~neon/thoughts/2019/07/15/mastodown

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Writing about programs and programming.

Putting my Mastodon to sleep

Not my pet of the genus Mammut, no. Just my old fediverse instance. Sometimes you want to move domains, sometimes software. Of course, you could migrate your old instance over to the new software, but what if there is no migration path, or you’d like to start anew? This is the situation that inspired this post: I moved to Pleroma when they finally released 1.0, and started a new instance on another subdomain, on my own hardware. I would like to avoid paying for my Mastodon instance’s server costs now that I am not using it anymore.

Disclaimer: I have not contributed to any fediverse software, and I have no idea about how they really work. My fedi experience consists of hosting an instance for two years. So, consume this document with much salt.

You may ask, how do you put an extinct proboscidean to sleep? I do not know either, so I asked on the fedi, but nobody came up with a solid battle-plan. After some searching, I found the tootctl self-destruct command, which seems like a good way to make everyone forget your server ever existed (it sends account delete activities to everyone). That is not quite the magnitude I want, I would prefer to leave a gravestone, not absolutely annihilate my old persona. But hey, that might be what you want, so there you go.

Imagine a few hours of system administration before reading onwards, that’s what I did at this point in the blog. I do so enjoy writing an article as I do the stuff I write about.

Based on the previous information, I had a plan to cache the /users/neon endpoint, and respond with error 410 everywhere else. I did that, and then realized that it probably is not good to pretend to be an active instance (through providing a cached response on one endpoint), and ended up just serving 410 on the whole domain.

So, how do you put a big furry creature to sleep? Make it respond to everything with error 410. That’s what I did in any case, I hope it’s asleep now.