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Fix the forum script please

Japan With Kids - Forums: General Discussions: Fix the forum script please
By Gerald Vogt on Thursday, February 23, 2006 - 11:18 am:

Could someone please fix the script for posting messages? People frequently post their messages a couple of times because they get an error message when they post and thus try to post again and again until they realize that actually it worked the first time and the error message was bogus...

By Admin on Thursday, February 23, 2006 - 8:21 pm:

I'm sorry, but I don't know how to. In fact, I haven't been able to duplicate it myself. Does anyone know how to and want to volunteer some labor to the site?

By Admin on Thursday, February 23, 2006 - 8:28 pm:

I'm sorry, but I don't know how to. In fact, I haven't been able to duplicate it myself. Does anyone know how to and want to volunteer some labor to the site?

By Jellund on Thursday, February 23, 2006 - 8:29 pm:

My husband may be able to help, can anyone tell me what the error message says?

By Admin on Thursday, February 23, 2006 - 8:34 pm:

I'm sorry, but I don't know how to. In fact, I haven't been able to duplicate it myself. Does anyone know how to and want to volunteer some labor to the site?

By Gerald Vogt on Thursday, February 23, 2006 - 8:59 pm:

Well it seems as if you have been able to duplicate it yourself now... ;-) I can help you, too, if you like. During my last post, it just took very long until the response came but eventually, after a short coffee break, the correct confirmation screen came up. The forum software is quite old. Maybe you should consider upgrading to the current version...

By Gerald Vogt on Thursday, February 23, 2006 - 9:06 pm:

Well it seems as if you have been able to duplicate it yourself now... ;-) I can help you, too, if you like. During my last post, it just took very long until the response came but eventually, after a short coffee break, the correct confirmation screen came up. The forum software is quite old. Maybe you should consider upgrading to the current version...

By Gerald Vogt on Thursday, February 23, 2006 - 9:16 pm:

It seems as if the posting script nevers sends back an answer, i.e. the browser waits endlessly for an answer. For the last post, Firefox retried the connection automatically after 7 minutes. The second time the connection to the server was closed after 5 minutes...

By Admin on Thursday, February 23, 2006 - 9:19 pm:

#&*@(^%(&|#^%(^& OK. Except I didn't get the error message though.

I bought the newest version from auction proceeds (about 2 years ago) and then together with Karen's husband spent hours and hours and hours trying to install it. Then finally talked to the Discus people and they said they could do it (for $50 an hour or something like that), so it was a money issue again. Sorry, I just haven't got it, especially right now in February.

By Gerald Vogt on Thursday, February 23, 2006 - 9:55 pm:

Well you only get an error message when the browser gives up on the connection and reports it back. But the behaviour of the browser and of Windows seems to vary between each attempt that's why sometimes it silently retries, sometimes it just shows an empty screen and sometimes the browser shows an error message.

As it is commercial software I don't know if it is so easy to fix something. Maybe there is an update available for the version you have installed which fixes this problem.

I guess the problem did not appear in the beginning so I suppose the reason for it should be something else that has changed on the server in the meantime that causes the problems. Was there a web server update in the last months??

By Cornelia on Saturday, February 25, 2006 - 8:21 pm:

Dear Gerald (and everyone else),
Yes, there was a big change on 13 December (our time in Japan) about 12 hours before I left on holiday.
The reason so few people noticed that the discussions were completely OFF was because it was the holidays. The site was transferred to a new machine at the hosting company, NETNATION in Vancouver, Canada. There have been a number of improvements in my hosting contract as a result. The software upgrades have caused a few glitches. And it took about two weeks to get most of the cgi scripts working properly. I think even the ip number for the site changed. The duplicate, triplicate posting problems appeared shortly after the discussions were again operable.
The software is the commercial version, and to see who makes it you can just click the forum software button above.
The commercial version offers a number of advantages over the free version. There are some things that are not ideal in the design, but on the whole I think it has worked very well.
I did buy an update, but apparently it was a couple of generations younger and the upgrading process was too hard for yours truly to complete, safely, so I gave up. I do not know if successful installation of the upgrade would have a made a difference in the problem we are experiencing now. But probably... yes.

By Gerald Vogt on Sunday, February 26, 2006 - 8:16 am:

Dear Cornelia,

it is hard to tell whether a update will fix the problem or not. From the forum software link I gathered that the version you use is pretty old. Thus I thought an update may be good to do. It is hard to tell why the update failed without seeing it and the error messages you have got. As you had to modify some cgis after the server move it may well be that this causes also the update to fail as it does not fully recognize all the installed cgis anymore. But this, too, is hard to tell without seeing it.

