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 Post subject: Archives - What they are and how you use them
PostPosted: 02 May 2007, 22:12 
Lamenting the amount of work
Lamenting the amount of work
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Joined: 20 Jan 2004, 09:57
Posts: 2909
Location: The land of the fording oxes
Archiving history

As well as the current threads on the board, the CBB also has a vast and growing archive of old threads. These mainly consist of the drabbles that people have written, but there are also many discussion or information threads that have been kept for their interesting content.

Archiving first began back in 2003 when bandwidth started to become an issue, as it was a way to free up more space on the board. Two separate archives were created, the Drabble Archive where the stories from Cookies and Drabbles were kept, and the Random Archive which was for everything else.

However, with the death of the old board at the end of 2003 and the creation of a new board, archiving was put on hold as space was not such an issue.

Archiving resumed in August 2004, partly because the drabble sections had grown so large that completed stories needed separating from current ones. This time a blog format was used and the old index can still be seen here

Unfortunately there was one crucial problem; only the most recently archived threads could be viewed in the index, meaning many were hidden, unless you knew how to find them!

In-House Archiving
Then Liss had a brainwave and created an in-house system, which we still use now. Here, threads can be uploaded straight into a central system. This system can also be manipulated to divide the threads out into smaller archives for each forum or drabble house, and has allowed us to add further information, such as author and story details to every file uploaded.

The board now has a regular archiving or deleting policy for each forum. This means problems of bandwidth are unlikely to reccur and it also provides the mods with guidance on when and what to archive. This system proved very lucky when we were hacked in 2006. Though many current threads were sadly lost, we did not lose our archives.

Using The Archives
At present the board has archives in three different places: the lycos archive (old_archive), the Blogger archive (middle_archive), and everything archived in the present system. There are links to these archives in this thread in Joey’s Trunk. This means it is difficult to navigate your way around some of the older archives, and therefore much information is not available. However there is a project beginning to re-archive the old threads and in particular the drabbles. This intends to create a central place to go to access all archived threads and will enable people to search by title, author, location of the school, character, keywords or genre (ie house).

Looking for drabbles
The archived drabbles are all accessible through the wonderful Index Drabbleorum, which is found in Ste Therese’s. As St Mildred's is a locked forum, it has a separate index of archived drabbles. The drabble houses also have a link to their individual archives in the forum index.

Many finished drabbles are also posted in the Sally Denny Library (SDL) and authors are often happy to send word documents out if you’d prefer to read something without the yibble.

Discussions and other fora
Those discussion fora that have their own archive also have the link displayed on the index page. Many of these also have their own indices created and maintained by the mods which enable threads to be accessed in other ways. For example:

Special Sixth Archive arranged by books, characters and debates
Lemon Biscuits & Liberty Bodices arranged by subject

If you do have any spare time (though be careful it can eat your time) then it is worth browsing through the archives. There are some fantastic drabbles lurking there, and reams of drabble resources and interesting discussions. The archives are an important part of the board’s history too, and so we are continually working to make them more accessible. If anyone has any suggestions please let us know.

Joey: A Life In Pictures - Bake with Bert Blog

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