What's cooking on SourceHut? April 2021

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Hello again! As another month rolls on by, sr.ht saw 849 new users join
our ranks, bringing our total to 21,890. As always, please treat our new
colleagues with patience while they learn the ropes.

Tomorrow’s monthly Mumble meeting is planned for 16:00 UTC in the usual
place: voice.mnus.de, port 64738. An important question will be
discussed: should builds.sr.ht be made available only to paid sr.ht
users? For details, see the builds.sr.ht update further on.

## General News

First, and most importantly, I have some urgent news.

After ~nelson had some issues using Stripe from the Falkland Islands, I
offered to accept payment for his sr.ht account in the form of cute
pictures of the locals. He agreed, and here they are 🐧 He sent four
pictures ([1] [2] [3] [4]), and three videos ([5] [6] [7]). Thanks,
Nelson! Naturally, he will not be expected to pay for his account.

[1]: https://l.sr.ht/pCOs.jpeg
[2]: https://l.sr.ht/Q9c-.jpeg
[3]: https://l.sr.ht/ajCP.jpeg
[4]: https://l.sr.ht/yUYU.jpeg
[5]: https://spacepub.space/videos/watch/ffcafcf2-a3e3-4996-b369-1bfdbbe640d5
[6]: https://spacepub.space/videos/watch/01bfa6e5-bf6a-4165-9c87-7a707dd9bc95
[7]: https://spacepub.space/videos/watch/f86f96be-2324-4381-96ee-47fd87c771e3

Otherwise, things have been somewhat quiet, as (1) I’ve taken a little
bit of time off this month, and (2) we’ve been busy warding off
attackers at the gates. Otherwise, we have been working quietly on
builds.sr.ht’s GraphQL API.

## builds.sr.ht

The GraphQL API is making good progress, and I hope to have the initial
version online this month — only a few features left. Ignas Kiela has
been working on some improvements for performance, and a few other minor
improvements have shipped alongside those.

Image updates:

- FreeBSD 13 is now available

We’ve been dealing with a rash of cryptocurrency mining attacks on
builds.sr.ht this month, as you may have seen on status.sr.ht. If you’ve
experienced long queue times, this is why: we are playing a cat & mouse
game trying to teach our systems to detect crypto miners, then updating
them again after the attackers figure out how to work around them and
saturate our build queue with cryptocurrency miners.

We seem to have things under control for now, but it raises a more
interesting question: should we just make builds.sr.ht a paid service?
Ultimately, all sr.ht services are going to require payment, but builds
is both the most expensive service for us to host, and the most ripe for
abuse, so it may make sense to make it paid in ahead of the beta plans.
We’ll be discussing this idea with the community during the Mumble call
tomorrow, feel free to join if you have some thoughts around this.
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