Author Topic: Old ICQ contacts and comunication history - suddenly deleted  (Read 534 times)

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Offline the Dark LordTopic starter

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I upgraded my Miranda and I find out it deletede most of my ICQ contacts from its database, which resulted in huge damage on my database. I am using Miranda for so long BECAUSE of its history, storing all conversations... That is the reason I am keeping using it and if any new comunicatiomn means is necessary (e.g. Discord) I am looking for possibility to incorporate it into my Miranda... so I can have EVERYTHING nicely packed in one program INCLUDING all previous conversations.
I have backups of elder versions of my database but WHY is it doing? It is not the first time most of my database was erased without any asking if I want to make any kind of purge. Just nuthing, it just decided that years of stored conversations I am keeping there intentionaly... can be deleted withou even asking me for permision!

I want to know what I can do, what thing in options to change, to prevent this unwanted damage of my database ever again.

 

Offline dartraiden

If you upgraded from pre-0.95.10.1 to 0.95.10.1 or later, read this ("Why do some contacts in the contact list become faint when I first log in with a new protocol?" section")
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Offline the Dark LordTopic starter

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I know why they are faint... that is the issue since they screwed ICQ protocol last year and new Miranda plugin had to be introduced. I did the upgrade from 0.94.10 last year. So I am fully aware of authorised and unauthorised contacts. That is why they are faint. That is what I know. That does not explain why the contacts and the history of comunication was deleted from my database without even asking me.

What I was doing now was upgrade from 0.95.11 alpha #21101 to 0.95.11 #22530
I don't care what ICQ server thinks. The history of comunications has nothing to do with any ICQ server, it is inside of my Miranda, it is inside of its database, it is on my computer, not on any server. And unless I say otherwise, it should stay there as it is.

So I am asking for a simple help what to do with what setting to prevent this to happen.
I want to ensure that Miranda won't do nothing like this ever again.
 

Offline dartraiden

> That does not explain why the contacts and the history of comunication was deleted from my database without even asking me.

Because we cannot more keep in Miranda contacts missing on the server. This would create a tons of problems in the new protocol (inability to receipt missed messages from the server, inability to receipt offline messages, and many more). The only exception is made for [deleted] contacts (ICQ owner periodically deletes prolonged non-use accounts from the system - such accounts are deleted from all contact lists on the server and get the name [deleted] - the owner of such an account will never be able to regain account). The option "Do not synchronize contacts with the server" in the old protocol was a big mistake. She brought only problems after so many years, without any benefit.

> What I was doing now was upgrade from 0.95.11 alpha #21101 to 0.95.11 #22530

build 21101 is 0.95.10 and contains old ICQ protocol. Thus, new protocol discovered that some local contacts are missing from the server and placed them in a NotOnList group, and after restarting, deleted them.

> So I am asking for a simple help what to do with what setting to prevent this to happen.
Db_autobackups plugin. And daily backups with his help. At any time, you can simply import history and contacts from the backup. I recommend using the latest version of Miranda (stable 0.95.11 or alpha 0.95.12) so that you definitely get a fix for [deleted] contacts.

If f**king Mail.ru (ICQ owner) doesn’t invent any new sadistic way to delete contacts from the server, everything will be fine. This is the most hated IT company in Russia...
« Last Edit: 28 02 2020, 00:06:13 by dartraiden »
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Offline the Dark LordTopic starter

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I tried to import contacts from backup... unfortunatelly the import freezed, the progress bar stopped moving for several many minutes. I had to terminate the process.
I had to create a "light" version of the original database, keeping the most important contacts and import those.

And of course all of those contacts are dead contacts. All of my contacts emigrated to Skype a long time ago.
I have almost hundred contacts... but during last few years only five was active...
I don't need those contacst for the means of comunication with those people... I need those contacts for the history of past comunications. And those records are like a treasure to me. Maping big portion of my life during past 15 years. I just don't want to loose big portion of my life to the error of judgement of some algorithm.

Is there any other thing I can do to protect my own past?
I don't care what is happening on severs, what kind of purge are they doing there. Not for ICQ, not for Discord.
The reason I am stubornly using Miranda for all those years is its database, containing and carrying all what I ever wrote to anybody through Miranda. And I always believed that what is inside of Miranda will stay in Miranda. That the fact it exist as compltely portable program, carrying its database within, will safe and protect my comunication history as long as the file with my database exists. That nothing can be missed unless I manually give the order for deletion.

I share the hate towards the russian company and toward their unwanted changes...
And I also have a huge hate agains't Skype... it stole my contacts...
 

Offline Vulpix

I completely feel and agree with you.

I use autobackups plugin to store backup every hour. At the end of the week I stubbornly manually compare current db export versus export that is being updated using MsgExport plugin into JSON to understand if anyone has gone from my database.

I also don't believe anyone else should have the right to manipulate data in miranda.

This is for example why I have my own miranda fork where I have deactivated deletion features (such as people on Discord being able to delete their own messages; not in my Miranda!). And also prevent user from deleting their entire history if they remove me from contact list (another unbeliveable local data manipulation... if user removes me, fine, but Miranda should not delete data it has for this user. It feels like somehow this user has power over my miranda and over data I have stored.

I too have data from... 2007+ stored in my miranda's database which is now around 500 megabytes almost, and this data is without a doubt the most important data on my computer. I have incremental backups that I maintain and check thoroughly, stored in multiple locations, I manually verify the data consistency every week.

