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A&F Bandwidth Issues: UPDATE 11/22


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#41 Peter T Chattaway

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 12:22 PM

metalfoot wrote:
: Heh. I would never worry about you running out of stuff to post, Peter... at least from knowing you from various email lists and such since 1996 or so.

Out of stuff, no. Out of motivation with regard to a specific forum, though, maybe. Like I say, loss of functionality became a significant discouragement to my blogging a couple of years ago, and I know I took a loooong hiatus from Facebook after one of its re-designs a few years back, so if the environment HERE were to undergo a significant change -- and one that made it LESS functional, rather than more -- then who knows.

David Smedberg wrote:
: Would it be possible to limit use of the search function to registered members only? I have seen other forums do this, and it might cut down on searches significantly.

Can people use the search engine without logging in, then? (I'm almost NEVER not logged in.) Yeah, if only registered members could use the search engine, then that sounds like a good idea.

#42 Anna J

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 12:50 PM

I want to emphasize that this is just an experiment. We can get the old search box back if we hate Google, or try a different one (any suggestions?). I don't know if members-only-access search will work with the old search, but that is another thing we could try.

But the fact is we have to tamp down our bandwidth starting today, or the site will keep crashing. At least this buys us some time so we don't have to immediately switch to a different host.

Please keep your comments coming! We want to know what you think about the functionality of these ideas since you guys spend the most time here (as opposed to IMAGE staff).

Let's also keep talking about the possibility of deleting forums. Would anyone object right off the bat to deleting Politics, for example?

#43 M. Leary

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 01:13 PM

Would it help if we wrote really small?

#44 Anna J

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 01:32 PM

Let me amend this post. Here is the breaking news.


Jeff's friend Brendan says:

If being able to search private posts is a goal, there really isn't a solution outside of switching to Sphinx. It makes perfect sense to me that fulltext database search would cause this sort of issue. It's a sort of anathema, and using sphinx would solve it. It also makes sense that they'd want you to change plans in order to install sphinx -- right now you're in a shared environment, and sphinx should use a private environment. This would make something like Hostgator more expensive, too -- you can't just run any old program in that $5/month package. However, a Hostgator VPS would be much cheaper than $120/mo.

Right now we are paying Invision $30/month for 1GB of diskspace and 50GB of bandwidth (which, you will remember, was not enough to sustain our first post-IMAGE Top100 launch and we had to buy extra bandwidth).

We need more bandwidth no matter what, to sustain our searches and archived posts.

Invision won't continue to host us unless we switch to Sphinx.

If we move to Hostgator, we can buy 30GB of diskspace and 500GB of bandwidth AND Sphinx for $40/month (plus $150/year to Invision to keep the forum software as is).

It sounds like our current search box is becoming obsolete anyway, and there's no guarantee that if we moved to another host, keeping our current search engine, that we wouldn't run into the same problem in a year or two. [We can get away with just using Google search as a stop-gap at this point, until we make a decision.]

What I need to know from all y'all: What do you think about Sphinx fulltext search? Have you used it on other forums? Do you prefer it to our current engine?

#45 Jason Panella

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 02:17 PM

Does anyone know anything about Sphinx?


I've heard he's somewhat mysterious.

Posted Image

Source.

Edited by Jason Panella, 30 September 2011 - 02:18 PM.


#46 Buckeye Jones

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 02:32 PM

Have you considered running banner ads to provide the revenue? Is that off the table? It just seems like making $200/month on Netflix, Blockbuster, studio ads is low hanging fruit.

#47 Anna J

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 02:37 PM

Have you considered running banner ads to provide the revenue? Is that off the table? It just seems like making $200/month on Netflix, Blockbuster, studio ads is low hanging fruit.


It's possible, but I don't think we have the traffic for it.

#48 David Smedberg

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 02:40 PM

Have you considered running banner ads to provide the revenue? Is that off the table? It just seems like making $200/month on Netflix, Blockbuster, studio ads is low hanging fruit.

Posted Image

No, seriously, NO. I would much rather pay $5/month for A&F than have ads. I may be alone in this, I am curious to know.

Anna, I have no idea what difference a user would experience with this Sphinx thing... :huh:

#49 Anna J

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 03:06 PM

No, seriously, NO. I would much rather pay $5/month for A&F than have ads. I may be alone in this, I am curious to know.

Anna, I have no idea what difference a user would experience with this Sphinx thing... :huh:

Honestly, we would exhaust every other effort before buying ads.

The Hostgator option would mean a little more expense but nothing near the $1000. I think that's our best option - just wondering now if we should upgrade our search software since it would be free. It's up to you guys, since you use it the most often.

#50 Anders

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 05:42 PM

If upgrading the search software is free and potentially better, I don't see any reason not to. The current search works fine for me when I need it, but it's not intuitive.

