• Windowssecrets down?


    Have not been able to get to windowssecrets.com for several days, appears to be down. It has been throwing a “Error 503 Backend fetch failed” error. isitdownrightnow.com says it has been down for more than a week.

    Does anyone know what’s up?


    Viewing 15 reply threads
    • #167176

      We have heard this is true, but so far don’t know the reason.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #167194

        It’s been down for some 30+ hours now, over the previous two weeks or so I had seen daily outages that might have lasted 10 to 30 minutes or so.

        The owners were contacted yesterday, their technicians have been alerted, all we can do now is wait.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #167677

          It’s still down.  Have Penton shoved their unloved child over a cliff?

          Dell E5570 Latitude, Intel Core i5 6440@2.60 GHz, 8.00 GB - Win 10 Pro

          • #167729

            From my limited 3rd-hand info, the trigger was likely a hardware error.

            Penton haven’t owned it for some time, Informa are the current owners.

    • #168694

      It’s still down. Have Penton shoved their unloved child over a cliff?

      Makes you wonder doesn’t it.  I can’t imagine why Penton/Informa would consider the very popular, informative, successful WSL site an unloved child.  Even more so, I can’t imagine why they are keeping the site administrators and moderators in the dark!

      Have you seen the price of Tums? It's enough to give you heartburn.
    • #168956

      My post above refers to the Windows Secrets Forum (commonly called the Lounge), not the Windows Secrets Newsletter.  This is for those who keep getting the two confused.   🙂

      Have you seen the price of Tums? It's enough to give you heartburn.
      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #169135

        For what it’s worth, Windows Secrets Lounge started out as WOPR Lounge, renamed Woody’s Lounge, back in the ’90s. When Brian folded Woody’s Windows Watch into Windows Secrets Newsletter, he renamed “Woody’s Lounge” as “Windows Secrets Lounge” or, occasionally, WSN Lounge.

        The WOPR Lounge was built by Eileen Wharmby and Claude Almer, back when building a site took an enormous amount of talent and perseverance. Eileenslounge.com split off from Windows Secrets Lounge back in 2010 and it’s still going strong. HansV has been the driving force behind Eileen’s Lounge since forever.

        3 users thanked author for this post.
    • #169123

      Seems that Windows Secrets is not a priority for Informa. Will it ever return?

      Cheers, Paul

    • #170685

      The website is back up today, it appears.

    • #170766

      Whilst it’s now using HTTPS I’m still getting “Your connection is not secure. The owner of windowssecrets.com has configured their web site improperly.” It appears the site now has a certificate issued by Amazon on 18th Feb to a *.windowssecrets.com sub-domain.

      If I (temporarily) add an exception, the content of the forums’ home page is unformatted. I’ve tried two devices, 3 browsers, cleared caches, cookies (and certificates) to no avail. I’ve asked for an update ‘cos it’s not at all clear what’s going on.

      • #170779

        Same here Rick. I’m using chrome and I still get the same “Your connection is not private” no matter if I try the forums or WS .com. Nothing has changed for me except the old “Backend fetch failed” no longer appears.

        Don't take yourself so seriously, no one else does 🙂
        All W10 Pro at 22H2,(2 Desktops, 1 Laptop).

    • #171345

      I’ve just had an update that ‘specialist database repairs are now ~90% complete’. This means that the Windows Secrets Lounge forums should be back up and running soon.

      Windows Secrets newsletter subscribers will be getting another update email soon with information about expanded/extended content/subscriptions.

      Hope this helps…

    • #171607

      I’m getting a new message now, with the Penton logo. It basically says it’ll be up soon.

    • #171857

      I’ve just tried the Windows Secrets site again, and voila!

      It’s actually up and running, no security certificate warnings, although still no new content.

      Last newsletter listed is from 08 February 2018.


    • #171951

      Another baby step forward… the site configuration issue now appears to be resolved and I no longer to make the site an exception (I use Firefox) to get past the previous ‘insecure’ error. The WSL forums home page is still showing a 404 – Page not found error though.

      I note that the Windows Secrets site’s certificate is now from Amazon and appears to be an annual one (13 months, actually) rather than the previous 3-month certificates from Let’s Encrypt… so I’m going to take this as an additional good sign. 🙂

    • #172577

      Windows Secrets Lounge is back up, but the only new posts are from SuperSite for Windows; we need some real humans to start posting there again.

      Wow, that was a long down time!

      Dell E5570 Latitude, Intel Core i5 6440@2.60 GHz, 8.00 GB - Win 10 Pro

    • #172624

      I still can’t log in. Tells me my password is incorrect. Also the Lounge Page will not come up in HTTPS! ?



      May the Forces of good computing be with you!


      PowerShell & VBA Rule!
      Computer Specs

      • #172646

        Same here RG. Password is incorrect, not a secure site. It reminds me of the overhaul that they recently did before this debacle.

        Don't take yourself so seriously, no one else does 🙂
        All W10 Pro at 22H2,(2 Desktops, 1 Laptop).

      • #172754

        It’s been rolled back to the beginning of June last year (2017-06-01), which has resulted in a mess.

    • #172706

      Face it, let’s just get everyone over here!!

      Willie McClure
      “We are trying to build a gentler, kinder society, and if we all pitch in just a little bit, we are going to get there.” Alex Trebek
      • #172726


        Don’t mean to brag, but all’s good down here. 🙂

        Password is fine, secure site, and can access ‘Newsletters’ (although the last one showing is 8 February 2018), and Forum (although the latest messages are dated May or June 2017).



    • #172938

      I’ve just had another update (after I asked whether there was any news).

      It’s been acknowledged there were far more issues than expected getting the site back up and the IT team is still working on the issues I mentioned (i.e. site not secure and appears to be a very old backup).

      On the newsletter side, the editor now has access again so new newsletters and content are expected. Subscribers will be getting an email update with offers of extended content and subscriptions.

      The text further acknowleged how painful this has been for forum members/newsletter subscribers and ended with regret about the time this has taken.

      If I get any further updates then I’ll pass it on.

      Hope this helps…

      I note that, using Firefox, the site shows as insecure and I cannot access it with a test account I created *after* the site went from HTTP to HTTPS. This leads me to believe that it’s a pre-HTTPS backup that’s been restored. If so, then there may well be issues if, as RetiredGeek noted (Hi RG 🙂 ), you do change your site access password then a post-HTTPS restore is made.

      I’m going to hold fire for another day or two and hope that an HTTPS restore appears.

      (I’m confused why AusJohn reports secure site, no issues. My memory is poor but I seem to remember a date of 30th June 2017 as the day WSL moved to HTTPS.)

      Hope this helps…

      3 users thanked author for this post.
    • #173065

      Would you believe it? I’ve just received a Windows Secrets Newsletter – “Five Easy Pieces – Windows Utilities I Couldn’t Live Without”.

      Unfortunately, from my point of view, there’s no improvement over the more recent ones; still a majority of MS Office, rather than Windows, articles.

      Hopefully everyone else who’s anxiously awaiting the newsletter receives theirs as well.


    • #173074

      * Follow up to my last post *

      Sorry, my excitement was a little premature.

      Although there’s been some progress, there are still plenty of bugs in the system.

      1. The link in the newsletter, to the web version, brings up the newsletter for 6 February 2018 instead of the 6 March 2018 edition.

      2. The link in the “first page” of the newsletter web version, to “Show all articles on a single page”, is broken; that is, it doesn’t work.
      I’m only able to get the four articles one-by-one, not all on the one page.


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