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hDot Image and File Hosting

The ad box in the upper right has been shrunk so it doesn't break the page on lower resolutions, a couple other ads have been moved around to maximize revenue, and some semi-working stylesheet things are now more-working. As always let me know if I broke something horribly.

I think that's mostly done. Everything's templated away and safe to use on multiple pages, all the image listings are updated (including most viewed today and all-time) with both the old tabular view and the new gallery view, file listings are only updated for the most downloaded pages (I'll probably get to the main file listing tomorrow). All of these pages are now (or will be, in the case of the master file list) under the same templates, so a lot of that weirdness as you went from pages styled ever-so-slightly differently should be gone soon.

So yeah look over there on the left side of hDot, all the old image tables have been replaced with somewhat shiny new thumbnails for easier at-a-glance browsing of new/popular files. The functionality is written such that I can call it with a single line of code for any size of table (the thumbnails are fixed at 160x120) so expect to see more of this around the site soon.

I'm not sure exactly what to do with the file listing, though.

File downloads have been changed, there's an added layer of security now and it sets up a future feature of allowing multiple files with the same name and/or multiple versions of the same file. All files should now "download" in the browser instead of displaying for certain filetypes (depending on your settings, i.e. mp3s will download now instead of loading in QuickTime if you have it installed).

The biggest change you'll notice is that anyone clicking on a file download link (the ones that look like /h/dl/###) from an external site now have a page pop up rather than just the download. This lets me show a few more ads (and offset the costs of downloads) so I'll be adjusting the bandwidth/credit system soon to account for this.

The update process may have disrupted some downloads between 2am-5am EDT today, but things are settled now.

Godaddy is moving all xerol.org sites to a new server in the next couple of days. There may be some brief downtime or broken items in this period. You may need to clear your DNS cache to get to the new server as well.

Today I'm implementing some of the long-planned features of hDot. First off you'll notice the vastly changed front page. This is the first step to allowing paid accounts.

The "my profile" block on the right now shows your daily bandwidth usage. All current accounts start with a 100MB daily quota, which goes up by 100KB every time someone views a page on the account. Hotlinked images and all file downloads will use up the quota. This is to bring more traffic into the site. Basically you'll have two options if you're a high-bandwidth user - Use hotlinked thumbnails to bring traffic in, or purchase additional quota.

The quota increase is permanent, and after a couple of weeks will be reduced to an amount based on your account level. Basically if you bring a lot of traffic into the site one time, you'll have a better bandwidth cushion for life.

Once all these features are implemented I'll be rolling out a paypal system for purchasing storage and bandwidth. Read on for an overview of available plans.

I've added a new feature to the sidebar, daily toplists. These reset at whatever midnight server time is until I can figure out a way to do a rolling 24 hour block without taking up 4 billion rows of database space.

Note: The links at the top of the sections point to pages I haven't written yet. I'm working on a revamped listing system which will integrate searches, clean URLs, and filtering. This may take a few days.

I'm temporarily disabling news comments due to a spam leak. Should get them back up by the next time I post news.

I've got some minor backend changes to make that may require the site to be down for some periods of time over the next 48 hours. I'm starting with a backup of everything so worst case scenario anything you upload over the weekend may disappear.

As you can probably tell, the site looks a little different now. I'm finishing up refactoring the code, and putting in some minor design changes to respond to criticism and suggestions I've received over the last few months. The header bar is half the height, and I've adjusted the ad box accordingly (I should be able to bring in a bit more revenue now that there's another slot).

I've added topic-specific RSS feeds to the site. These are accessible by clicking on a topic icon (see upper-right of any story) and can be used to filter by specific news. This is especially helpful for people who want to follow the work I'm doing with MAGFest video. That feed can be found here.

Complete rundown of feeds:

I'll preface this by saying that no existing links should break. That being said, some existing links may break, albeit unintentionally.

I've laid down the groundwork for creating multiple and custom thumbnails for uploaded images, but it'll be a short while before that's actually in. I had to modify the databases which may have brought some thumbnails down for a short time.

I think I'm finally satisfied with a color scheme. If anyone has any suggestions let me know.

Since I've finally finished with that, I can make some new fitting icons/images to go around the site. Also I will be changing the file link images and thumbnail colors soon. Instead of having a single choice you'll get to choose when you upload, and fairly soon I want to allow multiple thumbnail sizes and adding thumbnails to images already uploaded. Soon, not now. Now I sleep.

I've added some navigational icons to the upper left. Still working out some CSS issues (namely why I can't get the background color to change on hover) and will probably tweak the icons a little when I have more time. Also I know music.xerol.org is empty/broken, I'm still working on that.

I've changed around the session code on the site a bit. If you have login problems or issues anywhere else on the site please contact me. Info is at the bottom of every page.

I've made some significant layout and CSS changes, and I'm working on moving entirely away from a table-based layout soon.

These provide a shorter way to link to files (in BBCode at least, the HTML has some extra attributes to keep it compliant) and a much better presentation on whatever site you're linking files on.

I'm moving a lot of the non-hosting related material to the main page, http://xerol.org/. The only posted items that will appear on hdot now are those from the "news" and "site news" categories.

