BookMooch down

July 1, 2009

I’m having trouble with the main hard drive that crashed at 3am, and I’m working on it now.

I don’t yet know when it will be back up. I can’t copy the data off the drive at the moment, so I’m going down to the machine room to take the drive out, swap it for a spare, and see if I can read the data off from home.

BookMooch may be down a few days because of this problem. I’d rather try extra hard to get all the data off, so there isn’t any data loss from the previous backup, since I know that causes a lot of hardship for people.

Update at 5pm:

I have managed to copy the data off the drive, but there is one “drive block” that “went bad”. I have a program I wrote two years ago that will check each row in the database to make sure it’s ok, and if it isn’t, will use the backup to restore it. That might take a long time (hours and hours), and I will be up overnight to watch it, with the hope of getting things back up tomorrow morning.

Update at 7am:

BookMooch is now back up, and there doesn’t seem to be any data loss. I’m going to write a separate blog entry about it.


80 Responses to “BookMooch down”

  1. Michelle said

    Sorry for your troubles, John. We appreciate all that you do for Bookmooch. Thanks for thinking of the best way to handle things. I’ll miss BM today, but will hope for the best πŸ™‚

    • Nancy Abbott said

      I just recently joined and love this site. So sorry for the troubles John-I miss the site already.Hope everything works out okay!

  2. Pat said

    Sorry to hear about the crash. It always happens at the most inconvenient time!

    What a great service you have! We just discovered the site and have 5 books going out and 2 coming in since signing up yesterday.

    Much luck for a speedy “recovery”.

  3. Brian said

    That stinks, John. Also like Michelle said, we appreciate that you do all of this for us as a community =) If you need any donations for a new hard drive, don’t be afraid to ask!

  4. Sharon said

    Sorry to hear about the trouble. The joys of computers, huh?! Good luck with getting it up and running again.

  5. berto said

    Best of luck to you in your efforts to get things back in order. Out of curiousity how frequent are the backups?

    What will I do between tasks if I can’t obsessively refresh my wishlist all day looking for goodies? πŸ˜€

  6. Chris said

    Sounds like a lot of work. I hope and pray it isn’t as hard as it sounds. We appreciate all your hard work.

  7. Diane Lapierre said

    I ditto what Michelle said. I love this site and appreciate all the work it takes to run it.


  8. Daniel Vassily said

    Thanks for all your hard work John. You are appreciated by so many of us. I cannot thank you enough for Bookmooch.


  9. Rob said

    Best of luck in getting this up and running. It’s a great site and I recommend it to everyone I know that reads. Thanks for all that you do!

  10. Steph said

    Thanks for all the work you do for this community!

  11. Kathleen said

    Courage,John! Thousands of desperate people are looking to our hero to lead us through this bleakest of times!

  12. Abi said

    What everyone else said. I only came across the site a week or so ago and I’m absolutely addicted. It’s fab.

    Fingers crossed for a successful repair.

  13. James said

    Best of luck with the fix!

  14. Jessica said

    John, I don’t think many people realize how much work goes into your keeping Bookmooch up and running. It certainly took me a while. But anyway, I for one wish to second everybody up here and thank you. Bookmooch is one AMAZING thing you created and put into place and has delighted me enormously ever since I joined. Thank you for all the hard work. It’s very appreciated, although we might fail to say so often enough (at least, I don’t write it as often as I think it!!!!)

  15. Kellie said

    Love the website. What to do with my time now… Perhaps I should read…

  16. Jon said

    Since I’m an IT geek, the first thing that popped into my head when I read your blog was “when was the last backup run and where is it?” Preferably within the last 24 hours and stored somewhere other than the hard drive that failed.

    Best of luck, John. I know from personal experience how painful this is going to be for you.

  17. Sherecita said

    Hey! Sorry to hear that. No worries though, we will be patient!

    Best of luck!

  18. Mark Williams said

    There is a daily back-up Jon.

    There has not been any significant loss of data on the system since the Fall of 2007.

    Mark W
    Bookmooch Team

    • Jacquie said

      Another vote for thanks for all your hard work.
      Once the system is back up, may I please be first in line to mooch something on “the Fall of 2007”? My knowledge of this important event in modern history is rather scanty.

      • Andrew said

        It was a time of great lamentation, with much wailing and gnashing of teeth. For some of us, the memory is still too painful to relive.

  19. Marian said


    Thanks for everything you do! I love this site.

