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Old 2005-04-20, 17:41   #1
HackMaster
 
Apr 2005

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Default Web server slow

I noticed that your web server was acting very slow (slow: 3-10Kbps) for file downloads (the latest prime number and prime95 setup files). If you guys need any space to host files, or to offer a mirror, I can provide you with file and site mirrors.
(price will probably be free if hosting credit is given)

Last fiddled with by HackMaster on 2005-04-20 at 17:44
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Old 2005-04-20, 19:13   #2
gribozavr
 
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I can offer a mirror hosting too. All traffic is free for me from 16.00 UTC to 6.00 UTC. In a month or two I will be able to tell you if I could make it free during other time of day. Can you tell me how much traffic a month does meresenne.org have? My bandwidth: 64 Kbps.
It would be good if you will provide me a domain name, something like ua.mersenne.org (I live in Ukraine!)
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Old 2005-04-20, 23:11   #3
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i have a dedicated Cable line doing 384Kbps. that is hooked up to a 30gb server, that i use for text transfers (like whole site backups). for file distributations, i have a OC-12 line. (hosting with a friend). For that, i have about 500 mb. and us.mersenne.org would be neat
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Old 2005-04-21, 04:53   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HackMaster
i have a dedicated Cable line doing 384Kbps. that is hooked up to a 30gb server, that i use for text transfers (like whole site backups). for file distributations, i have a OC-12 line. (hosting with a friend). For that, i have about 500 mb. and us.mersenne.org would be neat
not fair ;) oc is so oc like lol "wishes for bw like that someday"
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Old 2005-04-21, 12:28   #5
Peter Nelson
 
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In my opinion, a DSL line is not a sufficiently reliable technology to run a service like this over. In addition, DSL is usually contended bandwidth whatever the marketing, and additionally they are usually asymetric with more download than upload. A server needs the opposite ratio.

Although the prime95 software itself does not generate much traffic (however multiply this by about 50,000 machines) the other things on the server do.

eg. web-based statistics, webserver for the project, ftp archive for software downloads etc.

Ideally a facility should be in a physically secure environment with UPS, fire detection and suppression, etc. The hardware should have redundant PSU, hot-swap/hot-spare RAID drives which will reduce problems due to the main causes of hardware failure. Ability to hardware reboot the server remotely when it crashes is also desirable and could be provided by eg an APC Masterswitch unit.

The ftp server could be mirrored elsewhere, but to change the stats generation may require some backend work. It appears to be difficult to upgrade the existing server software in reasonable timescale (although some have tried moving towards v5).

For me, there is NO WAY I would run a mission critical server on the same box as the webserver for the project. But that's how the project is currently configured. Processing stats or database queries can slow down everything else.

A problem with the current system is that the link to the backend database seems very unstable. About monthly it goes down, meaning nobody can view their individual report, and any work submitted gets ERROR3. Some of it has to be manually mailed to and fixed by George. All this is not good.

Moving/mirroring the ftp stuff will not solve this problem, but may be a good thing to do in any case.

Another benefit of mirroring would be resilience, but I suggest that putting server(s) on a dual-homed network (using BGP4 with its own AS number) and using load balancing over more than one physical box are the kind of things we should be thinking about.

All of this is a world apart from hosting on a domestic DSL line, which is only appropriate for "wannabe" hosters. You don't see IBM or Microsoft hosting their site on DSL and there is a reason!

Although I like Ukraine as a country, I'm not convinced they have sufficient net infrastructure for this kind of thing. The exchange points at Amsterdam or London or Manchester (or somewhere directly linked into these) would be more sensible places to locate a European mirror site.
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Old 2005-04-21, 13:09   #6
HackMaster
 
