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costs involved with Glocktalk

Discussion in 'Announcements & Support' started by Loudmaxima, Feb 8, 2004.

  1. Loudmaxima

    Loudmaxima Got Glock?

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    Eric,
    How much does it cost you monthly to run this site?
    What's the bandwith usage of this site per month?

    I just hear about the costs involved and I'm curious as to how much it actually costs to host this site.

    I appreciate GT very much!

    just curious....

    CS
     
  2. Eric

    Eric Big Giant Head Staff Member Admin Silver Member

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    I'm not really comfortable talking about this publically, but since I am running a fundraiser, I guess it is a fair question.

    There are a number of costs associated with running this site. We just added dual load-balancing T-1 lines. Before that, page load times were terrible. Now, we are using 60 - 80% of both T-1's, during peak times, and we are growing every day. Our dual T-1's cost us about $1,600 per month. The elctric bill for all of the computers runs another $350 a month or so. Buying hardware to replace old stuff and keep up with site growth is another major expense. I have spent something on the order of $30,000 for equipment, in the last year. That might sound like a lot, but it isn't hard to do, with this kind of system. A high-quality RAID card can cost $1,000 or more, all by itself. The type of harddrives I use in most of the systems cost close to $500 each. There are twenty of these harddrives in the GT message board servers alone. All of this stuff wears out and has to be replaced periodically.

    The biggest expense associated with this site though is time. I spend 30 hours a week, or more, keeping this place running. Those are hours that I can't spend earning a living. A guy I knw once described himself as independently poor. That has a familiar ring to me. I have skills that I could be using to earn a very comfortable living, if I had the time to use them. The fact is though that this site has turned into a full-time job. A full-time job that doesn't provide much in the way of salary, at the moment.

    This site started out as a hobby and it has been one of the most enjoyable and fullfilling pastimes I have ever taken part in. It has outgrown its hobby status though. If the site is to continue, it needs to start paying its own way. I am working on some business services that will become a part of the community and I hope they will help support the site and me. I am not looking to get rich. I would like to be able to host this place AND be able to pay my bills though.

    Anyway, all of this is probably a lot more than you were asking. Sometimes I ramble. Eric
     

  3. Loudmaxima

    Loudmaxima Got Glock?

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    Thanks for the reply Eric!
    I know you do a lot to keep this site up and running and I appreciate it!!

    So you're not using a server in a data center, but rather inside your house? Is this more cost effect than a dedicated server in a NOC or colo?
    I imagine due to bandwidth costs alone it might be cheaper just to run t1's.... :)

    As soon as uncle sam sends me my tax check, I'll be making a donation.

    Thanks again!

    CS
     
  4. Eric

    Eric Big Giant Head Staff Member Admin Silver Member

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    Hello. I've run the site on dedicated servers and in co-location facilities, in the past. The site has outgrown them. The bills are high right now, but it would cost more to pay someone else for the bandwidth the site is using. I've been kicking this around a long time and if there is a cheap and easy way to run a site like this, at this level, it has escaped me. There really aren't any free lunches. Anyway, I really appreciate your vote of support. Eric
     
  5. UCF-Tacoma

    UCF-Tacoma Super Member

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    To me glocktalk has never been slow. You've kept way ahead of any significant downtime that I might have experienced. There is a Ford message board at www.ftwtrucks.com. You ought to get hired there to speed things up for them. Not sure how the size compares to GT but I know they both have significant amounts of users on them. So my point is is that GT wouldn't be that affected if everything didn't load with no lag at all. We need to learn patience anyway.
     
  6. DaleGribble

    DaleGribble Sandwich!

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    Wow, I had no idea the cost of operating GT was so high. Personally, I think you should institute a pay to post type system. Charge folks $10.00 bucks a year for a full membership. I think most members would do it without hesitation!
     
  7. Loudmaxima

    Loudmaxima Got Glock?

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    Actually,$10 a year to post sounds like a good idea, however, I am sure there are people here that can't afford the $10. I'm sure these people contribute here intellectually a ton, but can't afford to financially.
     
  8. IndyGunFreak

    IndyGunFreak

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    But they can spend 15-30 a month for 'Net Access(assuming they are not accessing from friends, work, etc..). I think 99.9% of people, on the Internet, could come up with 10-20 bucks.

    I think this has been brought up to Eric before, and for whatever reason, he chose not to implement this. IMO, part of the reason may be, when someone pays for membership, they automatically assume they can do as they please. Eric runs a pretty tight ship here when it comes to following the rules, and if folks thought because they had forked over their 20 bucks, they could post as they please, I imaginie they'd be sorely mistaken...

    Then you'd always have someone trying to wrap up Eric's time with small claims, because he banned them, and they want their 20 bucks back, etc.. It's a great idea on paper, and probably 99% of us, wouldn't have a problem with it. It's that 1% that would make it very hard to deal with.

    Thanks for your work, Eric.. I knew the costs of this site were probably pretty high, but not that high! ;?

    IGF
     
  9. Biscuitsjam

    Biscuitsjam

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    Requiring a paid membership is a good way to kill a site. Quite simply, there are hundreds of other message boards out there and most of us are members of more than one. While this one has its unique niche, and most posters get more than $10 value out of it, most have a natural reaction against spending money, especially online. Even a $0.01 charge would cause 70% or more of the members here to quit, and dissuade 99% of new members from joining. It is a sad fact, as many websites have learned. In the long run, you'd probably get more money asking for it than demanding it.

    These fundraisers are probably the best way to keep things going. While I have trouble justifying giving away $10, I can easily do so if I have a 1/10000 chance of getting something in return. Also important though is to recognize those who contribute in some way:

    -Leader board for top donors
    -Leader boards for top states
    -Some kind of progress meter towards a goal (that users can see their donation make rise)
    -Special symbol next to username that shows that someone is a donor
    -Some kind of special priviliges
    -Thank you letter of some kind

    -Biscuits
     
  10. MikeG23

    MikeG23

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    I wonder if the advertisements at the top of the main page are paid for. If they are not they probably should be.

    I would have no problem with a membership fee, but unfortunatly biscuitsjam is probably right.
     
  11. IndyGunFreak

    IndyGunFreak

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    I'm certain they are. Click the "Advertise Here" link for details... While they probably make a small dent in the costs of running this site, It's pretty obvious(and respectable) Eric is not trying to get rich off GT...


    IGF
     
  12. calzoom

    calzoom

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    Lets take a page out of Bill Oreilly's note book.

    Post the Rules for posting: No cussing, swearing, gettin nekked or ya get yer but kicked off the site.

    For Premium members $4.95 a month. With 31596 members that comes to $156400.20. Now that's a handsome figure. Nice enough to give the members a nice little avatar beside their name. Eric could have a few sheckles to put in his pocket, new equipment could be maintained
    yada, yada. Now; What could be wrong with this picture?

    I would much rather be a member here than over on Oreilly because I get more out of this site. More info. More Laughs. More brotherhood.

    Seems to me Eric is an upright guy and needs to be supported. $4.95 x 12 months comes to $59.40. Now looky here most of us lose more that that in the gun shop buying prettys and go fasters.

    Being a guy who puts his money wher his mouth is, if Eric puts up a box no or address my check is in the mail shippin and handling included.

    Eric if you want to send me a pm of where you want this thing sent.
    And thanx of the opportunity.

    :)
     
  13. calzoom

    calzoom

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    Nevermind. I found the address over under contributions.

    Again thanx for the opportunity.
    ;)