  20. Joel Taliaferro said

    I appreciate what you do to keep this site running. Thanks!

  21. Maria said

    Thanks for your work, John!

  22. Sorry about that. I hope you’ll find the solution (I’m no techie) Courage!

  23. Mimsy said

    Oh, ouch… Like a previous commenter, I’m also a complete computer geek (working as one as well), and can only imagine the stress and frustration you’re going through on your end.

    Take your time.. I’d rather you took five days to get back up and got it all working from the start, than have it back up in 24 hours, but not be stable and accurate.

    Thanks, both you and Mark and the rest of the team, for maintaining this site. I love it!

  24. I thought it was just me having problems. Good luck, and I’m with you, John, take your time to make sure all the info’s there and correct. I’m sure we all have stacks and stacks of books to keep us busy. :]

    Thanks for what you do.

  25. knittingnurse said

    John, you are an amazing person for working so hard at keeping this site up and running. I greatly appreciate all the effort, sweat and tears that are involved.

  26. Jodiu said

    John — I just signed up for Bookmooch last week and am impressed by the community it creates. Thanks for working so hard to make our lives more sustainable. Best of luck! I wish I could bring you a coffee (or ice cream!) to help you along.

  27. Darcie said

    I’m sorry that the system is down! Thank you so much for everything you do to keep the site running for us!

  28. I don’t realize the extent of my bookmooch addiction until something like this happens. I hope things go smoothly for you John! Thanks for all that you do. I think I WILL go read a book!

  29. Erin said

    Thanks so much for all the hard work- I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it. And so do my co-workers, as a matter of fact. I have used some of my extra points to mooch books for them as well! Take your time & I hope the fix goes smoothly with as little stress as possible.

  30. Sianeka said

    Thanks for letting us know, John, and thank you for all of your hard work here. Good luck getting things back the way you want them — hope all gos smoothly for you.

  31. JOELLE said

    Oh, sorry about the crash !!!! Good luck getting things back again !!!!

  32. Nancy McKinney said

    Let me put my “thanks” in, too.

  33. Jeannine said

    Long Live Bookmooch!

  34. Hercules40 said

    The joys of daily backups!

    We’ll be alright… But get the site back up and running, ok?

    Let me know if I can help… Man, I want to be part of the BookMooch team!

  35. Kay said

    I hope the data downloads at home and you don’t have to spend too much of your time dealing with this problem. Many thanks for all you do, John, so quietly behind the scenes making sure everything runs well. As many others said, you don’t realise how often you check this site until it’s down.

  36. Effie said


    Get well soon, hardrive.

    Long Live Bookmooch.

  37. Lauren said

    Good luck! Thanks for all your hard work.

  38. Irene said

    Good luck, John. We all really appreciate your continuous efforts to keep BookMooch running smoothly.

  39. Claire Thomas said

    Thanks for trying to fix this and for all your hard work. Makes us all realise how essential BookMooch is for us all. Hope it doesn’t take you too much work to fix it.

  40. Ed said

    Is there a way to keep future data backups offsite like at S3 or some service like that?
    Perhaps folks at Amazon can offer up a solution to you free of charge or something.

    Best of luck.

  41. Xysea said

    Thanks for all your hard work. I’m sorry to hear about the hard drive troubles.

  42. Vagabond said

    Thanks, John and good luck!

  43. Kathleen said

    I am so sorry to hear about the crash and I hope you don’t have too many head aches trying to fix it.

    You have such a great site!!!

    Hopefully you will be able to fix it soon so that you can enjoy the 4th of July holiday in peace.

    Happy reading.


  44. wolverinex said

    Hope you manage to solve the problem asap…
    Meanwhile I’m waiting for the site to come back online so I can get the address I’m supposed to send 2 books to (and to accept the request as I didn’t manage to, when the site went down)…

  45. Amy said

    Adding my voice to the many to say thanks for all your work, John. I hope this isn’t too stressful to fix.

  46. Trudy said

    You do a great job. I feel for you, having been through these things myself. Hang in there.

  47. Uh oh. It’s contagious!

    Perhaps we’re ALL responsible for that Fall.

    Argh! Get me outa here. lol

  48. Oh, yes, and I forgot to say:

    I just found Bookmooch last week, and am already in love. Sorry about the tech problems. Thanks for all the hard work.

  49. tiwow said

    Hi John,
    Thanks for all your hard work. It is much appreciated. Good luck on retrieving the data.
    Thanks again!

