Monthly Update June 2016

It’s June! or what happened to May?

(If tech talk bores your, skip the next couple of paragraphs. You can think of puppies or kitties instead!)

Some may have noticed we had a service interruption the first weekend of June. The site itself was ok, but we had to move our Domain Name Servers (DNS). This is the system that converts URLs to IP addresses. So for a day and half, the internet could not see our servers.

We made this change as a result of a series of events that resulted in an attempt to protect the site from DDoS attacks. DDoS is a type of DOS attack where multiple compromised systems, which are often infected with a Trojan, are used to target a single system causing a Denial of Service (DoS) attack. For some time, we get intermittent attacks DDoS (originating in china mainly) where they try to overwhelm our bandwidth. So when the site seems slow, that is likely the reason.

To help mitigate this nuisance, we switched to a service called Cloudflare. the service worked great but was not 100% compatible with the site. Switching to Cloudflare required moving our DNS (that acronym again) to them. So switching back required moving our DNS again. The first time, no one noticed. The second time, well the sie was unavailable.

We still need to address this issue. And I have a plan, but will wait a month, then give notice before we make any changes.

(You can stop thinking of puppies or kitties!)

Gold Subscriptions numbers are still a little down, but we did raise enough to cover the servers in May. Most of URNA is free, but there are a few extra benefits from being Gold:

1. View Secondary Profile Photos
2. View Member Galleries
3. Enhanced Journal Posting abilities including HTML, Pictures, Smilies, Entries for Friends Only, & more

A new option for annual gold was added. You can now purchase an annual Gold for $44.95 with an auto-renewal of $10.95 every 90 days after the first year. This will save the hassle of having to sign up for an annual each year and gives a slight price break to our annual Golds.

I also reorganized the subscription page to be a little more straight forward. I had gotten a few comments that it was a little confusing. I also added a Donate link for those who want to help but not interested in a Gold or for those who have a Gold but want to help out more.

If you are not a Gold, please consider becoming a subscriber or any Donation would be a great help. (here)

Next, even though the upgrade is on hold until money gets a little better, a small change was made to the login process. Now, after you log in you will see 3 options – take me to my profile, take me to chat and take me to the main page. Before, there was only the option for take me to my profile. This will save a few clicks for those wanting to go straight to chat. And as a reminder, we do have a Main Page with interesting information and articles.

Last, we are always looking for links and articles of interest to the transgender community. This includes personal stories if you would like to share yours. All I ask is that for original content that you not use extensive formatting as most of this has to be converted to HTML, which can be a PITA.

Happy start of the Summer! Pam