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tenjuna

dTrades History...

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NOTE: I am going to add more to this, regarding the server upgrade project, the PostAbout/c2oc project, my withdrawal from D2 and the site because of health issues, the move back to dTrades, and finally the sale of the site, its death, and today's rebirth. I have a lot of pics to add and I am sure I still have old vent recordings. It's just a matter of finding everything and eventually this post is going to be huge lol. Anyway more to come...
 
Hey everyone, welcome to dTrades!
 
If you are new to the site, I want to take this opportunity to welcome you and to introduce myself, and to tell you about the site. It occurred to me that I never told the whole story about how the site got to this point, and since I am in nostalgia mode here we go...

 
In The Beginning 2004-2006...

 

dTrades started in May of 2004, as an alternative to the relatively draconian forums at Battle.net and D2JSP. At the time, I was helping with the coding and running of d2trading.com with Brooklyn, which was a great site as well. But eventually, I made the choice to accept the offer to join the team here at dTrades in August 2004. World of Warcraft was released that Fall, which saw the entirety of the founding team leave Diablo 2 for that game. This left me in the awkward position of taking over a site I had just joined. I wasn't really sure I wanted to take over the site at the time, as I had 2 small children and a wife to take care of...in the end I decided to push on and see what happened.
 
On November 25th, 2004, the infamous Black Thanksgiving database crash occurred. Those of you who were around back then will remember having to recreate your user accounts and posts. On my end it was a great learning experience, but horrific. I must have had hundreds of people wishing death upon me lol. In short, it was me being dumb is why it occurred. I was attempting to clean the database while prepping for a site upgrade, and instead, I dumped the contents...including the backup. I still shudder at how I felt when I realized what I did. I was able to scrounge some partial backups and we all moved on, but at first, I thought I was going to have to shut down. Fun times...

 

The original site can be seen at http://www.happyfunbear.com/. (This site's code is old enough that it doesn't always work in today's web server environment. The site may be up or down at any given time but I am always working to keep it going...and don't bother posting there, nobody uses that site.)

 
I cannot even begin to express how much fun the first few years were for me. There were so many people involved in the day to day running and flow of the site it will be impossible for me to list them all here. You all know who you are, whether it was the Vent chats, the Diablo runs, the DClone pops, the Friday Night Free For Alls, you all made a really crappy part of my real life so much easier to tolerate. Special shout out to Jeet though, that guy made my life both fun and hellish at the same time lol.
 
I do want to make one specific mention though...it was only with the incredible generosity of a few that this site was able to function as long as it has. I want to thank all of the Gold Members for their generosity over the years. There were times that it was a clutch donation of $100 or $50 or $20 that saved my bacon, and I really very much appreciate it. I especially want to thank Enzo, who donated to the site more than anyone by far. <3 I also want to thank the various staff members that have come and gone over the years. Especially the Admins, who took over for things when I got sick, and the subsequent time I was in Nursing School. Without you guys, the site would have been done in 2009.
 
"The 12 Days of D-Mas" that I ran during the Holidays in 2006 ended up being the last very big event that I did for the site, and in fact, I only made it to Day 7 before my personal life became too problematic to continue large scale projects. This would be a trend that would continue for the next few years.
 
Circa Winter 2006:
 
20645091_10155650765588656_5396661253056
 
 
2007-2008...

 
By 2007 the site had already started to decline, but this is the period of time where video gaming, in general, became a business for me. Eventually, it became a full-time job for me that I ran out of my basement for a couple of years. At one point I had 16 computers running D2, and the Four Horsemen servers running this site. I also was running a CounterStrike server rental site, a World of Warcraft gold farming ring, and trying to branch out into Guild Wars, and a few other games.
 
It was with this in mind that I started the c2oc project, and migrated dTrades over to PostAbout. The intent was to have a central hub for all of your gaming, regardless of platform or game title. This was a very ambitious project, which unfortunately was not managed well by myself due to the sheer amount of work it needed and was problematic almost from the start. In hindsight, more people were needed to code and do the backend stuff on all of the sites I was working on...I was simply spread way too thin. I wish I had spent more time concentrating on dTrades and upgrading hardware, rather than trying to branch out to other games.

 

If you want to see what PostAbout looked like, you can see it at http://www.amerfs.com/ (This site's code is old enough that it doesn't always work in today's web server environment. The site may be up or down at any given time but I am always working to keep it going...and don't bother posting there, nobody uses that site.) 
 
