AfterDawn: Tech news

News written by Jari Ketola

AfterDawn: News

DDoS attack brings a brief outage to AfterDawn

Written by Jari Ketola @ 11 Jan 2014 14:36

DDoS attack brings a brief outage to AfterDawn A part of the AfterDawn network was unreachable for 1-2 hours this morning (around 10:00 AM Eastern Time, 15:00 GMT). The outage was caused by a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack towards our servers that saturated the downlink of our rack cabinet.

Most of the English language sites were available again within an hour, but much of the international sites were unreachable for nearly two hours.

DDoS attack a considerable amount if traffic is directed at a server or servers in an attempt to bring down the server or the network infrasturcture. In our case the 1GBps network link of the rack cabinet couldn't handle all the incoming traffic. In response the traffic to the affected services was blackholed.


Graph of network traffic caused by a DDoS attack

The attack did not cause security issues with our services.

Read more...




AfterDawn: News

150 million accounts leaked - check here if you are affected

Written by Jari Ketola @ 05 Nov 2013 11:25

150 million accounts leaked - check here if you are affected About a month ago Adobe confirmed that their systems were breached and user account details were compromised. Security researchers and hackers got their hands on the data and news started circulating the web.

The leaked data contains, among other data, email addresses and encrypted passwords. The encryption key is so far unknown, but it could be just a matter of time before all the data is decrypted and millions of email addresses are linked to corresponding passwords. That is because all the passwords seem to have been encrypted with either a very few keys or a single key. Security analysts have already managed to find the top 100 passwords from the millions of rows of data.

If your account was compromised your Adobe account was already locked a month ago. If, however, you are unsure if your email address was in Adobe's records (and it is quite likely that many of the 150 million users affected are), you can check online if your email address is included in the leaked data. This service is provided by a third party, and AfterDawn is in no way responsible for it's behaviour. While we believe the service is legit, there are no guarantees of it.

Read more...




AfterDawn: News

Announcement: AfterDawn server maintenance (update: maintenance done)

Written by Jari Ketola @ 17 Dec 2012 22:48

Announcement: AfterDawn server maintenance (update: maintenance done) One of AfterDawn's US servers will be relocated tonight at midnight EST. This may cause slower site response times for our US visitors, but things will return back to normal once the server is again back online. For the duration of the relocation all traffic will be handled by our European servers.

The relocation is expected to last 3 hours maximum, but can take until 7:00 AM EST. We will update this news item as things progress.

If you experience problems accessing the site please try and clear your DNS cache or just bear with us for a couple of hours. =)

Update 02:15 EST: The server has been relocated and is again back online and serving requests. Please let us know should you experience problems accessing any of our services.





AfterDawn: News

Notice: Problems with the site layout and images fixed

Written by Jari Ketola @ 03 Nov 2012 15:52

Notice: Problems with the site layout and images fixed There have been problems with the site layout and image content today. These errors are caused by problems at our CDN provider, Internap (formerly Voxel). These problems are mostly caused by the issues caused by Hurricane Sandy in the New York area.

Image servers have now been reverted to point directly to AfterDawn's own servers. Service should return to normal within the next 10 minutes. If you are experiencing problems, please try clearing your DNS cache.

We apologize for any inconvenience caused by the problems. I'm sure AfterDawn not loading is a minor inconvenience compared to the disaster caused by the hurricane.





AfterDawn: News

Notice to AdBlock users regarding layout issues

Written by Jari Ketola @ 21 Sep 2012 12:59

Notice to AdBlock users regarding layout issues We have been informed that AdBlock Plus with FanBoy's AdBlock List causes layout problems at various AfterDawn.com sites. The filter blocks too much content which causes the entire space reserved for a banner advertisement to be removed. This in turn throws the site layout out of whack.


This is how the problem appears:

Read more...




AfterDawn: News

It's a girl!