The alternative would be to move to some other free discussion board software like phpbb which I use personally. But it depends on what you have in your server contract because you will need php and mysql for phpbb.

So, I suppose discussion the software installation/update in this place is probably quite hard. I can help you with it if you like. Feel free to email me...

By Cathy Edwards on Sunday, February 26, 2006 - 8:49 pm:

My very scientific approach to the double post is this....
After clicking the "Post this Message" button I go to my own email in Outlook Express, do a "send and receive" and if the message I have just posted appears in my Inbox I assume it must have gone through.
I then click on the link to the discussion at the bottom of my new message and it is always there.
As I said, not scientific, but it works every time - no double posts!

By Nancy on Sunday, February 26, 2006 - 8:57 pm:

Cathy, I am glad to see that I am not the only one with a practical solution to avoid double posting. J After I click the post message button, I go to the navigation bar on the left and click New Posts and I can see if my post is there. So far it has been working!

By Admin on Monday, February 27, 2006 - 11:16 am:

Dear Gerald, Cathy, Nancy and everyone else,
Cathy and Nancy, you have figured out very similar solutions to what I have been doing (with my many posts as either Admin or Cornelia). Good for you.
I have been reluctant to change the discussions software entirely because of the many, many still valuable posts in the past that would, I think, be lost, if not physically, then lost through virtual burial in an unused or untapped archive.
Also I believe that the DISCUS software is a pretty good product and it has only been my niggardliness that has stopped me from doing what is necessary to make things "whole" again. Unfortunately, making my daughter school tuition (place holding payment) is my next top priority. Fortunately, someone has offered to put some money into the pot for the DISCUS updates and installation done DISCUS! I am contacting them now, and will return with news of how much the total will be and how much we still need, in case anyone else wants to contribute. From their web site it looks like it might be possible for a total of about $80-90 USD.

By Gerald Vogt on Monday, February 27, 2006 - 11:51 am:

Most people do not know about the double posting problem. I basically read this forum through email I receive as notifications. Multiple posts generate multiple emails.

I suggested that I can look at the software installation to get it working. The problem when you buy support by the company what could be done by you is that in the end you will again depend on their support because you don't know what they have done.

I also implied in the suggestion to change to a different software that all posts would be transfered to the new software as well which should not be too hard if discus stores the messages in some accessible manner. I can help you with that, too. I am computer professional...

But I certainly don't want to talk you into anything and if you have someone you pays for the update and support to get it working properly again, you just go ahead with that. It is the most convenient solutions of all of us...

By Admin on Monday, February 27, 2006 - 3:17 pm:

Dear Gerald, Sorry, I didn't catch that implication. I'm not a professional (at least not with internet server software and cig scripts) so it even takes a bit of effort on my part to understand everthing you've written. I'll wait for the response from DISCUS, and then go from there. What I like about DISCUS is that I can re-organize the discussions as they grow with their very friendly admin interface. This means that when the next pregnancy topics are started under General Discussions (again) I can easily consolidate them with the pre-existing topics, so all the posts (for that topic) are in one place. I'll send you an email privately.

One negative (about DISCUS only?) is that not all of the discussions seem to be noted by the search engines (but some are). It is more of a feeling than something that I've "proved".

By Admin on Tuesday, February 28, 2006 - 6:09 am:

From: DiscusWare Support
To: Japan With Kids Admin
Sent: Mon Feb 27 15:55
Subject: Help!

* * *
Cornelia Kurz wrote:
> Hello,
> We are suffering tremendous problems with our very old version of DISCUS. We (Mike and I) did spend about 40 hours trying to upgrade to the 4.00 version which I purchased in September 2003 (see below). Documentation from failed upgrade attempt included below.

> On 13 December our host in Vancouver,, moved all their clients over to new machines and new software. Since then the old DISCUS version is no longer functioning well enough. So one of us has taken a look at your site and sees that you will do the installation now for about $80. (I think that is USD?)

> There is actually a public dialog about these problems at:
* * *

I reviewed the message that sent me as well as the forwarded messages that were attached. DiscusWare offers one year of free technical support via e-mail to our customers, which for you expired in July of 2004. As such, I can provide general advice to you regarding your situation, but we will not be able to provide more specific support (e.g., logging into your server, or providing additional assistance via e-mail).

