Forum Rules and Etiquette

Our mission ...

This forum is part of our mission to promote the preservation of vintage computers through education and outreach. (In real life we also run events and have a museum.) We encourage you to join us, participate, share your knowledge, and enjoy.

This forum has been around in this format for over 15 years. These rules and guidelines help us maintain a healthy and active community, and we moderate the forum to keep things on track. Please familiarize yourself with these rules and guidelines.

Rule 1: Remain civil and respectful

There are several hundred people who actively participate here. People come from all different backgrounds and will have different ways of seeing things. You will not agree with everything you read here. Back-and-forth discussions are fine but do not cross the line into rude or disrespectful behavior.

Conduct yourself as you would at any other place where people come together in person to discuss their hobby. If you wouldn't say something to somebody in person, then you probably should not be writing it here.

This should be obvious but, just in case: profanity, threats, slurs against any group (sexual, racial, gender, etc.) will not be tolerated.

Rule 2: Stay close to the original topic being discussed
  • If you are starting a new thread choose a reasonable sub-forum to start your thread. (If you choose incorrectly don't worry, we can fix that.)
  • If you are responding to a thread, stay on topic - the original poster was trying to achieve something. You can always start a new thread instead of potentially "hijacking" an existing thread.

Rule 3: Contribute something meaningful

To put things in engineering terms, we value a high signal to noise ratio. Coming here should not be a waste of time.
  • This is not a chat room. If you are taking less than 30 seconds to make a post then you are probably doing something wrong. A post should be on topic, clear, and contribute something meaningful to the discussion. If people read your posts and feel that their time as been wasted, they will stop reading your posts. Worse yet, they will stop visiting and we'll lose their experience and contributions.
  • Do not bump threads.
  • Do not "necro-post" unless you are following up to a specific person on a specific thread. And even then, that person may have moved on. Just start a new thread for your related topic.
  • Use the Private Message system for posts that are targeted at a specific person.

Rule 4: "PM Sent!" messages (or, how to use the Private Message system)

This forum has a private message feature that we want people to use for messages that are not of general interest to other members.

In short, if you are going to reply to a thread and that reply is targeted to a specific individual and not of interest to anybody else (either now or in the future) then send a private message instead.

Here are some obvious examples of when you should not reply to a thread and use the PM system instead:
  • "PM Sent!": Do not tell the rest of us that you sent a PM ... the forum software will tell the other person that they have a PM waiting.
  • "How much is shipping to ....": This is a very specific and directed question that is not of interest to anybody else.

Why do we have this policy? Sending a "PM Sent!" type message basically wastes everybody else's time by making them having to scroll past a post in a thread that looks to be updated, when the update is not meaningful. And the person you are sending the PM to will be notified by the forum software that they have a message waiting for them. Look up at the top near the right edge where it says 'Notifications' ... if you have a PM waiting, it will tell you there.

Rule 5: Copyright and other legal issues

We are here to discuss vintage computing, so discussing software, books, and other intellectual property that is on-topic is fine. We don't want people using these forums to discuss or enable copyright violations or other things that are against the law; whether you agree with the law or not is irrelevant. Do not use our resources for something that is legally or morally questionable.

Our discussions here generally fall under "fair use." Telling people how to pirate a software title is an example of something that is not allowable here.

Reporting problematic posts

If you see spam, a wildly off-topic post, or something abusive or illegal please report the thread by clicking on the "Report Post" icon. (It looks like an exclamation point in a triangle and it is available under every post.) This send a notification to all of the moderators, so somebody will see it and deal with it.

If you are unsure you may consider sending a private message to a moderator instead.

New user moderation

New users are directly moderated so that we can weed spammers out early. This means that for your first 10 posts you will have some delay before they are seen. We understand this can be disruptive to the flow of conversation and we try to keep up with our new user moderation duties to avoid undue inconvenience. Please do not make duplicate posts, extra posts to bump your post count, or ask the moderators to expedite this process; 10 moderated posts will go by quickly.

New users also have a smaller personal message inbox limit and are rate limited when sending PMs to other users.

Other suggestions
  • Use Google, books, or other definitive sources. There is a lot of information out there.
  • Don't make people guess at what you are trying to say; we are not mind readers. Be clear and concise.
  • Spelling and grammar are not rated, but they do make a post easier to read.
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Cookie Monster used to be a great cookie manager...

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    Cookie Monster used to be a great cookie manager...

    I've been using Cookie Monster from Ampsoft for a while and it has shown itself to be just what the doctor ordered, until lately and thanks to MicroSloth and Ampsoft. It allows for selective deletion/retention of cookies in all major browsers. Lately, however, MS has sent out a couple of Cumulative Security Updates that have effectively rendered Cookie Monster useless for IE cookies. They did this by changing the cookie file name format for IE cookies. Ampsoft has not provided any update for this issue and has not even replied to any email requests at all. I have not been able to find any suitable replacement for Cookie Monster and so my only solution has been to uninstall the offending patches that cause the problem. The first was on Aug.11 and is referenced in MS11-057 or KB2599049 and the most recent was today, referenced in MS11-081 or KB2586488.

