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I Thought I Wasn't Going to Ever Blog about Trax in Space again...

Posted Thursday, February 25th, 2021 8:08:00 am
Well, I hope at least a couple people get a good chuckle out of the title. Fortunately for them, this post is about something else entirely: the Trax in Space 1 file repository.

I've maintained this site, with some interruptions, since around the time TiS1 shut down, which I believe was some time in 2003 or 2004. It was a simple site written in Classic ASP that had one purpose - serve files. When I lived in Houston, I maintained this site on my own server that was literally right next to my desk. I had unlimited bandwidth, great Internet speeds for the day, and was able to let people download what they wanted.

Fast forward to October 2015, when I moved from Houston to Belmont. The site was unceremoniously removed from the Internet, and I really had no idea how I wanted to get it back up. I had roncli.com up in Azure for quite a while by that point, but didn't really know what the cost was going to be for me to put the whole 14 GB repository online, so I just... didn't.

It didn't take long for people to notice it was gone, either. In December 2015, I received my first email regarding someone willing to host the site. As a man of technological pride, I silently declined, promising to myself to put it up soon. It took me 2 1/2 years to do so. This was the birth of the Github repository for tis.roncli.com, rewritten entirely in Node.js. However, there was a twist. Because I wasn't sure what kind of cost bandwidth would have, I limited downloads to 50 per 24 hours, a limit that still exists to this day. People have been generally happy that it's back, but have been asking for the 50 download limit to be removed. I've largely been unwilling to do that, simply because I'm not sure what the cost of doing so would be. However, it's a question that I will be willing to revisit after this current project is complete.

Last year, I started learning Docker, and figured TiS1 would be a great first project. I learned how to set up Azure Storage, where all the files now live. I learned how to run certbot properly, got nginx as the web server, and log failures to Azure so that I can monitor what's going on. It's been awesome. The server is a Linux VM that's super small compared to the one I'm running, and is all open source, so no fees for it being a Windows VM with SQL Server on it. It's pretty cheap to run, too: about $10/month.

TiS1's transition has been a success, and kick started me on my next project... moving Six Gaming into Docker, a project that was full of... let's say "learning experiences". I'll talk about Six's challenges in my next post.

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