from the kick-back fees, "generously" offered by telecom companies.

Those days (the first years) were long, but fun as heck. Unfortunately also very profitable. Investors came by and not all of them were of the friendly sort. Both co-founders were each sent packing with 4.000.000 euro, and still the investor got away with 20.000.000 euro more when the ISP was sold and moved to a different part of the country. Ah, those pre-bubble-popping days....

Deozaan

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Re: Gizmo's Tech Support Alert freeware site shutting down
« Reply #11 on: August 19, 2021, 11:19 AM »
Think it wouldn't be much of a problem to host somebodies data, as long as you and "they" can never know what's inside.
That, plus a BAT tip of sorts for the extra bandwidth.

Sounds like you're describing Filecoin, which is another (cryptocurrency-based) file-storage technology being developed by the folks who developed IPFS.

By the way, you can see stuff that uses IPFS here, if you'd like to explore a bit: https://awesome.ipfs.io/

Don't know about a browser but we had a couple of ISPs that provided free internet if you allowed them to show you ads - they didn't last very long.

In the USA there was one called NetZero. IIRC, they lasted a surprisingly long time, but eventually abandoned the adware model and went to normal subscriptions.



Oh wow. I just did a search and it seems they're still alive. And in addition to their subscriptions, they're still offering 10 hours of free dial-up per month. I didn't know dial-up was still a thing. :o It probably uses up the whole 10 hours just to load the Google home page on dial-up. . .
« Last Edit: August 19, 2021, 11:29 AM by Deozaan »