Yeah this sure is "news". Actually I just wanted to remark on the relative difficulty of making an icon look good at 16x16. Obviously fewer and more contrasting colors are better, but using Inkscape it's hard to avoid the temptation to use a lot of gradients. But anyway, to the right here is the icon in large format (since I was shrinking it down I didn't really care about lining up the outline exactly) and the SVG.

I've added some direct download links to the recent/popular files blocks on the main page. I'll be adding these to the other file lists soon and also making a custom icon (this one is temporary).

A massive game of Reversi that anyone can play. Click on a green tile to make a move.
I know the login is broken, use the login page instead for now. It's got to do with Acroblast (which is also broken, but for a different reason - it's not finished) and will be back to normal once the game is running.
I have clean URLs working for images and files (basically only in f.php and i.php, which now show up/link as /file and /img respectively), and news (viewstory.php and topics.php, /news and /topic(s)). There is some basic functionality in /user (formerly viewprofile.php, which still needs some cleanup). I have a lot of tweaking to do before profile/my account pages work properly, but the old links still work (and probably always will) so I left them in for now.
Due to some complicated problems with mod_rewrite and making clean/trackable URLs for images and files, I've decided to ditch the subdomain. It will still be there, and it will still work, but everyone is encouraged to use http://xerol.org/h from now on. All on-site URLs will be converted to the new clean format, although the old ones will continue to work indefinitely.
I've added Digg and Facebook sharing links to news stories (as you can see with the camera post) and also a stats page, which isn't complete yet, but I have to wait for enough data to be generated to make sure the other graphs will work.

I've finally got around to making master file/image lists (i.php and f.php) as well as top image/file lists (popimgs.php and popfiles.php). The latter two URLs are subject to change. You can also access them by clicking on the appropriate header on the main page.

If you noticed, the site is ugly. I'm holding a contest to get some new graphics.

What I need:

  • Upper left logo replacement (must use same general design/colors) - 99x99px
  • Thumbnailer icon (see sidebar on main page)
  • Link icon (see bottom of some of the most viewed images pages)
  • New icons for audio, video, zip/rar, and text
  • Replacements for the topic icons (see topics.php)
  • Maybe a new background image (but same color/etc. again)

Winner gets a 100MB account (or 100MB added on to their existing account).

I'm going to have some time to code this weekend. Most of that's going into ThaSauce but if anyone has any suggestions/requests for hdot please leave a comment.

This is a milestone. Not that it actually means anything but it's an excuse to post something when I haven't done so for quite some time.

I've modified the image thumbnailer to do a few things differently. The blank space around the edge of the shrunk image is now transparent; there's now a border around the entire thumbnail; the text at the bottom now has the filesize and is centered.

I've added some new referral tracking features to the site for images and files. They appear at the bottom of each image/file page after the comments. This should be useful if you want to know who's listening to your songs and such.

I've also cleaned up some user accounts that were both not activated and had suspicious email addresses. All accounts have zero access from creation for security purposes, so you have to email me if you want to be able to use your account. From here on any accounts created will be deleted after one week if I don't receive an email with your account information and why I should give you space.

There was a bit of a problem with viewing files on accounts with no images uploaded. That's fixed now, and I'm going away for the weekend so if anything else is broken, OH WELL.

New features added:

  • Icon replaces [ Thumb ] text in all image listings
  • Filesizes now displayed in KB, MB, as needed
  • User/profile listings now separated by page
  • Minor styling/coloring changes

I've made some slight color changes to the stylesheets and the logo. I've also added a captcha (groan if you want) but now anyone can comment.

I added thumbnail links to the front page and profile pages for images that have them, added HTML code for images, and increased the font size on the code blocks.
I accidentally forked the codebase and overwrote the live code with an older version when putting in comments, so I'm just going to have to rewrite the embed code. Just not now, it's late.
You can now comment on all images and files. Every existing file has comments enabled by default, but soon you'll be able to choose whether or not comments can be posted on a file or image, along with a few more options.
I've recently started twiddling with Inkscape, so I'm making some new site graphics with it. First up is the logo in the upper-left, which is already in, after that I'll be doing new backgrounds and topic images, plus some fancy buttons.
Files with certain extentions (swf, mp3, mid) now are embedded on the page when you view a file. More will come when ready.
I've just added a few new features to the image code. You can now opt to not have a thumbnail, or can pick from 4 different thumbnail sizes.

If you have any issues with the new thumbnails, leave a comment and I'll look into it.
I guess I need a "games" topic. I'll add it later.
Anyway, TubeRacer, my latest game project. Get it!
So we hit 200 files, finally. Not really news, but I just wanted to test out the updated news posting system, for bugs and stuff.
At least I think it is. Try it out.

So, there's still some things that need to be done, but otherwise the site's pretty much up and running for the primary functions (hosting files and images).

What I still need to get done:

  • Allow users to edit/delete their own files
  • Put in an admin control panel for easier usage on my part
  • Work on the news/comments section for easier use.

But, generally, it's good to go now. And this is also a news test post, by the way.

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Contact: xerol@xerol.org - Put 'hdot' in subject line

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