By the beginning of 2008, the servers we had been running on since Day 1 were starting to die, and you cannot imagine what it took for me to keep those things running. It seemed like I was fixing one thing or another at least once a week. I was able to keep things limping along, until finally in September 2008 I decided to upgrade them. All new servers were put in during October-December 2008, eventually leading to some much-needed horsepower. Unfortunately with all of the large scale outages, database crashes, and general slowness by then the damage had already been done with a lot of people having left for greener pastures. Put this together with the general decline of D2 itself (not to mention the huge problems at home), this led me to decide to quit the game and the site in 2009.
 
-----
 
2007-2008, after EnzoD2 got big enough to buy me a house:
 
20645088_10155650747033656_5053626862461

20708148_10155650762058656_6880050109811
 
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The Four Horsemen, before/during/after the upgrade project October 2008:

 

Before:
servers.gif


During: 
during.jpg


After: 
after.jpg
 
 
2009-2011...

 
2009 through 2011 were among the worst times of my life. I went through a cancer scare, then split with my wife and had a major breakdown. After losing everything, I was pretty much done with this site, and in fact, it wasn't until Summer 2011 that I showed back up and tried to pick up the pieces. By then the site had gone into major decline, and it was only the hardest of the hardcore that was still coming on a (surprisingly) daily basis.

As I was going through a bit of a rebirth myself, in September 2011 I decided to migrate the site back to dTrades and re-create the original Mactastica skin, which you are seeing now. I cannot relate to you how much this helped me personally. Though since I had just started Nursing School about the same time, this turned out to be very ill timing. I was not prepared for the sheer amount of time and effort it would take to get through school, and after a few months, I had to put dTrades away (I thought) for good.
 
 
2012-2016...

 
I had had several people interested in buying the site over the years, and at the beginning of 2012, I found a buyer that gave favorable terms. By this time Nursing School had consumed my life, and I needed the funds to cover that effort. What was supposed to happen was that the site would be integrated into another site, as some other D2 sites had been before this one. For whatever reason, that never happened...so by May 2012, it became apparent that I had inadvertently killed the site for a few bucks. I cannot even begin to describe how bad I felt about the whole situation, but there was nothing I could do. However, it turns out that the people who bought all of my domains never bothered to renew them, and I had previously (and cleverly I might add) set up the domains to be automatically repurchased if they ever expired. So by 2013, I had reacquired most of the domains. Unfortunately, all of the PostAbout domains were claimed elsewhere.
 
After finding out that the site was never going to be migrated, I did try to grab hold of things again. By this time the server hardware, some of which I had been using since 1997, was almost completely at the end of useful life. Enzo generously offered to host the site at his web host, so I moved everything over, and threw in an IPB upgrade to boot, just to keep things current. Unfortunately that IPB version turned out to have a serious vulnerability and was almost immediately compromised, which led to the site being made completely unusable. I did not have the time or inclination to try and fix it, so the decision was made to shut it down completely. Things were so crazy for me personally that by the time I was able to go in and grab all of the files and databases, the web host had already erased all of the files. That is why we are missing data from May 2012 to February 2013.
 
Since then I have been in Nursing School pretty much non-stop, and have been working as a Nurse since 2014. But, I always had this place in the back of my mind and had the thought that if somehow I could bring it back I would.
 
 
Today...


In May 2016, I was cleaning out my hard drives of the 25+ years worth of files that have collected, and I found an old list of bookmarks from some of my favorite dTrades posts. This led me to some serious nostalgia, which meant I had to fire up the site in order to see anything. Since I had just turned up an awesome server to feed my Plex addiction a few weeks prior, I decided to try to start a LAMP server, which is something I had never tried before and had been suggested to me many times to replace the Windows servers I had always used (and had problems with). Amazingly, it has been everything I have always wanted in a server and then some.
 
Once I was able to find all the files and fix the only version of the database I could find (May 2012), the site is working and here we are. I cannot even begin to tell you how bad the state of the files and database were. I pulled this copy off an old hard drive out of one of The Four Horseman, which promptly died shortly after finishing the copy. I found that a fitting tribute, as even though The Four Horseman truly were workhorses and they lasted far longer than they really had any right to, the hardware sure did die a lot:lol:. I only have pictures of them now, I gave away everything I had back in 2014 after getting my Nursing License as a way to start fresh with a new life and a new way of doing things.

