Support BikePortland - Journalism that Matters

Update on my technical difficulties

Posted by on February 12th, 2008 at 9:43 am

As many of you know, the site was completely down yesterday.

My server crashed due to too much traffic. The culprit was my coverage of the Handmade Bicycle Show.

I worked with my host to fix the problem, and they tweaked the server as much as they could, but they said the traffic was simply more than the server could handle.

I should have foreseen this potential issue and taken better precautionary measures to prevent it, but I guess I learned this lesson the hard way (again).

This is the third time I’ve crashed my server (here’s the first and the second). After each time it’s happened, I’ve changed hosts and upgraded my server plan. I was most recently on a dedicated server that seemed to be performing fine…until the Handmade Show.

As you can imagine, having worked so hard on my coverage of the Show, it was a bitter pill to swallow knowing that thousands of people were not able to visit BikePortland.org on the day that would have certainly been my busiest ever.

With over 20,000 pages viewed on Sunday, which is typically my slowest day of the week, I expected over twice that many pages would have been viewed yesterday.

The site seems to be doing OK for now. But I’m not going to let this happen again. I’m in the process of switching to yet another new host. They haven’t even given me a price quote yet, but at this point, price is a secondary concern to making sure this never happens again.

Thanks for being patient while I get this handled.

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. BikePortland is an inclusive company with no tolerance for discrimination or harassment including expressions of racism, sexism, homophobia, or xenophobia. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Also, if you comment frequently, please consider holding your thoughts so that others can step forward. Thank you — Jonathan

23
Leave a Reply

avatar
23 Comment threads
0 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
21 Comment authors
Jonathan Maus (Editor)Wilsonville9MmannPhillip RossMatt M Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
c
Guest
c

No idea what scale you\’re looking for, but if price is truly of secondary concern, WordPress.com VIP hosting is a fairly bulletproof niche solution not to overlook. It\’d certainly give you room to grow, and would probably drive a fair number of pageviews in itself.

destin
Guest

Whatever you use make sure the dedicated server or solution is scalable to meet higher demand.

I use these cats often enough:

http://www.mediatemple.net/webhosting/dv/

Bikelawya
Guest
Bikelawya

I am thankful for all that you do. I live in SF but check in with you all the time. This stuff happens.

I liked your coverage of the show.

Regards,

Bikelawya

Adam
Guest
Adam

Having the site down yesterday was a bummer but if you look at the reason why it\’s a good thing, to much usage. It just goes to show that you put up a great site that people enjoy using. Thanks Jonathan!

Todd Boulanger
Guest
Todd Boulanger

Jonathan – we all understand what was going on Sunday/Monday – so do not beat yourself up too much.

Ted Diamond
Guest

Problem I\’d love to have!

I was part of the problem, I guess, cause I think your coverage of the show was spectacular, and I kept checking in.

Chris
Guest
Chris

No worries man, your site was the place to-be if you couldn\’t be in PDX this past weekend. Great coverage!!

Val
Guest
Val

What Todd said! I figured that was the problem, and had total faith that it would be taken care of in as timely a fashion as possible (nice to be right!). We can be patient, not to worry. We\’ll always be back.

mike_khad1
Guest
mike_khad1

It may be acting up today (Tuesday) too. I struggled a few times today to access you. Means you\’re doing a great job.

SH
Guest
SH

I too had some trouble today. It must be exciting to be getting too much traffic!?

Opus the Poet
Guest

Several bike sites and blogs were knocked out this morning, including mine. I have a blog that posts accumulated bike wrecks from the web, and i couldn\’t get into my own site to update it until after 2PM today. Glad to see BikePortland is back up.

WAW-042
Guest
WAW-042

This is the best news I\’ve had today. First you reported that there was a bike parking shortage. Now you\’re reporting that there was a server shortage for those of us who tried to park ourselves in front of bikeportland.org

Congratulations! The show and website are both a success. You\’re doing a fantastic job. Don\’t come down on yourself too hard.

Kronda
Guest

You know Jonathan, Mercury is in retrograde right now so communication is all &$^*%ed up. According to my link, you should be out of the woods by March 10th…

Jonathan Maus (Editor)
Guest

\”you should be out of the woods by March 10th…\”

thanks Kronda… but if I\’m not out of the woods by then, I\’ll be out of business ;-).

Mmann
Guest
Mmann

I understand your disappointment, but I agree with the others – thank you for the wonderful coverage, and thank you to your family for giving you up for the weekend so you could bring it.
And good call on the naked bike!

Joe
Guest
Joe

this site is just hip.

Scott
Guest
Scott

What Todd said… I did suffer through some withdrawals, but I made it through ok.

Keep up the fantastic work!

annefi
Guest

Here\’s one measure of the effectiveness of your reporting, Jonathan: You mentioned the 1979 film \”Breaking Away\” in one of your reports and now there are 21 holds on the two copies in the entire Multnomah County Library system.

Matt M
Guest

My guess is that the increased pageviews means increased cost to Jonathan. Everyone that visits this site daily or weekly probably needs to kick down some some $ for the excellent content/coverage provided! Kudos to you Jonathan, especailly on the show coverage.

Phillip Ross
Guest
Phillip Ross

Hey folks,

I propose that we support the site by providing a monthly RECURRING donation. Although it isn\’t much, I\’m willing to chip in $10 a month. So Jonathan – my question is – how can I do this without using Paypal? I as because I assume that the $500 withdrawal limit per month and the 2.9% fee (?) might cramp your style.

Suggestions?

Mmann
Guest
Mmann

I\’m up for anything but Bikeportland pledge breaks.

Wilsonville9
Guest
Wilsonville9

Jonathan,

This is my first post.

I have been a fan of yours (yes, yours) for almost a year, but I really understood how much I rely on you when the site went down.

I would also be willing to pledge, as suggested by Phillip Ross.

Jonathan Maus (Editor)
Guest

RE: recurring support through paypal.

I have had a system in place to handle this but have yet to launch it. stay tuned. My hope is to have a \”subscriber\” base that, for 5-10$ a month will get the peace of mind of supporting my work along with various premiums and goodies. thanks.