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I am talking about just mirroring the actual web site, not the server. That being said,

hosting on a DSL connection is not that bad. The reason that they do not host off a DSL line is they have the ability to buy a faster connection. T1: $1500 USD. OC-16: 3000?? If you feel like providing me 3000, I can easily provide you a nice fast mirror. For you and all your 25 million clients? I would think you dont have that big of a following. For a site with their usage base in the thousands, the high-priced connections are not needed. And think about how the web works: If you have 100 users each requesting a 100k file, you dont need 10MBps (note MB: megabyte, not megabit(Mb)). each user will not request the file all at once. and, most html files are not 100k!
That being said, you most likely will not get access to a full net center, with every redundant thing, spare hard drives, extra hvac stuff, and overpowered dual xenon servers. In my opinion, if its better than what one has now, go for it. If you want to stick with your 5Kbps connection, ok. Do you have "a physically secure environment with UPS, fire detection and suppression, etc."?? Do you have "redundant PSU, hot-swap/hot-spare RAID drives which will reduce problems due to the main causes of hardware failure"? I have, in all my computer working time, never have had a computer fail. (other than the laptop I dropped off a table) As long as one keeps the computer clean, dust-free, and fans working, nothing should happen. Computers dont just randomly go up in flames. Hard drives dont often die, but my servers have dual HDs. And, no, I dont have a load balancing system with a dual-homed network. If you want all that, then talk to these guys: http://www.cogentco.com/ . They could easily hook you up. Oh, but for free? ha. it wont happen.

I dont mean to be mean, but dont say that we need to donate space in the RackSpace redundant network. I was voluntiering a mirror, not a replacement. If your primary goes down, the mirror will probably be up. If not, then it will be like its not there, and your site will be down. Just like it would be normally.

(i was in a bad mood about having my prom plans screwed up, but i feel better. Thanks for the rant space)

oh, and the offer still stands.
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Old 2005-04-22, 04:45   #7
moo
 
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hack the problem is that the server regenerates the main page many many many times a day. also the web and database servers are located on the same server and on the hour it recomplies the entire database to generate stats. also its hosted in a datacenter but on a older duel p3 machine.
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Old 2005-04-22, 05:43   #8
Peter Nelson
 
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I want to affirm and encourage your desire to see improvement in the project and your willingness to help via your kind offer.

However, I reiterate that DSL is not appropriate IMHO. As you say, those who have a choice (via paying for it) will go for a proper service.

You suggest mirroring the web site. Unfortunately this is somewhat integrated with the backend and contains some dynamic content from the back end ie when you login to look at your individual stats. Other things change hourly and again are based on the database. Many people download the status files of tested exponents etc. I agree that it would be nice to take such load off the server (as I said it should) but in practice it may not be totally simple to alter the existing system to achieve this.

If you are not sure about that, try making the reported list of client platforms support recognition of AMD Athlon *64*, Intel 6xx or Intel Pentium D (8xx) processors and display their quantity. I doubt you would have success within a timescale of 6 months or a year because of the people involved and their busyness. Similarly try making the individual report list contain the correct client version - it doesn't currently, and that's a server side problem.

OC stands for Optical Carrier and is at certain levels like 3, 12 or 48. There is no such standard as OC-16.

I think you grossly UNDERestimate the cost of genuine OC-12.

You may have access to (ie sharing) part of an OC-16, or maybe sharing part of the bandwidth which is only part of somebody's total OC-16 going into a datacentre, and in any case whatever the access circuit, many ISPs will have a separate limit or charging per volume of actual traffic.

Neither I nor GIMPS have 25 million clients.

> "easily provide you a nice fast mirror" - not on a 384k DSL line!
By the way, what is the UPSTREAM speed on your 384k line? Is it symmetric or less?

And perhaps a mirror of the static content, not the dynamic.

There would be big problems preventing you redirecting the mersenne.org domain eg the client and the web stuff point at the same domain, and without that you might need some rewriting of the HTML and/or backend stuff to accomodate mixed operation.

The low data rate you measured coming from the server is almost certainly not constrained by the connection where the server is hosted currently but by the box it is running on trying to do too much work and therefore crawling.

Although the user base is only about 50,000 (and 80,000 machines) some of those users download large files (much bigger than as you say "100k") hourly so if I were you I would not attempt to speculate that the traffic is minimal.

> "That being said, you most likely will not get access to a full net center, with every redundant thing, spare hard drives, extra hvac stuff, and overpowered dual xenon servers"

Really? I certainly have access to such a facility. By the way, it's "Xeon".