 

It was sheer luck and a lot of hours to get things to the state you see now. I was able to find intact versions of the old sites on an old CD backup I found in a box, and from those, I was able to bring back a good portion of data that I had (either accidentally or stupidly) deleted over the years. I was able to get an even newer version of Mactastica done, an upgrade to IPB4 accomplished, and have been slowly adding features to try and get the site back to its 2005 peak.

 

That's really what the point of all of this is...getting the site back to a point where I loved it most, but usable in today's server environment with some cool new features.

 

I have a running worklist that will be posted in Announcements, and once I am totally done with Nursing School I will be able to start playing video games again, and will definitely be focusing more time on this site.

 

Memories, baby!
 
----
 
Plexie, the server you are viewing the site from right now...this server is at least 8 times faster than The Four Horsemen put together:
 
13237791_10154203704188656_4088828930175

 

 

Future...


Who knows? It's been more than a year since I first posted this and things have progressed rather nicely. D2: Remastered is in the works, and I expect 2018 to be a very interesting year, especially since I will be done with Nursing School (finally, after 7 years). I have every intention of playing D2 again, and I have some thoughts on how to make the site better. Maybe people will come back once Remastered is released, that would be pretty cool.

 

I have decided to keep the site going as long as I am able, which since I am working with current generation brand new hardware should be for a long time. I have no doubt that I will be the only one on it most of the time, but call it a labor of love. <3
 
I would love to see and hear from people...I know a lot of you used this site when you were teenagers, so I am looking forward to talking about your own memories and what you've been up to.
 
:wub:

 

Cain

 

10892544_10153003106188656_1568339658_o.

 

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its pretty nostalgic to see this site again. by the time i came around here it was far past its glory days. but i still had a lot of good memories here.

pretty cool to read up on what happened before my time.

current users of diablo 2 will know me as DST

I eventually got to work on other projects that filled the hole left by dtrades/pa

lots of people tried to replicate it. but it never held the same popularity you did. even back in 2010/11 when the site was on the decline.

most of the people i worked with on them ended up not being able to deal with the time it required. they'd eventually bow out, even when

i offered to keep it going they got so burnt out on it that the rights would never be transferred over. i cant say i blame them and in all honesty

i never had the time to dedicate to building something like that from scratch. i've got a few more years of school to go still.

in 2010 i started using this site a few months before i turned 20. kind of makes me feel like i haven't grown up any by getting on to check your domains every few months ha.

been going to college for years. went from being a kid who worked construction to a guy who decided he wanted to get a PhD in physics.

i met some really amazing people through this site. and i'm actually still friends with a lot of them. they were even there for me when i was struggling with balancing school and work and we would goof off on the few nights i had to unwind. i dont think i can really express how grateful i am about being able to make friends like that.

thanks for getting the site back up ^_^ even if it doesnt last for whatever reason it was nice to take a trip down memory lane

kind of funny though. the backup feels ancient. but its not that old honestly. it just never hit me how i never came onto the d2 trading sites until so late in the game..

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Lol thanks for adding your memories.

 

The backup IS ancient, no doubt about that. I did try multiple times to find something more current, but even then it would still be a couple of years old. Most of the files I had were corrupted, so frankly it was luck that I was able to get something stable going at all. The Posts table in the database alone took me most of a day to unravel.

 

It's funny that you bring up how other people tried to start up a site, thinking how "easy" it was. I think I just made it look really easy. In fact, it's really freaking hard, and sometimes I look back and wonder how I managed to keep things going as long as I did. Even more amazing is that it's been 12 YEARS since I started this. It's amazing and a bummer how fast time goes.

 

I am not delusional enough to think that this will ever go anywhere again, but I am going to keep it going for as long as I am able to keep paying the bills.

 

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I looked if I had a backup from the webhost you switched to and sadly, I do not... :(. I wonder if they keep backups of sites that drop off their user list (doubtful, but it might be worth checking).

Also of note, in your hiatus, the_futon_god (tony) made an appearance. As far as I could tell, it was actually him. He didn't stick around long, but I did have a couple chats with him.

Further notes:
Duped (Mac), duckfluffed (Don), Rike (Ryan), and a few others (Gary, etc) have been known to show up on PoE now and again.

If you have a gaming itch, give PoE another shot. It was a pretty good game when you first tried it and, IMO, has gotten nothing but better. fwiw, new challenge league (fresh start for everyone) starts June 3rd.

Don and I made some "improvements" to the layout and features of the site when it was on the 3rd party host (youtube inline vidoes, forum restructure, etc). Getting those back would be kind of cool.

