More Bulletin Boards

February 5, 2010

An even dozen from around the world. (updated)

I have continued my exploration of the BBS community and have more to report. Not all these boards are really great and not all are completely functional. This is because many boards seem to get old and disused after a while. However new ones come on the scene and old ones revive.

In prervious posts I have given links to lists of boards. These are useful, but the number of dead ends can make their use difficult. One organization which has a solution to that problem is bbs-scene.org. They maintain a list which is checked daily to make sure the boards are up and running. That, of course, doesn’t mean that they all work, but it’s a good start.

The bbs-scene.org does much more. In their own words:

“bbs-scene.org offers a collection of internet services to the bbs (bulletin board system) community. We offer an irc network and a nntp (or news) server.”

I am sure their efforts will help give more life to the community. Hopefully too, that will make it more attractive to newcomers.

I found another list which is up to date. I’ll let them explain:

BBSfinder is based off of the concept used at SHOUTcast.com. A dynamically updating list of of radio stations (in BBS finders case, Bulletin Board Systems) that is never out of date. The idea was sparked due to two main factors… The Bulletin Board Scene has dwindled since it’s glory days in the 80’s and 90’s. While there are many BBS’s active, the caller numbers have lowered. This is a site to help raise awareness that BBS’s are still alive and kicking.”

You can find them at http://www.bbsfinder.com/


Here is a list of the ones I tried, along with my impressions:

1. Aleco Experience: Located in Prague, Czech Republic, they specialize in 8 bit computers. Although they have a rigorous signup procedure they do have a nice interface which also gives you choices. The site was fairly responsive and they offer a decent editor for those who want to post messages. There were no local messages and basically offered DoveNet only. I would recommend this as a good choice. telnet://alecoexp.dyndns.org Port:23

2. Defcon BBS is located in Norway and has local messages in Norwegian. The main message base in english is DoveNet. They have a guest login which only asks for your name, country, and e-mail address. That in itself makes it commendable. telnet://bbs.defcon.no Port:23

3. Diamond Mine Online is a US board and home to the BBS Corner which I have mentioned before. I was pleased to see that they have guest login, but it looks like this board is getting a bit neglected. A visit to the sysop’s web presence gets you a suggestion to catch up with the world and sign up for a Facebook account! It looks like Diamond Dave is tired of the BBS scene. telnet://bbs.dmine.net Port:23

4. Electronic Chicken is a Toronto based board. It is quite active because the sysop “echicken” makes an effort to keep things going. In the end a strong sysop presence is really what makes a board work. I found it to have a decent signup procedure and they carry Fido, Scinet, Zer0net, and Dovenet. I didn’t get to test the editor so I don’t know if it works well or not. One notable feature of this board is a large text file section. I look forward to going back and checking that out. telnet://bbs.electronicchicken.com Port:23

5. Masquerade is based in Overland Park, Kansas, and aims to be a revival of the community driven bulletin board systems of the 90s. They’ve got a good looking setup. Signing up is a bit funny though. You are asked to write a letter to “Blakdeth” which he/she will then review to determine if you “get accepted”. I noticed they carry Dovenet, Zer0net, and Scinet, but perhaps this is a better board for gamers. telnet://masqueradebbs.com Port:23

6. The Change OSP is in the Netherlands. The first thing I noticed is that they are running EleBBS software which is a little out of the ordinary. Signup didn’t actually work properly, but by putting everything on the first line where it asks for alias, I got in. They then ask you if want access to the “adult area” which it claims is extensive. I tried the message section and found only Scinet to be active in English. The Fido message area was in Dutch but I didn’t see any local messages. This board has a nice interface. telnet://thechangeosp.nl Port:23

7. Tiny’s BBS is an old classic board coming back to life. They claim lot’s of doors, Fidonet and Micronet, great BBS filebase. I also found Scinet, and Alternet. It has an excellent editor and easy login. I had a little trouble reading messages, but the board is still under construction so things will probably get sorted out soon. So far it looks really good and I particularly like the colour scheme. telnet://tinysbbs.com Port:23

8. AT2k Design BBS is another US board. This is the only board which has a really good guest login. I got the impression that I might be welcome, which unfortunately is not usually the case with bulletin boards. One can actually peruse the board and see how it works without having to fill out a long form with personal information. I strongly recommend this as a first board to visit. The interface is excellent. I didn’t try the editor because I logged in as guest. telnet://bbs.at2k.org

9. CarSo BBs is located in Beverly, England. They bill themselves as “The best since 1986”. It looks good and they claim to support a number of different terminal types. They have guest login which only asks for location, e-mail, and name. It doesn’t seem very active but it looks good. telnet://carso.synchro.net or telnet://carso.dyndns.org

10. datavase BBS hails from Edinburgh, Scotland. They carry Dove-Net, the new MusicalNet, and ASTRO-Net. The latter seems to be the focus of the board. If astronomy and astrophysics is of interest, then this is definitely the right board. They look friendly and have guest login. I think this is a class act. telnet://bbs.datavase.info

11. Chatsubo bills itself as an underground cyberpunk BBS. It is based in Torun, Poland, and is mostly in Polish. There is a menu choice of Polish or International but I only found one friendly message in the English section. Apparently the site is still under construction. The signup asks for name, city, email, and sex, but they also want more information in a message to the sysop if you want to get validated. telnet://chatsubo.servebbs.org:10024

12. LiveWire! Manilla, is from Mandaluyong Phillipines. This looks like it was a very active board at one time. Like many boards they insist on getting your phone number. After giving them enough additional information to get a credit card in your name, they ask you to email them at a Yahoo address to get your account upgraded. In case you lose your password they suggest you give them your mother’s maiden name. In this day and age, I would be very careful using real information on a site like that. Personally I dislike lying, but suit yourself. Perhaps it is best to stay away unless you have a good reason to trust them. telnet bbs.livewire.com.ph

It seems that the BBS survives mostly in North America but, as you can see from this list, there are still some in other parts of the world. That little round of telnetting was certainly an adventure and I found a couple of boards there which I might revisit. Particularly AT2k Design BBS and datavase BBS. Hopefully other people will too. ~

Update:
It looks like it’s going to be a baker’s dozen. I had not been able to find a BBS in Denmark, although Norway is close, but today there was the comment which you see below. Well, I immediately typed “telnet nightexp.no-ip.org” and was promptly greeted with the login screen of The Night Express BBS. What a treat! Sysop Bo Simonsen of Korsør was there for a late night chat and the software which he develops himself, ran like a charm. He is a BBS fanatic and it looks like he is single handedly keeping the Danish BBS scene afloat. If you are Danish, wish you were, or just tired of Synchronet, I can whole heartedly recommend this board. Give it a call and leave me, or Bo, a message. ttyl

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2 Responses to “More Bulletin Boards”

  1. […] More Bulletin Boards Share and […]

  2. And we can add a danish BBS to the list

    nightexp.no-ip.org

    Running Daydream/Linux which I am currently developing.
    I am not doing huge progress, but I have fixed a number
    of bugs (and I wrote a fidonet tosser).

    Bo

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