Archive situation at cdrom.com
October 1, 2001
by Ty Halderman & Frans P. de Vries
As many of you may be aware, the master DOOM and Quake community archives at cdrom.com have been inaccessible over the last week or so. This note is an open letter to the communities involved, from the archive maintainers Ty Halderman and Frans de Vries. Where it says "we" below, it is the two of us we refer to. We hope this will at least partially explain what is and has been going on.
As of about the 21st of September, 2001, Digital River (the owners of the cdrom.com server) denied public access to the idgames/ (DOOM-engine games) and idgames2/ (Quake-engine games) archive file trees. This was, according to notes reflected on Doomworld (but not sent to us, the maintainers) a temporary condition due to unusual bandwidth needs. The expectation was that by early the following week, things would be back to normal.
Since then, we have been informed by Bill Dickson, Senior Manager, Download Technologies, Digital River that our maintenance accounts on cdrom.com are locked and will not be restored, and that the future of the archives (if any) will be handled by people who work for Digital River, outside the DOOM/Quake community. Unfortunately, he only told us this after several days of lockout and in response to email queries from us. Until that response, we had absolutely no idea what was going on.
As you might imagine, we started out royally peeved and insulted, after having spent so much time as volunteers to support the community. We have since been dusting off our contingency plans that were formulated some time ago, when Digital River first announced that no one should link to their site directly and that there would only be paying customers from now on.
At that time, however, we were assured that, at least temporarily, we would be able to continue the archives on cdrom.com. We expected that an exit from that situation would be handled with discussions, planning and professionalism on both sides. At least we have been professional on our side.
It may take us a bit of time to completely implement our plan for hosting and mirroring the official archives, but we will inform you of the new situation as soon as everything is in place.
Rest assured that we have now, as we have had for years of volunteer efforts, the best interests of the id Software community in mind. We may ask for some assistance from other members of the community as we finalize our plans, and appreciate your patience in the meantime.