Moving directories

The old management of, who plans to discontinue in the next month, has recommended that a group wishing to continue this service move to dreamhost. I believe that I understand that could continue to be used after setting up with dreamhost. However, there are about 3000 web pages and 4000 users (only about 10% active) attached to this domain. How would one move all this material under dreamhost? Also, they presently have web mail set up using Neomail. How would this change? Would the user addresses remain the same? Also, once running there are a lot of inactive user names that would need to be deleted. Also, many of the web pages now linked or in the system would need to be edited or removed. Is this possible?

Just to be clear, this is a customer-to-customer forum.

It sounds like a big ambitious undertaking since there are 4000 user accounts. Just wanted to throw out my observations:

  1. I think all the email addresses would have to change because they’d be at a different domain, right? It sounds like they wouldn’t get to keep an address…
  2. In order to allow users to manage their own pages, you’d need 400-4000 user accounts, right?
  3. It’s not clear what the best course of action is for the page content itself. It sounds like it’s all static content, so ftp’ing the content from the tfn servers to dreamhost would be straighforward. It’s the setup of user accounts and chown’ing that sounds time consuming.
  4. What about all the links to organizations with their own domains? Are those all hosted at tfn or are those just links to sites hosted elsewhere?

Would this group continue to be a 501©3 non-profit?

I’m no expert at an undertaking of this type but wanted to get some helpful thoughts out there… It does sound like a job big enough to warrant getting some professional help.

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I see no feasible way to run a site of that size on shared hosting; because of the load having so many users would likely bring (never mind that even the highest level plan with DreamHost is capped at 750 users), I find it unlikely that any shared host would be willing to take on the burden of hosting a site that size. Even if only 10% of the 4000 accounts are active, that’s still a potentially huge use of server resources. What you probably want is a dedicated host—it appears that TFN presently uses RackForce, but there are many dedicated hosts out there.
Very little to do with either emus or farmers!

The current page at seems to be telling people that they are shutting down at the end of the month, current users should move their sites/email away to places like Yahoo… and that the domain name will remain their property.

That doesn’t seem to match up with what you’re saying, so I’d probably check into that more before putting too much effort into setting anything up.

Especially since it’s a 3 letter domain. Unless you’re shelling out a lot of money, I probably wouldn’t count on that being included.

I’d say that if you have to get your own domain, you’re basically starting from scratch, since no one would get to keep their current email or web addresses.

Sounds like a hassle. I’m not sure what you’d get out of the deal, but you might just be better off starting your own thing. Maybe you could get them to link to you and refer users to you, instead of Yahoo & Google.

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Thanks to the responders. The information that only 750 users can be accomodated and the fact that even with many known inactive, we still have 3360 that need to be transferred before the present server contract runs out led us to seek another server. We are thus going with, a local provider.

We were lucky to find a company willing to undertake this task at little cost: We are now in the process of moving the files. Thanks for your input.