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  #1  
Old 05-09-2008, 07:00 PM
Jason Dunn
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Default We're Moving Servers, Expect Some Down-Time Tonight

What's that? Another server move? Yes. The long and the short of it is that when we <a target="_blank" href="http://www.zunethoughts.com/news/show/88473/we-re-back-and-here-s-our-tale-of-woe.html">moved to our new server back in December</a>, I was focused on the CPU and RAM capabilities of the new server &ndash; and didn&rsquo;t think at all about the hard drives because, hey, we were going from five-year-old SCSI hard drives to modern SATA drives, so they should have been at least as fast, it not faster right? Nope. <br /><br />Some blame for that can be shared around, especially with The Planet (who's advising sales person didn't bother to point out that issue to me), but it doesn&rsquo;t change one fact: the SATA hard drives we have on our current server are incapable of the throughput needed to run full site backups whilst still keeping the sites themselves running. Ultimately the blame for this falls squarely on my shoulders since I'm the one with the credit card renting the server. We&rsquo;ve had sporadic down-time over the past month for exactly this reason: anything that&rsquo;s disk intensive has the ugly side-effect of bringing down the sites.<br /><br />You&rsquo;d think the solution would be to simply upgrade the hard drives, right? Well, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.theplanet.com">The Planet</a> is unfortunately completely inflexible in this regard, and they say the only solution is to order a new server with the hardware we need, and move everything to that. So that&rsquo;s what we're doing: our new server is an Intel Kentsfield 2.13 Ghz quad-core machine, the same as our current server, and it also has the same 8 GB of RAM, but we&rsquo;ve gone from two 500 GB 7200 RPM SATA drives in RAID1 to two 300 GB 15,000 RPM SCSI drives in RAID1 &ndash; the fastest and biggest they have. If we run into disk throughput issues after this upgrade...then we have a different kind of problem.<br /><br />Sometime this evening (Eastern Standard Time), we'll be initiating the move. You can expect all our sites to be down, but we&rsquo;re hoping this will be a relatively quick process. By Saturday AM everything should be back to normal. And I swear by Thor&rsquo;s Hammer this will be our last server move for quite a while&hellip;I hope. ;-)
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Old 05-09-2008, 07:55 PM
timmy
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Quote:
And I swear by Thorís Hammer this will be our last server move for quite a while
So you're the one who's got it? Us vikings have been missing it the last 1100 years . Good luck with the move!
 
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Old 05-09-2008, 07:56 PM
makicr
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You sure you want to tempt the fates, the day before your "Dragon Giveaway" day? I have never known an upgrade or transfer to go well when there is something important scheduled to follow immediately thereafter.
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Old 05-09-2008, 10:04 PM
Jason Dunn
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Originally Posted by makicr View Post
You sure you want to tempt the fates, the day before your "Dragon Giveaway" day? I have never known an upgrade or transfer to go well when there is something important scheduled to follow immediately thereafter.
Unfortunately we don't have much choice - everything is based on virtual machines, so the move should be relatively seamless. I hope.
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Old 05-10-2008, 04:24 PM
jgrnt1
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It could just be that things are smooth on my end today, but the site does seem snappier.
 
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Old 05-10-2008, 04:42 PM
Jason Dunn
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Originally Posted by jgrnt1 View Post
It could just be that things are smooth on my end today, but the site does seem snappier.
Things are definitely snappier - we're done what we needed to do, we're on a new box, and hopefully the DNS has been pushed around the world...these new hard drives rock.

Now to finish up the Digital Home Thoughts contest so I can then launch my Dragon contest.
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Old 05-10-2008, 05:50 PM
makicr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Dunn View Post
Now to finish up the Digital Home Thoughts contest so I can then launch my Dragon contest.
Well, get going then. I need the new video camera you promised me.
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Old 05-11-2008, 01:29 AM
Jason Dunn
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Originally Posted by makicr View Post
Well, get going then. I need the new video camera you promised me.
Sorry buddy, guess it wasn't meant to be.
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  #9  
Old 05-11-2008, 03:17 AM
Forester1
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Default New Server

Hi Jason! I'm brand new to your site (yes, the Dragon contest), but I'm an IT guy. You didn't mention if they charged you an arm and a leg for the new server, so I hope not. Some hardware is stuck in what they can put into it. I have a server at this moment that is out of drive space, but it already has the largest drives that model will take. So I am trying to get a different model up before our AP department runs the disk completely out of space. Anyway, they may be valid in their assertions. depending on the make and model of the server. Still, since you are only renting, I would think the swap would be made at a reasonable price. There may not be a lot of choices in what vendors are available where you are? Depending on your budget these days, some pretty fast HP and Dell servers are available out there in the $2500 USD range, but maybe you don't want to mess with being an owner, with upkeep, maintenance and patching responsibilities.
Like you say, the hope is this will keep you up and running for a long time. Congrats on the new hardware, this site seems to be doing fine!
 
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  #10  
Old 05-11-2008, 03:41 AM
Jason Dunn
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Welcome to Digital Home Thoughts, nice to have you here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Forester1 View Post
There may not be a lot of choices in what vendors are available where you are? Depending on your budget these days, some pretty fast HP and Dell servers are available out there in the $2500 USD range, but maybe you don't want to mess with being an owner, with upkeep, maintenance and patching responsibilities.
I'm with The Planet, and they sell mostly Dell boxes - but they handle the hardware maintenance, bandwidth, networking, etc. I have some great people helping me manage the box, but I didn't want to go down the road of purchasing hardware and doing the whole co-location thing. At least, not in Calgary - bandwidth here is brutally expensive, and no local co-location place can match what I get from The Planet.
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