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 Post subject: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 3:06 am
 1337 Beta Collector

Joined
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3042
I wanted to bring out a little piece of myself I've been thinking about for a while. It's almost 2am on a monday morning so it's not the best time, but better to write this or forget about it in the morning... . So excuse me if I drift a little, part of my brain is telling me "8 hours of drooling on a pillow", other part is telling me to say what I am about to say.

There's been a few questions and issues cropping up about the "mission" BetaArchive has, and here's my highly personal opinions about it. It may not reflect yours but that's not the point either. And I'll probably add some more in the future.

First off...

The "mission" of BetaArchive

I've heard this from a few members... they argue with me that BA doesn't have a mission, it simply exists out of pure awesomeness for the sole benefit of creating a "community".

I beg the differ.

By default we are a community: A bunch of people with similar interests, sharing knowledge, experiences and resources on a single platform. But that doesn't mean that the community as a whole as a "mission". First off, BetaArchive rose out of the ashes from OSBA, that alone was an indication that BA had a goal to set: To continue the legacy of OSBA and to make it better, hopefully learning from past mistakes and improve on all the successes. As time passed by we aquired new members, skills and resources, and eventually it became a quest to become the best beta site on the net. When I joined I wanted BA to become the place to get betas. You can't do that if you believe that BA's sole existence is to be a after-school water hole for nerds. BA has the foundation to set an example on the net, and that requires a path to follow, a distant goal to run towards. For me the goal is to channel all beta resources into this site. To gather whatever files and information we can across the net and make it easily accessible for members. Since BA also dealt with older non-beta stuff I've also included abandonware into this "goal", but that still stands a little bit in the shadows and may very well change in the future - perhaps we'll keep the abandonware, or we try to focus entirely on betas.

So yes, BetaArchive does have a mission. We're not here to only entertain people that has nowhere else to go. The net is a very big place and we don't want to become just an another website. We want to be a professional site for betas that is available to everyone and not keep betas in the dark, information traded only by shadows in dark alleys. And BetaArchive may also be a very good platform to save old software as well. Or a good platform to launch it into a new site. Who knows what the future holds.

The status of BetaArchive

Here's a bit that worries me. I feel BetaArchive has been watered down a little bit too much. We've drifted away from our main core and become more of a breakfast club. The majority of our forum (at the moment) consists of other things than betas (and we have no abandonware section at all), and most of the activity is non-beta related. I think perhaps a new strategy has to be worked out to secure BetaArchive's future. I want BetaArchive to be a hardcore beta site - by beta lovers, for beta lovers. Cut down on the nonsense and be more hardcore. Want to discuss hackintoshes? Take it on OSX86. Want to discuss what gaming PC is best? Take it up on tomshardware or anandtech. Got issues with your drivers? Contact your vendor.

As it stands today BetaArchive has betas and abandonware. So if you got issues with any of those then we're the place to ask. If not then the members should look for questions elsewhere. Only because they are members here doesn't mean it's the proper place to ask. I like hardware development and computer graphics, but I would never ask how to create a CUDA grid here, there are far better forums for that dealing with that kind of stuff.

Changes are never easy tho, if we lay down a path to become more streamlined we will lose some members. But I think it's still for the best, because those that ARE really interested in betas (and abandonware) will stay. The ones that leave are here for the (undefined) "community". But we want active members bringing knowledge to everyone else, not members that help us fill up the "What computer do you use" threads (personally I want to get rid of all these threads). Sure, if you're into betas but also want to be a bit social then we'll do our best to give you a little bit of space to be friendly but BetaArchive shouldn't premiere these kind of topics.

And in my opinion it does today. We're focused more about how members "feel" on the forum than what BA is becoming as a whole. Some members has raised concerns that BA is becoming too bland and mainstream, and I happen to agree. Andy and I have some plans in the works to give members a lot more out of this site, but it has to be done into the right direction. Which I believe if it will but not without some difficult choices to make.

The contents of BetaArchive

Question: Why do you add so much crap and useless things to the FTP?
Easy answer: Because we have to.