The one cited concern was with the black table cells upon upgrading to Discus 4. This is an issue that is explained and documented on our support site:

As you can see from that page, changing the colors does not require manual editing of the files, but can easily be accomplished by saving new "alternating color" preferences.

With regard to not being able to post, to provide support we would need an exact error message that you are receiving. Again, this is something that would not be available via e-mail due to the expiration of your technical support. You are welcome to post in our support forums regarding any problems you may be encountering with respect the posting. Customers and DiscusWare employees read that forum and try to help out where possible.

At this point, there are several options available to you:

1. Self-service option: post messages in our Support Forum and read documentation to diagnose and fix the problem. Our Support Forum is free to join, read, and post.

2. Support renewal: you can renew your e-mail technical support for one year at a cost of $99.95, which also includes access to any new versions of Discus Pro that become available while your license is under support. This is the "Professional" option noted on our support contract page:

3. Support contract: you can opt for one of the higher level support contracts offered on the previously mentioned page. Any of the choices from Bronze or above offer remote troubleshooting, which means having us log in to your server to check permissions, verify scripts, look at logs, and so on.

4. Consulting: on a one-time basis, you can contract us to log into your server and diagnose and fix any problems. The cost for this service is $150/hour with a half hour minimum. I will provide you with an estimate if you are interested in this option.

With regard to our $79.95 professional installation service, that service is available for a first-time installation of Discus Professional. Since you are looking for upgrades with preserved messages, our flat-rate professional installation services are not available.

The most rapid solution involving having us log in to your server would be offered by the one-time consulting service (probably 1-2 day turnaround) or by the enhanced support contract (generally takes about 1 week to get all signed and completed). Please let me know if you require clarification on any of these support choices, or if you want me to send you the estimate and agreement for the consulting service.

Kevin W. Paulisse

DiscusWare - Powering web discussions since 1997

By Admin on Tuesday, February 28, 2006 - 6:15 am:

In short: There are now two problems. There is the purchased upgrade to version 4.0 in 2003 which was never completed.

There is the posting problem since the transfer to the new machines on 13 December.

There is the thought that the installation of Version 4.0 will solve the posting problem.

I wish to contact support at Netnation to ask their thoughts on the posting problem. Unfortunately I have not been able to "copy" the error message. I have only seen it once and it appeared only briefly, too fast for me to copy. Has anyone copied it?

By Gerald Vogt on Tuesday, February 28, 2006 - 6:56 am:


By Gerald Vogt on Tuesday, February 28, 2006 - 7:34 am:

From what I gathered from the previous test:

Once you submit the message to the server there is no response coming back. The server closes the connection after some timeout, in my previous test after 400s.

This means that there is no error message. The only error message you may get is from the browser telling you that the connection has been closed or timed out.

It looks to me as if the cgi on the server crashes somewhere after it adds the message to the board leaving the connection open which the server closes after a time out. If you have access to your log files you may find an error message there or your provider may help you locating it. If the cgi crashes only the log files contain the relevant error message.

This is as much as I can find out from here...

By Pato on Wednesday, March 1, 2006 - 1:37 am:


By Admin on Wednesday, March 1, 2006 - 1:46 am:

2:30 am - Phoned Netnation: DISCUS script issue reported to ("Jason"). Long response time duplicated at their end. Expecting response via email after perusal of logs.

By Pato on Wednesday, March 1, 2006 - 8:45 am:


By Admin on Friday, March 10, 2006 - 7:37 am:

OK, as you can see the forum script is not fixed yet. Still working on it.

By Tai Dirkse on Monday, July 3, 2006 - 9:01 am:

okay i know this is a n old thread... but seriously, this forum should be moved to alternative forum software. Either spend a couple hundred USD on vBulliten or use some software like phpBB where you can easily create templates....
I use SMF on my site.. but its kinda hard to customize unless you're an advanced user...

By Tai Dirkse on Monday, July 3, 2006 - 9:04 am:

oh alsoinfopop :
they're pretty easy to use too

By Tai Dirkse on Monday, July 3, 2006 - 9:18 am:

or.... just have the discussion board hosted by someone else? haha :p
just kidding...