> "In my opinion, if its better than what one has now, go for it"

But, IS it better? You would have to educate people whether to use the mirror or the master server, how to deal with one going down etc

> "If you want to stick with your 5Kbps connection, ok."

As I said it is not constrained by the connection but the server, in my opinion.

> Do you have "a physically secure environment with UPS, fire detection and suppression, etc."?? Do you have "redundant PSU, hot-swap/hot-spare RAID drives which will reduce problems due to the main causes of hardware failure"?

Yes, as it happens, I do!

> I have, in all my computer working time, never have had a computer fail.

I don't know what the odds are but either you have not much experience or you're extremely lucky so far!

>Nothing should happen.

Er, no, something SHOULD happen. That's why they quote MTBF mean time between failure for components.

I specifically mentioned PSU and hard drive as these are some of the most frequent failures.

Your servers have dual hard drives? But what do they do when one dies? Do they continue to operate using the remaining drive, allow you to hot-swap without rebooting and rebuild the raid transparently when you do? Oh and have you heard of the "domino effect" where one dying drive creates extra heat which also kills the other?

>I dont have a load balancing system with a dual-homed network. If you want all that, then talk to these guys: http://www.cogentco.com/ . They could easily hook you up. Oh, but for free? ha. it wont happen.

After the dot.com bubble burst, load balancing hardware has been on ebay for as low as 1% of original (extortionate) retail price, hardly expensive! Or you can homebrew it.

And running BGP4 for dual homing is a topic covered in the Cisco courses. So find yourself a decent hosting ISP, or get a switch/router and someone who knows how to configure it and you can have this with a bit of effort. Not only myself but within our local Linux User Group are people with these skills.

-

Improving the physical hardware primenet runs on has already been suggested/discussed in another thread, and some were willing to donate either hardware or money for it.

> I dont mean to be mean....

On the contrary, you come across as being generous

> dont say that we need to donate space in the RackSpace redundant network.

Well, as for me I have worked for 3 of the biggest telcos in the UK including cable internet and ISPs, used dedicated Gigabit connections in premier UK datacentres for high-end blue-chip corporate applications. There *might* be a possibility to locate such hardware at one of these locations (as a few U in a rack). However, this is not something I would volunteer flippantly, realising the long-term nature of a commitment, the responsibility, need to consider bandwidth usage (and mix of UK/foreign traffic).

Oh, and you may have noticed the number of Primenet clients (and therefore traffic) is increasing over time in this project. And as machines get faster they complete work faster, so communicate more often. And more users means more people looking up their stats and other stuff.

Therefore, assuming you could host something today, will that be sufficient in a year's time?

Also would performance of your mirror suffer when eg you download eg a service pack from microsoft or maybe run online gaming? Would you use the same machine to host pages for other websites?

> I was voluntiering a mirror, not a replacement

Unfortunately I think the DYNAMIC content accounts for the majority of data being transmitted. It might be worthwhile to mirror the ftp site though (daily and/or hourly).

Just as an aside, I suspect the static content could be accelerated (and reduce load on existing server) by using a front-end web-cache like squid, or if the money is available (via ebay), a Network Applicance Webcache box and a layer 4 switch to throw traffic at it.

It would be nice if primenet could distribute itself and its database across multiple machines, but sadly it is not written that way and won't be anytime soon. Clients experience inability to connect when it is down.

Your mirror would only contain out-of-date copy of the master server. This would have SOME value eg for press releases, FAQ etc but such pages do not account for the bulk of usage.

> Thanks for the rant space

Thanks for the opportunity to rant back.