But what was the real question again? Members ask me questions like "why do you collect so much old crap like xxx, no one uses it anymore" etc etc. Thing is, we're called "BetaArchive", not "OnlysomeBetaArchive". If we're set to collect betas then we have to accept ALL betas, even if it's of some obscure app or game. I try to sort out the best things first, but I also have to process a lot of oddities I've never heard about. But apparently someone has and it could hold some interest for them. And if we're made even one member happy because we keep "IBM Cobol 1.1 (beta)" then we're succeeded.

However we still have a strict line which we do not cross: I don't put up betas of homemade apps (sorry, your VB app of "My Notepad 0.1 beta" will not be upped here). Nor betas of hacks or modifications of any app, commercial or not (so no Windows hacks or Office tweaks etc). I deal with betas of commercial software, i.e software in a carton box or plastic cover, sold in a store with a price tag attached. If you want your personal stuff to be saved then create yourself a sourceforge account or put it on your own website. If you however manage to sell it in a store and want old versions archived, then contact us and we'll give it a safe home.

It also happens now (for the time being) that we collect abandonware. This basically started since BA right from the start had old DOS and Windows versions on file. We also had some very old Word, Excel and PowerPoint editions so we kept on building on that. And when I came along (me being primarily interested in old software) I thought it would be great for BA to also collect all kinds of abandonware. So I started to all my entire collection of floppy-based PC games, then I added more games for other platforms, applications and continued on adding whatever floppy-stuff I could find. I've tried to hold back on everything that is post-floppy due to storage concerns, but it's just a matter of time before I have to add that too. So don't worry if your fairly recent edition of "Half-Life" or whatever doesn't get added, I mostly archive those for later addition (PM me if you got questions regarding this). But as it is today I try to add the really old stuff first, which is floppy-based software.

That said, the same answer can be given here regarding why we add x and y: because we have to. If we're going to be a serious site archiving betas and abandonware then we need to add all of it, even the stuff you don't know about. If we only focused on Microsoft, IBM and Apple stuff then we shouldn't be named "BetaArchive", but something else. Also, adding those rare and unheard of betas is also what makes us great. It's easy to find Microsoft Windows 95 on the net anyway, but it's not that easy to find a prototype version of some obscure console game.

But even here I draw a strict line: I don't add shareware. There's tons, tons and tons of it online and during the internet boom (around the shift between Windows 3.1 and Windows 95) there were so much shareware junk created that we could fill an entire datacenter of it. Oh wait, that's been done already, it's called http://www.download.com not to mention the numerous FTP mirrors holding older shareware stuff and the so called "PD" (Public Domain) stuff. We don't bother with those. What we do bother with are all those full version retail titles you may have in your parents basement. Give us that, but keep your "123 Pic Viewer Demo version" to yourself. Naturally I add a lot of personal opinion here when I decide what gets released or not, but I try to be as objective as possible. Some stuff will never get released, some stuff may get released (when I verified it), and some stuff will always get released no matter what.

But as a whole, we have to add all the well known as well as the unknown titles to the site. Because we collect all of it, not just the ones some members are aware of - if we did that then we would need to hold a poll before every release to decide what's "worthy" or not. And we're not going to do that.

And finally, even if it's generally unrelated to the above,

What does the co-admin think of BetaArchive?

I think BetaArchive has great potential. We've survived so much, we've been online for longer than OSBA was. We've had our problems and there has been a couple of times where we thought to pull the plug and never go back, but we're still here. We've lost a few good members, we've gained many good members. What we need to do now is try to channel all that into something better. To cut away all the junk around it and keep the best parts.