  50. Susan said

    Adding my thanks to everyone else’s, John. Bookmooch has changed my life for the better in so many ways. Thank you so much for slogging thru the hard times like right now.

  51. ssly said

    I for one am going through withdrawal. I think that I was on the net this am when it went down. Best of Luck getting the problem fixed. I keep saying to myself over and over it’s just a used book It’s just a used book! Thanks for all you do John. Your the best and so is Book Mooch.

  52. Joyce said

    Wanted to add my thanks; really have come to rely on and enjoy this site. Thank you John and Mark and anyone else who might be involved in the background. Hope the site is up soon, as withdrawal really sucks.

  53. Cheryl said

    So sorry for all the stress you’re going through, Jon. Thanks for all your hard work. I’ll just have to deal with the withdrawal for a day or two or three. Hope it’s not more! πŸ˜‰

  54. Diane Lapierre said

    If would be good if we could post somewhere how this site has changed our life for the better. I’d sure like to tell how it has helped me in the short time I’ve been here. I’m going through serious withdrawal too but it is a good type of addiction.

  55. nanenj said

    Man, that sucks! I hope you’re able to recover the majority of the data and that BM isn’t gone for too long. 😦

    Good luck!

  56. Jan said

    Thank you so much for everything you do. I love the site. Hope you don’t have to spend any of the 4th of July holiday working on it.

  57. Melissa said

    So sorry you are having to deal with this, especially at 3 am. Thank you for all of your hard work!

  58. Molly said

    Good luck! Your hard work is appreciated.

  59. vandana said

    Sorry for all the troubles.. but thanks for all of your hard work – much appreciated!

  60. Schneider said

    How much would we all have to contribute to run the entire BookMooch system and database as a redundant array system?

  61. micheller said

    Thanks for all your hard work. It appreciated πŸ™‚

  62. Zara said

    I’m so sorry that Bookmooch is down 😦
    Thank you for your efforts in getting it back up online πŸ™‚

  63. Ben2K said

    I appreciate the difficulties, but how about putting a “Temporarily Out Of Service” sign up at the web address? Right now, unless someone happens on this blog (as I did), all that happens accessing the site is NOTHING.

  64. Dovile said

    Like so very often in life, you never know how much you need/love/enjoy something, untill you loose it…

    Thanks for your hard work, John, and patience dealing with this.

  65. Shay said

    Well, John, I must have known this was gonna happen, cause I printed out an entire list of all my inventory the night before it happened ! I have NEVER done that. So if you lose some of mine, it’s no big deal. I type 100 wpm and can easily put mine back in. I do hope you’re successful in your efforts for everybody else’s sake. And thanks for working so hard on it. I MISS BOOKMOOCH !!!

  66. Jim said

    Bummer-good luck with the fix.

  67. Daniel said

    Thank you for having BookMooch. We have received so many good books, and appreciate your efforts to maintain the site.

    Thanks and best of luck to get it back online!

  68. Brawley said

    As Ed said in an earlier comment, time to move this application to the cloud! Forget worrying about hardware… put it on S3, or the Google App Engine, and you won’t have to worry about it any more.

    Thanks for working so hard on this!

  69. Michelle said

    Just reading your update – OMG what a nightmare. So sorry you are having to deal with this. Please know that your hard work on the site (yours too, Mark) has made so many people so very very happy. Everyone involved in BM administration deserve medals.

  70. Mishy said

    Thank you so much John, for everything you do for the life of BM. It truly is a living thing, this community. It’s just in the hospital at the moment!!!
    Loving BM here in Australia!
    Long Live BookMooch!
    Long Live King Mooch John.

  71. fifiriri said

    bon courage pour le travail que vous Γͺtes en train de faire.


  72. Christine Gardner said

    Go John! Bookmooch has become part of my life. Thank you for your diligence and dedication!

  73. dichroic said

    Thank you so much John (and everybody else behind this great service:). You do awesome work!

  74. AlexDraven said

    Congrats on getting it back up so fast – and thank you!

  75. whitemountaingirl said

    Glad you are back up, love Bookmooch, keep up the great work. Much appreciated.

  76. Thanks John! Good job. I just checked my points, wishlist, and inventory and they’re all correct. I see no data loss on my account.

    Thank you so much for BookMooch. It has really made my life more enjoyable for the last two years. I appreciate it.

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