News | Forum | People | FAQ | Links | Search | Register | Log in
IGN Decides To "discontinue Free Hosting Services"
I know there are a decent amount of mappers who are hosted on a Planet site, and I was just wondering if we (mappers, modders, engine coders and others) were all affected in the same way by IGN's decision to change their approach towards free hosting services (presumably because of "compatibility" issues with the "new data center," which sounds very vague and not very convincing).
I received an email this afternoon basically telling me that a large number of hosted sites (including mine) will simply disappear after August 31st and was wondering if there were other people here in the same situation. I don't really have a problem with moving my site to my domain name, but I'm assuming that not everyone can/wants to do that. I'm also a little worried about sites that have been up for a while and whose webmasters have disappeared from the face of the earth. IGN made it clear in the email that no content would be saved. It might be worth it to back some of these sites up.
Do you think this decision will have a negative effect on the communities? (all games (all planet sites) are being targeted, here)
First | Previous | Next | Last
And planet* sites slip even further into the "totally forgettable" category of online gaming sites.

Its a shame, I remember when I visited planetquake and planethalflife daily to see what new mods and maps were available!

A lot of content is sure to be lost here! Backing up as much as possible could be a really good idea, sadly on my 512k connection I don't think im the man to do it :/ 
It will definitely have a negative impact although most people in the community should have jobs at this point in their lives and could pay for hosting if they really want to continue running their sites (many are basically moth balled anyway).

It sucks though and it's another step towards squashing the communities that form around games. *sigh* 
I mean, all of my sites - including shub-hub and Quaketastic - cost less than $15 a month. It's manageable. :) 
What Does This Mean? 
Can someone in one sentence or less say exactly what this mean? Is a huge loss of content imminent? Or is this just a "no new sites" thing? 
"a Large Number Of Hosted Sites Will Simply Disappear 
"a large number of hosted sites (including mine) will simply disappear after August 31st"

Ok. :(

Sigh ...

Huge loss of ancient PlanetQuake sites. 
I Love The Ancient Sites ... 
This is really sad to see.

I know most people don't ever even visit the most ancient PlanetQuake sites, but I find the older ones the most "personal" and least "bland" because the people at the time were excited about Quake.

So I guess sites with modding/engine/modeling tutorials and prefabs go. Probably several QuakeC sites. Countless mapper sites.

Countless skin sites. Worldcraft 1.6 occasionally non-functioning site.

What happens to FilePlanet downloads, nothing I assume?

Probably 90% of the oldest sites that still exist are PlanetQuake, most other sites went 404 or URL not found a long time ago. 
Copy-pasting Unfun 
Baker : the Fileplanet files stay.

Yeah, I have the feeling that most of the non-profit-making sites will probably go. I don't think it's really a matter of being old or not updating. I mean, granted my site is updated only a couple of times a year, but I feel like I have offered new content (in the form of mods) not SO long ago... I don't have a ton of visitors, though, so that's probably the reason.
I can't really imagine that everything will go. Obviously they have to keep *some* sites. So the best bet is that they'll keep the big, profit-making ones, the ones for which ads actually work.
Here below is the entire email, copy-pasted:


Dear CocoT,

We at IGN are providing you with notice of very important changes that are taking place with the IGN Hosting Services, including the sad news that we are shutting down the IGN Hosting Services.

*1. Changes to the IGN Hosting Terms of Service*

Firstly, certain sections of the IGN Hosting Terms of Service have been updated which are effective immediately. Please take time to read through the complete updated Terms of Service at the website below (a link to the previous version is at the top of the site):

We will post any additional updates at the above link. Should you have any questions about these changes to the Terms of Service, please do not hesitate to contact us via Please note: subject to (B) below, the IGN Hosting Terms of Service will cease to be in effect after August 31, 2009.

*(B) Shutting Down of IGN Hosting*

As referred to above, we also have some sad, but extremely important news for you regarding your hosted site, and ask that you read through the following carefully.

After years of quality free hosting for gaming sites, we have decided to discontinue our free hosting services. We know that this will come as a shock and a disappointment to you; in this e-mail we will explain why this decision was made, when the shutdown will occur, and what the next steps are for the many hosted site owners who will be affected.

The primary reason for the discontinuation of the free hosting is one of compatibility. At IGN, we are in the process of moving to a new data centre, and a number of our operations are incompatible with it, including the free hosting service. At this time we regretfully are not in a position to carry out the additional work needed to make the hosting service compatible.

We are all extremely grateful for you having chosen us as your site's host, and as such want to do all that we can to make your transition to a new hosting provider as easy and seamless as possible. We will maintain the hosting service, with full technical support, up until 11.59 PM, 31st August 2009 (�Cut-Off Date�), giving you several months in order to organize a migration. Please note however that the Cut-Off Date is hard and fast - there will be no extension of the service after this date and backups of your databases and content etc. will not be maintained. Anything that you want to keep MUST be downloaded to your computer before the Cut-Off Date. Please note: if you don�t migrate your files and database by the Cut-Off Date, you will no longer have access or right to access or use any aspect of your site that IGN was hosting and IGN will have the right to delete and remove from our servers all aspects of your site. 
(part 2) 
In order to assist you, we have prepared a detailed information website (see link below), which provides information such as a sample list of possible replacement web hosts you could transition to, instructions on migrating your files and database(s), in addition to FAQs about the discontinuation of our services. We strongly recommend that you read the entire document if you intend to continue operating your site at another host:

*3. Continuing Services*

It is not all bad news however. Some of the services we made available to hosted sites will still be available to you after August 31st, specifically:

*(i) Free File Hosting at*

You will still be able to use FilePlanet's free uploading tools to post your files and share them with your community. This tool can be accessed at No registration needed to download your files. If you have a really large file, contact us directly at

*(ii) Direct2Drive Affiliate Program*

As a former Hosted Site owner, you will be eligible for a special deal on the Direct2Drive affiliate program. Earn 8% commission (the regular commission rate is 7%) by driving sales to the leading digital download retail store, Direct2Drive. To learn more click here (

*To summarize:*

-> The Hosting Services will end on 11.59 PM, August 31st, 2009.

