The Unfinished Project
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Some of our users' sites

A project experimenting with playing the viola in a cello-like position between the knees.

Friendly Housing Action is a campaign group for housing co-operatives.

Paul Johnston's popular personal site covering cryptography and other topics.

What is The Unfinished Project?

We are a self-hosting project run by a group of people based in Manchester, UK.

The project has a long history, starting off with a hosting company called RDNS way back in 1997. This was bought out by what is now Gradwell Communications; the accounts on the RDNS systems which were not paying customers re-formed into the Unfinished Project, continuing on a collaborative basis ever since.

Over the years we've been on the same journey as everyone else in the industry, from physical servers in "co-lo" datacentres, to managed VMs, to cloud computing. Our first co-lo server even had a phone line and modem hooked up to it to provide a fax gateway service.

A funny moment was when, on visiting a datacentre to retrieve a decommissioned server, we found it was actually being used as a shelf for somebody else's not properly rack-mounted equipment!

These days we use Linode as our cloud provider, and we don't even know where exactly our data is located (though Linode tell us it's somewhere in London).

Why the name "Unfinished"?

Firstly, to reflect the fact that it is a project which runs on an ongoing basis - servers need constant care and attention, so for as long as they are running, the project can never be "finished"; there is always more to be done.

Secondly, it reflects our tendency to set ourselves ambitious targets, and then never get around to actually doing all the work needed!

Finally, there is a tradition of naming machines after classical composers; one of our previous (now decommissioned) servers was named schubert, and one of Schubert's famous works is his unfinished symphony.

Can I have an account?

We welcome enquiries from people interested in actively working on running a collaborative service.

Contacts for issues, complaints, abuse reports to report any service issues or complaints. We normally respond within 24 hours, and always within 5 days. to report any abuse from our users or systems.