Forums Archive -> VectorStar News

Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-07 13:15:25
by lmbedore
We are no longer allowing shell services for new users. As of August 17th (10 days from today), we will revoke shell access to all VectorStar Networks users.

Part of the problem is that we are running out of available file-handles on the shell server. This is causing all kinds of wierd, erratic behavior, like 5 instances of crond running. This is halfly caused by all the eggdrop bots running (which is also causing our subnet to be banned from numerous servers), and halfly caused by the huge number of virtual domains being served by our web server. I can remedy the web server problem, but I can't remedy the rapidly growing shell usage, except by stopping it.

The second problem is that I have had to warn, threaten, or delete over 10% of the accounts that have recently signed up due to abuse of the system rules in shell-space. So, we're going to go back to free web and mail, like pretty much every other free site provider. No more interesting shell gimmicks. No more fun development. Because too many people want to run eggdrop bots and too many people want to abuse our system.

I may consider reopening shell access, but not allowing bots in the future. It will take a lot of consideration.

Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-07 19:12:07
by Frank Consoli
You're damn right! L33t sckr1pt kiddie bastards don't need to be breakin' our servers!

Hell, the actual cost of building a server that's able to run an eggdrop bot is so cheap that your mother prolly costs more. Go build your own!
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-07 20:52:10
by whata
Yea your right... but the cost of having a reliable 24/7 server costs more than most peoples mama's And i was kinda fucked on that cause now my channel is going to get shutdown on undernet.. and that sucks... What you should do is kill all accounts that cause problems.. cause that just pisses hundreads of people off.. i cant even use any shell commands now
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-07 22:11:19
by jd
I hope you guys change your mind. not too many people take the time to offer free services that are really "free" with no charge for this and that..I wish more people on the internet were like you guys and werent in it for money.. thanx Jesse
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-07 22:52:24
by stealth
look, the way i see it is, you should terminate all problem making accounts and those that abuse the conditions of first signing up, and BLOCK all future accounts so that future accounts dont get shell, but the existing members do get to keep it. having a free shell account, email account that you can access via a shell, pop-server and web based is very rare... i personally think you should keep the shell services for all non-trouble making users and block all future users from shell access... this way you keep existing members happy while keeping your systems running at best performance...
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-08 03:20:01
by soepnel
that sucks, i say kick the f*kers who are ruining things, and let the rest of us keep shell :-)
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-08 07:52:37
by angeltek
Laird is doing the right thing, even if I don't like it myself.
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-08 09:12:26
by online
Hmmm if you think that your system is very much being abused... well, its a right decision, but how about those users who has found your service good. Your kind of service is pretty much rare like stealth said. I hope you'll reconsider some users who really needs your service. Well, I have no complain if you won't consider it its your server and I only got it free. But pls. do consider those users who have been using ur service safely and done no harm. Thank You for your service and more power. Hope you can decide the best solution...
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-08 11:07:08
by laird
Whata, you have been my #1 troublemaker for the last month! Your reccomendations would exclude you from service. I've had to send you 3 warnings by email and two direct messages to your console to get you to stop running multiple bots.

I'd love to keep shell services, but the amount of MY time that has to be used to babysit users who can't read the god damn rules page is INSANE! I must spend at LEAST 4-5 hours a day monitoring processes on the shell server. That's nearly a second full-time job. If you add up my current job, my travel time there, and my time spent on VectorStar's maintenance, I cross well over 80 hours a week of work.

Honestly, those of you who really need bots and "are fucked" because we're doing this really need to get your heads out of your asses. Take your computer, slap it on the internet 24/7 (dialup, DSL, cable, T1, whatever.. it doesn't matter. I did dedicated 9600 baud back in '94) and run your own bot off your own machine. If you can't do that, then you do not have the resources to maintain an IRC channel. So don't.

