ftlog: the free forum network: bugs

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This page details a summary of various bugs and issues divided into different categories and types.
  • General
  • WUS
  • Forum Administration
  • SUS
  •  Key to Bug Types

    BugA bug, with intentions to fix.
    Known IssueThis may be a bug, or some kind of quirk or other annoyance, which may be fixed.
    External FailingsThese are problems outside of our control.
    LimitationsStuff which the system cannot actually do.
    Non-BugProblems which are often misread as a bug, but are nothing of the sort.


    "512 Messages" Limitation
    Symptoms: A thread in a forum cannot go beyond 512 posts.
    Response: This restriction is introduced as a sensible limit. Because the forum engine is based entirely around a threaded structure, it was found that large threads became unmanageable after a certain point - particulary when using the web browser. Experience has shown that the limit is never reached for 99.9% of topics.

    "Quote Turns Off Hyperlink Detection" Limitation
    Symptoms: When you use the [quote][/quote] tags to quote some text, a hyperlink (text beginning with http://) is not automatically detected and compiled into a clickable entity.
    Response: This problem effects both WUS and SUS. This limitation is on the todo list to be resolved in a future patch for both server and client.


    "+1 Unread" Bug
    Symptoms: In the WUS, sometimes the unread messages counters in either the forum front page or individual rooms show 1 or more messages unread, and no amount of clicking MAAR or MRAR, etc. will release them. No actual unread message can be found when manually reading through the forum.
    Response: The problem does not resolve until the servers are flushed. The exact cause is currently unknown.

    "-1 Unread" Issue
    Symptoms: Occasionally the unread counters show "-1" (or less) messages unread. This is a temporary issue and is resolved by using one of the MAAR links. It may be a side effect from moderators moving threads to alternative rooms.
    Response: There is no haste to resolve this issue at present due to it's lack of severity and the fact that it may be related to the "+1 Unread" bug.

    "Internet Explorer Crashes" External Failing
    Symptoms: Internet Explorer 6.x (Windows) displays a critical error message (typically with a reference to C++) and then closes.
    Response: This is a bug in Internet Explorer, possibly related to page rendering - ftlog does not use any special Javascript, VBscript, Java, ActiveX or other content on it's page which may trigger such a crash (and even if we did, it is still Microsoft's responsibility to deal with this content reliably!). Recent IE patches may have fixed it. If the problem persists you could try changing your page display scheme to an alternative, or maybe try using the SUS.

    "Incorrect Topic Counters" Limitation
    Symptoms: A topic is shown to have a certain number of posts, but when I click on it - there are fewer messages than indicated.
    Response: This the side effect of an optimisation. The display number of messages for that topic are correct, but the other messages have typically been hidden by an administrator.

    "Unsighted Unread Message" Non-Bug
    Symptoms: After reading through a forum and posting some replies the unread message counter displays a positive number, yet no unread message is immediatly visible via the appropriate triangle highlights.
    Response: This is not a bug. This is a rare occurance and is caused by somebody replying to a thread, whilst you are reading it, but just before you post a reply. The triangle highlights denoting which threads have unread messages will not show if you have read the first and last messages in a thread. This is an optimisation and works fine 99% of the time. The exception occurs when somebody posts a new message in the same thread as one where you are writing a reply, but only after you have opened the thread to see previous unread messages, and only if you finish and post your reply after this other user, and only if there are no further posts after your own post. Because your posts are automatically marked as read, the thread does not show as containing any unread posts. Actually clicking on a thread in question still shows the triangle highlights for the appropriate message(s) however. This problem does not effect the SUS.

    "I Keep Getting Logged Out" Non-Bug
    Symptoms: When I return to the forum, I have to enter my login details yet again because I have been logged out.
    Response: For security, you will always be logged out if your IP has changed from the previous connection (most common with dynamic-IP based dialup accounts or when connecting from multiple locations). You can disable this by turning off the "Better Security" option at login time. Also make sure that "Remember Me" is enabled.

