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Webserver busy (staff: 'did a quick fix, working on increasing capacity')
Thread poster: Russell Jones

Russell Jones  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:12
Member (2004)
Italian to English
Oct 25, 2006

I have been participating in KudoZ activity since 2002 and, along with many others, have contributed a substantial amount to the open glossary.
It is now sufficiently extensive, in my language pair, to have become an indispensable source of information when I am working and is frequently my first port of call for terminological issues.
So it is becoming frustrating to find that I am regularly unable to access the ProZ.com Term Search and to be advised:
"Webserver is currently busy. Please try back later".
Unless this is a short term problem, I really do think Members should be given some priority in this area of the site.

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2006-10-25 14:14]

[Edited at 2006-10-25 17:14]


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justin C
United States
Local time: 12:12
English
I've made some tweaks, all should be well now Oct 25, 2006

Hi Russell,

I have increased the cap necesary to trigger the message you described here.

We have been experiencing higher than normal traffic numbers, and we are currently working to increase our web serving power to meet the higher traffic need.

Best regards,
Justin


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 12:12
SITE FOUNDER
Working on it... Oct 25, 2006

Thanks for reporting this. (Others have, too.) Term search has become increasingly popular and load has been an issue the last few weeks.

Our plan is to increase capacity generally, so that all site users can continue to access the archive. This may take a week or two. In the meantime, we ask for your patience. Thanks!


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Russell Jones  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:12
Member (2004)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Oct 25, 2006

Justin and Henry for your prompt responses.

Russell


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ICL  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:12
English to Spanish
+ ...
Investments Oct 25, 2006

Hello Russell, Henry and Justin,

Russell, though it's great that you got an immediate answer to this issue (great technical support), I would like to follow-up a bit on your following comment (no polemic intended, just constructive dialogue):

Russell Jones wrote:
I really do think Members should be given some priority in this area of the site.


Like you, I use the glossary/KudoZ database more or less daily, so I also noticed (for the first time today) the busy server message you mentioned.

As I only recently became a paying member and, therefore, I have been on "both" sides (paying/non-paying), putting on the hat of the non-payers for a minute, I don't know if you considered the fact that a lot of non-paying members also contribute with the said terminology databases (both with answers and questions).

Thus, I don't know if it would be fair to limit in any way the terminology database access to members only, unless, of course, you limit their contributions as well.

On the other hand, though obviously it is theoretically the paying members' fees that allow the existence of the said servers, I understand (and it would be very useful that Henry clarified if this is just an urban legend) that allowing non-paying members to contribute to and access the said terminology databases generates more site traffic, which, in turn, generates more business in general.

Therefore, from the business point of view, it would also be unwise to limit the access of site users/members.

Which brings me to my last comment: if I remember correctly, one of the many interesting suggestions made in the recent "Let's improve Proz" mega-thread (management actions still pending) was to get an overall idea of how member fees are invested in the site. For example, in server acquisition and/or maintenance.

I wonder if this suggestion will be implemented at some point in the (hopefully near) future, just for the sake of "transparent" information about Proz.com's finances.

Regards,

Ivette


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Russell Jones  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:12
Member (2004)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Please don't misunderstand me Oct 25, 2006

Ivette

I am a wholehearted supporter of Henry's policy of keeping as much of the site as possible open to all.
However, if the capacity of the servers makes full-time access to all an impossibility, I was suggesting that there would have to be some sort of rationing, at least at peak times.
However, I am sure from Justin's and Henry's comments that this will not be a long-term problem and, if so, such drastic action will prove unnecessary.

Russell


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ICL  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:12
English to Spanish
+ ...
No misunderstanding Oct 25, 2006

It's just that, like you yourself just acknowledged, this access limitation idea sounded a bit drastic.

And I hope you didn't misunderstand me, either, because I am basically a satisfied user/member of Proz.com (registered for 7 years), although I think that, like everything in life, it can always be improved.

Your comment gave me an opportunity to make some constructive criticism, which I hope Henry (or rather Proz.com) interprets as such.

Regards,

Ivette


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 12:12
SITE FOUNDER
Made sense, Russell Oct 25, 2006

Russell Jones wrote:

Ivette

I am a wholehearted supporter of Henry's policy of keeping as much of the site as possible open to all.
However, if the capacity of the servers makes full-time access to all an impossibility, I was suggesting that there would have to be some sort of rationing, at least at peak times.
However, I am sure from Justin's and Henry's comments that this will not be a long-term problem and, if so, such drastic action will prove unnecessary.

I understood it that way, Russell, and it would be a perfectly sensible suggestion if we were in that position. Fortunately, we able to increase capacity enough to leave the term search open to all (thanks to members!)


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 12:12
SITE FOUNDER
Thanks, Ivette Oct 25, 2006

ICL wrote:

Your comment gave me an opportunity to make some constructive criticism, which I hope Henry (or rather Proz.com) interprets as such.

Of course!

(Still working with Enrique to prepare the jobs plan and responses to suggestions...)


