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nwhitfield
Posted: Sun Apr 17, 2005 11:57 am Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9577
I've made some tweaks to the configuration files for the database server and I'll see how things go over the next few hours.

Nigel.
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deangelj
Posted: Sun Apr 17, 2005 11:10 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 29 Mar 2005 Posts: 316 Location: Sydney, Australia
nwhitfield wrote:
I've made some tweaks to the configuration files for the database server and I'll see how things go over the next few hours.

Nigel.

It is pretty slow at the moment...

cheers,
John
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nwhitfield
Posted: Sun Apr 17, 2005 11:27 pm Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9577
Yep; still pretty slow, but the load average isn't shooting up quite so high, so I think that people will see fewer absolute failures.

I've just made a further change, which should help a little - the database that drives the rest of the site content, such as links, faqs, taps and so forth has now been moved to one of my other servers.

That means the MySQL server on this machine essentially only has one database that it's serving, which should help it a little, and it means that the rest of the site won't be as badly affected by performance issues in the forum.

I do have another server in my office which could easily bear the load of the database requests, but it's on the end of my ADSL link, which would introduce a point of failure, and I think the upload speed would be a massive bottleneck.

So, sadly, we will limp along until I can sort out access to the data centre to slip another massive chunk of memory into the server.

I did consider moving the forum database to my other co-lo server, but since that one is similarly specified (and hosts the web site of my best paying client), we wouldn't gain much, and it would inflict pain on a whole new set of users.

Nigel.
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nwhitfield
Posted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 2:06 pm Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9577
As some of you will no doubt have noticed, performance has been an absolute nightmare, with the system throwing a bit of a wobble earlier today.

I can't tweak the database server settings much more, but I have not made some configuration changes to the web server, which I hope will help things along.

The changes I have made mean that there is a limit to the number of clients that can connect at a time, and a bandwidth throttle.

The server should now simply stop trying to do more things when it gets loaded, which will help stop the runaway deterioration in performance that we've seen.

New memory is on order, and as soon as I have it, I'll be visiting the data centre to install it on the system.

Sorry again for the continued performance problems.

Nigel.
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sebw
Posted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 2:11 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 05 Apr 2005 Posts: 293 Location: Southampton
Now lightnening fast at my end!!

Smile
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nwhitfield
Posted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 2:14 pm Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9577
Don't say that - you'll only tempt fate. I'll have to wait a while and see how things fare once more people are connected at the same time.

It may need a few more tweaks, but I think I've managed to stop Apache being too profilgate with system resources.

NIgel.
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matt
Posted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 3:17 pm Reply with quote
Forum moderator Joined: 30 Mar 2005 Posts: 2305 Location: St Ives, Cornwall Transmitter: Redruth
I think you meant profligate, Nigel. Wink

matt
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nwhitfield
Posted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 3:23 pm Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9577
Yes; almost certainly.

My excuse is that one of my cats is trying to be very affectionate today, and it's a case of typing with my hands between her legs, and peering over the top of the cat to see the screen!

I'm hoping for a bit of a rush later, so I can see what happens to the loading when there's a decent number of people online.

Amazing what you can squeeze out of 64Mb memory when you really try.

Nigel.
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matt
Posted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 3:27 pm Reply with quote
Forum moderator Joined: 30 Mar 2005 Posts: 2305 Location: St Ives, Cornwall Transmitter: Redruth
I remember fitting a 512KB upgrade in my old Atari ST. DIY for the brave as soldering was required!

matt
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nwhitfield
Posted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 4:51 pm Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9577
512K! Luxury!

I learnt most of my computer basics on an old RML 380Z, with 32k of memory, of which 1k was used by the screen. But it's amazing what you could do with 31k of memory and CP/M 1.4B. You try telling young folk that today...

(Even more amazing is that most of today's PCs are still using a filesystem that evolved, or rather been bodged, from something that was designed originally to be compatible with the CP/M filesystem, in particular it's 8.3 naming. That first saw light of day in 1977 - almost 30 years ago.)
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matt
Posted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 4:59 pm Reply with quote
Forum moderator Joined: 30 Mar 2005 Posts: 2305 Location: St Ives, Cornwall Transmitter: Redruth
Frightening isn't it?

I actually started on an Acorn Electron (32k, BBC compatible) with similar specs to yours. Even mp3 technology is currently over 10 years old and arguably outdated. Times fly!

matt
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Richard46
Posted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 5:30 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 31 Mar 2005 Posts: 1586 Location: Forest Gate East London
nwhitfield wrote:
Yes; almost certainly.

My excuse is that one of my cats is trying to be very affectionate today, and it's a case of typing with my hands between her legs, and peering over the top of the cat to see the screen!

I'm hoping for a bit of a rush later, so I can see what happens to the loading when there's a decent number of people online.

Amazing what you can squeeze out of 64Mb memory when you really try.

Nigel.


So should we all stay logged in to test it out?

As for the cat on the keyboard probaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa
aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaak feed the poor thing. Thats how I get rid of them. Smile

Edited by Nigel to put in a line break; I hate untidyness!
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nwhitfield
Posted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 5:34 pm Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9577
Yep; I'm happy to see as many people logged on as possible, so I can see how things react. I noticed one spike in load earlier, but that was while I was dfiong a system backup, so it doesn't really count.

It seems to me that posting puts a much bigger strain on the system than just reading. It will be even more the case when I enable searching again, though apparently there's a mod which you can run to simply index posts in the middle of the night, rather than as they're made, so I may look at doing that.

Nigel.
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deangelj
Posted: Wed Apr 20, 2005 4:44 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 29 Mar 2005 Posts: 316 Location: Sydney, Australia
performance seems to be much better now Nigel.

cheers,
John
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nwhitfield
Posted: Wed Apr 20, 2005 10:49 am Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9577
An update on this - new memory has now arrived, which will enable me to boost 8-fold the amount of RAM in the system, and relocate the memory presently in it into the other server, which is presently running the site content database, helping to ease some bottlenecks on that box.

I hope that I'll be able to do this later today or tomorrow, but I can't give a fixed time because of the need to arrange with the data centre team. And now that we have tolerable performance, it's less of an issue than was the case a couple of days ago.

With a bit of luck, once the memory upgrade has been done, we'll be able to turn tbe forum indexing on, and provide a comprehensive search facility too, which I shall investigate over the weekend.

Nigel
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