And we're back again, better than ever!

Discuss technical problems and features here
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emk
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Re: And we're back again, better than ever!

Postby emk » Mon Apr 24, 2017 11:14 am

neofight78 wrote:I've had a quick flick through the first few pages of my log and there is an old uploaded image that is displaying, so I guess it must only be more recent images that are missing.

Thank you, that really helps! I'll ask rdearman to take a look, and we'll figure out if we can recover this missing images.

Morning update: One more round of database gremlins

We just had another 25 minutes of downtime while I fixed a problem with the database configuration. It turns out that phpBB was storing the database address in 3 files(!), and not just one, thanks to how the Symphony caching system works. This is nasty and ugly—I'd updated the database URL correctly in the main file, but the two undocumented cache files actually pointed to the wrong database. This meant that, in reality, everybody's posts were being written to the old database, because phpBB never even looks at the config file (outside of the admin panel) as long as the cache exists. That's just gross.

So to fix this, I changed the password on the old database (so that the new site can't access it any more), I migrated the data again, and I cleared all the caches. So now everything should be talking to the correct servers, and even if something tries to access the wrong server, it won't know the password anyway.

Some days I kinda hate technology. But we should be operational again, this time for real!

(hangs head in shame, offers many apologies)
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MamaPata
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Re: And we're back again, better than ever!

Postby MamaPata » Mon Apr 24, 2017 3:29 pm

None of the technical stuff means anything to me but it looks like a ridiculous amount of work! Thank you both so much!
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tarvos
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Re: And we're back again, better than ever!

Postby tarvos » Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:17 pm

Thank you for the enormous effort involved. Otherwise we wouldn't be able to keep abreast of all our fellow language learners' language achievements!
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emk
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Re: And we're back again, better than ever!

Postby emk » Tue Apr 25, 2017 1:10 am

emk wrote:
neofight78 wrote:I've had a quick flick through the first few pages of my log and there is an old uploaded image that is displaying, so I guess it must only be more recent images that are missing.

Thank you, that really helps! I'll ask rdearman to take a look, and we'll figure out if we can recover this missing images.

OK, the image problem was really embarrassing. (Technical geeks can look here while I hang my head in shame.)

Anyway, image uploading works again, and I hope that some / most / all of your images are back where they belong. Let me know if any are still missing, and thank you for your patience and your help!
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neofight78
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Re: And we're back again, better than ever!

Postby neofight78 » Tue Apr 25, 2017 2:08 am

Yep, looking good for me! Thanks for fixing that :D
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Re: And we're back again, better than ever!

Postby schlaraffenland » Tue Apr 25, 2017 2:27 am

Thank you so much, emk and rdearman, for the enormous volunteer commitment of time and resources. And let me add my voice to those who are calling for some way to throw a donation your way eventually to cover operating costs.
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Re: And we're back again, better than ever!

Postby PeterMollenburg » Tue Apr 25, 2017 3:12 am

MamaPata wrote:None of the technical stuff means anything to me but it looks like a ridiculous amount of work! Thank you both so much!


Ditto. I have no idea whatsoever with regards to what appears to me as the technical stuff, but I do indeed appreciate the massive amount of work that emk, rdearman and if there's anyone else I've missed, have been putting in.

I've gained a hell of a lot from the community over the years and would not be where I am with my French today without the massive amount of help I've received from this community's members- and we wouldn't be here as a community without all the work that goes in to keep it functioning well. No language course could provide me with such specialised help and support. I'd be happy to contribute financially.
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Re: And we're back again, better than ever!

Postby Iversen » Tue Apr 25, 2017 4:06 pm

Thanks for getting the forum back on its feet. I can see that some of the pictures have been damaged, but apart from that it doesn't seem that we have lost anything much. And hopefully we may now even avoid some of the delays that plagued the forum in its previous location.
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emk
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Re: And we're back again, better than ever!

Postby emk » Tue Apr 25, 2017 4:13 pm

Iversen wrote:Thanks for getting the forum back on its feet. I can see that some of the pictures have been damaged, but apart from that it doesn't seem that we have lost anything much. And hopefully we may now even avoid some of the delays that plagued the forum in its previous location.

Please try reloading the pages with the missing images now, and see if those images are back. In theory I've fixed the main problem with the images.

And things should mostly be pretty snappy, although the site might slow down during the daily backup, or go offline for a bit if Amazon needs to reboot the database server for some reason.
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Re: And we're back again, better than ever!

Postby rdearman » Tue Apr 25, 2017 9:13 pm

Well it has been an interesting week, and I just wanted to say publicly a huge thank you to emk who did all the heavy lifting to get this site back up and running on a very whizzy system, with an amazing technical backend which makes updates and backups a breeze. If you're not a techno-nerd like me, then you probably don't really appreciate the huge effort emk put in getting this site using the latest technology and one of the slickest technical setups I have ever seen in my life. This community website now has a better technical setup than I've seen for most public companies, and emk has given all his knowledge and experience for free in order to help us grow and prosper. I won't list all of the stuff which has been done, but just to give you a flavour, we now have:

  1. Periodic online backups of the database, and upgraded database tables to the latest standard.
  2. Isolated services running in docker containers which help performance, upgrades, and security.
  3. A slick automated upgrade system which pulls the latest source code at the push of a button.
  4. Migration from a problematic blogging system to a nice stable, secure html only blog.

I am in complete awe at his technical abilities, and if you ever need to hire a programmer, you should check out his website Kidd Software. He is too modest to tell you how truly bloody amazing he is, so I thought I'd tell you. He'll tell you I helped, but I was just the guy handing the scalpels to the surgeon.
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