Other than that, great trip down nostalgia lane...

EDIT: Glad you've finally seen the light of Linux ;)

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I looked if I had a backup from the webhost you switched to and sadly, I do not... :(. I wonder if they keep backups of sites that drop off their user list (doubtful, but it might be worth checking).

Also of note, in your hiatus, the_futon_god (tony) made an appearance. As far as I could tell, it was actually him. He didn't stick around long, but I did have a couple chats with him.

Further notes:

Duped (Mac), duckfluffed (Don), Rike (Ryan), and a few others (Gary, etc) have been known to show up on PoE now and again.

If you have a gaming itch, give PoE another shot. It was a pretty good game when you first tried it and, IMO, has gotten nothing but better. fwiw, new challenge league (fresh start for everyone) starts June 3rd.

Don and I made some "improvements" to the layout and features of the site when it was on the 3rd party host (youtube inline vidoes, forum restructure, etc). Getting those back would be kind of cool.

Other than that, great trip down nostalgia lane...

EDIT: Glad you've finally seen the light of Linux ;)

I actually fired up PoE and played for a bit last weekend, but got bored quickly as I could not remember what I was doing lol. I am going to PM my phone number to you...if you are playing at all this weekend I would happily join in.

I have exhausted all avenues for a more current backup, so what you see is what it is. It's ok though, I have no illusions that anyone is going to frequent the site anymore. This is more a labor of love for me and getting things to the point I had always wanted to the last 7 years, but never really had the chance. Since there is no hurry or pressure to get it done, I can actually enjoy it now.

With that said, if you could give me some ideas on what changes were made I would happily do them, or you still have Site Admin so fire away.

And I always knew I needed to go to Linux, but looking back frankly it was a miracle the site ran as long as it did. There was just no way to do it without costing me resources I simply did not have. In retrospect more people beyond me should have been heavily involved with that part of the site, but as I stated earlier sites like these only work because someone is passionate about them. When that passion dies, so does the site.

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honestly there is still a demand for sites such as yours. it may not be big such as 09~ but you'd atleast have a consistent user base

i've never played POE i heard it was good though, d3 seasons arent that bad to play up until around 500-600 paragon. then it gets pretty damn boring.

saber is still around and corey isnt to far either.

And I always knew I needed to go to Linux, but looking back frankly it was a miracle the site ran as long as it did. There was just no way to do it without costing me resources I simply did not have. In retrospect more people beyond me should have been heavily involved with that part of the site, but as I stated earlier sites like these only work because someone is passionate about them. When that passion dies, so does the site.

and 100% on that. its why d2haa isnt up anymore haha.

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The plan here is to get the site "fixed" as much as possible both structurally as well as going back through and cleaning up old posts; plus the very long laundry list of problems, dating back to 2006 in some cases. Once that is done, and everything is as good as I can make it, I will send out an e-mail blast to everyone. After that it will likely be mostly nostalgia, but if somehow people end up back here to congregate again I would love it.

This is no longer a money-making venture for me, so I have no agenda other than being happy to work on this again. I am working towards a Doctorate in Nursing for the next 3 years, and this is a much-needed hobby from now on.

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Change of plans, now that I have things more or less stable, I have been finding myself very much enjoying working on the site again. So I am now working towards building version 4 of the site, progress for which can be seen at http://www.caintest.com.

As of this post I have a designer working on the Mactastica skin, and once that is done I will migrate the database and THEN work on cleaning up posts and forum structure. I have a lot of ideas for the new site, for instance yesterday I figured out how to get name glows working again(!) :o

As far as I am concerned, version 3 of the site needs to be part of the site's history now, it's been 5 years since I have actively worked on it, and it would be a waste of a lot of time trying to fix it the way I had envisioned, Much better to start a new chapter and move forward.

Once the migration is completed, I will send out an email blast and see if anyone wants to come back. I am also working on getting duping going again so I can make some dclone walks happen w00t lol.

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I see quite a few familiar faces here!  Has it really been 8 years?!  I remember the whole d2trading site then the start of dtrades.  I bought a computer case from Tenjuna back in 2006 when i started up mud2shop.com.  

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On 2/12/2017 at 0:02 PM, The_Futon_God said:

There might be some history missing there. :D

 

Well yeah, lots actually...so fill in the blanks instead of being a drive-by poster lol

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On 2/17/2017 at 10:52 PM, The_Futon_God said:

The story is lost in time...all we are is dust in the wind. 

