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michaelczhang
Earlier today, we experienced a hardware issue with a server that housed only the avatar images of accounts. Unfortunately these profile icon images were lost, and will have to be re-uploaded.

Previously we were also storing a significant number of photographs on this server, but had transfered them to Amazon storage a month ago, so no photographs or data aside from profile images were lost.

This event suggests we're making the right decision in moving our data from single servers we manage ourselves to Amazon's professional managed and protected data storage. We are almost done transferring all photographs on the server over to Amazon, and we will not be relying on our own servers for image storage at all.

We apologize for the inconvenience of having to re-upload your avatar images. We will be switching our avatar storage to Amazon as well to ensure this doesn't happen again.
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revenant
Thanks for the explanation. This problem is another in a surprisingly long list of recent hiccups (mislaid images, log-in issues, spamming, etc.). It's not up to your usual standard of fast response / nearly faultless performance and I imagine it must be due to the transfer. I also hope it's the last for while. Please rap Amazon's knuckles for me and tell them to hurry up with the book deliveries while they're at it.
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michaelczhang
We will be working on addressing all of these issues in the coming days. What's the problem with mislaid images?
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Jarvo
My new avatar is working except on my homepage. Is this what other people have as well now?
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lyency
ridiculous... are you refunding people who payed you for the service that is worst and worst?
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michaelczhang
@Jarvo: Your avatar shows up everywhere for me. Email me at michael@photoblog.com if you're still seeing this issue...
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Jarvo
Thanks Michael, I guess it must have been an issue with my computer - I did a restart and the pic came up first time. Thanks for your offer of help
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mystic1
Call me dum but is the avatar my profile picture? Because if thats the case mine is not working
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girafferacing
Yes, you're absolutely right! If I've understood things correctly they all went missing in the transfer to Amazon so we've got to replace our profile pictures ourselves. I've done that with mine which is why I'm now being represented by my cat!
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michaelczhang
Yeah, you're correct in that by avatar we mean profile picture. However, it wasn't a mistake or problem with transferring that caused the images to go missing, but rather the server that housed the avatars had a failure.
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fotomike
is anything else going to go wrong geez. its like every month theres a problem
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matteveryday365
"Unfortunately these profile icon images were lost, and will have to be re-uploaded."

Re-uploaded by whom? By photoblog via a backup? Or are you stating that each user needs to re-upload their profile pic?
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michaelczhang
@matteveryday365: cathyB is right. Members will need to upload their avatars again. Sorry.
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tuliplucy
I was just about to purchase the photoblog Pro version but I do realize issues arises one after another... hmm
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michaelczhang
@dhulsmeyer: Thanks =)
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girafferacing
I'd like to echo what dhulsmeyer said. I think the cost of pro membership on PB is fantastic value - less than the cost of one cappuccino a month! Yes, there have been a few problems recently but the two Michaels have obviously been putting things into place to make sure our data is safe in the long run and I have every confidence these growing pains will ease soon. Thanks Michaels for all you do.
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revenant
Actually, all the recent bitching (including my own) is a sign that service at PB works so well on the whole that when an occasional FUBAR occurs we're devastated. It's worth remembering that transitions are never easy and that we do get excellent value for money. I hope that people considering the upgrade are not put off by what is, after all, a very rare occurrence.
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JustGarden
Is it necessary to have one-third of the home page devoted to Photoblog news? The "Feature Page" photo is stuck below it like an afterthought. This site is about photography, let's devote more homepage space to just that!! We don't need a running epistle on lost photo data, lost avatars, etc. Provide a "link" to an "issues page" and a "forum page".
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djnana
I don't have a single complaint about Photoblog. I've used the Internet constantly in my job for 20 years and I think PB is one of the best products out there! How often do we get so much joy for so little imposition? Every site has it's problems now and again, but I think the Mikes take awfully good care of us and our "works of art"!
And, if you can upload your avatar (profile pic) once, surely it would take less time to do it again than to write a long forum letter! I'm a faithful follower, PB!
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michaelczhang
@JustGarden: We try to have important news items communicated to members prominently for a finite amount of time to make sure everyone knows what's going on. When there's nothing important to communicate, the featured photograph will be the first item on the right column =)

@everyone else: thanks a lot of for your support and encouraging words. It definitely motivates us to work harder to improve the quality of this service. As always, if you ever need anything, email me directly at michael@photoblog.com!
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GKorts
Finally there is an advantage in this lost avatar image story. I could clear my friends list to an actual state just browsing all the question marks
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