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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have ran several "website down" checks and all show no response tor www.fototime.com I also checked www.nitroexpress.com, also not responding.

The Fototime outage is being discussed around the internet and most speculate it has to do with the server fire in France.

 

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Yeah I mentioned this in my thread from Friday (I think), left me high & dry with 6 months left on this year's paid subscription.

Site is gone, emails bounce, and not a peep.

According to the news reports, all data lost in the French fire is "unrecoverable."
But here are very few if any of the images I've uploaded there over the years that I don't have saved.

Somewhere.

Scattered over multiple backups from long gone computers.
I had about 8000 images on FotoTime. Getting it all back together would be a nightmare, and will most likely never happen. I started over on another site and will upload on as as-needed basis.
 

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According to the news reports, all data lost in the French fire is "unrecoverable."

I imagine that will not go over well with their commercial customers who probably expected (and may have contracted for) some kind of automatic backup. A good example "cloud services" drawbacks. Hope they have disaster recovery plans that do not rely on that service provider.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
We will just have to wait and see. There has been mention that some sites are back up up and others are working through massive recovery programs. But it has been clearly stated the data stored on the French servers is gone.

I myself have over 8000 photo and 20 years worth of work lodge with Fototime.

Al we can do is wait and see what happens.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I found this discussion on Fototime today. Very interesting. The seem have large clientele of long time subscribers, I have been with them over 18 years.

 

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I signed up with SmugMug, it was recommended to me by a photographer I trust (but then IIRC so was FotoTime). It's costing me a little more than twice as much as FotoTime did, and I'm still caught up in the learning curve, but I'll work it out.

Thankfully I'm not caught up in the same mess as others that had ALL of their photos there and no backups. Maybe 1% of my content was direct uploads from mobile that didn't get saved on the computer first, hopefully nothing I can't live without.

I've been through this before, with a site called PhotoIsland, which at one was a free service bundled with ArcSoft software. I lost tons of content when they went down, never again.
 

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You can host your own photos, and it's not difficult if you already have a website and some control over it, but it's not as simple as the web photo sites.

I've been doing it for years. You need a web server either on-site or in the cloud somewhere with an always-on internet connection that allows for personal servers (most do), a domain name, then the software to manage the photos and then periodic server maintenance and backups so miscreants don't hack into a security hole on your server and trash it.
 

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Shred answered with the first half of my post while I was typing.

A less technical method (which I use now) is to maintain a website on a site host such as godaddy.com which relieves you of most of the technical needs but burdens you with more overhead.

Both require some learning if you haven't done this kind of stuff before. Both require some kind of REGULAR BACKUP PROCEDURE TO A SECOND DEVICE to protect you from events like photobucket or the French cloud host fire. This cannot be emphasized enough. It is not perfect because if your site system crashes (my one time web host did), you will have to go through a restore procedure such as reposting all your thousands of photos (there may be some kind of software available to automate this; I have never looked. In the business world, this includes practice trips to an offsite computer center where your team restores all your back up tapes and brings up a mirror system to demonstrate that you actually have everything you need should you need it.)

The alternatives, if you don't want to get this involved, are losing all your stuff (the current situation) or paying someone to manage the above process. But then you are relying on someone else to do their job (like the French site host's customers who had a reasonable expectation that the computer center would have an adequate fire protection/suppression system.)
 

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Two computer crashes and now the FotoTime F.U. have taught us that ALL FORMS of backup can fail. So, after the second 'Puter crash, we decided to do a Triple backup.

WE Now Have:

1.) 1/3 of our photos, about 1,500, the Favorites, organized and backed up by being on separate, high-quality, Memory Data chips in a fireproof safe in the least, fire exposure place.

2.) All of our 4,500 photos saved to the current computer.

3.) All 4,500 saved on the original Memory Data Camera chips in a fireproof safe in the least, fire exposure place.

AND, for those of you savvy enough to know that Memory Data Chips do lose molecules over the years which degrades the images thereupon stored, we also know that we will be long gone from this earth by the time that happens. HA!!

Tracy
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Agreed only some what about back ups.

I had 8000 picture shared and posted on the internet, lodged on Fototime. How do I restores the pictures I posted in some post I made in 2007.

Fototime had a list of pictures that I had posted and the last time the they were accessed. When last I looked I was surprised by the high percentage of older pictures that were recently accessed. The only problem I didn't know where.
 

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How do I restore the pictures I posted in some post I made in 2007.

This depends on the precise procedure used by the forum regarding images. If they saved your image to their own computer, the fototime crash would not affect it; it would still be on their host. If you had a link {img}{/img} type reference, it would have been something like https://fototime.com/dd/images/cannon.jpg which would now be a dead link because fototime's server is dead. You would have to load your pic to another site and go back to the post that referenced it and change the url to the new one.

