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NNTP Bridge Users: Please Read! RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • We have recently been experiencing some stability issues in the forums related to the NNTP Bridge and the web service it uses. For the time being the web service has been disabled until we can further investigate the issues and develop solutions. There is no need to report errors from the bridge until this issue is resolved. I will reply to this thread daily with status updates until the issue is resolved or further action is defined. Thanks for your patience.
    Community Forums Program Manager
    Monday, March 14, 2011 5:35 AM
    Answerer

All replies

  • We spent time today doing more analysis of the problem and looking at ways to re enable the web service. We will continue this through tomorrow. I hope to report back tomorrow with an ETA for turning this back on. I understand this is important. Thanks for everyone's patience, we are working on it.
    Community Forums Program Manager
    Tuesday, March 15, 2011 5:48 AM
    Answerer
  • Would be nice that this information would be published in other "Forum groups" too, like the German and maybe other Non-English forums...
    Martin Richter -- MVP for VC++ [Germany] -- http://blog.m-ri.de
    Tuesday, March 15, 2011 7:15 AM
  • It would be nice for the future when you add a feature to the bridge service to inform the user about such facts. Something like "Service temporarily unavailable for maintenance reasons". Iv'e spent quite some time to figure out that it was not my local installation which caused the malfunction, maybe other users too, thanks. BTW, this is my first posting via the HTTP service at all.
    Tuesday, March 15, 2011 9:36 AM
  • It would be nice for the future when you add a feature to the bridge service to inform the user about such facts. Something like "Service temporarily unavailable for maintenance reasons". Iv'e spent quite some time to figure out that it was not my local installation which caused the malfunction, maybe other users too, thanks. BTW, this is my first posting via the HTTP service at all.

    +1 for this, I too have spent a lot of time looking to see if it was my installation or other local issues causing the problem.  I try to avoid the web/HTTP based systems if possible.
    Tuesday, March 15, 2011 10:03 AM
  • ...yes and I only found the reason because I wanted to check for a newer version! Grrr...

    Please post every update here! :-) I enabled "Alert me" so I will be informed when the issues is solved ...

    Tuesday, March 15, 2011 10:43 AM
  • Perhaps the bridge could report a meaningful error message to the News app when the web service is unavailable (like now).  The error I got  in Windows Live Mail 2011 from the Community Bridge when I tried to update a newsgroup is:

    ---

    503 program fault - command not performed System.ServiceModel.FaultException`1[[System.ServiceModel.ExceptionDetail, System.ServiceModel, Version=3.0.0.0, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=b77a5c561934e089]]: A network-related or instance-specific error occurred while establishing a connection to SQL Server. The server was not found or was not accessible. Verify that the instance name is correct and that SQL Server is configured to allow remote connection

    ---

    If it said "Could not access web service, please check the forum status at http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/reportabug/threads to see if it a server side problem" it would be far better.

    I imagine this would require work on the bridges to generate this message when the web service could not be connected to.

    Thanks,
    David

     


    Efficiently read and post to forums with newsreaders: http://communitybridge.codeplex.com
    Tuesday, March 15, 2011 4:57 PM
  • It would be nice for the future when you add a feature to the bridge service to inform the user about such facts. Something like "Service temporarily unavailable for maintenance reasons". Iv'e spent quite some time to figure out that it was not my local installation which caused the malfunction, maybe other users too, thanks. BTW, this is my first posting via the HTTP service at all.

    +1 for this, I too have spent a lot of time looking to see if it was my installation or other local issues causing the problem.  I try to avoid the web/HTTP based systems if possible.
    And another + for alerts and +much more for avoidng web/http based systems!
    xxxx
    Tuesday, March 15, 2011 10:12 PM
  • One thing that really honks me off about this NNTP Bridge situation is that you completely cut us off from using NNTP on the "Answers" pages altogether.  A supposed "upgrade" of the web-based software rendered that whole group of discussion forums inaccessible -- apparently by design -- to those of us who rely on NNTP.

    I have been a long-time participant in some of these groups.  I relied on an offline reader (Forte Agent) to capture discussions because I frequently only have time to participate in these discussions when I'm not able to work directly online.  I was then able to read the messages, compose my replies, save whatever I wanted to keep for future reference, and then transmit my replies or new postings when a live connection was once again available. Unfortunately, I'm no longer able to do this. 