I think we need to reshape BA a little bit. Make it more true to its roots, focus harder on betas (and abandonware if it's wanted, otherwise cut that out entirely into something else, perhaps a sister site?) and not drift into decay as just an another "tech" site. On this part I believe Andy and I are quite in agreement but we need to work out on how to do it without cutting too deep. We got some great stuff coming (no spoilers, don't ask) so it may also be a great opportunity to mold BA into what we think it should be. Also, you members need to be more active with the development too. I for one would greatly appreciate any input you would have of how you think BA should be. But please, give me realistic ideas and also suggestions on how to implement it. And no community-unfriendly suggestions such as "ban all noobs" etc because that isn't helpful. We're not going to become some kind of elitist forum where we only invite people we "like". Naturally from time to time Andy and I have to make uncomfortable decisions that may make some members angry, but instead of venting that into some pointless IRC channel or forum hating us for this and that be helpful in return. It's not easy running a forum and to make everyone happy, it's plain out impossible to make a decision that will have a 100% support. But we do try to do the best for the forum while at the same time trying to realize a vision we got for BetaArchive.

As a platform for launching new ideas I think BetaArchive is great. At the moment we focus mainly on betas and we're in a position now to create something no one has in the past: a vast software archive of lost and forgotten software. Remember that we live in the age of computers. We can read on slabs of stones what vikings did thousands of years ago, but no one will know what "Windows 3.1" looked like (or even that it existed) in 50 years. We are here to change that. We need to preserve software for the future. Software is both a piece of art (no software is alike) and part of our history as people living in an age created and run by computers.

This is my vision. And the primary reason I stay with BetaArchive since it lets me explore these ideas and create a foundation to make it all into reality. OSBA laid the ground works, Andy set the tone with launching and running BA and now I got the chance to be part of it.

This is why I also want BetaArchive to save abandonware. Perhaps BA itself isn't for abandonware but maybe we can use BA to launch something else dealing specifically in abandonware. I don't know really what you members think but it would be great to know. Remember however that if abandonware is to be treated outside BA (as a sister site perhaps) then all abandonware has to go. Including old DOS, Windows etc. If BetaArchive is to do betas only then it has to be betas only. It would be a lot of work dealing with betas and abw separately, so in my opinion it should be kept under the same roof, even if it's dealt within a network of "BetaArchive sites". This is just some free flying fancy ideas I got rolling around in my head so if you got any ideas let us know. BetaArchive's current state with abandonware has been more or less automatic: BA had abandonware from the start, I had a lot of abandonware to add to the site, and the ball got rolling with me and other members adding more.

Either way, we have the possibility here to make something great. It will not be easy, we may very well fail, but at least we tried. And if we succeed then it will be beneficial for all. We've already made a small mark on the net (both good and bad) but we can become so much better if all of us made an effort.

This is my rant for this time. More will come in the future .

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 3:45 am
 Pro Beta Collector

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Hmmâ€¦ I agree with most of what you have outlined hereâ€¦

I joined after I noticed how knowledgable the members seemedâ€¦

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:24 am
 1337 Beta Collector

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whistler 2416
I hope abandonware is not removed from betaarchive. Mostly concerning windows versions before windows 2000 that aren't betas. I find myself downloading those all the time :/

If abandonware is to be taken down, I'll would have to rehost the files for myself, which would really suck for my site host!

Otherwise, great thoughts on betaarchive!

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 8:22 am
 1337 Beta Collector

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I am not interested in taking down the abandonware stuff myself, but if the majority of the members do then perhaps we will. And it also takes up a lot of space and will by far be the largest section on the FTP. Which is also why I suggested that in the future abandonware could be parted into a second site, alternatively move to a less critical file host.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 1:15 pm
 1337 Beta Collector

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mrpijey wrote:
I am not interested in taking down the abandonware stuff myself, but if the majority of the members do then perhaps we will. And it also takes up a lot of space and will by far be the largest section on the FTP. Which is also why I suggested that in the future abandonware could be parted into a second site, alternatively move to a less critical file host.

