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New Host and New Benefit | Other Developments
[Jan. 14] CPCUG Members attending the General Meeting on January 9th were told about the free email box with massive storage, that will be given to each CPCUG member in good standing when the cpcug.org domain changes hosts on February 1, 2006. At that time, cpcug.org mail server names will change and a new cpcug.org website should appear. All this thanks to important contributions by CPCUG volunteers, responding to the disaster created when our old ISP failed on December 18. Instead of shifting the old arrangment to a new ISP, the Board elected to split email and online services, which CPCUG will now control, from internet access (whether dialup or broadband) which members will continue to buy from third parties (as described further in an earlier advisory, see below).
This new, free benefit will include web-access to manage that email from anywhere, anti-virus and anti-spam filtering, automatic forwarding to any other email account, and other advanced features. After January, each CPCUG member will have an email box with a user name in the form of [firstname].[lastname]@cpcug.org, ready for use with a temporary password that should be sent by non-electronic mail before the end of the month. Tell the CPCUG Office immediately if your non-email address needs to be updated. Members who already have accounts @cpcug.org will also have the option of replacing their default username with their prior username. (All mail received under the old username will be stored at least until March, 2006. Today's @cpcug.org customers must tell CPCUG no later than February if they will take longer to join these two startup accounts.)
Email software on user computers will just require changes to the two server addresses for those who currently use @cpcug.org, or an added profile for CPCUG members who adding their new email account for the first time. Shortly a step-by-step online guide to doing this should be available online, either here or with a link from here.
Since the new hosting may not allow us to offer affordable shell accounts, CPCUG is working on alternatives. Certainly the automatic forwarding feature will allow you to forward email to any other email address with a shell account, e.g. Millkern should be asked about transferring existing shell accounts, if you wish to continue with our old ISP. Shell accounts from other providers might also prove suitable.
Dennis Courtney, the CPCUG Past President, is the chief technician for this effort, to be assisted by a new volunteer Webmaster, Steve Chafe. Thanks gents! Despite a bad cold, Dennis described other features of this new hosting arrangements to the membership: vastly improved, rapid membership communication through these email accounts, IMAP as well as POP3 email services, subdomains for improved website architecture, and a choice of portals instead of just Mambo alone. LISTSERV software cannot be installed, but there are 5 or 6 alternatives that are offered. (The portal software and list management tool have not been chosen as of this writing.) The hosting service selected is wwww.alphaone-tech.com, and the preconfigured package with the large amount of online storage we require will cost about $75/month overall.
Dennis aims to organize a low cost option for personal web pages, perhaps using a discount given CPCUG's domain hosting, but the old arrangement does not appear to be viable without charge (on account of storage cost). One of our old ISP's problems was that it failed to charge enough for real costs like extended online storage & its backup, something that CPCUG is committed to avoid. There is no technical reason that the old URLs to personal web pages cannot be reused, but each personal web-page subscriber may need to supply the content (if Millkern is unable to restore it). Watch this page for more on how this will work, as the arrangements are resolved.
As of January 9th there has been no more communication on the restoration of files that Millkern may be attempting:
Another Q&A about Internet Services will be presented at the beginning of the February, 2006, General Meeting, expected to be at Washington Gas, Springfield VA, on February 13 at 7:00 P.M. Until then watch this page, and send questions to MIX-L, as described below.
Those who want to automatically forward their current @cpcug.org email from their shell account should be able to do so as follows:
filename = .forwardcontents = email@example.com
Make sure you do not use a DOS/Windows editor like notepad or wordpad, to create the file. pico (available in all CPCUG shell accounts) works fine. So type "pico .forward" (without the quotes) and then type the email address you wish your email to be forwarded to and exit and save. Done.
The subsitute for MIX-L is now running online, at FreeLists.Org with the continuing support of J. Casey and David Chessler. To subscribe, visit the signup page at http://www.freelists.org/list/mix-l then wait for a confirming email.
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