     Forum Administration

    (no issues currently recorded)


    "Old non-sticky messages dissappear from quiet rooms" Bug
    Symptoms: In quiet rooms, after a while, old messages dissappear from the topic list.
    Response: The SUS does actually download the older topics, but the software built-in message cleanup routine deletes old messages. It needs to be enhanced so as to leave at least x number of topics in a room.

    "SUS does not download all the messages" Issue
    Symptoms: After being away for a few days, the SUS downloads the most recent thousand or so messages, but not the messages from the other days.
    Response: This is an issue that needs to be addressed. However, there needs to be some understanding a line needs to be drawn somewhere between getting all the messages you have missed and not getting far more messages than you would actually read, which would thus be a fairly wasteful transaction. After all, if you were away for 3 months would you really want to download nearly 100,000 messages? The needs of the user needs to be balanced against the needs of not over burdening the network. The SUS is currently configured very much like OE's NNTP reader to get the most recent x number of messages. It will also compare topic lists to ensure it hasn't missed any any posts in more quiet rooms. Even so, this is still one area we would like to improve.

    "Changes to the forum name or description are not downloaded" Issue
    Symptoms: The SUS does not receive any changes to the forum name or description.
    Response: This is a minor issue and will be resolved up at some point. If you refresh your subscriptions list at any point after a change, the new details are collected.

    "I have been given access to a new room but the topics are not downloaded" Issue
    Symptoms: If an administrator grants you access to a new room (or a private room is made universally public), the rooms contents do not appear in SUS.
    Response: For security, the server does not send topics or messages you do not have permissions to read to the client. However, should you get access to that particular room at a later point, the SUS does not automatically collect the newly visible topics. As a work around for now, you must goto Community > Get More > Topics.

    "Miscellaneous IE" External Failures
    Symptoms: Miscellaneous Internet Explorer failings.
    Response: There are numerous bugs in the SUS, which are in fact problems related to IE. The SUS uses an embedded version of IE straight from the OS. The problems are wide and varied and often depend how stable IE is on a system, although there can often be some difference between using IE normally and the embedded IE in SUS. Some of the more common failings may be added here later.

    "Local Search" Limitation
    Symptoms: The SUS's Local Search function is ineffective.
    Response: The local search function was introduced primarily for offline use, when you are stuck without any other means to search. Use the online browser based search system for all serious searches. The one built into the SUS can only search the files it has downloaded, and only supports single keyword or phrase matching.

    "All or many posts marked as unread by SUS" Non-Bug
    Symptoms: When starting the SUS and doing a post/download for the first time, all my previously read messages are suddenly unread.
    Response: This is not a bug. It is most likely because you did not properly exit the SUS previously without following the advice given by the warning messages. It is more likely to occur if you participate in the forum from multiple clients.

    "Stuff Does Not Update" Non Bug
    Symptoms: The SUS seems to be running outdated profile data, donator information, or other details.
    Response: This is not a bug. The SUS does not download all data the moment it changes, otherwise it would constantly be downloading somebodies profile just to get their new postcount! Instead, it gets them at intervals which maybe spaced between a few hours to a couple of days. You can bypass this process by clicking "Get More Profile Data".

    "Avatar Not Shown" Non-Bug
    Symptoms: The SUS does not show my Avatar or other peoples avatars.
    Response: This is not a bug. It is almost certainly because the avatars in question are Remote Avatars (i.e. not available on the ftlog servers). You can enable them via Community - Local Settings. They are turned off by default because they may be excessivly large or invariably the remote servers may be down causing a delay in the post/download process.

    "My SUS-created WUS session logs out" Non-Bug
    Symptoms: When I enter the WUS from the SUS, my session does not last very long and I am logged out.
    Response: For security, the default state of the automated WUS login from SUS clients is to have "Remember Me" disabled.

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