That could be an idea, especially since this is Betaarchive after all.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 2:18 pm
 Pro Beta Collector

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We were actually discussing this in #nttalk last night, about how BetaArchive has lost it's focus. Off-topic discussion is nice, and I encourage it on my forums and such, but if you have a forum that was made for a *purpose*, then such off-topic discussion should be kept down a bit. I've been noticing an increasing trend in people who, after getting their 10 posts or 1 or 2 questions that are beta-related out of the way, seem to use BetaArchive as their own personal tech support. The logic behind this astounds me. There are so many more BETTER communities created specifically for getting answers about general tech stuff and tech support. If you Soundblaster 16 isn't working in Windows 7, go ask somewhere that DEALS with that sort of thing, instead of gunking up a *BETA* community with your personal tech problems.

Though there are also the questions about betas. It annoys me to no end when some person is complaining that the beta version of * OS that he just erased XP and installed on all of his main computers has gone foul, and he wants it fixed because he has all his important files on that computer and doesn't want to lose them. These people can't get it through their head that this is *BETA* software, and is, by definition, buggy and incomplete.

A slightly related thing to the past paragraph is people who keep saying Windows 8 sucks basing their opinion only on the Developer Preview. This would be like me grabbing your half-completely magnum opus lego sculpture, and then saying it sucks and you should go back to Magnum Opus v2.01. It's just dumb.

Sorry if I got a bit off-topic with my longass post.

This opinion comes with no warrante, expressed or implied.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 3:44 pm
 1337 Beta Collector

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I have to admit, I'm one of those users that people complain abut so often. I joined "just for the Windows 8 Beta" (7959 IIRC). But I stuck around because this is the kind of site I WANT to belong to. I got my s*** together and started actually contributing. I guess my point is that there IS a sense of community here, and that's not necessarily a bad thing. A lot of us are techies, but don't know much about betas. Some (myself included) are trying to learn as much as we can. Yes, there are a LOT of members who use the boards for nothing but tech support, or just try to get their 10 posts and download like mad. Most of us aren't like that, though (I hope).

I guess what I'm saying is that YES, this site should be primarily for betas, but having other forums isn't necessarily a bad thing. I would rather come to ONE site to discuss technology with people I trust (both asking questions and giving answers), than have to create a dozen new accounts all over the Web and deal with OTHER forums that are full of self-righteous jackaes and 13-year-olds who think they're hot s*** but can't actually answer a question. BetaArchive isn't like that, for the most part. It's a valuable resource, and for those of us who are interested in ALL areas of technology development, it can become a daily visit. It is for me.

/end rant

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 5:57 pm
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I agree, but I think that technological posts about old hardware, as well as News should be retained. On tech sites, only a few people (if any) are interested in the outdated hardware.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 7:23 pm
 Pro Beta Collector

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I agree. BetaArchive is slowly turning into Neowin and Sevenforums, if you get what I mean. When I joined, it was all about betas and abandonware. The most active and exciting forum was the Downloads and Offers stuff.

That said, just to make my point of view clear, I see great value in the abandonware, probably more than the betas. The only betas I value are the leaked ones for current under-development products. Others are good to have around for fun but not for keeps.

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Last edited by xpclient on Mon Nov 14, 2011 5:31 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 7:25 pm
 Amateur Beta Collector

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I was here before the first Windows 8 leak.
The forum changed a lot from that time to now...

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 8:30 pm
 1337 Beta Collector

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I have to agree. I've lost focus on betas and everything in the past few months but the more I look at them the more I've realised how awesome BA was when it was just betas and the odd bit of abandonware. I think all the offtopic forums should be restricted as to what topics can be discussed there; and the entire 'breakfast club' forum shouldn't perhaps show on the home page. And stop posting all the support topics (since when did 'beta' include helping people with obvious things like remote RDP?)!

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 10:33 pm
 Site Administrator

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I've been keeping track of this topic most of the day but never had time to post until now.

Myself and mrpijey have discussed this many times in the past, and have both wanted to restructure BetaArchive into what it was supposed to be about - betas. However due to time constraints, having a job and a life in general these things have never had any sort of priority assigned to them. Being the sole developer of the site, it's often hard to find motivation and when I do get it, it lasts very little time.

However we've been going in the wrong direction for far too long now. As it's been frequently pointed out, the forum is going too off-topic, and as mrpijey has mentioned on more than one occasion, we can't exist as "just a forum". We need to expand our range and offer something more than a place for people to talk about betas and download what they need.