I DO genuinely regret having to take shell services away from those who use it for mail/ftp/web design. I'm letting the hamster wheel in my head spin and try to figure out a way to open that up again. I'll probably have to look into some of those really annoying restricted-shells. Damn, I hate those things... but that might be the only way to keep shell access open.

Right now, the majority of our shell-account users run eggdrop bots. Eggdrops have traditionally had a huge number of resource leaks and wierd, freaky CPU-hogging routines that could crash a box, even when only one eggdrop process was running. I've done it many, many times, though it was back on eggdrop1.3.27. If our users all used client apps, like licq or micq or BitchX or ircss, and not server-like processes (like eggdrop), I'd be perfectly happy. Sure, I could just ban eggdrops, but it'd probably work about as well as banning IRC proxies. I have to harass an average of 3 new users a DAY and remind them that they can't use IRC proxies, as stated in the rules and displayed during signup. I've gone so far as to write a cronjob that automatically kills most known varieties of IRC proxies, and another cronjob that warns me when a user installs one. I don't want to have to snoop on my users - I just don't like doing it... but I've been forced to because of repeated abuse of our system.

I've had about a dozen users in the past that have repeatedly attacked our servers and others' servers with exploits sitting in their shellspace. I either caught them running it, or just found the exploits by dumb luck. I had one user that used our servers as a NNTP leech site, storing hundreds of megs of data in our temp directories. Due to him, I check the temp directories many times a day. I had another user with a very peculiar bot... it took input from the bot's IRC connection and seeded an HTTP request to a link site, forging browser and OS information at random, to make money on clicks. Well, the last guy's script was so ingenious I didn't say anything to him. :)

My point here is that shell access has become 90%+ of the maintenance of this network, and in its current state I don't see any way to bring maintenance to a manageable level. Until something changes that allows shell services to be manageable, I'll have to kill shell access to the public.
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-08 11:07:09
by Vahman
The connection, as well as the servers, can be pretty expensive. Laird and I know this pretty well. It is simply sad that a FREE service can be offered, with nothing expected from the user except for a little bit of tact. Obviously, for many people this is too much to ask.

Unfortunately, because some people have absolutely no logical mindset for respect, all users will lose there right to shell access on Vectorstar.

Sometimes it is much easier to make a decision when you are not paying the bill every month.

Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-08 22:32:24
by whata
Well why dont you have people montitor shell accts for extange for extra services i did that for lots of people i will) Trapnet(about a year ago) and more its a small price to pay
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-09 01:25:40
by toby
The few ruin the good things in life for the rest of us!
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-09 06:56:11
by H4Inf
Damn, i just signed up for shell access, now ill have to close my account =(
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-09 12:32:39
by Frank Consoli
I haven't felt this hated since high school. What about you Laird?
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-09 12:58:48
by lmbedore
whata: that's what we're doing now. I'm doing most of the monitoring, and it's out of hand. and the servers are completely screwing up. I'm sorry this just isn't registering in your head, but these are critical technical problems we are experiencing, causing denial of service.

Yeah frank... this is nearly the most hated i've felt since high school... 2 months pre-prom specifically. :)
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-09 15:10:20
by Frank Consoli
2 months pre-prom? Sadly, I don't recall what happened 2 months prior to prom, or in fact which prom you're referring to. Would you like a twinkie?
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-10 16:37:49
by r3chn3r
It's gotta suck having to break it down to us like that. I do enjoy the norm web/ftp access as well as the testing I perform on my own box from a remote shell and it's pretty crappy that the rotten apples ruined it for the rest of us. Viele bloede Leute kann nichts anderes weil die einfach Scheiss sind. Like I think I wrote in an email... Keep me updated if you have a change of heart. Oh!!! You're not killing pop access are you? Sean
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-11 11:00:01
by Dave Domingo
Laird, if its ur decision... do it... we just got it free right? but on my opinion check those users who really been a pain in the ass, but pls. do have some considerations on those users who really followed your rules. Pls. do. Another thing if you really gonna revoked it pls. tell us all the revoked access u applied. i want ftp/web for my site thanks :)
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-12 04:02:07
by drw1947
shame to see these shell services go, esp since a lot of us working away from home, but it's understandable too with all the little script ratz out there. hope to see the shell services resumed at later date.
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-12 17:03:30
by myself
Thanks for the excellent service you've provided for the last year. It's a pity things had to end like this.
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-13 09:52:24
by lmbedore
Just shell services will be disabled. Everything else (FTP, web, POP/SMTP, etc) will remain running as it is now.

