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01 May 10 12:27
Date Joined: 22 May 02
| Topic/replies: 14,208 | Blogger: Betfair Customer Services's blog
Forum Maintenance Tuesday May 4th to Wednesday May 5th 2010

Migration of the Betfair Forum to a new platform

The Betfair Forum will be undergoing maintenance from approximately 9:00 am BST on Tuesday, May 4th to 1:00 pm BST on Wednesday, May 5th. During this system maintenance, the Betfair Forum will be migrated to a new platform. The current forum platform is running on software that is no longer supported by the company that supplies it, which could potentially lead to performance problems and bugs. The move to a new forum platform will ensure we are providing the best possible experience for our forum users, as well as enable us to offer new features in the future.

During this maintenance period, the Betfair Forum will be available for reading and posting, but any posts made during the maintenance period will not appear after the end of the maintenance period.

While we have tested the new forum extensively, any migration of this sort will likely have some issues that come up in the first few days. If issues do arise, we will work to resolve the issues as quickly as possible. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this transition.

Please read the FAQs below for more information on what is happening.

Will the new forum look different from the existing forums? Will the features be the same?
The new forum will look much like the current forums and will have the same features. There are a few differences that you will notice. First off, the Terms & Conditions will no longer appear when you first enter the forum. This information is still accessible in the left hand menu of the forum.
Another change relates to the rules for reading forum posts.

In the current forum, you can only read posts if you are logged into your Betfair account. In the new forum, you will be able to read all posts without logging in. You will still need to log into your Betfair account if you wish to post to the forum.

Why are you migrating to a new forum platform?
The existing forum platform software is outdated and is no longer supported by the company that created it. If no action is taken, this old software will experience performance problems and bugs that will impact your experience in the forums.

By migrating to a new forum platform, our software will be supported and updated over time to ensure the best possible user experience. The new forum software will also enable us to add new features and functionality to the forums.

Will the forum be available during the migration? How long will the migration last?
Yes, the forum will be available during the migration. We currently anticipate that the migration will take approximately 28 hours from 9:00 am on May 4th to 1:00 pm on May 5th. Due to the large volume of data being migrated, it is difficult to predict the actual time needed.

The announcement mentions that posts made during the migration will not be saved. What does that mean?
In order to migrate the data from the existing forum platform to the new forum platform, we need to pick a cut-off time, then grab the forum content up to that cut-off and migrate it over to the new platform. Since the migration is expected to take about 28 hours, any posts made during that 28 hour window of time will not appear on the new forum platform once the migration is complete.
You will still be able to post to the forums during the 28 hour window, but none of the posts or comments during that period will be retained. We decided this was a better option than making the forum unavailable completely for that length of time.

Will I have to create a new forum chat name after the migration?
No, customers chat names and date joined information will be migrated over.

Will all of the existing discussion posts and comments be migrated to the new forum platform?
We will migrate all threads with activity in the last 6 months. This means that we will migrate threads created in the last 6 months, as well as all threads that have been posted to in the last 6 months. However, due to the volume of threads and nature of the content on the Horse Racing forum, we will only be migrating threads that have been posted to in the last month.

Will the migration impact unofficial third-party forum search tools?
We are aware that some customers use search tools built by third parties to search the forum. These will no longer function after the migration to the new forum platform. We have contacted the owners of those search tools to let them know this will be the case.

The announcement mentions that the new platform will enable Betfair to offer new features, what does this mean?
The new forum platform is capable of offering many new features. Rather than making a lot of changes to the current forum experience, Betfair is working on a new beta version of the forum to run in parallel, enabling us to test and gather feedback on new features. These features will include some of the things forum members have requested in the past, such as search functionality and the ability to report abusive content. The beta version of the forum will also allow us to gather feedback from customers on new layout, design and features popular in other forums.
The beta forum will exist alongside the main forum and will contain the same posts & content as the main forum site. Posts from the beta will appear in the main site and vice versa. Customers who participate in the beta programme will have the choice to try the beta, or return to the main forum site.
Since the beta forum will be a separate site, the beta will have no impact on the main forum. Forum users will be able to continue to use the main forum as they would before the creation of the beta forum.
We are looking to launch the beta in the coming weeks. When it does launch, we will start by inviting a limited number of forum users to participate. Over time we will expand the beta and eventually open the beta up to all forum users. We will have more information on this in the future.

How can I participate in the beta?
When it launches, the first phase of the beta will be by invitation only. We will select a small number of our most active forumites to participate. The second phase of the beta will include a larger number of customers who have indicated interest in the participating. The final phase of the beta will be open to everyone.

We have not yet determined the timing of each of these phases. We will have more information on how to indicate your interest in the beta in the future.

How do I give feedback on the new Forum?
Please use the Site Feedback section of the Forum to provide us with your feedback. While we may not respond directly to the comments, they will be read. Your views and opinions are important to us.

How will you communicate on the progress of the migration?
As we expect the forum to be available for most, if not all, of the migration, we will communicate on the status and any known issues via the Service section of the Forum. If this is not possible for any reason, you will be able to find updates here:

Will I be able to bet during the Forum maintenance?

We expect all betting products to be fully available during the maintenance and for all other parts of the site to remain unaffected. When the final step in the switch from the old forum platform to the new forum platform is taken, customers using the forum may have to log in again to post.
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