We are planning on lots of changes in the future. For any of you following the Facebook feed you will know about one of them - a beta database, or knowledge base if you like. This will be much like the Wiki but controlled internally by administrators and assigned moderators/members only. This allows us to keep the contents free from personal opinions and stick to hard facts only, but also provide all of the necessary information we find for each beta. It will be a lot of work but it will be well worth it in the long term. However since it's been developed outside of the site by a friend of mine it may take some time as he has his own life to deal with too.

Beyond that we have lots of other changes planned which we will reveal to you in good time. But one of the biggest I'd like to outline is changes to the forum structure. There is too much off-topic talk and we need to reduce it because it's making the IQ count of the community look unbearably low. We have a lot of very smart people here but newcomers who are here fly-by-night ask silly questions that they could easily find the answer to had they took a short amount of time to look themselves. We want to eradicate those types of topics and keep only those that are useful. We don't want to end up as the next general knowledge help forum, we're more specialised than that.

Re-structuring to the way you get access to the FTP hasn't taken place yet for many reasons, but that will also be another change. You will be required to get more contributing posts and the criteria for getting access will probably be changed as well.

On top of that, we were planning on regular news posting by a group of members. This allows us to keep everyone up to date with recent technologies, betas, abandonware finds, etc. It's a very good way of generating interest and decent topical discussion and creates a fantastic atmosphere for people to come to. We'll keep you up to date on that development as well.

But as you can see, there is huge room for improvement and I'm sure many if not all of you will agree that's the sort of direction we need to head in, but the work involved is huge for everyone involved in the development.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 3:07 am
 1337 Beta Collector

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i dont see anything wrong with the way BA is now, as for abandonware,it should be deleted from thedtp server,it takes up too much room and bandwidth.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 4:19 am
 Amateur Beta Collector

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I totally agree with everything Andy has said. Very nice explanation.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 4:45 am
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I have to say that I joined BA because of betas, at that time I was discovering about betas and this forum seem perfect to learn more about betas. Now all you find is a lot of offtopic and support.

It's obvious that some members ask for tech support (Non beta related of course), I mean, there are a lot of new members that doesn't know a lot of computing and they are even trying to use beta software (Don't get me wrong, I was one of those) But it should be retricted to betas/abandonware, you can learn a whole lot more on small specialized blogs or other forums tan here (And even on their native language).

As for abandonware I think we are a huge repository for this, we shouldn't get rid of it. It's a big part of history and of the site too.

Finally, BA has to be a whole site with much more services, but focus more to betas/abandonware. Maybe some members will be uninterested and leave, but it's up to them.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 5:06 am
 Ex OSBA Member

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I like what's being said in this thread - Andy and mrpijey, I think that it would benefit the site greatly to move all off-topic discussion (including custom OS discussion) to a sister site, to keep BA setup as the deFacto BetaArchive I think a restructuring of the forum would be great too - maybe add tagging to posts, to make it easier to find every post on, say, build 5111, or build 5840 - I'd love to see something like this get implemented. The idea to have news posters would greatly enhance the traffic that comes in, and let the interwebs make more sense of what this community is about.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 9:08 am
 Site Administrator

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Betaluva, with that attitude we might as well delete all of the windows betas as well. They also take up too much room and bandwidth.

We want to keep everything beta and abandonware regardless of its size or how popular it is. That's the purpose of BA. We are going to need more space eventually and mrpijey has offered his server again now that he has 100Mbps upload. Since BA averages no more than 10Mbps its plenty except during leaks.