I'll try to figure out how to keep shell access running well in the future... I might end up moving some hardware around and completely dedicating Apathy to shell usage, so it won't affect web/mail/dns if something goes haywire.
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-13 17:55:41
by Krayzie
All you need for a shell server is a little shit box with a small ide hard drive. I'm sure you could find someone registered here that has a pentium 200 layin around collectin dust :)
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-14 04:10:27
by revenge
hi! can i keep my bot? pls? thanks and more power!
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-15 00:52:19
by shizit
you guys aren't hated, it just sounds like some selfish kids who don't appreciate the fact you're doing this for free are complaining that they got caught abusing the system. we all like shell (hell, I just like being able to do quota, but that's me) but you gotta do what you gotta do. thanx for just being here. L8r
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-15 19:39:33
by stale
Krayzie, I believe that was my original suggestion for you skr1pt k1dd1ez that wanted to run IRC bots. However, a Pentium 200 class machine just isn't going to cut it for a couple hundred users like we have on VectorStar.

We have the hardware, we just don't have the patience. Shit, maybe it's just me that lacks patience, but I'm going to blame that on the fact that I was born in New Jersey.

BTW: Brian, when the hell is firewall going to be offically released? That song is the bomb!
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-23 04:47:52
by wsc2
this is just bullshit i have to find a new one now i cant run my eggdrop this just sucks were else can i find a shell????????????????????????
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-08-23 13:17:13
by stale
You might want to start your search here.
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-09-03 22:29:21
by aztek
Hahahaha Well said Frank! And for all those shitheads who screwed the shell and are now whinging because it's been taken away from you, why don't you look at it from these guy's view? If you want shell, why not donating a bit of money to the poor blokes? $25 each wouldn't hurt that much, and with that Laird might think about reconsidering. Moral: Instead of bitching, think how you might be able to solve this. Besides, I'm going to be hosting a service like vectorstar's soon. Free of course. I also think that there's not enough people out there genuine enough to provide a quality, free service like vectorstar. That's why I'm starting
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-09-15 01:32:22
by mscript
Hey if you guys do this, take down all shells then your gonna kill my small biz I really need this for my software I put my software here for online download you guys have the only place where i can post my files and know that they'll be there when my users try t download them. It took me 4 years to find a shell provider like you and im only 14 so I cant just go out and buy a server for at least another year. I depend on you guys big time! If you take my shell away your pretty much taking my biz away to! Please reconsider!! I'm a 2 year software developer and 4 year webdeveloper I will do anything to help!! JUST LET ME KEEP MY SHELL!
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-09-17 19:13:15
by mscript
Ok so I went back and saw what you said Laird so your just shuting the shell down so our websites and curent files that were sent by ftp to our accounts that they'll all be kool I mean i do use the shell for irc reasons sometimes but never any bot (I need the space) but I'll be able to keep my site up and running and beable to update it everyday? Well if thats the case then hey I'm all for it go for it kill they bastards using bots slowing your server down and making it crazy!! Why dont them fuckers ever read the rules!
Re: Termination of Shell Services 2001-09-22 10:12:11
by narnia1
I have a quick question about the shell access. Is access to the shell via telnet/SSH completely gone or are we still allowed to access it but not allowed to run various processes on it. I tried to SSH to mine earlier and got a "Password authentication error". The password is correct because I can use the ftp. BTW, the ftp seems to be refusing connections as at 15:10 GMT on 22/9/01