Written by Jari Ketola @ 02 Aug 2012 8:28

It's a girl! AfterDawn.com congratulates Janne (Waiski, our software guy) and his girlfriend Lotta, who became daddy and mommy today!

Specifications:
Sex: F
Weight: 2100g (4.6 pounds)
Height: 46cm (18")
Uptime: 3:14 (since 12:14 p.m., Aug 2nd 2012)
Instructions manual: None included ("trial and error kit")





AfterDawn: News

AfterDawn.com now on Google+

Written by Jari Ketola @ 10 Nov 2011 5:48

AfterDawn.com now on Google+ After the introduction of Google+ Pages we have opened a page for AfterDawn.com as well. You can access it easily at http://afterdawn.com/+. If you have joined the Google+ Platform Preview program you might also see Google+ Badges around the site!

What type of content would you like to see featured on our page? News and commentary? Links to interesting content around the web? Inside information about AfterDawn? Or perhaps something completely different?





AfterDawn: News

AfterDawn US server problems fixed

Written by Jari Ketola @ 07 Nov 2011 16:37

AfterDawn US server problems fixed One of the AfterDawn.com servers had connectivity problems during the weekend, which caused problems for our North American users. Users in other regions could have been affected as well.

The problems were caused by a combination of abnormal network latency and cache frontend server configuration. There also was another problem that caused occasional "Oops, there has been an error" -messages when no error actually occured. This was also caused by an overly optimistic default setting in the version of Varnish Cache we were using. The setting has now been fixed along with an upgrade of Varnish.

We are deeply sorry about the inconvenience the problems have caused, and hope that they are now behind us.

Should you encounter problems accessing or using our site, please don't hesitate to contact me directly via email at firstname.lastname@afterdawn.com or via Twitter at @ketola or @afterdawn.

Reference:
https://www.varnish-cache.org/trac/ticket/1012





AfterDawn: News

AfterDawn moved to new servers - relocated in the Netherlands

Written by Jari Ketola @ 30 Sep 2011 8:57

AfterDawn moved to new servers - relocated in the Netherlands As many of our regular visitors have probably noticed, we had outgrown our four-year-old server setup quite a while ago. We have worked on a new infrastructure for quite a while now, and finally switched to a new location earlier this week.

We have now ironed out much of the (inevitable) bugs that appeared in the transition. However since this was quite a major upgrade, there's bound to be some more problems lurking around in the shadows. Therefore please do let us know if you encounter something that is not working as expected.

In addition to moving to completely new server hardware, we also switched from very old and unsupported BlueDragon FREE Coldfusion server to an open source version of the same software - Open BlueDragon (or OpenBD for short).

Probably the most significant change was moving the hosting location from Dallas, Texas to Amsterdam in the Netherlands. The change in location allowed us to get much more beef behind the scenes (full server specifications after the break).

Read more...




AfterDawn: News

Towel Day - AfterDawn throws towels at you

Written by Jari Ketola @ 25 May 2011 8:35

Towel Day - AfterDawn throws towels at you To celebrate the annual Towel Day we here at AfterDawn decided to give away a bunch of AfterDawn towels. How clever!

In order to enter the drawing, just comment on this article, like it on Facebook or Tweet about it. If you include an appropriately towel-themed picture of yourself, your chances to win will increase fortytwofold!



Towelday.org





AfterDawn: News

Changes to the way pages are loaded at AfterDawn.com

Written by Jari Ketola @ 09 Feb 2011 12:24

Changes to the way pages are loaded at AfterDawn.com We have just implemented a couple of relatively small, but quite significant changes to the site. Both changes aim to improve the overall page rendering speeds. In short - pages should hopefully load and display faster than before. The changes focus on the way advertisements are displayed on our pages, and on the way certain images are loaded. After the change most of the advertisements are loaded after the page has completed, which allows you to start viewing and reading faster than before.