Myself and mrpijey will be having some further brainstorming sessions to discuss what people have said about this topic so far fairly soon.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 11:24 am
 1337 Beta Collector

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In addition to what Tandyman said here:

Tandyman100 wrote:
We were actually discussing this in #nttalk last night, about how BetaArchive has lost it's focus. Off-topic discussion is nice, and I encourage it on my forums and such, but if you have a forum that was made for a *purpose*, then such off-topic discussion should be kept down a bit. I've been noticing an increasing trend in people who, after getting their 10 posts or 1 or 2 questions that are beta-related out of the way, seem to use BetaArchive as their own personal tech support. The logic behind this astounds me. There are so many more BETTER communities created specifically for getting answers about general tech stuff and tech support. If you Soundblaster 16 isn't working in Windows 7, go ask somewhere that DEALS with that sort of thing, instead of gunking up a *BETA* community with your personal tech problems.

The problem is that most people who have good knowledge have also little patience to other people who ask them about technical problems related to any beta OS/software, hence on finding many people are asking them too much they decide to leave the community. And not leaving the community for small period, but for long time, if not forever like KenOath and some members you know more than I do. So knowledgable people are going, noob people are coming. What do you think the result would be???

Ok, there's no community without any problems. But in my opinion you need more strict rules that forces people to be good with other people and not leads to community destroying. I remember Rioter was behind everyone and in his time in moderating the forum I didn't notice the noobs and stupid questions, or rules breaking.

Also those people who are leaving should realise that their knowledge is important to other people, and people are not all the same, unless people who have their own life and can't be in the forum all the time as they were (I am one of them and I don't know alot as other people do. When I joined the community I know nothing about what even word Beta means).

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 5:19 pm
 Amateur Beta Collector

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I thought I also want to share my thoughts on this, because I represent a group of users of which you normally don't hear too much - just compare the number of posts to the date I joined BA. So clearly I'm neither a spammer, nor a leecher and probably not even a too big noob.

I really like BA - but as a de-facto-outsider I must confess that I haven't noticed too many changes recently. I'd agree though that it would make sense to move non-beta abandonware to a seperate site if you take the name BA into consideration.

Actually I caught myself asking (among other things) some general technical questions here, because I really value people's knowledge here and the forum users are very friendly. I think it would be some kind of loss if all non-beta related discussions would be forbidden - why not leave such things to an Off-Topic forum?

Besides I think in such technical matters it's often hard to draw a clear line between beta and general tech discussions. Just think about someone asking on which machine he would be best able to run Whistler #24** - is that really a pure beta question? And if so: Will it remain to be a pure beta discussion, after some responses are made and then it drifts into discussions, whether Whistler runs better on a Pentium IV than on an AMD Athlon?
I agree that rules forbidding "off-topic" discussions in certain forums can certainly be tightened, but there will always be the need for some leeway.

I'm looking forward to seeing how things develop here. Thanks for all your good work. I don't doubt, BA will become even better.

Best regards
Jens

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 7:23 pm
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Jens,
I think the general concern right now is that there is very little beta conversation at all.
We would be restructuring the forums to make it clear that we are looking for Beta based topics in all areas of the forum except the off-topic one. Currently the forum structure seems to encourage more non-beta discussions, and we have just a single section that explicitly states that it is for Beta Discussion.
Asking what hardware would work best with a certain build is within the Beta based discussion, as it would be a discussion concerning a certain build or range of builds. Where the line might be drawn is when people start asking if X hardware is good to play X game that was released last month, or X game that will be released next week. Those sorts of things are covered by the developers and will generally be frowned upon when we restructure. We will however encourage people to ask and discuss what hardware would be best to try a Beta or Alpha version of a game or piece of software, as that is still within a beta discussion.
Also, we aren't forbidding the off-topic discussion altogether, but condensing it and expanding the Beta and Abandonware sides of the site and promoting them as the main reason for this site instead of just a place to ask any sort of watercooler question.

Another example of things that we would frown upon would be people asking questions about how to avoid X or Y restriction at school, or how to write X or Y piece of code for their website or homework. We'd be open to people posting how to get around X or Y restriction in a Beta or Alpha piece of software, and we'd be fine with people asking how to code for Phodeo or other technologies for beta\alpha products and software, but we're not some hacker community and we're not your tutor for class.

