Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progress

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Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progress

Postby ian » Sat Dec 29, 2012 3:59 am

Today we're reinstalling WordPress, the blogging software. A server tune up has it running much faster, but comments and some back end stuff like comment moderation are still taking 10-15 seconds or longer. A secondary test site was setup yesterday and works much better, so today we'll wipe and reinstall WordPress.

You'll notice sitewide slowdowns from the backup process, followed by a few minutes of major outage on the blog. Hopefully everything is cleaned up by 10am server time (11am CET). We'll post a followup here when the blog is sorted.
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby honken » Sun Dec 30, 2012 4:13 am

Dont know if its related to maintanance or if its just me, but the captcha for too many failed login atempts doesnt show on the mobile site.
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby ian » Sun Dec 30, 2012 5:30 am

Thanks for the heads up, I'll look into it. Could just be a deficiency in the mobile site. Maybe I can just disable it.
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby ian » Sun Dec 30, 2012 5:32 am

I found the setting. It is not possible to disable it as far as I can tell, but I increased it to 12 to be less bothersome.
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby matseng » Sun Dec 30, 2012 5:40 am

While hacking in the system, can you please add a search button/link to the main forum page? As is it now I have to do "View new posts" followed by a "Return to advanced search" to search in all forums...
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby Sleepwalker3 » Tue Jan 01, 2013 8:07 am

Ian, I think I've found a problem with the search in the blog. I was looking for a comment I made the other day about a Nikon IR trigger, but it showed up no hits, I found the article and it is there, so unless I've been celebrating NYE just a little too hard, there's something funny going on with the search.

Also, is the forum searched when you do a search from the blog (or vice versa)? I searched the forum and found somebody had used the TV-be-gone to work as a Nikon IR trigger, but the blog obviously didn't find it.
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby arhi » Tue Jan 01, 2013 8:55 am

the two searches are not linked, if you want to search all of dp do a google search:

what you want to search for site:dangerousprototypes.com
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby Sleepwalker3 » Wed Jan 02, 2013 8:57 am

Thanks Arhi,
That's fine for the forum, but there is still something wrong with the search in the blog unless I'm missing something. If you do a site search of DP in google for 'nikon', you get about 40 hits, at least a few of those are on the blog. But if you go to the blog now and search for it in the blog, it shows up 'nothing found' - maybe the index got screwed up when the server work was going on?

I also noticed something that I wasn't aware of before, the forum search only works for the sub-board you're in at the time, if you want it to search the whole forum you need to go to Advanced Search - probably explains why I had trouble finding things before. I think it was Mats that recently suggested having a search section on the 'front page' of the forum and I second that idea, that way it could easily search all of the forum.
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby arhi » Wed Jan 02, 2013 10:57 am

I assume DP is very "visible/highly accessed" forum but I don't know (do not have nor want any access to any such data).. search is one of the most resource hungry operations on phpbb and wordpress .. on number of forums I was involved in setting up we completely removed the search option as server was just unable to cope with it. Turning off search speeded up the forum many times so even as decision to remove search was only "until we get better server" we never turned the search back on, we just added google search button... I assume DP is having similar problems, when 100 ppl search trough text the forum just becomes slow for everyone, limiting search scope to a single "sub board" reduces the load significantly, and if you wanna do a search on the whole site ... google .. :D
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby matseng » Wed Jan 02, 2013 1:37 pm

arhi wrote:the two searches are not linked, if you want to search all of dp do a google search:

what you want to search for site:dangerousprototypes.com


I really dislike sites that just uses a "Google custom search" for their data.... Unless the site is ginormous and having a massive number of visitors it should be easy and cheap enough to just throw some extra hardware at the problem.

I'd be surprised if phpbb doesn't have support for putting the full text searching database (or a mirrored ReadOnly clone of it) on a separate db server to allow for searching without affecting the main db and the normal operations.
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby arhi » Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:28 pm

matseng wrote:I'd be surprised if phpbb doesn't have support for putting the full text searching database (or a mirrored ReadOnly clone of it) on a separate db server to allow for searching without affecting the main db and the normal operations.


last time I checked - it didn't support anything similar.

contrary to common opinion phpbb is a piece of crap software with disgusting architecture and serious lack of both security and maintainability :( ... unfortunately it is very popular as from the user side it looks ok and ppl know how to use it as is common throughout the internet. Due to seriously flawed architecture if one would to patch it and add all the new functionality (I did few times moved some parts to a second server) you are either stuck with the version you created or you need to apply your patch every time you upgrade the piece of crap. There is no concept of plugins for phpbb - the "mods" they talk about are just a patches for the main source and they don't even use a proper patch system but a separate way more unsafe format they invented as "human readable".

as for the search capabilities, phpbb sucks big time. donno about few latest versions but it used to have 2 options
- use index created by phpbb system (works crappy, slows down insert of posts, clogs the database)
- use full text search ability of myisam storage engine (full text search in myisam works but is order of magnitude slower then specialized solutions like lucene, sphinx etc.. not to mention that myisam is by today's standards deprecated storage engine and that new mysql server pushes for dropping myisam completely getting innodb way faster in every segment of mysql usage)

moving phpbb's search engine to a new engine is possible but as I said for every future upgrade of the phpbb you need to do it again and the way updates go you often have to do it from scratch... since phpbb's security is piece of crap you have to upgrade phpbb every time the security updates are available 'cause there's gazilion little kids that call them self hackers that use those exploits to fsckup forums that are not up to date... I know some time ago phpbb dev's were discussing of adding a lucene search capability to phpbb especially as zend was then preparing Zend_Search_Lucene but I don't know how far they went with it. I also know there was a mod for phpbb that was talked to be pushed into the main tree that use sphinx or to be more precise there was a talk that phpbb 3.1 will support sphinx out of the box .. donno if that's true iirc phpbb is still on 3.0 and 3.1 is still heavily beta .. depending on how many of the promised changes go into 3.1 it might be a quantum leap up from 3.0 .. but let's wait and see ... that's also a huge deterrent from investing time in fixing 3.0 and adding better search if 3.1 will have it out of the box as iirc 3.1 was already supposed to be out...
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby Sleepwalker3 » Fri Jan 04, 2013 3:36 am

The search problem was mostly with the blog though
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby arhi » Fri Jan 04, 2013 8:16 am

hm, never spent too much time fixing wordpress search but I know there is a plugin for wordpress to enable it to use sphinx: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/wor ... nx-plugin/ so fixing search for WP "should" be piece of cake for Alex .. I emphase "should" here 'cause I never tried so it might not work as advertised
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby ian » Wed Jan 09, 2013 5:35 am

contrary to common opinion phpbb is a piece of crap software with disgusting architecture and serious lack of both security and maintainability :(


Ditto on this. Every plugin is hand hacked into the code. I imagine it would take days to diff everything and get it upgraded to latest version.

Thanks for the heads up on the blog search. Not sure what is going on but will look into it.
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Re: Server maintanance and WordPress blog reinstall in progr

Postby arhi » Wed Jan 09, 2013 8:50 am

ian wrote: Every plugin is ...


they even dare call that plugins / mods :D
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