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Performance issues?

anyone

Well-known member
Hi,

was it just here in Europe, or was there a general two-days long offline phase for the page? What happened?
 

Knorp

Well-known member
According to Cloudflare the site or host could be found (ip-address), but wasn't responding within 100 sec, hence the time-out message. Yesterday I did notice that the site was back online for a brief period.
Probably a run-away task or database issue.
Amazing it took almost two days to recover. Hopefully it'll be stable now.
 

rayyan

Well-known member
It was a 2 day off line issue.
We go through Europe, so same for me here.

Thanks to the admins n tech support to get it back online.
 

scho

Well-known member
So, are these occasional downtimes we have experienced related to hacking or just routine maintenance? If there is going to be scheduled maintenance a heads up notification would, be helpful. My apologies if I missed it this time.
 

darr

Well-known member
I do not know what to make of the downtimes. Part of my business is building and maintaining websites. While we have experienced an occasional 15 minute to an hour of downtime over 20+ years on individual sites, this forum's downtimes seem pretty long. It would be nice if management released a post explaining what happened or if scheduled maintenance may bring service down. I mean if you are going to ask us to reach into our pockets and donate money to help keep this site up and running, it just makes good business sense. My apologies if I miss the announcements as I do not spend as much time here as in the past, but I seem to visit during downtimes.
 

SimonW

Administrator
Staff member
I do not know what to make of the downtimes. Part of my business is building and maintaining websites. While we have experienced an occasional 15 minute to an hour of downtime over 20+ years on individual sites, this forum's downtimes seem pretty long. It would be nice if management released a post explaining what happened or if scheduled maintenance may bring service down. I mean if you are going to ask us to reach into our pockets and donate money to help keep this site up and running, it just makes good business sense. My apologies if I miss the announcements as I do not spend as much time here as in the past, but I seem to visit during downtimes.
Unless you are counting some periods where the forums up but is closed then any downtime has generally been less than an hour after I'm informed of an issue. There are times when we need to do things to resolve issues which if the forums open and people are surfing and posting would just cause problems. And as some of those things require us to take a full backup before doing them so we can roll back in the worst-case scenario and with this being a photography website it has a lot of picture uploads so taking a backup doesn't take 5 minutes.

Anyway, the issues are fairly mundane. We had a corrupted MySQL table back in January that was breaking certain actions on the forum and the forum needed shut while we repaired that. That is something that randomly happens with MySQL from time to time.

We also had an Apache log issue, logs should rotate every day and the old log archived for two weeks before its automatically removed. Logs however weren't rotating correctly so were just getting bigger and bigger until we ran out of server space. That happened a few times over a number of months, the first time as the configuration was right we thought was just a blip but subsequent times we ha to try some things to resolve it.

The one over the last few days is space based again but this is all your fault, you have been uploading too many images :) We already knew we were close to the limit and were working out the best step for increasing the storage (not least because the only way to increase disk space on the sever itself would be to jump up to the next level server which would have added more disk space but also doubled the number of cpus and ram but also almost doubled the price) but the control panel said we had about 10GB's free which should have lasted us a few weeks to make the right choice. However the control panel didn't agree with the server itself which was reporting much less space and we unexpectedly ran out. To get the site back up we needed to clear some space first but we also also needed more space to be able to solve the issues long term and so as to limit how much space you would continining eating up we closed the forum while we did that. We decided to move all the images and avatars to an external bucket, the added benefit of this is it will act as a CDN so should make all images load quicker. I set it up, tested it with new uploads and it worked fine. I then went to move all the existing ones over and the commands that should have started that would just kept throwing errors. I tried everything for a couple of hours but it didn't work so I then had to find even more spaces I could clear which included uninstalling some default server software that the site doesn't need to run and reverted back to using the locally stored ones. Spent the next day debugging everything before finally finding fix to the issue. So I had to close the forum again to do this because we couldn't have you changing avatars and uploading images as they might then get missed in the transfer. Everything seemed to go well and the site was switched to using the external bucket. Space was still an issue because I couldn't delete the local images yet because if there was an issue that hadn't been noticed we might have needed them but I went to bed at 4am thinking there was enough space to last a couple of days. Woke up at 10am and somehow despite all the images going to the external bucket you had generated enough data in those 6 hours to cause the server to run out of space again :(. Guess I'm going to have to spend the day manually managing the server space until I'm sure we can remove local images
 

Knorp

Well-known member
Thank you, Simon.
I do appreciate your information and explaining the situation.
But what about a notification in advance ?
Saves you a lengthy note afterwards.

Just saying …
 

SimonW

Administrator
Staff member
Thank you, Simon.
I do appreciate your information and explaining the situation.
But what about a notification in advance ?
Saves you a lengthy note afterwards.

Just saying …
It's hard to give advanced notice when it's an emergency situation that we weren't expected
 

dj may

Well-known member
Maybe limit the image size? It is not necessary to have large files for browser viewing, especially mobile devices.
 

pegelli

Well-known member
Thanks for the explanation Simon and we do appreciate all the effort to keep the site up and running.

One question (just out of interest), I never upload images to the site but link from SmugMug which is my image host for several fora that I am a member of.
I assume the storage problem is not caused by those linked images, or is there still an effect.
 

k-hawinkler

Well-known member
Thanks for the explanation Simon and we do appreciate all the effort to keep the site up and running.

One question (just out of interest), I never upload images to the site but link from SmugMug which is my image host for several fora that I am a member of.
I assume the storage problem is not caused by those linked images, or is there still an effect.
Thanks Pieter, I do the same, link from smugmug.
Great question.
 
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