View Full Version : Server update - downtime expected soon

05-10-2004, 11:40 PM
Attention Users:

Those who have been with us for a while can probably remember the downtime associated with our last server upgrade about a year ago. Those who have been with us for a shorter while might recall the server instability we experienced a few times last month. Well last month was an early warning sign that it's time, once again, to upgrade our server. What can I say, we've outgrown another server despite getting one which we thought could not be outgrown :? . Our numbers have grown to top a hundred thousand unique visitors and a million page views per month.....well past similar sites.....and it's still growing :shock: . So at this rate, things will only get worse if we don't make changes soon to a bigger and faster server.

Of course this will mean significant downtime (24-72 hrs) during the upgrade and some associated temporary bugs. During that time, we'll also be working on making some improvements to the website by updating the software and eliminating some existing glitches. However, our major forum upgrade is not yet complete and is scheduled to be released by the end of the year. We were hoping that both the server and forum upgrades would coincide so that we can complete both projects at the same time, but Murphy's Law states otherwise :roll: .

I don't have the details about the downtime yet, but we expect the upgrade to take place sometime during this week. I'll provide more details as they become available and will report them on this thread. We're very sorry for the inconvenience this may cause, but we're confident that the long term server stability will be well worth the short term inconvenience.

05-12-2004, 11:32 AM
Apparently the stats we've reported have not been very accurate in recording our true stats, often underestimating the numbers. From our stats on the server itself (much more accurate I think), a few independent statistics compilations have shown that ValueMD has had as many as 7.8 million page hits each of the last 2 months....that's significantly greater than the 1 million we thought we'd reached previously :shock: .....and a total of 68 million hits since our last server upgrade in mid June 2003.....no wonder our server was having problems :roll: .

As for the update on the server upgrade, the latest predictions indicate that it will begin some time on Friday May 14th and will be down for up to 3 days (depending on your location). We will still be experiencing sporadic bouts of server instability until then since we're still overworking our old server. In addition, the scheduled date might be moved up if the instability presents any risks to the current server....possibly without notice. Also keep in mind that there might be a few associated bugs after the server is back online which we'll attempt to correct as quickly as possible.

Again, we appreciate your patience and understanding, and we hope that you'll agree that this upgrade will be worth it in the long run.

More updates to follow.....

05-16-2004, 12:31 AM
Although we've taken steps to minimize the effects, the website will likely experience significant downtime starting at some point on Sunday May 16th while we continue to work on the scheduled server upgrade / maintenance.

More updates to come....

05-20-2004, 12:49 AM
Attention Users:

I didn't want to jinx it by announcing it sooner, but I think its safe to say [knocks on wood http://www.stopstart.freeserve.co.uk/smilie/banghead.gif] that the server upgrade is complete. Thanks to Hanson and GladHost, I think the move was a great success and relatively quick and painless, but please let us know if you notice any bugs that may be left over. http://www.stopstart.freeserve.co.uk/smilie/mypic7.gif

I don't know about everyone else, but I've already noticed a great improvement in speed and stability http://www.stopstart.freeserve.co.uk/smilie/computin_smiley.gif. Our new server is the latest and greatest Dual Xeon Processor....for non-techs like myself, that doesn't really mean much http://www.stopstart.freeserve.co.uk/smilie/conf.gif ....but it sure sounds fast and all the techs seemed pretty excited :lol: . Anyways, I hope this new one will be able to support our continued growth for some time. Our next maintenance project should take place some time this year when we expect to implement a major upgrade to the forum software....more info will be provided shortly.

By the way, some users have asked about donations. Well, you might notice that we've removed all of our donation buttons because we are no longer accepting donations from users to support the site. We feel that the sponsors can carry the burden of site-related expenses for you so that we can truely provide a free service for our users, which has always been our intentions. We appreciate the thoughts, but if you really feel the need to give something back, please consider supporting our affilated charity, Children International, or some other worthwhile charitable organization.

Other ways to support ValueMD can be by thanking one of the many Moderators (and of course Site Administrators and Techs behind the scenes http://www.stopstart.freeserve.co.uk/smilie/behindcomputer.gif) who kindly volunteer their time, or simply by continuing to provide an exchange of helpful information via your posts. The only donation button which still remains is located on our Charity page (http://www.valuemd.com/bigheart.php), but please note that 100% of any donations will go directly towards charity......thats not a typo....100%. It has always been one of our primary missions to support needy children in 3rd world countries, so please help us if you agree with this worthy cause. We're in the process of sponsoring another child...more information will be provided shortly.

Thanks to everyone for their patience and understanding during the server maintenance. I should add that not even one complaint was made during the move http://www.stopstart.freeserve.co.uk/smilie/eek3.gif , and we really appreciate everyone's support. As always, thanks for using ValueMD!

05-20-2004, 09:50 AM
i gotta ask doc, where you get all thos neat icons that arent on our list??

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