    Does anyone know of a suitable replacement for Cookie Monster. I haven't found one so far and I'm getting tired of having to rollback patches to keep this program working. I'm quite sure MS isn't done forcing this file name format update on us.
    PM me if you're looking for 3½" or 5¼" floppy disks. EMail “ ” For everything else, Take Another Step

    I just kind of go with the "don't use Internet Explorer" approach...
    Computers: Amiga 1200, DEC VAXStation 4000/60, DEC MicroPDP-11/73
    Synthesizers: Roland JX-10/SH-09/MT-32/D-50, Yamaha DX7-II/V50/TX7/TG33/FB-01, Korg MS-20 Mini/ARP Odyssey/DW-8000/X5DR, Ensoniq SQ-80, E-mu Proteus/2, Moog Satellite, Oberheim SEM
    "'Legacy code' often differs from its suggested alternative by actually working and scaling." - Bjarne Stroustrup


      I used to go with that -- but I need it to maintain compatibility with some sites and whatnot. So, that's no longer an option, unfortunately.
      PM me if you're looking for 3½" or 5¼" floppy disks. EMail “ ” For everything else, Take Another Step


        any REPUTABLE site will work perfectly with Chrome/Firefox. I havent used IE since about 2000.
        It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.


          I run into very, very, very few sites that absolutely require IE anymore. If they require IE I just don't use them.

          Firefox has a great option to not accept 3rd party cookies, also pretty flexible history deletion options. You can also use things like noscript and RequestPolicy.

          You can also use IE Tab + so you can open an IE only page in Firefox if needed.
          Last edited by mikerm; October 12, 2011, 03:46 PM.
          An equal opportunity collector.


            Mikeerm, luckybob, you've missed the point, entirely.

            I'm talking about web developement.

            Take a look at the browser stats I've included below from one of the sites I'm responsible for maintaining and I'm positive you'll see why *I* need to verify/monitor sites with IE!


            I think even you'll understand that when over 50% of your sites' visitors are using IE to view your websites that it would be utterly incompetent to not validate those sites with IE.

            Now, hopefully we can drop this portion of the thread and hopefully get back to the matter at hand ..... which happens to be an intelligent discussion on handling the new cookie file format in IE.
            PM me if you're looking for 3½" or 5¼" floppy disks. EMail “ ” For everything else, Take Another Step


              you never mentioned web dev. until NOW. I believe that everyone that read your post was under the assumption that you use IE and cookie monster at home and are looking for an update for your personal machine. I also did not want to insinuate that NOBODY uses IE anymore, just that they SHOULDN'T. And if you are using IE just for compatibility, why do you care about cookies, unless its your main browser? I use a virtural machine running XP for browsing websites that may infect my computer (and the occasional non 64bit compatible program)
              It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.


                Originally posted by luckybob View Post
                I also did not want to insinuate that NOBODY uses IE anymore, just that they SHOULDN'T.
                Are you saying that people aren't free to choose and use whatever they so desire?

                Does everyone need to do everything your way or be told that they are wrong?

                Sorry, but that doesn't sound like an adult point of view.
                PM me if you're looking for 3½" or 5¼" floppy disks. EMail “ ” For everything else, Take Another Step


                  Guys, settle down ... this isn't worth getting into a tussle over.

                  Like it or not there is a lot of IE out there, and a lot of unenlightened web sites that still require it.



                    So be it.

                    There's still another tidbit to be gleaned here.

                    If you look at the stats chart above you'll notice that IE 6 tops the list. This is what most European and Russian based forum spammers and hackers use. I'm not quite sure it's their browser of choice but it's what they mostly use. It's the bad guys' signature.
                    PM me if you're looking for 3½" or 5¼" floppy disks. EMail “ ” For everything else, Take Another Step


                      For what it is worth, I am also a web developer and I spend 95% of my time in MSIE. I usually check validity in Firefox, Chrome etc at the end of production. The reason for my browser choice is that our customers and users still to most part are MSIE users, no matter if other people consider our customers sinful or not.

                      Stone, I haven't noticed the new cookie format but then again I don't manage my cookies in a particular way.
                      Anders Carlsson


                        Anders, the old format was, i.e., anders@vintage-computer[2].txt.

                        The new format is an (8 character filename).txt that looks like this..... PTFQ99KJ.txt, all caps with numerals.

                        My first post in this thread references the Security Bulletins/Updates that install this change of formats, among other changes. It took me a little over a month after its initial implementation to actually understand why Cookie Monster was no longer listing the IE cookies.

                        I manage my cookies because I refuse to just delete them en masse, like the so-called experts would have you do. There's too much valuable, stored information in some of them that I don't feel like entering manually each time I visit certain sites. And, if you don't delete the other, useless cookies, over time they slow the browser down.
                        Last edited by Stone; October 13, 2011, 03:56 AM.
                        PM me if you're looking for 3½" or 5¼" floppy disks. EMail “ ” For everything else, Take Another Step