Don't get me wrong, I think the idea of some form of mirror would be a good thing but notional 64K or 384K links probably are not ideal. I would suggest a minimum of T1 (USA) or E1 (Europe) which is symmetric and uncontended.
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Old 2005-04-22, 12:52   #9
gribozavr
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Nelson
Although the prime95 software itself does not generate much traffic (however multiply this by about 50,000 machines) the other things on the server do.

eg. web-based statistics, webserver for the project, ftp archive for software downloads etc.
As I pointed in my previous post, in the specified timeframe I don't care about the traffic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Nelson
Ideally a facility should be in a physically secure environment with UPS, fire detection and suppression, etc. The hardware should have redundant PSU, hot-swap/hot-spare RAID drives which will reduce problems due to the main causes of hardware failure. Ability to hardware reboot the server remotely when it crashes is also desirable and could be provided by eg an APC Masterswitch unit.
The servers (yes, there will be two) will stand at my home -- so any kind of hardware failture will be detected almost immediately. Software falitures are very improbable -- I use Linux with Apache as web server. Backups are already being regularly done.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Nelson
The ftp server could be mirrored elsewhere, but to change the stats generation may require some backend work. It appears to be difficult to upgrade the existing server software in reasonable timescale (although some have tried moving towards v5).
I think that most traffic comes from the webserver and from the exponent lists. So we can mirror only them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Nelson
Moving/mirroring the ftp stuff will not solve this problem, but may be a good thing to do in any case.
I fully agree.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Nelson
All of this is a world apart from hosting on a domestic DSL line, which is only appropriate for "wannabe" hosters. You don't see IBM or Microsoft hosting their site on DSL and there is a reason!
Though it is really an ADSL line, a whole home network will be using it in a week or less, so ISP was chosen very carefully.
(don't worry, I have upstream/downstream=64/64, so even if my people will be downloading files -- upstream busy, downstream will be free)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Nelson
Although I like Ukraine as a country, I'm not convinced they have sufficient net infrastructure for this kind of thing. The exchange points at Amsterdam or London or Manchester (or somewhere directly linked into these) would be more sensible places to locate a European mirror site.
I can't understand, what's the difference between placing a server in Ukraine and in England: Internet is the same everywhere, 64k in Ukraine is the same as 64k in England. As I wrote above, if that ISP will not provide GOOD services, it will not be our ISP.
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Old 2005-04-22, 13:49   #10
HackMaster
 
Apr 2005

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Quote:
I can't understand, what's the difference between placing a server in Ukraine and in England: Internet is the same everywhere, 64k in Ukraine is the same as 64k in England. As I wrote above, if that ISP will not provide GOOD services, it will not be our ISP.
The internet is not a thing. Its a bit network. Your ISP must send its requests to the replying server. I will break it down for you for the way it happens for me to contact to the MIT server.
The connection must be sent to the server. It gets there by contacting the local Bellsouth main internet ring(which is a big loop of fiber opic line goin all around the usa. Its gonna find its way into the ring, go to the exit point that is closest to MIT, its gonna find its way to the MIT ISP, which will direct the request to the MIT HTTP server. Here is each step that the return communicaton takes to return.
Code:
 1  W92-RTR-1-W92SRV21.MIT.EDU (18.7.21.1)  0.508 ms  0.580 ms  0.257 ms
 2  EXTERNAL-RTR-1-BACKBONE.MIT.EDU (18.168.0.18)  0.519 ms  0.443 ms  0.456 ms
 3  ge-5-0-116.hsa2.Boston1.Level3.net (4.79.2.1)  0.415 ms  0.394 ms  0.372 ms
 4  ae-1-56.mp2.Boston1.Level3.net (4.68.100.161)  0.643 ms  0.606 ms  0.694 ms
 5  as-1-0.mp1.Miami1.Level3.net (64.159.0.1)  35.974 ms  35.170 ms as-0-0.mp2.Miami1.Level3.net (64.159.3.249)  35.046 ms
 6  so-6-0-0.gar1.Miami1.Level3.net (4.68.112.42)  35.303 ms so-7-0-0.gar1.Miami1.Level3.net (4.68.112.46)  35.117 ms  35.076 ms
 7  BELLSOUTH-TE.gar1.Level3.net (65.57.174.6)  43.291 ms BELL-SOUTH.gar1.Level3.net (65.57.174.2)  35.487 ms BELLSOUTH-TE.gar1.Level3.net (65.57.174.6)  39.413 ms
 8  axr00mia-1-0-0.bellsouth.net (65.83.236.19)  35.307 ms axr00mia-0-0-0.bellsouth.net (65.83.236.17)  35.556 ms axr00mia-1-0-0.bellsouth.net (65.83.236.19)  35.350 ms
 9  icx00jax-6-1-1.bellsouth.net (65.83.237.105)  43.322 ms  43.205 ms  43.006 ms
10  205.152.187.89 (205.152.187.89)  43.398 ms  43.135 ms  43.224 ms
Note, I am at school, so im directly connected, via T1, to the bellsouth link.
You may not have a good fiber line to me, for example. It does have to cross an ocean.
-----
One more note, I have the Cable line. Maximum download speed of 4Mbps and upload speeds of 384Kbps.