On the other hand, if your own server crashed, you would repair or replace the computer including restoring anything that was missing from backup media and restart your web server and the dead links would be alive again.

There may be a photo hosting site that does provide backup of your data though it will not be free. But even if you pay for the backup service, the provider may not come through when the SHTF. They may guarantee automatic recovery but what if they can't/don't? What recourse do you have? You really need to keep your own copies on your current computer and on USB memory sticks so at least you can perform a restore once the defunct fototime gets going again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Here is the latest and last from Fototime.com

FotoTime
On March 10, due to circumstances beyond our control, FotoTime suffered a catastrophic outage. This outage effected both the infrastructure and data. Regretably, due to this outage, FotoTime has ceased operations.

We would like to thank all of our customers for supporting us all of these years. This difficult decision to cease operations was the only option available to us.
 

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Does anybody here believe in Karma?

Could something like the following have happened? An unnamed Don's daughter was recently married. At his suggestion she lodged all of her wedding photos with the BEST, he thought, Fototime. Now he's sleeping in the garage. Tired of this, he is presently instructing some of his "broken nose guys" what to do with the "Take the Money and Run Guys". Gee, can you guess? If you believe in Karma, you can probably guess correctly!!

T&M
 

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This prompted me to check my (limited) previous GBO posts with photos to see if they were still here - upon a quick check, it looks like they are (but I have hardly yet looked for them all). I never used FotoTime specifically, so can I assume that only users of that particular service would lose photos here? Sorry if that is a dumb question.
 

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March 10 more or less coincides with the OVHcloud server farm fire so that may be the root cause. And the lack of a disaster recovery plan.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Gents,

I don't believe this is the case at all, not for one second. I don't think these guys took our money and ran. This way different than what Photbucket pulled.

These people lost their infrastructure and data. It just seems to me to be more than coincidental that this occurred at the same time that a major cloud facility is destroyed in a fire in France.

Image you have everything on your hard drive and everything is backed up on your stand alone Hard drive and bunch of flash drives. If your hard drive fails you can restore everything with those back ups. Then your house burns down. Your computer is burned up, your back up hard drive is burned up, your flash drives are burned up. You have nothing.

These guys probably leased cloud server space for their business. Their software is proprietary. They have built and modified it for over 20 years. They lease the computers that hold this soft ware because of the massive size required to operate it. Their business records are on these leased servers-the cloud, Customer records, like who we are and what we paid and when are due to pay, all stored there. The data, our pictures, are also on these servers.

Most likely there was in a back up plan and that was stored on other servers elsewhere in the cloud, Different servers with in the cloud like your stand alone hard drive hold the back up data. If one server with in the cloud fails they can restore the service back by accessing the data from the back up servers.

What happened in France was a Cloud facility was destroyed. Hundreds and more likely thousands of servers were destroyed, just like your house burning down. Everything was lost. Everything.

After that fire the whole operation was shut down and one report said over a million websites gone.

I think it more than coincidence Fototime was destroyed at the same time the Cloud facility was destroyed.

After the fire salvage operation were started to see what was lost, it may be days, month even longer before any thing is recoverable, if anything can be restored.

The fototime guys have nothing to run with or aren't able to identify who is a customer. They have no way of knowing who we are, what we paid or when, because it I all gone.

What money they collected has probably been going out as fast as it has come for expenses and over head. Anyone who has ran a business knows what it cost to run a business. How much of every dollar coming in actually goes in your pocket.

Their finances are probably a mess right now. Over on the Watch forum people are reporting putting claims with their credit card company for non delivery of service. One guy who sells photo's said he lost over 20,000 images. There was a number of people there who lost far greater numbers of pictures than my mere 8,000. Many of them 20 year customers, like myself. One fellow said all his ads were blank now.

I am sure the FotoTime guys are about to get hit with a flurry of lawsuits.

I paid just under $24 a year for the service. That is roughly $2 a month. My subscription is due in July. So they owe me about $8. The folks at FotoTime owe me 8 bucks. But they don't have my name or address or any records to tell who am so the can't return it, even if I claimed it. They have no way to know who we are, there "house" burned down.
 

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I lost all my daughters pictures.

My 14 year old daughter died 2 years ago from cancer. I stored all her pics on Fototime. I had a seperate album for each year she was alive from 2003 -2018.

I thought this was a good idea so as never to lose them and I could acess them from anywhere in the world.

I have none of the pictures that were on fortime and each album for each year had hundreds of photographs and videos. If anyone knows about how to contact the owner of Fototime (Karl Swierenga) PLEASE CONTACT ME.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Interesting story this morning on the cloud fire.


I wonder what the chances are that Fototime was operating from servers on the cloud servers that were shut down as a precaution?
 
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