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Updated: 24 July 2002

56 K equipment has arrived!

[Photo: New Chebucto Plus 56 K server] New 56 K digital phone equipment purchased last week has arrived in the Chebucto Office. Technical Committee member Johnathan Thibodeau is shown here examining the new equipment, which will allow up to 96 users at a time to connect to the Chebucto Plus dialup service at 56 K speed, the maximum speed possible over a dialup connection. The 16 kg (36 lb) rack-mountable Ascend 6096 has 96 digital 56 K modems, kept cool by eight high-velocity fans.

Chebucto Plus 56 K logo The plan is to thoroughly test the new equipment first, making sure that everything works as advertised. This testing will likely take several weeks before converting over Chebucto Plus from the current 33.6 K to full 56 K service. All speed user modems will be able to connect to the new Chebucto modems, but only 56 K user modems will get the full benefit of the higher speed. The Chebucto text service will not be affected by the upgrade.

New proxy server speeds web surfing (finally)

After a shaky start, the Chebucto proxy server is now online and fully functioning for all Chebucto users. The proxy server, which speeds connections to the web by keeping local copies of requested files, caused major disruptions to Chebucto Plus user connections for the first couple of days it was online. These were eventually traced back to a bad network card and some minor configuration issues with the new server. Approximately 40% of requested files from the internet are currently being served from the local proxy server.

Spam/virus filtering server soon ready

The new Chebucto spam and virus-filtering server is nearing the final stages of testing. Using Spam Assassin for spam mail filtering and F-Prot for virus mail filtering, the new server should dramatically decrease rubbish mail sent to Chebucto users. Plans are to send out an email to all users and give them the option of having unfiltered mail, having their spam and viruses shunted to a special folder for their later inspection or having their spam and viruses deleted outright.

Setup of the new spam filtering server was delayed by proxy server setup problems, which kept Technical Committee members busy most of last week. The new spam filtering server should be put in place soon.

Chebucto Community Café Opens

Chebucto Community Cafi Chebucto Community Net has opened a new café, a virtual coffee-house where people can post their opinions on a variety of topics. The forum is open to all, Chebucto users and the general public. The café is online at and can also be reached by Chebucto text users with the g)o cafe shortcut (type gcafe then hit Enter or Return).

There are ten forum topics to start, and people can suggest new topics. The topics range from Harbour Cleanup to Crime & Justice, with a focus on Metro Halifax issues. Chebucto Internal Committee Chair Mark Rushton was the driving force behind the new forum, which he hopes can address an unfulfilled community need to communicate and collaborate in an easily accessible way.

Low-Cost Custom Web Addresses Now Available

Chebucto users, groups and businesses can now have low cost custom website and email addresses. For $20 a year or less, full details here, users can have a custom Chebucto Sub-Domain name.

Non-Profit groups on Chebucto can have the website address, where name would be replaced by the organization or group name. Small businesses on Chebucto can customize the website address; individuals and families can customize with their family name; and Chebucto-based information resources can customize the web address

Email aliases to registered Chebucto sub-domain names are also available for $10 per year per alias. These email aliases can redirect mail to any email account.

Membership Reward Plan continues

Chebucto is pleased to announce a new Membership Reward Plan open to all current Chebucto members. Full Details here.

For each new Sustaining or Family Sustaining member who tells us they were referred to us by you, we'll give you a $20 credit good towards your next Sustaining or Family Sustaining membership. "Word of mouth" advertising can now get you free internet: five referrals are good for a free Sustaining membership, including a year of our famous Chebucto Plus full graphical access.

Chebucto Users still tops in *.NS.CA SETI processing

SETI, the Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence, has been processing their radio telescope data with home users' computers for years now. Using an innovative screensaver which runs whenever the user computer is not in use, SETI has had more than 1,063,000 years of high quality computer processor time donated to it.

Of all the computer domains ending in the letters NS.CA, denoting Nova Scotia, now ranks number one, beating out both the government of Nova Scotia and the vast resources of EdNet, the schools network. Current stats here. Chebucto users have sent in more than 15,000 results, representing more than 32 years of CPU time that would otherwise have been wasted.

Outlook user email advisory

After the recent wave of viruses specifically targetting users of Microsoft Outlook and Outlook Express email programs, and the constant stream of user complaints about randomly altered program settings and difficulty using the program, the Chebucto Community Net Office and the Chebucto Technical Committee recommend our users do not use either Outlook or Outlook Express as their email program.

Windows Users can find a selection of email programs available for download here and Macintosh users can find a selection of email programs here.



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