And i have been lucky. No computers failed.

I am only talking about mirroring your HTML files. That seem mostly static. Except for updates about new info found. nothing related to your other PrimeNet servers. only http://mersenne.org/, http://www.mersenne.org/prime**.txt, http://mersenne.org/gimps/p95v238.exe, and all the other OS versions.

ahh, whatever. i dont really care. I just would think that allowing your users to download the text files with the latest number, and the actual program with some speed. (For when you get /.ed) But I care not. I happened to find a copy of it on my file server from a previous install.

(i probably should note: "/." means to get slashdotted. Which means getting mentioned on http://slashdot.org and having millions of people visiting your site in minutes. see: http://www.thinkgeek.com/slashdotted/index.shtml

Last fiddled with by HackMaster on 2005-04-22 at 13:53
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Old 2005-04-22, 14:19   #11
gribozavr
 
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Here's traceroute from my ISP's server to 205.152.187.89 (I can't traceroute from my computer because I haven't yet signed the contract with them):
Code:
 1  corporative (62.80.160.129)  1.104 ms  0.668 ms  0.613 ms
 2  monthree (62.80.191.73)  2.464 ms  1.015 ms  0.792 ms
 3  213.179.224.105 (213.179.224.105)  6.447 ms  3.339 ms  7.994 ms
 4  195.5.5.254 (195.5.5.254)  7.813 ms  6.382 ms  3.449 ms
 5  mgraz1-180-117.net.uta.at (212.152.180.117)  120.850 ms  117.249 ms  129.884 ms
 6  c76vix2-g5-1.net.uta.at (212.152.192.98)  78.287 ms  74.622 ms  82.325 ms
 7  212.73.202.137 (212.73.202.137)  81.665 ms  86.666 ms  97.814 ms
 8  4.68.124.185 (4.68.124.185)  140.880 ms  133.339 ms  134.638 ms
 9  as-1-0.bbr1.London2.Level3.net (212.187.128.61)  161.479 ms  162.096 ms  152.835 ms
10  as-0-0.bbr2.Washington1.Level3.net (4.68.128.102)  225.262 ms  219.843 ms  210.053 ms
11  as-1-0.mp1.Miami1.Level3.net (64.159.0.1)  200.294 ms as-0-0.mp2.Miami1.Level3.net (64.159.3.249)  210.021 ms  210.794 ms
12  so-7-0-0.gar1.Miami1.Level3.net (4.68.112.46)  255.528 ms  256.000 ms  262.219 ms
13  BELLSOUTH-TE.gar1.Level3.net (65.57.174.6)  283.751 ms  289.144 ms BELL-SOUTH.gar1.Level3.net (65.57.174.2)  179.695 ms
14  axr00mia-1-0-0.bellsouth.net (65.83.236.19)  294.233 ms axr00mia-0-0-0.bellsouth.net (65.83.236.17)  188.274 ms  179.702 ms
15  ixc00jax-6-0-1.bellsouth.net (65.83.237.93)  199.529 ms  187.728 ms  187.087 ms
16  205.152.187.89 (205.152.187.89)  303.421 ms *  267.958 ms
I think it's not bad -- only 6 more routers for crossing the ocean.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HackMaster
I am only talking about mirroring your HTML files. That seem mostly static. Except for updates about new info found. nothing related to your other PrimeNet servers. only http://mersenne.org/, http://www.mersenne.org/prime**.txt, http://mersenne.org/gimps/p95v238.exe, and all the other OS versions.
I meant that too.
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