Feb. 9th, 2012

denise: Image: Me, facing away from camera, on top of the Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome (Default)
[staff profile] denise
I'll lead with the good news: we've been setting new records for traffic constantly for the past month or so, and just now we broke 30Mbps (megabits of traffic transfered per second) for the first time, which is an awesome milestone that we are totally dancing around and celebrating. People are using our baby!

So, if we're transfering record amounts of data, and if (as mentioned on our offsite status twitter) we added two new webservers today to help push out traffic, why has the site been so sluggish today?

As I mentioned in the 2 Feb dw-news post, the answer is very complex. There are a lot of underlying causes that can look to you guys (the people who are just trying to load your reading page and comment on various posts) like the site is just plain sucking, and I know it must be tempting to wonder: hey, this keeps happening, why can't they just fix it?

in which I make an extended metaphor about site traffic )

[staff profile] mark has been making a bunch of code fixes that will speed things up in the short term, and [personal profile] allen is working on the more sweeping code changes that will speed things up in the long term. The code changes Mark just made should help a lot, but high traffic periods (evenings, US time) may continue to be sluggish for a few more days.

We've also added more caching of frequently-accessed and unchanging data: CSS files, JavaScript files, images, and icons are all being cached so they load faster, and served from the fast static content frontend, which takes the burden of serving those off the webservers that are working to build pages. Meanwhile, [personal profile] alierak has been working on optimizing our server response so we can squeak every microsecond out of the servers themselves.

So, in short: We're busy! We're all really sorry about the slowdowns at peak traffic times, and we're working really hard to increase capacity and speed up site performance. Thank you all for your patience (you really are the best users a site ownership team could ask for!) and for continuing to use Dreamwidth. This is a very exciting problem to have. :)


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