The oldest Internet Relay Chat (IRC) server on the internet will be switched off for good at the start of next year, after denial of service (DoS) attacks eventually got the better of it.
"Well, the sad day has finally come," reads the welcome message for users logging onto the server at the University of Colorado, which it claims is "officially the oldest continuously operating IRC server on the internet".
The machine has served the EFNet IRC community since 1988, but malicious attacks have taken their toll.
The explanation for pulling the plug reads: "The university can no longer afford to support the hardware and software to run it, nor the network resources to support not only the traffic to and from the server but the extra bandwidth needed to handle the various DoS attempts made against the server."
The history of IRC has been dotted with DoS attacks made against the voluntarily hosted servers. Back in July of this year, the entire EFNet network was subjected to a crippling 3Gbps DoS attack, which forced the disconnection of six servers, one permanently.
The reasons for many attacks remain unclear, but members of the IRC community suggest that DoS attacks are carried out against certain IRC channels as part of online vendettas, while others are simply attempts made by script kiddies to take over channels.
As a result, irc.colorado.edu will be switched off for good by 1 January 2002, as the university, and the bandwidth it supplies, "can no longer accept the liability of running an IRC server".
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