DUUUUUST IN THE WIND! ALL WE ARRRREEE IS DUST IN THE WEEEEEEIND!

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On 5/13/2016 at 10:25 AM, tenjuna said:

cropped out for scrolling reasons~Mewi

 

Tenj I didn't go through the whole thing, but did you mention that time when the RAID died?

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On 1/19/2017 at 9:46 PM, martin887 said:

I see quite a few familiar faces here!  Has it really been 8 years?!  I remember the whole d2trading site then the start of dtrades.  I bought a computer case from Tenjuna back in 2006 when i started up mud2shop.com.  

 

Holy crap Nostalgia. I forgot we ever even ran mud2shop together. Whats up man.

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On 7/7/2017 at 4:49 PM, Pioy said:

 

Holy crap Nostalgia. I forgot we ever even ran mud2shop together. Whats up man.

 

Hey man! it feels like it's been forever.  A lot has happened over the last 11 years! I keep debating on playing again.  

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Yeah there will be a D2: Remastered, probably next year. They are hiring people right now to work on it. I graduate in April finally so I intend to play.

 

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i come back once in a while to read this site.

 

just realized that the archive of postabout has all my PM's that I've received/sent since like 2006. is there any way to export them all? a lot of memories there... spent like an hour reading over them. remember when you did that postabout fg buyback? how the hell did you manage that with the funds you had?

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5 hours ago, AL said:

i come back once in a while to read this site.

 

just realized that the archive of postabout has all my PM's that I've received/sent since like 2006. is there any way to export them all? a lot of memories there... spent like an hour reading over them. remember when you did that postabout fg buyback? how the hell did you manage that with the funds you had?

XiP messed that up for us :(

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I actually imported all of the messages last summer, they should be in your inbox, but probably not as easy to find. Otherwise, I could export them to a SQL file, but I don't know how much good that will do you. Maybe I could do an excel spreadsheet if you really wanted it.

 

I did the buyback using funds I was making from EnzoD2. It wasn't a lot at the time but I did what I could as people wanted the cash.

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On 8/8/2017 at 7:59 PM, tenjuna said:

I actually imported all of the messages last summer, they should be in your inbox, but probably not as easy to find. Otherwise, I could export them to a SQL file, but I don't know how much good that will do you. Maybe I could do an excel spreadsheet if you really wanted it.

 

I did the buyback using funds I was making from EnzoD2. It wasn't a lot at the time but I did what I could as people wanted the cash.

 

When I checked the PA site, there was an option to be emailed an excel or an html file. An Excel spreadsheet would be fantastic. I know there was like 2000+ msgs stored in my inbox dating back to like 2006 or something haha.

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On 8/11/2017 at 0:21 AM, AL said:

 

When I checked the PA site, there was an option to be emailed an excel or an html file. An Excel spreadsheet would be fantastic. I know there was like 2000+ msgs stored in my inbox dating back to like 2006 or something haha.

 

You should be able to log into the PA site and export your messages, though it is tedious. I have been playing around with an export from the database, and it's messy. I doubt it would do you any good. 

 

Actually now that I think about it, I could try to hack that export feature out of PA and see if I can make it work that way.

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AL, just so you know how much of a pain in the ass this was it took me 1.5 hours to figure out this SQL query:

SELECT mt.*,msg.msg_post,m.members_display_name, m.id,mm.members_display_name as to_name FROM ibf_message_topics mt LEFT JOIN ibf_message_text msg ON ( msg.msg_id=mt.mt_msg_id ) LEFT JOIN ibf_members m ON ( m.id=mt.mt_from_id ) LEFT JOIN ibf_members mm ON ( mm.id=mt.mt_to_id ) WHERE mt.mt_owner_id=17401

But since this isn't the first time someone requested this I am going to add it as a feature on everyone's control panel, so thanks :banana:

 

It's not pretty but you should be able to figure out what you are looking at. If you look at the third value in each row, that is UNIX time so you would have to convert it to see the actual date and time such as the first message in the list has 1196785924 which is Tue, 04 Dec 2007 16:32:04 GMT (which you can do at http://www.onlineconversion.com/unix_time.htm)

 

Like I said, it's not pretty. :crazy: 

 

I probably need to massage this but I can't spend any more time on it for now. I will add it to the work list so eventually, I will get to it.

 

Excel file is coming in a PM.

 

 

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