Friday night topic: Whoops

— 10:00 PM on December 7, 2001

Sorry about the downtime this morning. Our server has been getting a real workout lately, and the video card review finally tested its limits. The infamous Slashdot effect was in full force, and the server was reporting load averages like so:

11:03am up 58 days, 21:26, 3 users, load average: 418.87, 489.02, 416.53
Obviously, that is Not Good. The server is a dually Pentium III 866MHz with 768MB of RAM, and it ought to be able to handle very high loads if configured to scale properly. We had turned our parameters for the Linux 2.4 kernel, Apache and mySQL pretty well, but I think we hit a snag when our log analysis program kicked in. It took me quite a while to get things finally running again, and even longer to realize why we had such trouble.

Since about 2:00PM (Central time) today, though, we've been pumping out as much as 10Mbps of data with load averages no higher than 13-ish. Let's hope next time this happens, things work better.

Incidentally, if you are a Linux hax0r and would like to help keep things going here at TR and also help with web development, drop me a line and let me know. We could use another hand.

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