Late in 1988 The
Trashcan BBS was born as an 'after 10pm' BBS on the home phone of Chris
Hellyar's parents. Ben Arnold was onboard from the start as the Co-sysop
then Craig Shore joined some time in 1989.
In early 1989, The Trashcan BBS went 24 hours.
7 May 1991
Chris purchased Searchlight 2.15 from Jay Montilla (NZ Distributor for
Searchlight Software - $221.85).
19 June 1991
First phone bill paid for as Chris had moved the BBS to his flat.
20 March 1992
Chris purchased 80mb hard drive from donations to store downloads - cost
17 May 1992
Node 2 added. The Trashcan initially used
DESQview 386 as the multi-tasker/task switcher under DOS.
27 October 1992
Chris placed an advertisement in the
Press advertising The Trashcan BBS for the first time to drum up
4 November 1992
Chris purchased first of three
modems. $1,143 each (Ouch!).
Chris moved from DESQview to a networking stack using Netware 3.0, coax
ethernet and 4 PC's. A
386sx25 for the server, 2 separate 286-16's for the nodes, and a
486-DX40 for his workstation. Floppy boot for the nodes, and a massive
dual 120Mb's in the server at $750 each.. The big time!
15 March 1993
3 added for subscribers only - added another 286 PC to the 'network in a stack'
13 April 1993
Searchlight 3.0 upgrade purchased.
3 June 1994
Searchlight 4.0 upgrade purchased - support for RIP graphics added.
26 September 1994
Node 2 disconnected - The internet was starting to rear its head.
21 May 1995
At 7:23pm Chris signed out of the BBS for the last time before handing
it over to Nigel Adler.
Nick (current Sysop) last signed in at 3:24pm the same day, and made a
total of 3077 calls to the rubbish!
Nick MacKechnie 3077 calls
Craig Shore 2973 calls
Dean McIntosh 2172 calls
Nigel Adler 1455 calls
On the last day of The Trashcan BBS in 1995, there were 724 active user
accounts, 406 logged in during the last month Chris operated it.
There were only ever 16 paying users.
The last user to pay a subscription was Alan Dodds on the 8th of August
Due to other commitments Nigel passed The Trashcan BBS onto Nick to run.
Nick continued to live in Christchurch until he
accepted a new job up in Auckland in 1998. The BBS and computers were
placed in storage for a few years.
Nick was surfing the web, and came across 'The
BBS Documentary' and felt inspired to re-live his
youth and excellent friendships, and The Trashcan BBS was reborn on to
the Internet. Access to file and message areas via the web, newsgroups,
door games were added. The Trashcan BBS is accessible via Telnet these
days, with a read only view via the web of the message and file areas. I
believe this piece of history should remain the way it was in the good ol' days. Searchlight Software ceased development after it was sold to
TeleGrafix in 1999. TeleGrafix went bust and only ever produced a Y2K
update for the Searchlight BBS.
Nick and his family returned back to Christchurch after spending 8 years in
Auckland. The Trashcan BBS has returned to Canterbury and is one the
last BBS's left in New Zealand as well as one of a handful of
Searchlight BBS's still running worldwide.
Sysop: Nick MacKechnie
Port 2324 or via
City: Christchurch, New Zealand
Inception: Originally 1988
Fees: Free - Unlimited Access
Files: General Selection of over 25,000 Shareware files
Nets: JustaXnet 510:5126/0 - Fidonet 3:772/210 - AdventureNet
33:1000/200 - D'Bridge Net 201:2000/1 - STN 111:8644/1, RelayNet
Software: Searchlight 5.1 Beta Revision 2, Irex 2.29, Squish/386 1.11
Doors: Barren Realms Elite, L.O.R.D, Usurper, Falcons Eye, Global War,
CDs: Night Owl 13, 15 ,16 ,17 ,18 ,19 ,20 , 21, 24, 25, 26
Notes: Searchlight BBS Software Support Site, Offline (QWK) mail is
available, points on request.