Just because FrontCode disabled its cache servers in September of 2005, thereby technically killing the WinMX network, didn’t mean the community died with it. It’s reasoned that FrontCode nuked WinMX because of the RIAA’s September 2005 cease and desist campaign, where about a half dozen P2P companies were issued letters inviting them to disable copyright infringement or face litigation.
Some companies like WinMX capitulated, some went open source, others like LimeWire decided to stay and fight the good fight. In the wake of WinMX’s demise the remaining WinMX communities established their own host caching servers to replace FrontCodeâ€™s. A host caching server contains a list of active IPs on the WinMX network, and communicates this information to the WinMX client. Once a list of network connected IPs are provided to the WinMX client, the end user could then connect.
One of the more prominent post-FrontCode caching solutions was provided by WinMXGroup.com. The driving force behind that site, an individual by the name of “King Marco” or KM, who developed an efficient caching server that helped countless individuals reconnect to the WinMX network. Today, WinMXGroup is no more. KM has pulled the DNS (Domain Name System) on WinMXGroup.com, leaving many to wonder the fate of remaining assets of the WinMX network. The DNS is the service that converts a domain name (Slyck.com) to an IP address (12.345.678.90). KM talked to Slyck.com, and offered some insight on his decision
“It takes a lot of time and effort to keep things running smoothly, and it’s all basically down to me do everything, and when something needs doing it’s always everyone looking to me for it all,” KM told Slyck.com. “People basically just expect me to do everything and it is a lot of pressure that gets put on me, just for the fact that I decided to take up the challenge to resurrect WinMX when FrontCode decided to stop running things. But at the end of the day I decided it was all worth it because of the community…however lately I’ve decided it is no longer worth it.”
The immediate repercussion of taking WinMXGroup.com off line was connection ability of thousands of WinMX users. WinMXGroup’s sister site, WinMXWorld.com, has several active threads of users unable to connect to the WinMX network. KM points out the cache servers are still online and operational, however with the DNS disabled, thereâ€™s little advantage left to these servers other than gathering statistical information.
The fate of WinMXGroup.com is unknown. KM appears to be through with the project, however he is no opposed to the idea of another entity taking over the venture. KM has also released an official statement on his position.
â€œIf [someone] did have some plan and did want the use of the domain name I would be open to it - however [no one has] even suggested such a thing. I think they are more rushing around with hosts files and the “we need lots of caches” panic at the moment rather than concerning themselves with anything more long term.â€
In the mean time, WinMXWorld has posted an emergency thread with several host files of active IP address. KM also points out another publically available cache server that should help stranded users back online.
If you’re asking who still uses WinMX. Errr…