#51 BethR

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 06:59 PM

I'm sort of confused about this, but other sites I work with use Google search & seem to function all right. The A&F /Invision search has never worked very well for me, but maybe I just don't understand how to use it. I'm willing to pitch in something for the board, but mostly out of nostalgia at this point.

Politics can certainly go.

#52 John Drew

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Posted 01 October 2011 - 12:57 AM

I ask this without knowing a thing about bandwith issues, or storage capacities and the like (I equate with the theory that even a slow drip will eventually cause a bathtub to overflow), but I was wondering if cutting back such things as "email notifications on new topics" might help trim the fat, so to speak. I'm not sure when I started receiving these notices, but since I'm pretty much a daily visitor those emails become somewhat redundant. I wonder how much bandwith is used to generate those notices? Just some food for thought.

#53 Peter T Chattaway

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Posted 02 October 2011 - 02:09 PM

Alas, I have no knowledge of Sphinx (nor would I know the name of our current search engine, if anybody asked me). All I know is that I would never want to be limited to Google, given all its limitations.

For what it's worth, I'd rather not delete any of our archives if we don't have to. And I say this as one who has undergone some radical changes of heart and mind over the past decade, and who would probably find some of the older posts kind of embarrassing if they were dredged up for some reason. :)

#54 Christian

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Posted 02 October 2011 - 03:00 PM

Alas, I have no knowledge of Sphinx (nor would I know the name of our current search engine, if anybody asked me). All I know is that I would never want to be limited to Google, given all its limitations.

For what it's worth, I'd rather not delete any of our archives if we don't have to. And I say this as one who has undergone some radical changes of heart and mind over the past decade, and who would probably find some of the older posts kind of embarrassing if they were dredged up for some reason. :)

Hey, some of us are embarrassed by posts from the last month! ;) I enjoy some of the thread-pulls on this board -- when a newer member or A&F veteran dredges up some thread from 2004 and dives right into the discussion, reminding those who posted in those threads of what we were thinking years ago. I'd hate to lose that, although I'm not sure what dollar amount I'd place on the value of retaining that option.

#55 Anna J

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Posted 03 October 2011 - 11:54 AM

All right.

It looks like we'll be moving to Hostgator ASAP, but we won't make a decision on changing the search box now. Let's see how this works and consider it again in the future.

Thanks for your input, everybody.

#56 Anna J

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Posted 23 November 2011 - 03:15 PM

Update:

We are finally moving to Hostgator this weekend. It will cost us a little more per month, and we should be able to get a new search engine for free, if we want one (let's look at some as a group and see if there are any that might work for us).

The forum might be down at times during the next 24-48 hours.

Hopefully things will be much better after that!

#57 John Drew

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 12:27 PM

Welcome back, and thanks for all the effort that went into this relaunch.

#58 Anna J

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 01:17 PM

YAYYYY! It still looks kinda weird - will be working on that tomorrow. At least things are up and running, more or less.

Could y'all post here with random glitches that you notice? Right now I can see

1) the header doesn't stretch all the way across
2) the tabs are the wrong color, and some buttons
3) forum eating posts? NBooth mentioned some that were missing.

If you think a thread is missing some, please post here with the thread link and the approximate date of posts that seem to be gone.

Anything else? Let me know!

#59 NBooth

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 01:45 PM

YAYYYY! It still looks kinda weird - will be working on that tomorrow. At least things are up and running, more or less.

Could y'all post here with random glitches that you notice? Right now I can see

1) the header doesn't stretch all the way across
2) the tabs are the wrong color, and some buttons
3) forum eating posts? NBooth mentioned some that were missing.

If you think a thread is missing some, please post here with the thread link and the approximate date of posts that seem to be gone.

Anything else? Let me know!


FWIW,it looks to me like it's mostly stuff around the last of November--right before the switchover started--that went missing. I know I had a post in this thread that seems to have vanished, and two from the David Peace thread are also gone.

That's a minor thing, though, in the bigger picture. It's good to have A&F back. I was having some withdrawals.

Edited by NBooth, 04 December 2011 - 01:47 PM.


#60 Persona

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 03:04 PM


YAYYYY! It still looks kinda weird - will be working on that tomorrow. At least things are up and running, more or less.

Could y'all post here with random glitches that you notice? Right now I can see

1) the header doesn't stretch all the way across
2) the tabs are the wrong color, and some buttons
3) forum eating posts? NBooth mentioned some that were missing.

If you think a thread is missing some, please post here with the thread link and the approximate date of posts that seem to be gone.

Anything else? Let me know!


FWIW,it looks to me like it's mostly stuff around the last of November--right before the switchover started--that went missing. I know I had a post in this thread that seems to have vanished, and two from the David Peace thread are also gone.

That's a minor thing, though, in the bigger picture. It's good to have A&F back. I was having some withdrawals.


Good to have the board back.

Thom and I both posted at the end of the Melancholia thread... and I was hoping to view any responses there when the board went down. (could be that there were none I guess)