    You've completely missed the idea of a "community forum" by cutting off NNTP access.  Since this effectively cuts me off at the knees, I'm only planning to participate when I personally have a question, and only go online to the forums when I look for my answers.

    Congratulations, Microsoft.  You've really learned how to do justice to the phrase, "customer service."

    PS: I've been actively doing online support since back when you were probably in diapers!  Remember CompuServe?

    [Edited to correct the name of the forum group from "Social" to "Answers"]

    Tuesday, March 15, 2011 10:26 PM
  • One thing that really honks me off about this NNTP Bridge situation is that you completely cut us off from using NNTP on the "Social" pages altogether.  A supposed "upgrade" of the web-based software rendered that whole group of discussion forums inaccessible -- apparently by design -- to those of us who rely on NNTP.

    I have been a long-time participant in some of these groups.  I relied on an offline reader (Forte Agent) to capture discussions because I frequently only have time to participate in these discussions when I'm not able to work directly online.  I was then able to read the messages, compose my replies, save whatever I wanted to keep for future reference, and then transmit my replies or new postings when a live connection was once again available. Unfortunately, I'm no longer able to do this. 

    You've completely missed the idea of a "community forum" by cutting off NNTP access.  Since this effectively cuts me off at the knees, I'm only planning to participate when I personally have a question, and only go online to the forums when I look for my answers.

    Congratulations, Microsoft.  You've really learned how to do justice to the phrase, "customer service."

    //Steve//

    PS: I've been actively doing online support since back when you were probably in diapers!  Remember CompuServe?

     


    -- //Steve//


    I agree 100% with your statements, and have been hoping that NNTP access to the Answers forums will be reinstated due to popular demand. I won't hold my breath, though. I may look good *in* blue, but probably not too good *totally* blue :-(

    --

    SC Tom

    P.S. Yep, I remember. . .

     

    Tuesday, March 15, 2011 10:43 PM
  • I agree 100% with your statements, and have been hoping that NNTP access to the Answers forums will be reinstated due to popular demand. I won't hold my breath, though. I may look good *in* blue, but probably not too good *totally* blue :-(


    I used to look good in blue, but that was my old Air Force uniform. :)  Now my idea of "dress blues" is a clean pair of jeans!

    I wonder if Microsoft will even care about the supposed "very few" (their words) of us who relied on NNTP to participate in their "Community" forums....


    -- //Steve//
    Tuesday, March 15, 2011 10:49 PM
  • Thanks for all the suggestions on alerts etc. I spec'd out all these fancy client alert scenarios but they unfortunately didn't make the cut when it came to bugs and other work. But yes, I agree that it would be great to build that stuff in.

    To clarify, we did not plan to turn the service off...we had to and didn't really have a choice, there were some serious back end issues. The team and I are working pretty hard to turn it back on as soon as we can. We are pretty close and I'll have another update tomorrow. And realize this isn't the answers forums, the place to give feedback over there is http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/feedback/forum?tab=all . 

    Really appreciate everyone's understanding and patience.

     


    Community Forums Program Manager
    Wednesday, March 16, 2011 1:40 AM
    Answerer
  • And realize this isn't the answers forums, the place to give feedback over there is http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/feedback/forum?tab=all . 

    Thanks for the clarification. 

    Please note for future reference that the argument still applies, just in case you were thinking about "upgrading" your software on these groups to the same piece of garbage that the Answers forums are now using.


    -- //Steve//
    Wednesday, March 16, 2011 4:13 AM
  • Thanks for the update Brent.

     

     


    Bob Comer - Microsoft MVP Virtual Machine
    Wednesday, March 16, 2011 12:34 PM
  • Wednesday, March 16, 2011 3:14 PM
  • The Microsoft MSDN and Technet groups used to be on a "real" NNTP server. We now have this kludge with a web based forum and "NNTP Bridge". In my view it was a step backwards. I was told it was because of "stability issues" with NNTP. I'm registered blind and need pure text communication channels, but I also need the facilities of real NNTP for off-line, searching, archiving, mark as read etc.

