Fotoalbum.hu

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Fotoalbum.hu
Fotoalbum.hu logo
Fotoalbum.hu, a Hungarian photo hosting and album managing site
Fotoalbum.hu, a Hungarian photo hosting and album managing site
URL http://fotoalbum.hu [IA] [WebCite] [archive.is]
Project status Offline
Archiving status Lost
Project source Unknown
Project tracker Unknown
IRC channel #archiveteam
Project lead Unknown

fotoalbum.hu was probably the biggest Hungarian image hosting service. Registered users could upload unlimited number of photographs, placed into albums. During its operational period between 2006 and 2015, more than 19 million photos have been uploaded into ~246,000 albums, by ~46,000 users.

The site had a crash in July 2015, and after two years of coma it was switched off probably around the end of 2017.

History

The company behind the site offers photo development service, which seems to be profitable: the company makes good profit. How much it costs to run a site with tens of terabytes of data (20 million photos must be about this amount), and how much it takes from the profit, is unknown, but the site seemed to run fine. (fotoalbum.hu also serves as an advertising place for the company: it offers its services for photos uploaded there.)

Shutdown

Crash

On 2015-06-15 everything seemed fine. Then – probably early in July – something happened and an August 1 snapshot shows the site with a single notice reading "The site is temporarily unreachable due to technical reasons. We ask for your understanding.". On September 19 a longer and quite optimistic announcement could be read:

"Dear User, Visitor,
Our site is currently unreachable due to a server issue. The uploaded images are all available. We are constantly working on restoring data and operation of fotoalbum.hu.
We ask for your understanding and patience.
The earliest expected date of the site's restarting: 2015-10-12."

Critical response

Early in July, two threads got started on GyakoriKerdesek.hu in this topic where users freaked out:

There a user suggested that fotoalbum.hu had moved to fotoalbum.eu. This is probably not true, as fotoalbum.eu is a long-existing international service, having the same style and also Hungarian interface for years. Indeed, fotoalbum.hu users' albums don't seem to be available there.

The fotoalbum.hu subdomains (users' sites with their albums) present now the web server's default page. (example (snapshot))

Signs of the end

As of October 23, the notice on the website changed to a more menacing one:

"Dear User, Visitor,
Our site is currently unreachable due to a server issue. We are constantly working on restoring data and operation of fotoalbum.hu.
You can read about the rulings for suspension/termination of the service in the General Terms and Conditions of Service here.
We ask for your understanding and patience."

(The Terms have nothing special, there is the usual "We reserve the right to change the service in any way, including suspending or cancelling the service, and also deleting users' uploaded images.", and the disclaimer of liability for such cases.)

Note that the availability of the pictures is not mentioned in the second notice, but "termination of the service" is there instead.

On or around 2015-11-25 (file modification date), the notice on fotoalbum.hu changed to the following:

"Dear fotoalbum.hu user,
An error occured with fotoalbum.hu servers' database.
Without the database, sorting and rescuing the images and identifying the corresponding users is a longer process.
We are currently working on restoring the database so that the fotoalbum.hu site can operate normally again.
All your photos are available and in safety.
If you would like to download your images uploaded to the site, please request it from our customer service (info@cewe.hu) by providing the following information:
The necessary information:
Name:
Username:
Password:
fotoalbum.hu access url:
After identifying your images we will get back to you.
We will try to fulfill your request as soon as possible.
You can read about the rulings for suspension/termination of the service in the General Terms and Conditions of Service here.
We ask for your understanding and patience.
CEWE Hungary Ltd."

Contact attempts

user:bzc6p contacted the owner CEWE Kft. in February 2016 asking for cooperation, suggesting several ways of archiving the site, offering the help of Archive Team and the storage of Internet Archive, and emphasizing our will to preserve the content. Their representative, in his reply, thanked the suggestion, but said they were unable (or unwilling) to (let us) archive the content of fotoalbum.hu "in such a way". (Expressions in parantheses are there because the phrasing of the reply was ambiguous.)

"Nem áll módunkban a Fotoalbum.hu tartalmának ilyen módon történő archiválása."

On 2016-03-07, a user reported that she successfully contacted info@fotoalbum.hu and also received her images (except ones from year 2015). She was, however, asked to download her archive latest until 2016-04-19.

