Fun with FilePlanet

Wed, Jun 6th, 2001 | 10:53pm

I decided I was going to go try out this so called new File Planet thing. I hadn't been there yet since it's latest debut, and I wasn't really sure what to expect. I wasn't expecting much, and I didn't get it.

I arrive, yay, flash in the title ... that's always good. What should I try downloading? Ooh, I know. The Counterstrike 1.1 Win32 client. Why not? It's certainly popular.

click ... click ... what? I have to register? And log in? Well, that's lovely. their stats and user tracking must be very important to them. I grudgingly accept, and press their conveniently located "Click Here to Log In" link.
Page cannot be displayed.
Reload.
Page cannot be displayed.
Back.
Click link again.
Page cannot be displayed.
Back.
Click link again.
Page cannot be displayed.
Nice to know that they want to force a universal Gamespy ID on me to save me time. So, a little investigation further and I've found roundabout way to the signin page through the faq at www.gamespyid.com.

They want my fucking BIRTHDATE?

Fine. They'll get one. Not necessarily true, of course, but they'll get something.
E-mail: I put my old address I never check. I can't think of a single person I would want to talk to who would get my e-mail address through Gamespy ID.
Profile Name: Well, that's not hard. But ooh, what's this? A link to their free Naminat0r! Spelled with a 0! Don't we all need more people with leet garbage unreadable names like |>34T|-|C|_4\/\/? The first name the all-knowing Naminat0r suggested was SmegmaEncrustedFetus. Don't we need more of those, too?
Ah, first and last name. If this registration is solely for demographic purposes and is kept totally private, what difference does it make? Do they want to know how many gamers with "smegma" in their nicks have last names that start with the letter F? As far as Gamespy is now concerned, my real name is Louis Nawren. You can call me Lou.
Birthdate: Aw, that's easy. 6/6/66. Next?
ICQ Number: Hmm. how can I make this really fun? How about one of those really wierd ICQ numbers that nobody seems to have but somebody must, like 1010011010? That'll do.
Homepage: do they check this stuff? how about www.usps.gov? They won't be concerned at all about anyone who works THERE playing violent video games. Nosireebob.

There, I'm done with the required information. but oh, I can have a lot more fun!
Do I wish to be signed up for GameSpy mail? Carbon copies of all the information I don't bother reading at GSI sites to begin with? Hell, it's not going to my actual inbox, sign me UP.

Country: California's a country, innit?
Occupation: I'm feeling academic. I think I'll be an educator today!
Industry or Field of Study: Ooh, I could mark "athletic" and be a gym teacher! Nah, that might make sense. What would a academic/education person who works at the post office actually do for a living? Why, farming, of course! Put me down for "Agricultural/Landscaping."
Household Income: mm. unfortunately, it's all in dollars. Otherwise I would have put down some random figure in Imperial Drachmas.
Interests: Bars and Clubbing? That's a hobby? Well, shit, I thought being a drunkerd was something you hid from people. And what other interest goes best with drinking lots of beer? That would have to be Automotive Racing. ;D
Free Stuff! Heck yeah, I'm interested in receiving FREE money-saving offers on things that interest me. Free stuff rocks! And by free stuff, we mean spam from people who give us money and advertisements to hock on you! It's okay as long as we don't actually sell your e-mail address! Okay, so what might an alcoholic automotive repairman/postal carrier/academic education guy be interested in? Hmm, put me down for Fine Arts, Home'n'Garden, and, uh ... motorcycles. yeah.

Sign me up, brotha!

The page cannot be displayed.
Refresh.
The page cannot be displayed.
Back.
Form is now empty. I get to fill it out all over again.

RAPTURE!

After six tries I get through. I can feel my time being saved already. No more having to juggle all zero of my gamespy logins and passwords ever again! Counterstrike 1.1, here I come! Back to FilePlanet I go. I can feel how close I am to this file. I finally get to download something! And, the moment I've been waiting for ...

Ah, here we are. The page where I get to choose where I want to download my file from. And ... OMFG! What's this? 20 mirrors listed? And they aren't all in Texas! Have they suddenly dragged up 20 mirrors as part of the "New Fileplanet" deal?

Oh, yeah ... this is Counterstrike 1.1's mirror list. curses. Just out of curiousity I try to start the download anyway from some place called ftp.guerro.com. (that's spanish for war, you know. clever.)
Page cannot be displayed.
Yeah, okay, so I'll try another one.
Page cannot be displayed.
another?
Page cannot be displayed.
one in England?
Page cannot be displayed.
one in Australia?
Page cannot be displayed.
Okay, Gamespy. You leave me no choice. I press the link to FilePlanet FTP.

There are currently 892 People In Line
Estimated wait before your download starts:
27 minutes

JOY!

According to the nazis, der, I mean Gamespy people,

We call it the FilePlanet File Delivery System (FFDS). It's something unique on the Internet that's designed to help you get your files from FilePlanet instead of getting a "page not found" error.

Dear god, not being able to load a page? We wouldn't want that to happen.

Actually, what the system does is detect when you're trying to connect to a FTP server (the machines we use to serve you files) that's full of other people who are also trying to download files. It then puts you in a line, or queue, so that you can wait your turn instead of not being able to connect at all.

Just for the record, the only time I've ever not actually been able to connect to fileplanet is either when it's down altogether (amusingly often) and now that I have to fucking wait for it.

Increasing the number of connections will not make it any easier to get files, it just means everyone gets the files a lot slower.

Here's an idea. Try some more bandwidth. Just how much money did Gamespy spend coming up with this half-assed Fileplanet File Denial System anyway?

By the day, I grow continually happier to be hosted by Fragland. Sure, we have banners too, but they're non obtrusive (have you even noticed them all the way down there?), once you connect the load times are a breeze, and best of all I can put whatever files I want wherever I want and you can download them RIGHT AWAY WHENEVER YOU WANT. If I were hosted someplace at PQ, however, I would certainly take now as an excellent opportunity to stage a very noisy and deliberate exit.

Don't forget the screenshots I posted a couple hours ago and inadvertently pushed out of the way with this rant. It had to be said. Damn the man!