In the last weeks, some users have noticed that torrent downloads might be blocked from countries such as the United Kingdom, The Netherlands and Italy. Please, take the following steps to (possibly) find a work-around:
We're also looking forward to add new sources. If anyone wants to share ideas, tweet us or contact us. Right now, we're extending our meta-data fields (such as cross-linking shows and schedule and parsing episode names), and it is on our future plans to link it along with trusted sources (user accounts in reputed trackers or engines, for example).
It was a long-awaited feature, and now it's here: magnets are finally available throughout the page. Users can now generate a complete feed address including namespaces and magnets too, and switch between magnet or traditional views on the page.
Magnets are only available for logged users and in personal feeds, and there are no short-terms plans to add them on the public views or public feeds for now. We encourage any user or service relying on showRSS's feeds and service to use personal feeds as they're the ones with (mostly) guaranteed consistency.
In other words: we may replace the public torrent links with magnet links on the public views during the following months or so. But for now, it's just magnets if you want to. If you haven't tried them — you should!
If you happen to be a developer, check out the personal feed support with magnets and feel free to let us know if we can improve anything. Use the comments, our Twitter profile or send us an email.
Just a small note: the main hard drive has crashed and we've moved to new hardware (yeah, I'm sick of such bad luck too). The only quirk: all data since Thursday 8th March '12 after 16h30 UTC has been lost. Less than 6h worth of changes, registrations and comments (mostly), but still, it's some loss, as we had to restore from the last backup available.
Sorry to everyone for the inconvenience. Everything is back up now…
Hello folks. Nothing really interesting around there, just the usual show addition, expired shows and some correction (badly linked shows which result in not-really-ended shows and wrong schedules/descriptions). As always, if you see anything, report.
We have added a bunch of shows since the last update, usually the ones requested through Twitter and email. Keep requesting!
And concerning the important part: future! Magnets are the future. H264 is, too. First off: it's not our choice, and it goes well up the ladder. We're really sorry for the ones still using their DVD from 2004 that was good because it supported XviD, but nowadays media devices do not support it (but do support H264 as its supported by embedded hardware). It's also been the choice for HTML5 videos, online streaming and has proven to provide very good quality in less size. Sadly, every evolution takes its toll… Sorry for everyone. Still, not our choice… But hopefully will compensate with good things.
The next thing on the list are magnets. In fact, it's been a request always put on hold. Not every client plays nice with them (for the moment, the best is Transmission, as we can push magnets to it without problems) but for setups where a torrent file is downloaded and then loaded into a client, that approach does not work.
That's why I'm writing right now. We need to collect information on what client you're using, how it behaves with torrents and how you think it would fit the best into it. We have to figure out how uTorrent and current setups would behave with RSS feeds and magnets, and with magnets alone, as well as related software. And we need your help!
Even if there were no news, we've worked a lot. Aside from the new shows added (as requested), we've pushed a few major and minor changes… Let's see:
Next big milestone should concern magnet links. There is an ongoing ticket at Transmission with a proposal that might lead the path to that. We're also on #showrss at freenode, so join for any discussion.
We have just released a new schedule system using a different source (switched from tvrage to thetvdb). This should provide better consistency (no duplicates when US shows are re-aired later in UK), better updates and overall a better service as this new source is better for us than the previous one.
The iCal, RSS and schedule page as well as the browse page are now working with the new source. Some technical features have also changed with this new system, for example, the graph database once involved with the custom user schedules which had grown to over one gigabyte in memory, has now been replaced with a much lighter system.
We hope to receive your feedback and hope it works for you all. And happy holidays for everyone!
Long story short: we had to switch servers three times.
We currently run under a virtualized instance of Debian 6.0 (why: easier to maintain, backup, migrate, isolate, allows cloning and allows us to keep other dev instances). Until now everything has been running under Xen 3 and Debian, but once we upgraded to Debian 6.0 (both host and guest) things started to get bad.
You may know that the service has been unstable and all the time we had to work on it was invested on trying to troubleshoot and solve the issue (over 100 hours down in six months because of the still unknown issue). We first had problems with our provided that was limiting IO and network interrupts (and the whole system collapsed because of the high load queue). Then we switched to dedicated hardware with our own layer and got everything working. Then everything started to go down, sometimes once or twice a week but also a few times a day on some times.
After that, we switched hardware and everything looked good… For two days. We were believing that it had to do with the kernel and network layer as we were forwarding everything and doing routing with our own scripts between virtual network interfaces and the internet, and the NIC wasn't a good one. Switching hardware discarded that option, and now that we've discarded any external cause we can only believe that it has to do with the stock kernel and setup for Xen 3.1 available for Debian 6.0 stable.
Once again we're in newer hardware, changed everything and now we're running OpenVZ with yet-another-network-layer (that's the third time now). Hopefully we won't be down for much longer (except for 3-4 minutes at 0000Z some days of the week when we're doing full system backups).
So, yes: sorry for that. Hopefully we will never again be down for so much time or spend so much time without working on the important stuff on the web site. We've added some new shows, started the work for integration with thetvdb and looking forward to provide TPB-backed sources (point a tpb user as the source for a show, instead of using only eztv) for shows that aren't tracked by eztv.
Note: some data has been lost as the SQL datastore in the old server was corrupt in some parts, but not enough to recover from an older backup. For now you'll only notice that the schedule does not work. You can fix this deleting & readding the show, or just wait for a few days until we're fully running on thetvdb.
The last few weeks the site has been unusually slow. That, combined with the lack of updates, created some understandable disenchantment among site users (it makes sense — there weren't any showlist updates for months). I'm really sorry for that.
Right now the site is a one-man project (there once was someone helping with support and other stuff, but people gets busy) and I'm busy too. The few minutes each week I can allow to maintain this project are usually targeted to maintenance tasks (sometimes rebuilding the redis index, cleaning up and tweaking the MySQL setup, answering emails, adding shows). The last few months I've been extremely busy and only had time to keep the page barely functional (working feeds, still notice when some new episode is out — no more).
One or two days ago everything broke down and I had to create a new machine instance (the machine is layered as virtual machines and disk volumes, makes backups and administration easier) and work everything from ground up. The site should now feel a lot more responsive than before and overall work as expected. New shows have been added. (And I still can't explain why lighttpd was eating two cores and rising load to 6.00 and 7.00 even when not serving any requests, when it worked fine before).
The next thing on the priority list is integration with thetvdb, that way I can make it easier to add new shows and remove ended ones. That should come with an API (useful for apps like TVShows2, Catch and do-it-yourself people out there :D) and finally some new feature (allow users to create, maintain and subscribe to user-generated feeds: for example someone can create a feed for a non-english show, anime or anything else requiring recurrent updates, add new items and other users can have those items added to their personal web/rss feed as they require, if and how they want). That was almost done but was mostly trashed once we moved to the redis-backed system.
Someone give us 40 hour days and everything will be so much better for everyone…
Thanks to everyone who donated we've been able to buy and pay a new server for a year! If you are reading this it's because you're already connecting to the new server. Hopefully it won't break again for a long time (this time we have a lot more room to grow).
Once again, thanks!
We've experienced a huge growth since we launched almost two years ago and this is the first time we make a request like this. The last few weeks the site has been slow and unresponsive and we have migrated to a brand new database backend like we've explained before (here and here). While this assures we can keep growing from now on, it requires a lot more memory than we have available now and a different architecture we don't have. To avoid current slowness created by the lack of memory we have to migrate to a new server, and that means paying more each month and also paying the setup fees.