Read this page before reporting problems with WatchBot.

Frequent problems

No email from WatchBot

Repeatably some people report problems with obtaining email from WatchBot. In case it happened to you, try the following:

  • Double-check whether you gave correct email. Typos in user or host name are quite frequent.
  • Check your spam folder. It happens that WatchBot emails are for some reason classified as spam.
  • Try using another email address. Some email servers reject WatchBot emails due to oversimplified anti-spam heuristics, require sender to fill some forms before accepting email, etc. I am not able to diagnose all such problems, and I am not even interested in trying.
  • Wait for some time. A few minutes delay in delivering email is normal, even an hour happens from time to time.

If this all does not help, use the browser interface.

I am ignoring all reports about problems with obtaining email from WatchBot. Sorry.

Known bugs and limitations

Adjourned games are not joined

In case some game is adjourned and resumed later, each part stays as a separate game in WatchBot database, you must review/email each part separately.

I have loose plans to resolve this, but it is not likely to happen soon.

Invalid first move in some resumed games

In some resumed games (games continued after adjournment) you may face inconsistency between FEN line and the first move (for example, FEN says that it is black to move, but the game text starts from white move). Such games fail to open in chess programs and are not replayed in the browser.

To replay such game you must edit in in some text editor. It suffices to remove the first move.

I plan to correct this problem (together with the next one), nevertheless I can not promise any dates.

Buggy PGN in games with takebacks

PGN of games during which takebacks occured is buggy (taken back moves are left in the game text). I know about the problem, and hope to correct it, but it need not happen soon.

If you face this issue, you may try editing the PGN file in text editor, removing taken back moves from the game text (before the comment about accepted takeback).

Invalid game display in some browsers

In some browsers the game board does not display properly, or game replay does not work as expected.

In case you are using some ancient browser, please upgrade to more recent version.

In case you observe problems in some up to date browser, please send me the browser name, version, and exact description of the problem (maybe screenshot). I will take a look.

Problem handling

Reporting bugs

In case you face some bug in WatchBot, report it using email (see Author page) or FICS message (message WatchBot). Describe the problem in detail, mention exact date and time when the problem happened, point the game in which the problem occured (if appropriate).

Please, prefer messages or email to direct FICS talks. When I am on FICS, I am there to play some chess.

And do not report problems with obtaining email. WatchBot sends email properly, if you do not receive it, it is some problem on your side (see above).

Suggesting improvements

I am interested in hearing improvement suggestions. Send them via email (see Author page) or FICS message (message WatchBot).

Note that it may take some time before I am able to implement something, even if I like the idea. WatchBot is my hobbyist project and I am not able to spend a lot of time on it.

Searching for help

If you do not understand instructions, need additional explanations etc, try asking for help on FICS channels - either on channel 1 (where general help is offered), or on channel 101 (this is TeamLeague channel, a lot of people playing there use WatchBot frequently).

I am usually not able to offer direct help.


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