    Even if they want a web based forum instead of NNTP, I don't understand why we need a "bridge". It's not difficult to interface a web forum with NNTP. You can still have moderated posting and authentication. I seem to remember this was available in Linux forum software called "DBabble" over ten years ago!

    I pay for MSDN and Technet, but the managed newsgroups service has degraded since moving from NNTP to Web. We no longer get the highly detailed and advanced technical discussions; the answers has been dumbed down, along with the documentation (anyone seen VS2010 docs?), even the documentation help system has been dumbed down!

     

    Wednesday, March 16, 2011 7:21 PM
  • I totally agree and add that throwing fault messages that reveal internal details is against any security best practice.

    I want to warn MS that this could reveal a bad security problem/review.


    Raffaele Rialdi [MVP] My articles and videos: http://www.iamraf.net Italian blog: http://blogs.ugidotnet.org/raffaele
    Wednesday, March 16, 2011 7:41 PM
  • Sorry for a me too request for update when this issue is resolved, hopefully I'll get the alert.

    Wednesday, March 16, 2011 11:15 PM
  • I have been an MVP for 15 consecutive years.  That's a statement very few people can make, and I hope it gives me some credibility.  Never, until this year, did I have the feeling that Microsoft was actively trying to make it hard to be an MVP.

    It is difficult for me to think of a worse mechanism for the exchange of technical information than a web forum.  It forces ME to waste time doing the repetitive and tedious tracking work that a computer should be doing.  Anyone who values their time is going to prefer a newsreader interface.

    I find it inconceivable that any company would have OKed the rollout of a new system without ever having tried one of the popular access mechanisms, or that the rollout would have been allowed to STAY up while it was still inaccessible.

    Come on.  It can't be that hard.  It worked last week.


    Tim Roberts, DDK MVP Providenza & Boekelheide, Inc.
    Thursday, March 17, 2011 3:13 AM
  • I have locked this thread so it's only used for the bridge service status.  

    The service problem still exists and that is not yet solved. Our back end recently started experiencing some significant issues that we are working on. Priority one is to ensure the web facing app is safely working. Once we get that under control we will tackle how to get the bridge service back on. We started looking at the service and I have a plan for turning it back on, but we have gotten side tracked recently by some other issues for the forums themselves. We also have a minor monthly update going out tomorrow on the web side. Do tomorrow we'll be getting that out while working on these back end issues. Once that settles down we can then re focus on the bridge service.

    Thanks for everyone's patience.


    Community Forums Program Manager
    Thursday, March 17, 2011 5:48 AM
    Answerer
  • Daily update.

    We have been experiencing some back end issues, as I have explained earlier. The good news is that we think we have a path to resolve those. We should know more tomorrow. Once that is resolved we'll look at turning the bridge service on. I'll update everyone again tomorrow.


    Community Forums Program Manager
    Friday, March 18, 2011 3:57 AM
    Answerer
  • Well, things are not looking as promising as they did last Friday. We have made some progress but the problem remains, still some back end issues we need to resolve before we can safely re enable the bridge. We are working on this continually.

    Thanks for everyone's help replying to users, helping them understand the situation, not only for the bridge but also the points, my threads, activities and email alerts. It helps me out a lot so I can focus on the issues we are dealing with on the system.

    I'll have another update tomorrow.


    Community Forums Program Manager
    Tuesday, March 22, 2011 3:16 AM
    Answerer
  • We think we made some progress today, resolving one of the big problems contributing to our system health. Around 2pm or so we have enabled the job to keep the 'my threads' up to date. We also started the services to start catching up the point calculations, profile activites and the email alerts, so expect a minor wave of forum notifications to be sent overnight.

    Tomorrow we plan to keep an eye on things and decide when to re activate the NNTP bridge service. We also have a few other system level adjustments we are working on. I should have an update tomorrow on when we expect to get the NNTP bridge enabled again.


    Community Forums Program Manager
    Wednesday, March 23, 2011 2:48 AM
    Answerer
  • Things looked pretty good on the system today but we have another fix we'll likey get out tomorrow sometime. Then we will start looking at the bridge, running some tests to see how much that is going to negatively impact the system. I should have at least an ETA for re enabling the service tomorrow. Thanks for everyone's patience.
    Community Forums Program Manager
    Thursday, March 24, 2011 3:54 AM
    Answerer
  • We made a lot of progress ever the past two days on the system stability front. Some may have noticed that we enabled the bridge web service a couple of hours ago. We will send a broader announcement tomorrow after some further analysis in the monring.


