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  • FHM #1 - Feminist Servers: Backups, migrations, and other painful stories
    2021-03-13 11:00:00
    Published at 13 March 2021

    We invite you to an online day, hosted by Varia and facilitated by the infrastructure of Constant and Varia Broadcasts, dedicated to feminist servers.

    This work session focuses on the migration of mailing lists between the old and the new server ran by feminists involved in the Systerserver project. It opens a discussion around volunteering time, skill-sharing and technical tasks within grassroots tech communities. Autonomous feminist servers projects often operate with hardware that has to be assembled as opposed to cloud hosting, and recreational care as opposed to paid work. Maintaining infrastructures on a donation basis results in a dynamic environment where the need for backups and migrations often arises and for many different reasons: hardware failures, memory and software upgrades, making space for other projects, moving files, moving to new servers and so on.

    Location: For the public discussion at 14:30 https://stream.vvvvvvaria.org (Please refresh if you don't see the stream)
    Date: Saturday 13/03/2021
    Time: 11:00-16:00 CET

    The poster was made with a poster generator designed by Amélie Dumont https://polymorph.sh/

    The coming workshop is made up of two parts. The first part is a technical hands-on migration organized by Mara, of one or more mailing lists of anarchaserver, hersunday and femservers communities, all hosted by the systerserver project — a necessary task that will conclude the move to the new server and allow the repurposing of the old server. Participants are invited to join in by actively documenting the process together and intervening with questions and thinking through the technical problems. See below more info on the technical steps.

    In the second part of the workshop, we will talk about the connections between feminist servers and the travel path of this migration. How are different responsibilities, roles, tasks communicated among members of feminist communities? What are the difficulties of such processes and how do we deal with them? We will have a collective reflection on the frictions between the required technical tasks, skills-sharing and knowledge-transfer, which are all required to share the responsibilities collectively.

    The Feminist Hack Meetings (FHM), organised by Artemis, Angeliki and decentral1se, are a series of research meetings and workshops that explore the potentialities and imaginaries of feminist technological collectives. These gatherings aim to challenge who counts as a hacker, and what counts as hacking. The diverse activities of these gatherings will include sociopolitical discussions around technology and feminism, storytelling, prototyping and skill-sharing, as well as art experiments. We invite people, who are interested in technology and the processes of shaping it, to discuss and work together in four thematic sections (Feminist Servers, Care & Inclusivity, Speculative Fiction, Radio & Feminism).


    Στο εργαστήριο αυτό θα μιλήσουμε σχετικά με τη μετεγκατάσταση λιστών ηλεκτρονικής αλληλογραφίας μεταξύ ενός παλιού και ενός νέου διακομιστή που εκτελούνται από φεμινίστριες ενεργές στο project Systerserver. Σκοπός του εργαστηρίου αυτού είναι να ανοίξει μια συζήτηση σχετικά με τον χρόνο εθελοντισμού, την κατανομή δεξιοτήτων και τα τεχνικά καθήκοντα εντός των τεχνολογικών κοινοτήτων της βάσης. Τα έργα αυτόνομων φεμινιστικών διακομιστών λειτουργούν συχνά με υλικό που πρέπει να συναρμολογηθεί σε αντίθεση με τη φιλοξενία cloud και την ψυχαγωγική φροντίδα σε αντίθεση με την αμειβόμενη εργασία. Το εργαστήριο σε συνεργασία με τη Μάρα αποτελείται από δύο μέρη: το πρώτο μέρος είναι μια τεχνική πρακτική διαδικασία δημιουργίας μετεγκατάστασης λογισμικών για ηλ. λιστες αλληλογραφίας, και το δεύτερο είναι μια γενικότερη συζήτηση φεμινιστικών διακομιστών και τη σχέση τους με τον τόπο και τη διαδρομή των μετεγκαταστάσεων τους.


    11:00-11:20: introduction
    11:20-12:00: workshop
    12:00-12:05: break
    12:05-12:50: migration workshop
    12:50-13:00: wrap up
    13:00-14:30: lunch break
    14:30-16:00: discussion

    Participants requirements for the technical workshop 11.20 - 13.00 CET

    To participate in this workshop an internet connection is required. Also, some understanding of the terminal and command lines, as well as an interest in servers configuration will be helpful. If you would like to participate please send an email to angeliki@genderchangers.org. The number of participants is limited but the session will be recorded and archived in Anarchaserver.

    Technical steps for the workshop

    NOTE: These git tickets are private

    related tickets:

    https://git.systerserver.net/systerserver/notes/issues/11 https://git.systerserver.net/systerserver/notes/issues/10


    GNU mailman docs are very helpful providing all the configurations, however some context and explanation is missing. For systerserver's mailman installation and configuration I will follow the GNU tutorial, but instead of Nginx, I will use systerserver's available web server Apache2. Django sites need their own web gateway to handle requests, which can be done with either Gunicorn or WSGI software. Apache2 or Nginx in this case operate as proxies, forwarding requests to these python based server gateway interfaces wsgi or gunicorn, which in turn send requests to python based frameworks such as django or flask.

    • We will go through the latest version of Mailman, looking into configurations and requirements, but as Mailman would be installed already on the server, this will be a quick and general introduction.
    • archive the existing lists in old server, tar
    • copy these archives to the new server, rsync, scp, sftp
    • import paths to Mailman,
    • look into Apache2, gunicorn configurations for running the web interface of Mailman
    • Change the lists DNS, to point to the new server

    Resources online:

    https://wiki.list.org/DOC/Howto_Install_Mailman3_On_Debian10 https://docs.mailman3.org/ https://wiki.list.org/DOC/How%20do%20I%20move%20a%20list%20to%20a%20different%20server-Mailman%20installation

    This event is made possible with the kind support of the Creative Industries Fund NL.