Guild hosting

>> Sunday, February 1, 2009

A guild hosting or clan hosting service is a specialized type of web hosting service designed to support online gaming communities, generally referred to as guilds or clans. They vary from game server hosting in that the focus of such companies is to provide applications and communication tools outside of the gaming environments themselves.

Typical Features

The services typically offered by such a service include:

* Public and/or private forums for members to communicate with each other, or other tools for communications such as instant messaging or chat servers.
* Tools for tracking the roster of characters that a player might have in an MMORPG.
* An application for scheduling and organizing raids, tournaments and other gaming events.
* Applications for tracking treasure, items, or points accrued toward redeeming treasure (often referred to as a DKP system).


Originally, most people who decided to create a website for their guild used bulletin board software such as vBulletin and phpBB on traditional web hosting services. However, as the complexity of online games increased--accompanied by larger memberships, needs for more sophisticated scheduling tools, and roster-management features. One of the earliest such companies was GuildPortal, formed in 2001.In 2006, GamerDNA combined the features of a social network with guild hosting, to provide guilds with the ability to network with each other, as well as their own members.

Guild hosting services address a guild's basic need to have an online presence and allow guild members to communicate with each other outside of the game. While it is possible for any guild to do this on their own, setting up and maintaining a site requires constant maintenance, upgrades and integration of new software. One of the key reasons for the popularity of guild hosting services is their focus on relieving the guild from this overhead and freeing them up to spend more time playing the game. In 2006 Guild Launch was formed to directly address the need for reducing this management overhead, to expand the existing social network of the guild into other areas, and to build long term communities within the guild by delivering high quality and easy to use tools.Also launching in 2006 was MMO Guildsites, a option with many advanced features, some of which have been made freely available for use with any hosting service.In 2007 Guildomatic was launched to provide a guild hosting platform specifically for World of Warcraft guilds.In 2008 MyGuildHost, a new player in guild hosting, launched version 2 of their guild hosting and management control panel -- powered by open source PHP and AJAX technologies.In September 2008, a gaming social network launched its own brand of guild hosting with extreme flexiblity and ease of setup with a drag-and-drop designer for guild managers


Weblog software

Server models

Many weblog applications are available for users to download and install on their own systems. A wide variety of licenses are used by user hosted weblog software. Some of these are free and open-source that can be used, modified, and redistributed freely under free-software and open-source licenses. Others are proprietary software that may be licensed for a fee or have versions available free of charge.

Other weblog applications are offered only through their developers' hosts, either free of charge or for a fee. These typically include hosting service for the published blog itself, but some offer the option of using this hosted software to update a blog published


Maintenance through the Internet is a nearly universal feature of weblog software. This is usually done through a browser-based interface, enabling authors to create and update content on the site. Most software supports the use of external client software to update content using common APIs such as the MetaWeblog API and the Atom Publishing Protocol. Third party developers have created such clients, allowing bloggers to publish entries using desktop software rather than the web-based interface. WordPress Codex Wiki: Weblog Client has an extensive list of clients that support most APIs (not just WordPress). Examples include ecto and MarsEdit.


Video hosting service


Because many users do not have unlimited web space, either as a paid service, or through an ISP offering, video hosting services are becoming increasingly popular, especially with the explosion in popularity of blogs, forums, and other interactive pages.

The mass market for camera phones has increased the supply of user-generated video. Traditional methods of personal video distribution, such as making a DVD to show to friends at home, are unsuited to the low resolution and high volume of camera phone clips. In contrast, current broadband Internet connections are well suited to serving the quality of video shot on mobile phones. Most people do not own web servers, and this has created demand for user-generated video content hosting, which the likes of YouTube are catering to.

Purpose of Video Hosts (for users)

* Save on bandwidth costs, often eliminating costs entirely
* Creating a common place
* Make a hassle-free experience, where uploading a video and streaming or embedding would normally require advanced programming knowledge. It is now commonly achieved through a web browser, with little or no programming experience.

Copyright issues

Wikipedia hosts around 200 videos in the Ogg format on its servers. Wikipedia actively discourages non-free videos and formats: videos added to Wikipedia are supposed to be freely available for reuse. This contrasts with video hosting services such as YouTube, which can hold copyrighted material, though some rights must be given up to such companies in return for the hosting.

Mobile video hosting

Main article: Mobile Web content management system

A more recent application of the video hosting services is in the Mobile Web arena, where video and other mobile content can be delivered to, and easily accessed by mobile devices. While video-hosting services such as YouTube have developed means by which video can be watched on mobile devices, mobile-oriented web-based frontends for video hosting services that possess equal access and capability to desktop-oriented web services have yet to be developed.


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