-> No backups or snapshots will be maintained after that date (download everything you wish to keep). You will no longer have access to your site or any aspects of it (content, assets, files etc.) after that date and we will remove/delete all such files from our servers.

-> There is a number of alternative free webhosts you could investigate here:

-> FAQs and guidance for migrating sites is available here:

-> We are keen to help your migration go as smoothly as possible; contact us if you require any further information in connection with you site migration at:

-> File hosting at FilePlanet and Direct2Drive referral programs may continue (with the latter including a commission bonus).

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for contributing to the world's greatest network of independently owned gaming sites, and wish you all the best of luck should your site(s) continue at another host. Please, contact us ( if you have any questions in connection with the migration of your site.

Many thanks,
The IGN Hosting Team 
I should point out that, at this point, the FAQ makes absolutely not mention of "alternative free webhosts," unlike what the email implies... 
Personally ... 
I think this is a stupid business decision by them, but whatever.

The reason I believe it is a poor business decision is that I bet most of these sites combined only are a few terabytes.

And you can buy a terabyte hard drive for what these days? $150? 
... the "profit-making" part of it is of course only my own conjecture. They seem to be saying that, somehow, the way in which the "new data center" is going to be built will just make it hard to have both paying and non-paying accounts exist side by side... which, well, really just sound really odd. 
ah crap 
Yeah, this...

The primary reason for the discontinuation of the free hosting is one of compatibility. At IGN, we are in the process of moving to a new data centre, and a number of our operations are incompatible with it, including the free hosting service. At this time we regretfully are not in a position to carry out the additional work needed to make the hosting service compatible. bullshit. They just don't want to pay for the bandwidth anymore but are too pussy to actually say so. Fuck IGN. 
Bas News... 
... indeed... 
This Is Really Weird... 
From the FAQ:
"Can I pay to keep my IGN hosting?
Sorry, no hosting services, free or otherwise, will be offered."

"free or otherwise"?? Does that mean that basically ALL contents from the Planet sites (and the planet sites themselves) are going down the drain, then? Or are they become mere news sites?

This is starting to sound like a bad dream... The email was somehow re-sent this morning, and it does come from the gamespy network. I'm also surprised none of the planet sites have been reflecting this in their news so far. Weird. 
And you can buy a terabyte hard drive for what these days? $150?

Well, um, if you're actually running a service it doesn't really work like that :) But yeah, seems lame. 
@Willem Re:bandwidth 
If those sites aren't getting enough traffic for them to view them as a profit center for banner ads and then how can they be consuming a lot of bandwidth?

Especially compared to, say, FilePlanet? 
*shrug* Beats me. That's the only possible explanation I can come up with for them not continuing to host those sites. Other than them just being dicks, I suppose. 
I blame console DLC...

(the above comment is not a stupid as it appears, I assure you. I may expand on it once I've had breakfast).

Also this; too pussy to actually say so. Fuck IGN. 
youve had too much DLC for breakfast 
Huge loss of ancient PlanetQuake sites.


Someone with enough hard drive space (10 gig? dunno exactly) can simply mirror the *whole* site on their local harddisk. Brute force, German method.

wget is the tool to do that. It should take a couple hours. Let it run overnight.

wget -h

or something like that.

We have until August to do this, so it's not an imminent threat. 
Ah, it was wget -m. 
Has To Suck To Be You. 
Sad, but IGN has ben doing this type of "Let shot our own foot!" self-defeating strategy for years.

And the death of Fileplanet will be EPIC! 
I would not trust fileplanet, either. Although it looks like this time, it's spared.

It's only a question of time until Fileplanet is fucked, too. Probably a good idea to back that stuff up on local harddisks, too. 
I don't find it that hard to believe that they're migrating to a new platform and only want to bother porting the software/services that are core to their business. It could be something as simple as the architecture being written in ASP, and they're moving to a unix-based server architecture. Sure, these things can be ported, adapted, software can be installed, etc, but they're basically saying that it's more work than just keeping some old machines plugged in to their network, and they are not willing to do that work. Running a service is more than just the cost of a hard drive or bandwidth, you have physical stuff to maintain, and customer service requirements which means spending people's time.

Anyway, I think the most important thing is to spider and archive all of the old sites that are not maintained by anyone actively, so people have access to that stuff. And this requires the even more difficult task of actually creating a list of needed sites -- half of the stuff we're going to lose is probably stuff we completetly forgot about.

Active people also need to move their hosting, but at least they are active and paying attention, and can probably do that. 
First | Previous | Next | Last
You must be logged in to post in this thread.
Website copyright © 2002-2022 John Fitzgibbons. All posts are copyright their respective authors.