Even though we have done our very best to test the changes on a variety of browsers and platforms, there is a strong possibility that problems occur on some combinations of browsers, operating systems and service providers. Should you run across any problems with, for example, advertisement placement (see this fabricated example), please let us know either by commenting this news article or by sending us feedback.

Another change that we've implemented has to do with loading images on some of the "image heavy" pages at AfterDawn. A good example of this is the Desktop pics forum thread. Slow loading pictures in posts or signatures can cause some forum pages to load very sluggishly. Now, after the recent change, all the images in the all posts are loaded "lazily", i.e. when they are scrolled to view. You'll see placeholder images such as this when you view posts. Those placeholders will be replaced by the actual images once your browser has loaded them.

Read more...




AfterDawn: News

Seasons Greetings from AfterDawn.com!

Written by Jari Ketola @ 23 Dec 2010 12:46

Seasons Greetings from AfterDawn.com! It's time for us here at AfterDawn to take a break, and enjoy some quality time with our friends and family.

Happy holidays to all our readers and users!

-AfterDawn.com Staff





AfterDawn: News

Vulnerability in OpenX advertisement server - AfterDawn's ads affected as well

Written by Jari Ketola @ 12 Sep 2010 6:40

Vulnerability in OpenX advertisement server - AfterDawn's ads affected as well There is an un-patched vulnerability in OpenX advertisement server that affected the advertisement delivery at AfterDawn.com for short while today. The vulnerability was used to tamper specific files on our advertisement server, which caused advertisements fail to load. Advertisements are served from an isolated server, and no other AfterDawn services were affected at any stage.

The vulnerability is not in OpenX itself, but in an included component of Open Flash Chart 2. The vulnerability has been known for a long time but has not been patched to date. It's effects to OpenX and instructions for fixing and cleaning up after the issue are explained at kreativrauschen.com blog.

In our case the advertisement server simply broke down and delivered no advertisements at all. Access to the server caused Chrome to throw an "Error 330 (net::ERR_CONTENT_DECODING_FAILED): Unknown error" error while Firefox displayed "Content Encoding Error: The page you are trying to view cannot be shown because it uses an invalid or unsupported form of compression."

Read more...




AfterDawn: News

Nokia fires Kallasvuo - new CEO from Microsoft

Written by Jari Ketola @ 10 Sep 2010 2:16

Nokia fires Kallasvuo - new CEO from Microsoft Nokia's Board of Directors has appointed Stephen Elop President and Chief Executive Officer of Nokia as of September 21. Elop currently heads Microsoft's Business Division. Before joining Microsoft, Elop held senior executive positions in a number of US-based public companies, including Juniper Networks, Adobe Systems Inc. and Macromedia Inc. He holds a degree in computer engineering and management from McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada, which is his home country.

Elop commented on his new Nokia position:

I am extremely excited to become part of a team dedicated to strengthening Nokia's position as the undisputed leader of the mobile communications industry, with a relentless focus on meeting the needs and expectations of customers. Nokia has a unique global position as well as a great brand upon which we can build. The company has deeply talented and dedicated people, and I am confident that together we can continue to deliver innovative products that meet the needs of consumers. The Nokia slogan clearly states our key mission: Connecting People, which will acquire new dimensions as we build our portfolio of products, solutions and services.

Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo will leave his current position as President and CEO of Nokia on September 20, 2010 and his position on the Nokia Board of Directors with immediate effect. He will continue to chair the Board of Nokia Siemens Networks in a non-executive capacity.

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AfterDawn: News

Happy Holidays 2008!

Written by Jari Ketola @ 23 Dec 2008 6:20

Happy Holidays 2008! Once again, it is the time of the year when AfterDawn.com team would like to wish all our users, moderators, associates and employees very, very merry Christmas and happy holidays!

It is time for us to take a short break here at the AfterDawn.com office, but we will keep our eyes and ears open in case something interesting happens. If you're hungry for more, check out our forums!

On behalf of AfterDawn.com Team,

Jari Ketola






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