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Archiving Debian-Administration.org, for real

1 November 2020 13:00

Back in 2017 I announced that the https://Debian-Administration.org website was being made read-only, and archived.

At the time I wrote a quick update to save each requested page as a flat-file, hashed beneath /tmp, with the expectation that after a few months I'd have a complete HTML-only archive of the site which I could serve as a static-website, instead of keeping the database and pile of CGI scripts running.

Unfortunately I never got round to archiving the pages in a git-repository, or some other store, and I usually only remembered this local tree of content was available a few minutes after I'd rebooted the server and lost the stuff - as the reboot would reap the contents of /tmp!

Thinking about it today I figured I probably didn't even need to do that, instead I just need to redirect to the wayback machine. Working on the assumption that the site has been around for "a while" it should have all the pages mirrored by now I've made a "final update" to Apache:

 RewriteEngine on
 RewriteRule   ^/(.*)  "http://web.archive.org/web/https://debian-administration.org/$1"  [R,L]

Assuming nobody reports a problem in the next month I'll retire the server and make a simple docker container to handle the appropriate TLS certificate renewal, and hardwire the redirection(s) for the sites involved.

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Comments on this entry

icon rjc at 10:48 on 4 November 2020

I remember printing the articles out 15+ years ago. They're still stashed in the loft somewhere... :^)

End of an era.

Thanks Steve!

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