The end

The last Wayback Machine capture on 2017-09-24 shows a little change in the notice: there is a deadline of 2017-12-20 given for contacting the Customer Service for stuck images.

This suggests that the final switchoff of the website and the deletion of nearly 20 million photos happened in the end of 2017.

Site structure

Uploading to the site needs registration. It seems that photos can be uploaded only into albums, so creating at least one album is also necessary. The user can set the availability of their albums: public, password protected, or private.

User pages: <USERNAME>.fotoalbum.hu

Album pages: <ALBUMNAME>.<USERNAME>.fotoalbum.hu

Image pages (with reduced sized photo): <ALBUMNAME>.<USERNAME>.fotoalbum.hu/viewpicture/pictureid/<PICTUREID>

Image pages (with full sized photo): <ALBUMNAME>.<USERNAME>.fotoalbum.hu/viewlarge/pictureid/<PICTUREID>

Reduced sized photo: static.fotoalbum.hu/picturepreview/<YYYY>/<MM>-<DD>/<USERNAME>/<FILENAME>.<EXT>

Full sized photo: static.fotoalbum.hu/picturezoom/<YYYY>/<MM>-<DD>/<USERNAME>/<FILENAME>.<EXT>

Where USERNAME, ALBUMNAME are ASCII alphanumeric; YYYY, MM, DD are date elements like in 2014-12-19; PICTUREID is a number which doesn't seem to be regular (incremental) for either a user or globally; FILENAME is an inner filename, maybe name of the original, postfixed with another number; <EXT> is its extension.

The site doesn't provide full index of the pictures, nor does allow to browse everything. However, it lists a huge lot of tags (really a lot, maybe all?), where all belonging pictures can be browsed (e.g. http://www.fotoalbum.hu/tags/2006&pageid=30, pageid can be changed). (But not all pictures have tags!) There is also a category list, so albums belonging to a specific category can be browsed similarly. From these all, a fair amount of pictures and albums could be discovered if necessary. It's uncertain if everything. (It depends: if every album must be given a category, and every category is listed, then yes. Possibly this is the case, because there are a lot of categories, and also one called "Everything else".)

Archives

Minimal amount (~45,000 URLs) in the Wayback Machine.

     Hungarian websites     
Blogging Blog.hu  · Blogger.hu  · reblog.hu  · xfree.hu  · cafeblog.hu  · Defunct ones: Blogter  · Freeblog
Social networks myVIP  · Baratikor.com  · network.hu  · Defunct ones: iWiW  · hotdog.hu  · Mommo  · privi.hu
Webhosting ATW  · Ingyenweb  · Freeweb  · Ultraweb  · ini.hu  · ininet.hu  · G-Portál  · uCoz  · eOldal  · ewk  · 5mp.eu  · mindenkilapja  · Webnode  · Defunct ones: Extra  · tar.hu
Forums, message boards* Index  · SG  · Nők Lapja Cafe  · Hoxa
Video hosting Indavideó  · Videa  · xfree.hu  · videok.hu  · Defunct: videoplayer.hu
Image hosting Indafotó  · pics.coldline.hu  · kepfeltoltes.eu  · xfree.hu  · GTF Képhost  · fotozz.hu  · Kepkezelo.com  · darkweb.hu  · fos.hu  · Defunct ones: Fotoalbum.hu  · Kepfeltoltes.hu  · Kephost.com  · kep.tar.hu  · noob.hu  · PSharing (a.k.a. ivPicture)  · Kephost.hu  · keptarad.hu
Questions and Answers gyakorikerdesek.hu  · tudjatok.hu
File sharing data.hu  · toldacuccot.hu  · fileposta.hu  · Defunct ones: hellshare.hu  · addat.hu
Document sharing doksi.hu  · Docplayer
Fun* keptelenseg.hu  · csubakka.hu  · legalja.hu  · NSFW: napiszar.com  · napiszar.hu  · Defunct: Demotiváló  · nemkutya.com  · trollfesz.cc  · gumicsizma.hu  · szanalmas.hu  · NSFW: netszar.com  · napiszar.org
Other News+C  · gyertyalang.hu  · Volán websites
Listing major sites rich in user content. Feel free to expand if something's been left out.
*: just a few larger ones.

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