A few updates today folks. Firstly, I've published a new hpObserver release. Nothing special, just a couple of bug fixes.
The hpHosts release has also been delayed due to a worse than rubbish connection, drastically slowing down the validation process (almost 24 hours just to run a DNS validation on 3600 domains (only seems to be DNS affected by the slowdown so far)).
I also noted yesterday that BotScout was not loading. I figured it was just my connection so left it until this evening, and upon trying again, noted it still wouldn't load. I phoned my friend Mike (owns BotScout), and spoke to him about it, and he informed me that Verizon is having routing problems at present due to some strike or other, and some of their equipment being destroyed (neither myself nor Mike have any specifics regarding this at present). BotScout does seem to load for those in the US, but not from some other places (tried directly, via proxy and via Google Translator - none were able to load it (timeouts)), even e-mail to him timed out (hence phoning him)).
For those wondering, the connection issues regarding BotScout, will show up as timeouts, so you'd obviously want to verify it with a Tracert, to determine where it's getting "stuck" (in my case, it times out when it reaches hop 15 (18.104.22.168, AS27473 C I Host)).
On an unrelated note, I have also noted somewhat of a slowdown with the creation of new domains by the Renos gang. There were no new domains on Monday, then 5-6 on Tuesday, and no new ones today (Monday and today are the only times I've not seen new domains - there's been new ones every single day for the past several months). I've no idea what's going on there but will of course be monitoring it.
To coincide with this, I've also been monitoring sites known to serve Renos, and have noted a change that may be related. Previously, the sites would be updated with the new domains to the payload every 1-12 hours (depending on how quickly the domains were identified and blacklisted/suspended). Now however, the sites have been staying unchanged for upto 24 hours, and when the new URL is put in - it's one of the domains created 24-48 hours ago (normally it would be the domains they'd created that day).