Most people will say it's silly and well, maybe it is.

But to me, this is a huge, undeniable part of my life stored in this little program, and this is why I keep using it. I don't believe in servers, in cloud, in "someone else", when it comes to my own data. I only believe my own ways there.

So, I completely understand how you feel.

Maybe you want to start doing what I do.

Download and enable the MsgExport plugin and set it to auto export histories into JSON file.

Then have three folders.

One folder (call it CurrentData) is the current export folder, you will keep the ongoing data there. Second folder is the (LastSnapshot) "last time you compared" folder. And third folder is, say "CompData" for temporary comparison.

Now here is what I do.

At the end of every week, I take the exports from the LastSnapshot and delete them (I already have a full backup of the whole miranda directory for that week).
Then I take the contents of the CompData folder and move it to Last Snapshot.

Then I take the CurrentData contents and move it to CompData.

Then I restart miranda and do "export all" feature of MsgExport.

When done, I use total commander to compare CurrentData to CompData. All historical data must be the same. In general there should be very few differences. If you use Discord, then there will usually be differences for when someone edited their own message or posted a link, because the CompData folder will have those stored in separate messages whereas Currentdata will have it as a single message. But such difference is easy to spot. Sometimes the messages are a little reordered due to timestamps and out of order delivery, but that is also fine and easy to spot. But there must be no missing data in the previous content of the file. Moreover there must be no fewer files in the CurrentData folder when comapred to CompData. If there is, it means someone's contact data is missing. Maybe they deleted you and miranda deleted their data. Then you can go back using the AutoBackup plugin to see when you had their contact last, and save their data by converting them into a dummy, for example).

Anyway, at the end of the comparison, when I'm sure the Currentdata and CompData is the same (minus those things I mentioned above), I delete the contents of CompData and move the contents of CurrentData there.

Then, once more, I export all miranda history into txt into CurrentData, and I log back in. Now, the state is as follows:

LastSnapshot -> contents of last week's "CompData" folder.
CompData -> data you personally verified contains everything in your DB. Will become LastSnapshot next week.
Currentdata -> Same as CompData except once you log in and start chatting, new events will become appended to those files.

It's crazy I know. And it takes me about half an hour every week. I even funded one of the past developers to make the Msgexport plugin faster because previously it took like an hour to export my data :D

But after all the trouble with mdbx migration, discord deleting my messages and even icq, I think this is the only way to make sure your data is safe and exactly as it had been before.

So yeah.

I wish there was a setting in Miranda that would make it so that any kind of change that would cause deletion of data on _MY_ miranda side would be disabled...
 
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Offline dartraiden

ToS of some services prohibit the implementation of restrictions to delete conversations (for example any 3rd-party Telegram client should not prevent the other party from deleting correspondence on your part, otherwise, such a client violates the terms of use and loses the right to use Telegram servers: this can lead to a ban of whole client or user account)

You can violate any ToS, licenses and even pirate software but privately at your own risk. We cannot implement such setting if we still hope to ever implement Telegram support.

By the way, we should probably add a warning to the wiki that Discord does not allow creating third-party clients, and we are not responsible for any risks of using Discord in Miranda.
« Last Edit: 01 03 2020, 16:08:10 by dartraiden »
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Offline dartraiden

I also don't believe anyone else should have the right to manipulate data in miranda.
You just never sent dickpic to the wrong chat... the ability to quickly remove this for all participants is extremely useful.
« Last Edit: 01 03 2020, 16:20:36 by dartraiden »
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Offline rocketfodder

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So is there a way to re-import a database into contact history? I have .dat backups, but I don't see how to load it in DBtool or History++

Any help?
 

Offline dartraiden

How old are these backups? They are from Miranda IM or from NG? If from NG, then they format is MMAP or MDBX?

Post Merge: 01 03 2020, 20:10:54
If you are not sure, open the database in a hex editor and show a screenshot
« Last Edit: 01 03 2020, 20:13:25 by dartraiden »
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Offline rocketfodder

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Re: Old ICQ contacts and comunication history - suddenly deleted
« Reply #10 on: 01 03 2020, 22:03:44 »
They're backups from NG. How do I tell which kind?
 

Offline dartraiden

Re: Old ICQ contacts and comunication history - suddenly deleted
« Reply #11 on: 02 03 2020, 00:44:23 »
Use hex editor. MDBX contains many zeros at the beginning of the file.
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Offline rocketfodder

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Re: Old ICQ contacts and comunication history - suddenly deleted
« Reply #12 on: 02 03 2020, 01:03:21 »
It appears to be MDBX
 

Offline dartraiden

Re: Old ICQ contacts and comunication history - suddenly deleted
« Reply #13 on: 02 03 2020, 14:17:10 »
Open db in https://www.miranda-ng.org/distr/deprecated/0.95.10.3/ → Main menu → Database → Compact

Then import (Main menu → Import) the contacts and history into the actual Miranda
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Offline rocketfodder

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Re: Old ICQ contacts and comunication history - suddenly deleted
« Reply #14 on: 05 03 2020, 00:55:31 »
Thank you! I think it worked.

I apologize in advance if I'm really stupid and missed something, but:

I installed the deprecated version you linked. I was then able to re-load the database and everything was great. However, this is a new, separate install, correct?

Can I upgrade to a more recent version, or will that make me susceptible to the same deletion? Or is there a way to transfer this recovered information to the main installation?