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Updated: 26 June 2003

Message Of The Day Chebucto News Archive

Backlogged mail delivered!

[Photo: Tech volunteers hard at work]   More than 100,000 email messages to Chebucto users that had been delayed due to a weekend service disruption have now been delivered. The huge volume of mail has been causing slow service as the mail server has been pushed to its limit. Chebucto Technical Committee members have been working hard, sometimes around the clock, to speed up mail delivery. They had set priority to newer messages while setting older mail to be processed as fast as the system would allow and have been manually sorting through the mail queue to remove large numbers of duplicate spam messages and the message bounces from mis-addressed spam. The Chebucto mail server has also been physically reconfigured to enable it to work at its peak efficiency.

The problem started on Saturday morning, June 21, with the total failure of a key hard drive on Chebucto's main server, which caused all Chebucto services except for the Chebucto Plus dialup service to go down. The two year old hard drive, still under its original warranty, was replaced with a newer hard drive by early Saturday afternoon but restoring the data to it from the nightly tape backups took another twenty four hours. In the meantime, mail to Chebucto users and mailing lists continued to build up.

The delivery of this ever-growing backlog of mail soon became a problem of its own; in a usual day Chebucto delivers about 24,000 messages and for each day that mail delivery was slowed up, more and more mail would accumulate making mail delivery even slower. For the last three days, Technical Committee members have been using a variety of approaches to get and keep mail moving. The high system loads caused by the massive amounts of mail being processed had been causing time-outs and delays in sending and receiving mail through home computer mail programs, notably Outlook Express, as well as difficulty logging into the Chebucto text service.

All Chebucto Plus and Chebucto text account services are believed to be working normally now.

Chebucto Newspaper Column Give-aways!

[Photo: New Chebucto Mousepad] Chebucto's Mousepad newspaper column, written by Chebucto Internal Committee Chair Mark Alberstat with occasional help from some fellow Chebucto volunteers, is being well received and a third free mousepad for a column idea has been sent out. The column is published every second week in the Sunday Chronicle Herald. The Mousepad focuses on computers and internet technologies and how they can be used by people for an almost infinite variety of purposes. People can write in questions to the column and if they are used they will get a cool new Chebucto Community Net mousepad. Email questions to the Mousepad at

Chebucto mousepads may be purchased from the Chebucto Office for $10 each or mailed out for $15 each. Contact to order.

Alert: Fake Windows updates

We wish to advise our users to beware of email messages claiming to be from Microsoft containing supposed Windows Updates. These messages are fake and the included web address or program is a virus. Microsoft does not email users about Windows Updates.

Chebucto advises all users of the Windows Operating System to keep updated with the latest security updates from Microsoft. There are major security holes in the Microsoft Windows Operating System, Microsoft's Internet Explorer web browser and Microsoft's Outlook Express email program which can be fixed with software patches from Microsoft's authentic Windows Update site.

Unpatched versions of these Microsoft products are vulnerable to many viruses, worms, trojan programs and exploits where hostile users can get access to your computer and files. Users are advised to keep current with Service Packs and Critical Updates for Microsoft products.

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 1,511,000 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, producing more than double the results of both the government of Nova Scotia and the vast resources of EdNet, the schools network combined. Current stats here. Chebucto users have sent in more than 21,000 results, representing more than 43 years of CPU time that would otherwise have been wasted.

SETI is about to enter a new phase, targetting the top 200 candidate signals for direct observation using the full resources of the world's largest radio telescope at Arecibo, Puerto Rico.

Outlook user email advisory

After the continuing 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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