8archive Announcements - Don't call it a comeback

2016-11-30

Welcome back. We have been offline for quite a bit and we figured we owed you guys an explanation.

Archiving 8chan, the 2nd largest image board, is not an easy task. Not only is there over 1000 boards to check, some boards are rarely updated and others are updated quite often. Plus boards can choose to opt in or opt of the archiving process. And with other recent imageboard archives shutting down, it shows how hard it is to run and maintain an ever growing archive properly.

In mid September 2015, 8archive experienced some serious problems with it's original software. It prevented us from properly moderating the 8archive. After the original software authors couldn't figure out how to fix the problem we were at a loss what to do. The original 8archive creator had moved on and we didn't have the manpower to nuke it and rebuild it. The plan was to put things in stasis until InfinityNext could introduce it's own archiver. We couldn't even put the old content online because of the moderation issue.

However at this same time, another open source imageboard software was just started to be developed by the Sapphire called FutaBilly. After hearing about the 8archive problems, Sapphire quickly demonstrated how FutaBilly could be used for 8archive including archiving the multiple files that 8chan posts offer. This offered a fresh modern more efficient engine to replace the aging broken older software. While this new software could be tailored to 8archive's specific requirements it is very new, missing several key peices.

FutaBilly was nevered meant to be an archive software, so some major changes had to take place. Upon hearing 8archive's interest, Sapphire made some serious structural changes to the software including image deduplication and a more compact thread storage format. Then we developed a list of requirements to launch:

  • list 100s of boards
  • handle several thousand pages inside each board
  • search millions of post quickly
  • support the older archive URLs

So over the last couple years, Sapphire been developing FutaBilly to meet these requirements. Development hasn't been as quick as we'd like due to the previously mentioned archive implosion however it was all donated at no cost to 8archive. Sapphire even made the software to import the old archive posts into the new system.

Since the older archiver was offline while Sapphire was upgrading FutaBilly, they did their best to keep the new archiver running. So we have most of the posts but they're in varying states of quality. As FutaBilly had a ton of bugs they had to work out while posts were expiring. We did our best to archive as much as we can but there are bunch of broken posts and media due to this process, a lack resources and a better way forward.

While there are some new cool features, there a plenty of bugs and problems that we're working out. Please help us out by properly reporting issues in detail including URLs, browser versions, and anything else that is relevant. It is an open source project, so feel free to hack on it and improve it. Things are bad now, however things will get better as we move forward

So we're finally entering a some-what public-beta. Most of the UI issues are fixed. There are a couple data shuffling/caching bugs, so the live 8chan doesn't quite match the 8archive but we're aware and working on it.

Otherwise we did encounter a disk space issue in August 2016 where the archiver was offline for a month or two while we redid the disk system. We may have some gaps, otherwise everything else should be here.

Remember we spent a lot of time focusing on dealing with having more posts than 8chan has and making it fast. Performance was key to making this a success.

Please be patient, as this is a free service run by volunteers, ran to preserve all our memories.

Feedback/Ideas for improvements are welcome. And we HIGHLY RECOMMEND you read the FAQs