Where to Find an Empty Gopherhole | mari's Gopher Repository

Of course, not everyone can run their own Gopher server. Either you don't have the computer chops for it, you don't think it's worth it just to tinker, or your equipment isn't up to the task—say, a router that can't port forward, or an ISP that isn't fond of server owners.

You're not locked out of the Gopher goodness, no worries. While there's no big-name Gopher hosts like there are web hosts, there's still a good few servers out there that will give you space for your own Gopherhole if you want it. For some servers, Gopher isn't even the main attraction, or there's much to explore aside from it.

SDF Public Access Unix System (gopher://sdf.org/1)

Super Dimension Fortress

SDF actually predates Gopher itself, originally established in 1987 as a BBS for anime fans (hence "Super Dimension Fortress"), but later expanded out to a non-profit enthusiast network serving just under 50,000 users in total. Rather than continue to rattle off more information from their Wikipedia page, I'll just link it here. They've got a long history.

Members of the SDF get access to email, dial-up, ISDN, VPN, Usenet, domains, virtual hosting, and SQL, Minecraft, and most relevantly of your purposes, Gopher access. SDF does offer a free tier for some of these services, which will get you 20mb for email, web hosting, and Gopher hosting each, but if you're looking to get more space or get in on the real good stuff, you'll have to donate.

If you're interested, you can make an account here. Be sure you're good with using ssh before you dig in.

Tildes (tilde.club and suchlike)

Tildes are born from the same tradition as SDF, being social networks oriented around remote usage of a single Unix-based (usually Linux or BSD these days) computer. Tildes are traditionally web hosts, though many offer Gopher access these days as well. The original tilde is tilde.club, but tons of clones have sprung up in the wake of its success.

If you're curious about the history of the tilde phenomenon straight from the mouth of Paul Ford, the guy who created tilde.club, here's a Medium article. I feel dirty for linking to one of those, but there you go. Of the tildes I've been able to verify have Gopher access, here's a quick list:

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The information I've provided above is provided as-is. Errors may be present. You can contact me at mariteaux@somnolescent.net for corrections.

Last updated 7/17/2020.