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Many thanks, and a question about the new hosting.


New Member
First and foremost: Thanks. Really! To everyone involved with getting FA and the FA forums back up and running, you have my gratitude. You were in no way responsible for the outage, and instead you all used the opportunity to improve our FA experience. For that, I'm very grateful. It may be a silly thing to some of us, but for you working on it, this was a massive undertaking and a lot of work. So, again, thanks.

During the outage, though, some rather disturbing news surfaced in one of the LJ threads. It was probably well known by others, but apparently the colo/host that was being used at the time was also serving up a number of other websites that, according to google analytics, were distributing lots of malware of various varieties. The host was, at last check, teeming with all kinds of malicious software, and serving as an intermediary for its distribution. Not a good thing in the least. Glad the servers were moved out of there!

I'm not certain what the impact on FA would be because of something like this. It could be nill, because those sites are far removed from FA. Or it could be tremendous, when and if action is taken against the colo, or the nasty-malware peddlers decide to do something unsavory. Again, I'm not sure what the impact it at all. But it seems worrisome.

I'm wondering: Where can we find information on the new colo? If I wanted to check the google analytics page for the new place, what would I need to do? I just want to be sure. Thanks.


Site Developer
Inforelay systems.


Lazy-ass Drygerskunk
Looks clean (unlike Ironpath, which may be listed on the Spamhaus Zen list).


New Member
Many thanks, Yak! Looks like a much nicer solution, in many regards. Thanks again for the hard work on all this.


For the record, looking at netblocks like that isn't such a useful metric. While it does provide some indicator of the NOC's quality in their choice of clients, it's primarily useful in one situation - that is, when the owner of the netblock is the site operator.

Unfortunately, it's not so useful for several reasons:

1. Sites can - and frequently are - compromised, which could result in a "false" positive. This is especially likely when you are hosting through a company that primarily serves small business who are, by and large, not known for being paragons of security.
2. Colocation companies can take some time to process takedown requests. This can result in them being unfairly maligned by Google's systems, which look at the number of days.
3. Colocation companies who own small netblocks are more likely to have a high percentage of malware than those with a large netblock, assuming random distribution.

Now, there are some NOCs out there that are scummy as all hell. Ironpath sure has a lot of problems with it - the fact that I'm starring in this little post as their defender should be no indicator of my endorsement of them. In fact, I think I'd be more likely to hoist myself up to the rafter with a noose around my neck than to host a server with them in the future. That being said, I believe that it is only fair if they are criticized in ways that they deserve, rather than unfounded accusations. In this case, the bare facts alone will suffice to serve as a measure of their quality, rather than what are, I believe, correct conclusions founded on poor logic.


Lazy-ass Drygerskunk
In that case, some proof, but let me preface this with some pretext. Given that I've kept tabs on various entities, including Spamhaus' site, via the Usenet newsgroup news.admin.net-abuse.email for a good part of 7 years, I'll say one thing.

Spamhaus doesn't take listing whole ISP's lightly. They will start small, double-checking for open relays and malware sites. They try to list the source of the problem, the true cause, and post their proof online. ISPs that are unresponsive after several months of notification are warned of a full ISP-wide listing weeks in advance, before a public blacklisting is made; the ISP ether notices the big warhead in their front lounge and fixes the problem, or dies off, because customers cancel and move. They've been around for many years now, and that's their MO -- and yes, they got sued over it, and they took their hits. But I trust them.

That said, here's Ironpath's problems they face now:

They have nine(9) listings, none from known spam gangs. Most of them are servers with landing pages and redirection. Only one known host, a few spamming servers themselves.

Given Ironpath's unresponsiveness, I would say moving away from them was a good idea.