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 12:12
English to French
+ ...
About access to services/features based upon member status Oct 25, 2006

I simply wanted to say that users, no matter what member status they have, should be able to use any part of a site to which they also contribute. This should go for any aspect of the site (such as the BlueBoard for example).

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ICL  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:12
English to Spanish
+ ...
Just one last thing, Henry... Oct 25, 2006

(Now that I caught your attention... )

I just wanted to add that you sound like a really "busy bee"...

That is, you're Proz.com's CEO, Proz.com-related forums' moderator, Proz.com's innovation manager, you attend business fairs, Proz.com conferences, powwows, etc. etc.

I am no business expert, but I would say that maybe it's time to delegate a few tasks? I mean this seriously/constructively.

I mean, I understand that some Internet-based companies (like the recently sold YouTube.com) have a starting phase in which they work apparently without a "complex" management structure, because they have basically been created "in a garage", so to speak, so they basically dedicate most of their resources to the server (computer software/hardware) structure.

But I suppose there comes a point (due to the site's growth) that you then need to urgently become a more "infrastructured" company, the "corporation" phase, meaning you need to get more staff, resources, etc. in order to cover all the demands of the growing number of site users.

This could be the case of companies which went through such evolution, such as Ebay, Amazon or Google.

So I am not sure if Proz.com is still in the "garage" phase, but just observing how apparently overwhelmed one person (you) is performing so many maintenance/management duties, I tend to think that maybe you should really consider totally reorganizing the company into the "corporation phase", and thus hire more personnel to which you could delegate some of this increasing number of tasks.

That way, you would keep increasing your business and your customers would be more satisfied, a win-win situation.

Anyways, like I said, I am no business expert, but I do dedicate some time to read the economy section of newspapers and/or Internet sites.

And speaking of business, it's time for me to finish the translation of that manual which is due tomorrow

Good luck with the jobs' plan....

Ivette


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Jennifer Baker  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 10:12
Partial member (2004)
Italian to English
Thanks for posting Russell Oct 25, 2006

I've been getting the busy server message for a few days and have found it totally frustrating- didn't have time to send a support ticket, though.

Thanks-
Jennifer


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 12:12
SITE FOUNDER
It's a team effort, Ivette! Oct 25, 2006

ICL wrote:
That is, you're Proz.com's CEO, Proz.com-related forums' moderator, Proz.com's innovation manager, you attend business fairs, Proz.com conferences, powwows, etc. etc.

You may be giving me too much credit. I do love my job, and I put my heart into the site and community, but the only reason you can see me appearing in different places is that we have a great team in place doing lots of things, often behind the scenes.

For example, Justin is taking care of this load issue; keeping all of our systems running is rightfully a full-time job.

We also have a great new team in La Plata (as I think you know) handling support, custom fixes and development for members (Gaston), preparing an upcoming membership campaign (Leonardo and Florencia), and more. (Not to mention my brother Patrick, who fixes asado for the team... (plus handling localization, etc.))

Mike is heading up Project Connect, with Jason and Colin, and a new person, yet to be announced (or I'd say his name), is taking on the tasks of managing advertising and relationships with vendors.

As for the events and powwows, Romina in La Plata is lending a hand, but we are very lucky to have a few great, independent organizers in our community. Thanks, Angela, Roberta, Aurora, Magda, Steffen, Gianfranco, Rebekka, Katharina and Csaba!

As for the forums, anyone who frequents "mine" knows that the ones I supposedly moderate benefit from the oversight of other moderators... Even the jobs plan that I said I am working on actually is a joint effort with community manager Enrique, who incidentally has taken over much of the role of forum oversight.

And many of you know Cathy, if you required any help on a payment, etc. She also keeps the books.

So I probably should give them all credit publicly more frequently. Here's the team page, by the way.


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ICL  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:12
English to Spanish
+ ...
An "asado" expert? Oct 26, 2006

Wow, Henry, I had figured out you had some technical personnel, but I didn't know that you also have some really *highly specialized* staff such as an "asado expert" Well done, Patrick! (maybe we should start a permanent recipe section in one of the forums).

But seriously, I was just wondering if you have enough personnel to cover such a high population of members/users, considering that Proz.com probably already has the population of some small (or even medium sized) cities or towns of the "real" world.

So it's good to know then that your ubiquitous presence in the site is because of your enthusiasm with the site and not necessarily because you are doing *everything* (smile...).

I guess I thought of you working too much because I believe you have commented in the forums a couple times that your excess of work has not let you, for example, finish some of the recent proposals for improvement of the site.

And I guess some of us site members/users can be a bit like children: if you promise to take us to the zoo next week and you keep postponing it, we'll be nagging until you finally take us there, Dad (he he he!).

Anyways, thanks for taking the time to comment things and for highlighting the work of your team. Keep it up!

Saludos,

Ivette


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 12:12
SITE FOUNDER
Let us know how term search performance is today Oct 27, 2006

Hi again Russell, Ivette,

Justin made a second, more significant adjustment. if you get a chance, please let us know how the speed of term search is now, compared to before. Any faster?

Thanks,
Henry


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