    Community Forums Program Manager
    Friday, March 25, 2011 4:01 AM
    Answerer
  • The bridge service has been re enabled, all system issues that were forcing us to turn off the service should now be behind us. Thanks for everyone's patience on this while we resolved the problems.
    Community Forums Program Manager
    Friday, March 25, 2011 8:50 PM
    Answerer
  • GREAT JOB MANY THANKS
    Saturday, March 26, 2011 1:32 AM
  • Thank you VERY much.  It is much appreciated.  Now if only you could convince the folks running the Answers group ...

     

    -- Ron


    Ron
    Saturday, March 26, 2011 11:44 AM
  • Am 25.03.2011 schrieb Brent Serbus [ADMIN_MSFT]:

    We made a lot of progress ever the past two days on the system stability front. Some may have noticed that we enabled the bridge web service a couple of hours ago. We will send a broader announcement tomorrow after some further analysis in the monring.

    Thank you very much for the work. ;)

    Servus
    Winfried


    Connect2WSUS: http://www.grurili.de/tools/Connect2WSUS.exe
    GPO's: http://www.gruppenrichtlinien.de
    Community Forums NNTP Bridge: http://communitybridge.codeplex.com/
    Reg2xml:  http://www.reg2xml.com - Registry Export File Converter

    Saturday, March 26, 2011 12:26 PM
  • Thank you VERY much.  It is much appreciated.  Now if only you could convince the folks running the Answers group ...

    Amen to that!


    -- //Steve//
    Saturday, March 26, 2011 5:55 PM
  • Thanks very much for your work on this, and for keeping us informed (which seems to be an uncommon practice in general these days).

    It also looks like whatever has been done has made using the nntp bridge somewhat faster than it had been; on all of the forums that I'm following with the Community Bridge (from CodePlex), it seems that new messages are being brought in faster, even though I know my connection is having problems and thus is effectively slower.

     


    -- Jeff Zeitlin
    Saturday, March 26, 2011 9:59 PM
  • Yeah, some of the issues we addressed last week were system wide, so likely the bridge service will also benefit from some of our back end fixes. Thanks for the kind words, it was a crazy couple of weeks.
    Community Forums Program Manager
    Sunday, March 27, 2011 12:44 AM
    Answerer
  • A user is still reporting 800ccc0f error when connecting to the bridge.

    The following is signature, not part of post
    Please mark the post answered your question as the answer, and mark other helpful posts as helpful, so they will appear differently to other users who are visiting your thread for the same problem.
    Visual C++ MVP
    Monday, March 28, 2011 4:23 PM
  • Has this user enabled the "NNTP bridge" in his/her profile?


    Jochen Kalmbach (MVP VC++)
    Monday, March 28, 2011 6:04 PM
  • That's an old NNTP user so I assume it is already set.

    The following is signature, not part of post
    Please mark the post answered your question as the answer, and mark other helpful posts as helpful, so they will appear differently to other users who are visiting your thread for the same problem.
    Visual C++ MVP
    Monday, March 28, 2011 8:24 PM
  • I also noticed the quicker response using Community Bridge (from CodePlex), was talking to others trying to figure out if it was that we had been out of it for a couple of weeks or it actual did improve.

    I'm going with the "improved" side of this.

    Thanks for the work put into this and getting us back online.

    Tuesday, March 29, 2011 12:15 AM
  • The NNTP Bridge is is not functioning today.

    There are no new messages for the past 3 days ago and the newsgroup list during subscribing will not refresh.

     

    Monday, May 9, 2011 4:28 PM
  • Seems to be working fine for me. I have numerous new messages from today, and whenever I refresh, any new messages are showing up.

    --

    SC Tom

     

    Monday, May 9, 2011 4:33 PM
  • Thanks for the feedback and good news about the Bridge.   I'll uninstall mine, reinstall and try again.

     

    Monday, May 9, 2011 4:40 PM