-- Just my opinion though. I'm just a mod and currently haven't seen what's going to be rolled out.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 8:09 pm
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Although the abondonware isn't beta software, it could really be usefull.
BETAarchive is meant to collect betas yes, but some people (including me) are also looking for some old version of software and want the stable released version instead of possible buggy beta versions.
For those people BA is a great place cause it's one of the only places (if not the only) where you find so many old software.
So maybe BA isn't the best place for abondonwhere, there has to be some place where those programs are stored. It would be ok to move them to somewhere else, but it would be disappointing to see all that old glory just disappearing from the web.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 11:31 pm
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To be completely honest, BetaArchive is a great site for betas, I have to admit, even though I run a competing beta site. My site's collection and even my private collection is nowhere near the size of BetaArchive's collection (in size at least, I usually collect files some may consider "junk")... Now, the abandonware, I believe should stay on BetaArchive - I know that abandonware softwares aren't betas, and you'd think would be a deviation from BETAarchive's name-implied goal, but it's not (at least in my opinion). BetaArchive is a, basically, continuation of OSBetaArchive, where OS mean OPERATING SYSTEM. And then you could get into the argument about application, blah blah, but honestly, BetaArchive should keep the abandoware because its probably the second largest (third actually) abandonware achive that I've seen.

If the abandonware takes up too much space, simply move it to a slower server.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 1:42 am
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Well, it seems there are various opinions on how BA should be, but one thing that we seem to be on fairly common grounds are that BA needs to be more betas and less all the fussy-cuddly stuff. Which is also where I want BA to go. Andy and I will have to discuss and design a plan on how to move forward, and we will take all your opinions into account.

We will need more help from all the moderators to properly sort and delete information. Lately I've seen major slip-ups when it comes to removing inappropriate and useless content - the forum is full of threads posted in the wrong forums and threads that are completely useless for this forum. Starting next week I will (after a chat with Andy) start to clean up the forum by removing all nonsense topics, lock down all irrelevant threads and start the work with bringing back BA into shape.

Offtopic Comment
motherboardlove wrote:
...BetaArchive should keep the abandoware because its probably the second largest (third actually) abandonware achive that I've seen.

Out of personal interest, what other large abandonware archives do you have online? I am always on the lookout for new sources.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 2:50 pm
 1337 Beta Collector

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Well, the forum is what keeps this community running. Most of the topics are offtopic discussions. If we cut those out, we'd probably turn out like AbandoNET, one post per week.

As for dropping abandonware: sure you can get some of it elsewhere, but not all. So another possible solution would be to have separate servers for abandonware and betas. If we are to shift focus to primarely betas, then the server for betas would have better performance than the abandonware one. It could also be aranged that from some point on, we would only accept beta uploads.

Just my 50 cents.

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 Post subject: Re: The "Why", "What" and "Where" of BetaArchive        Posted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 10:27 pm
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DeFacto wrote:
Well, the forum is what keeps this community running. Most of the topics are offtopic discussions. If we cut those out, we'd probably turn out like AbandoNET, one post per week.

As for dropping abandonware: sure you can get some of it elsewhere, but not all. So another possible solution would be to have separate servers for abandonware and betas. If we are to shift focus to primarely betas, then the server for betas would have better performance than the abandonware one. It could also be aranged that from some point on, we would only accept beta uploads.

Just my 50 cents.

It's a bit sad that you believe we'll become a one post a day forum if we get rid of all the nonsense and irrelevant posts on this forum. First of all, we're quite a bit larger than AbandoNET ever was and we also have plenty of information and resources here, good deal more than AbandoNET ever had. And you should also realize that if we streamlined ourselves a bit we would attract people that are interested in betas and not only those that come here to leech and discuss nonsense. We simply need to become more hardcore when it comes to betas.

But perhaps you rather want quantity than quality then? More junk posts as long as they are posted and active?

Either way, BA will grow regardless what we do, but we need to decide in what way it should grow.

As for separate servers Andy and I are already discussing about co-location of the servers and splitting the contents between them. All in good time, and we intend to do it in such a way that it won't be noticable by the users.

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