About the recent slowness

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John Q. Public
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About the recent slowness

Post by John Q. Public »

And maybe the board getting the name wrong on some quotes.

It's complicated, but dumbing it down to where even I can almost understand it, the message board and Wordpress, which I use for the front page, the (occasional) football pool and the even more occasional survey, are written in PHP. In order for them to work, PHP has to reside on the server. Right now, the site is in a sort of a transition time between php v.7 and v.8.

There's a background process that Wordpress runs every time someone (or something) visits that side of the site that's been crashing and taking this side of the site with it. Just a hunch, but I get the feeling Wordpress wants to run on php v.8 but we're stuck on v.7.4 because the folks at phpBB say the message board still uses some terms that were written out of the new version. They're working on replacing those procedures but in the meantime my guess is that we have a conflict. They have until November when the old version dies.

So I'm in the process of disabling Wordpress and I've replaced the front page with a plain old, static HTML page. And for good measure I blocked a bot that's been hitting that side of the site every few minutes. 404 errors are going to go through the roof but I'd rather have them than 500's and the resulting 503's any time. We'll see if it works.
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Omar Bongo
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Re: About the recent slowness

Post by Omar Bongo »

I can't understand a word you wrote but the board seems lightning fast...thanks
"Trump is what he is, a floundering, inarticulate jumble of gnawing insecurities and not-at-all compensating vanities, which is pathetic."
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Donald Trump
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Re: About the recent slowness

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Hmmm. I just had a post time out. And the server logs said there were eight 500's in the 9:00 o'clock hour. Better than it's been but it doesn't seem to be gone yet. I'll wait and see what Tuesday morning's report says when I can have a full day to compare.
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Re: About the recent slowness

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Well, the report for Monday says:

403 Access forbidden - 42
404 Document not found - 1604
500 Internal server error - 124
503 Service temporarily unavailable - 30

The 403's are probably that bot I blocked and they're way down. 404's aren't any higher than usual. 500's and 503's are still higher than I'd like - and they're all from the board - but they were over a thousand last week. Progress, I guess.
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Re: About the recent slowness

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Still monkeying with this. 500 errors are still in the same range and I'm seeing a lot of timeouts in the error log, so I'm looking for things that might cause that.

Our host's Knowledge Base said I should look at one of the site's configuration files. And I realized that I hadn't edited out references to Wordpress, so I did that. Including one paragraph of code WP had inserted 16 times, for some reason. :shock:

And I found two ads in the sidebar that were passing through a company that's no longer in business. I guess I must have uploaded the wrong file for that or something. Now all 3 of them go direct to Google without delay.

And I noticed that the site wasn't forcing secure connections, which might have thrown "insecure site" warnings for people who typed "http" instead of "https" or used an old bookmark. I'd swear I did that a couple years ago when we switched to "https" but maybe it got undone, somehow.

The first change might affect the errors (we'll see) and the second two were just general housekeeping things but they'll at least make the pages work a little better. --:--
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Re: About the recent slowness

Post by Omar Bongo »

Been slow again lately, at least for me
"Trump is what he is, a floundering, inarticulate jumble of gnawing insecurities and not-at-all compensating vanities, which is pathetic."
George Will

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Donald Trump
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Re: About the recent slowness

Post by John Q. Public »

Okay, that was weird.

SQL errors are host level and they come from the HTML and database servers not connecting, like maybe a router went down or something. It seems to be fixed now. It isn't likely that it was caused by the other problems but there is a chance it could fix them. --:--

Looking at the error log, there was also a hacking attempt in the last hour, so the server could shut itself down again until it stops. We'll see.
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Re: About the recent slowness

Post by ShiftyMutt »

Seems like work..

I appreciate all of your efforts, JQ
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Re: About the recent slowness

Post by John Q. Public »

LOL You posted that as I was in the process of backing up and then uploading 18,000 individual files* to see if I can set up a parallel board from scratch to see if it has the same problems**. I'm fairly convinced that the problems are from something our host did that we're kinda stuck with for a couple months but I want to see if there's a way of working around it or if maybe a fresh install might work better.

* Note to Linux pros: Yeah, I know there's an easier way of doing it but no hablo Linux and I totally suck at command line kind of stuff. Doing it the hard way is probably safer.

** Note to people who have even less of a clue what I'm talking about than I do: It sounds like a lot of trouble but it isn't, really. It's not like I have to sit and watch all the files transfer.
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Re: About the recent slowness

Post by Omar Bongo »

Note to people who have even less of a clue what I'm talking about than I do
:foilhat:
"Trump is what he is, a floundering, inarticulate jumble of gnawing insecurities and not-at-all compensating vanities, which is pathetic."
George Will

"How stupid is our country?"
Donald Trump
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Re: About the recent slowness

Post by John Q. Public »

Okay, this is crazy because it's something I never suspected. Server errors and time-outs like we've been - or rather "were" - having are almost always caused by bad or outdated code trying to do something it shouldn't, so that's where you look. But no! Our problem seems to have been hardware or firmware and it appears to have been fixed. We had a grand total of eleven 500 errors yesterday and zero 503's. We had something like 60 the day before. It's the first time they've been under a hundred in a couple months. I think we hit 1,000 a couple times.

I got an email last week saying our hosting company would be "performing proactive maintenance on your MySQL [database] server" on Monday (some people might have seen SQL errors around midday). Well, whatever they did "proactively" seems to have fixed it. It's like "proactively" fixing your gas leak to keep your house from blowing up, but whatever. I'll take it.

Now, back to the bitching and moaning. \:D/
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Re: About the recent slowness

Post by John Q. Public »

Oh. I'm still going to re-install the board software whenever I have some spare time. There's still a couple bugs in the back end that I'd really like to make go away. Likely nobody will notice unless something goes horribly wrong but consider this the announcement because I probably won't know that I have the time until I do.
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