Dear Santa, thank you for the dolls and pencils and the fish. It's Easter now, so I hope I didn't wake you but... honest, it is an emergency. There's a crack in my wall. Aunt Sharon says it's just an ordinary crack, but I know its not cause at night there's voices so... please please can you send someone to fix it? Or a policeman, or...
Back in a moment.
Thank you Santa.

Monday, May 28


Right, Now I Need To Set Up...

Oh.  I already did that, like, ten years ago, and it still works?


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Saturday, May 26


System Updates

Made good progress on the HTTPS cutover today.

Two main problems:
  1. We need a wildcard certificate, because the rate limits for free certificates would take decades to secure all the blogs.
  2. Forms have to be explicitly HTTPS; implicit form actions are HTTP (unencrypted), and browsers don't permit HTTP form actions from an HTTPS page.
I've updated Minx to produce a [http.base] field that you can simply stick in front of any relative path that will automatically update for the HTTPS switch (and also if you change your blog address).

There were a couple of glitches while this was going on, but mostly it was confined to my blog.

Update: DNS changes have propagated, and I've set this blog to always use HTTPS.  All forms across all blogs should be updated in the system now to switch to HTTPS as it becomes available (this caused me the most pain).

Will continue testing on this blog before switching everyone else across.

Update 2: Bugger, got one of the DNS updates wrong.  Sites will load slowly for the next hour or so because they're waiting for a script to load from an IP that's blocked by our hosting provider (long story).  I could try to fix that, but it would take an hour to make and test the changes.  Some of the fancy features might not work while we wait for that DNS change to propagate.

Update 3: That's fixed now.

Update 4: Broke, which was depending on the old DNS servers.  Fixed that too.

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Pest Toast 2

Post post post....

Post more.

Post post post post.....


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Friday, May 18


Glitch In The Matrix

Sorry, the backup script froze the database for a few minutes.  It's not supposed to do that, but it did.

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Saturday, May 05


Zoom Zoom

2000 users registered in 21.079s, avg 10.5ms
20000 friends added in 19.551s, avg 1.0ms
20000 idiots muted in 15.948s, avg 0.8ms
2000 lists added in 3.497s, avg 1.7ms
20000 members added to 2000 lists in 54.352s, avg 2.7ms
2000 channels added in 4.420s, avg 2.2ms
2000 mixes added in 9.542s, avg 4.8ms
2000 messages posted in 15.774s, avg 7.9ms
2000 stacks added in 3.227s, avg 1.6ms
20000 slots added to 2000 stacks in 63.906s, avg 3.2ms
[more messages posted...]
39867 messages viewed in 2000 requests in 17.310s, avg request 8.7ms 49595 bytes 5873 bytes gz


Doing some refactoring, and running the test suite repeatedly to check that nothing has blown up.  (Which it did earlier this evening.)  Performance is on a single-core Vultr VPS with 2GB RAM.  Production is a 6-core/12-thread Xeon 2620 v2 with 64GB RAM, so throughput will be quite a bit faster.

That's without any caching, too.

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Friday, May 04


The Return Of The Database

Sorry, got impatient while doing the changes and pushed the server too hard broke things.  Only broke them a little bit, but once it's broken at all it takes 45 minutes to check the indexes and bring the database back online.

There's something not quite right with the storage on these KVM servers I'm using.  I'm probably going to switch back to bare metal servers for the databases.  VPSes are fine for apps and files, but databases need consistency.

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Thursday, May 03


The Return Of Recent Comments And Search Thingy

Um, they're back.

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Pest Toast

Poast poast poast...

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Tuesday, May 01


New Toy: Arale

It's a Xeon E5-2620 v2 with 64GB of RAM and a RAID-6 array of SSDs.

It's very cheap because it's a 2013 system - not quite 5 years old - and they're small SSDs.  But it will do nicely to replace a couple of our other servers that are running with single SSDs.

It will be the main server for the new platform.  I was worried until the weekend that I'd need more CPU power than that, but the 5x performance gains I got from two days of intense optimisation mean that this little server will run like the wind.  In Kansas.  In May.

The 64GB RAM is nice too; the other server I got recently only has 16GB, which is adequate but not spacious.  I had been considering Digital Ocean because of the ease of use, but it would cost nearly 5x as much if I wanted that much RAM in one place.


And I have that stupid boot loader problem with this one too.  Digital Ocean does not suffer from boot loader problems.

Update: Well, that was weird.  Five-year-old hardware but a two-year-old operating system won't boot.  But a week-old operating system does.

Well, Ubuntu 18.04 here we go, I guess.  While fiddling around I turned it into a RAID-1 for boot and a RAID-5 for storage.  I'll probably keep that.

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