I think all you guys need to do is put in a CMS then all the pages can be updated very easily, as well as managing discussionboards, image galleries and various other things in one software package! If you look at my website (althought I did not integrate the content management system with the forum) you are able to update content with out any knowlege of how to create a website.... you update sections the way you would update a blog on Xanga, MySpace, or LiveJournal... Its pretty easy. Although it does take some knowlege how to set it up.....

By Scott Hancock on Monday, July 3, 2006 - 11:05 am:

If this site were to be moved to another software or provider, there are big issues of 1)money ("couple hundred dollars" is a lot of money if you are also running a family); 2)time- another commodity that becomes shorter when one works and raises kids and 3) moving the thousands of existing discussion postings, which are a large part of the value of the site.

Appreciate the good ideas, Tai, but the owner of the site does it on a shoestring.

By Admin on Sunday, July 23, 2006 - 9:54 pm:

For a run down on what is currently going on with the forums, please check the discussion at
titled Announcements from Admin and JWK

By Robert Haak on Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - 8:31 pm:

I have been trying to post messages to the classifieds board but the system will not let me. I have sent e-mails to the various admin addresses but no one replies. I am trying to post a job offer for a full-time nanny/housekeeper in Tokyo. Thanks for your help.

By Admin on Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - 10:09 pm:

My web site is getting spammed as follows at the rate of once every 10 seconds when I open the discussion. Example:

confiscations caption,Bien:basset level:west {, free online online texasholdem game putters Jacob distinctive Susan {, free cheat sheet online texasholdem odds faked Scarsdale,lighter.{, free online texasholdem software

This started on about 15 July. I am on vacation in the USA right now, and I only have dial up modem averaging 26kb/second. I'm aware of the problem and trying to solve it. In the meantime the only way to stop the overflow of my queue and also my mailbox (where I receive notification of every queue message waiting) I have had to dis-able all posting.

If you are able to volunteer time to fix the problem and have expertise in web site file management and cgi script installation I would be most interested in some help. I definitely do not have time to answer all the messages that people are sending in. Please do not send them in. They will go unanswered. Developments are being reported at:
titled Announcements from Admin and JWK

By Admin on Thursday, May 10, 2007 - 8:24 am:

To all JWK forums users:
The forums are now open again. I think the problems have all been fixed. We'll find out as we go along. I was able to do this with the help of a Y40,000 donation from Patrick Newell and Tokyo International School (

The total cost of the repair was $425 USD plus countless hours. I am now looking at ways to make the site pay for itself. One project is to make the ads for nanny/housekeeper for pay.

In the meantime, I welcome you all back! Please discuss again!

By Mono on Thursday, May 10, 2007 - 11:14 am:

Congratulations on the reopening of the forums!!

Thanks for putting in so many hours to fix the problems and thank you Partrick and TIS for making that donation.

Can't wait to read all the good information coming from all over Japan!

By Admin on Wednesday, June 6, 2007 - 7:31 pm:

testing time it takes for the discussion page to update when a message is posted

By Admin on Tuesday, June 12, 2007 - 10:01 am:

This is a test message, to see if the extremely long delay in getting the message screen updated after a message is posted is now fixed. This test also includes an image upload.
photo of Chibi-chan

By Admin on Thursday, May 1, 2008 - 3:33 pm:

Hi everyone,
As many of you noticed, at sometime in the early hours of Wednesday April 16, the discussion forums were made unavailable.

This was done by the host company, in Vancouver, Canada. The entire .cgi scripts folder was made unavailable at the root level. This action was finally corrected today about 3 hours ago.

The reason for this was that Netnation claims that the automatic email notification feature is using too many systems resources on their shared servers. Basically, to them it looks like is being used as a conduit for SPAM, when they see large spikes of mail going out.

In order to get the .cgi scripts re-instated, I promised them that I would turn off the automatic email notification feature.

I am currently looking for another company to host the web site, that has the resources available. Netnation suggested I go with a dedicated server which is far more expensive for me to pay. In fact, if that is the only solution, then I will probably have to shut down JWK.

So, for the time being, I recommend that you go to the discussions page, and click on "New Posts" in the left hand side blue column. Then you can check all the new posts over the last 3 days or 4 days or 5 days... whatever you put in.

I will keep you updated.

By Admin on Sunday, May 6, 2012 - 3:52 pm:

- - We are getting ready to open a whole new discussions software and this old "Discus" software will be shut down.
- - If you are a Facebook useer, please"like" our facebook presence at:
We will announce quickly when there are new pages with new information published at JWK through Facebook!

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