V-Announcements: We’re Back!

I have to tell you, there is very little that gets me as aggravated as having Velominati go down. Its like having kids kicking down my sandcastle when I was a kid, watching helplessly as your labor of love collapses right before your eyes. We’ve spent the better part of the last month with the site staggering like a drunkard between being online, offline, and painfully slow. Its no way to live.

I’ve been unhappy with our host for a while, but I’ve been reluctant to move on because of the risk in changing platforms and the downtime associated with such a move. But, as my VMH cleverly pointed out on Sunday afternoon while I was tearing my hair out, I might as well take advantage of the downtime to change hosts. So we did.

After a careful evaluation, I settled on a WordPress-specific host called WP Engine. All these guys do is WordPress, and their servers are tuned specifically to the unique loads this platform imposes. They are like the Classics specialists of WordPress hosts. To my surprise, however, once I moved the site and data over to their platform even they couldn’t accomodate it without getting some of their specialists involved. I had a feeling Velominati imposed some unique demands on the platform, and it was a bit cathartic to have them express surprise over the volume of data we have. The Rules in particular has such a high volume of traffic and posts (several million hits a year and 11k posts and counting) that it simply causes things to choke. They also helped me find some optimizations in the code that helped reduce the load on the servers.

Part of the optimizations include changing how the photo upload tool works; you can still upload multiple photos into your posts, but the album tool is dead. I built that myself as a way to share photos with my family before we ever launched Velominati; it was never designed to support the kind of traffic we have here. So DM Albums is dead. Let us thank it for its service and wish it well. A-Merckx. On the plus side, you can now add captions to any photo you upload, so that’s kind of cool.

Anyway, we got it all up and running and last night I poured myself a stiff drink and flipped the switch on the domain name to point to the new boxes. Words can’t express my relief when I woke up this morning and everything was humming away nicely. We’ll give it a day or so before posting up new content just to make sure we’ve got everything squared away.

Its great to be back; let us know if you notice an improvement in site performance or anything that doesn’t seem to be working correctly. Vive la Vie Velominatus!

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115 Replies to “V-Announcements: We’re Back!”

  1. Vive la Vie Velominatus!  It has been a dull time while the site has been undergoing surgery.  Hope to see a new article posted soon.  I am sure others feel the same way.  

  2. Great work Frank and co, I can put the paint brush down now and do some enjoyable stuff again. I must confess though, that post was like another language to me!

  3. Seriously…I almost forgot my username an password!! Wow! Nice to have Velominati back in my life. Congrats on the new host.

    One question: is the column of space on the right hand side a permanent thing? Just wondering in the interest of maximum utilization of my V-screen.

    Looking forward to Milan-San Remo.

  4. @freddy

    One question: is the column of space on the right hand side a permanent thing? Just wondering in the interest of maximum utilization of my V-screen.

    Can you post a screen shot? We have three columns; one main column, one with community-oriented content (Cogals, Recent Posts/Articles) and one with more commercial-oriented stuff like the link to the book and products. (More coming there later.)

  5. Welcome back, Life is now good.

    Stop teasing with the promises of additions to the V Gear, just hurry up and make it so.

  6. Yeehaw! We’re getting hammered with un-NC like weather and lacking this Community on snow days makes life even more unbearable. Thanks for the work in getting it back up, Frank!!! Oh how lost I felt…This brightens my day, and will warm me tomorrow, high 17*F, low of 0, very very undude like for these parts.

  7. @JohnB

    Welcome back, Life is now good.

    Stop teasing with the promises of additions to the V Gear, just hurry up and make it so.

    Should be easier now that I’m not fighting the server gorrilla now.

  8. Great timing!  I’m back too.  Although my absence was likely less noticeable than the lethargic and downed hosting servers.  But I’m ready to get fired up for the Spring Classics!

  9. I love the new arrow on on the right side that take you straight to the top of the page! ben wanting to see that for a long time. thanks.

  10. @frank

    @brett

    Damn, now I’m gonna have to write something…

    We can always count on you to focus in on the right issue!

    Oh right… Yay, we’re back!

  11. @Casey

    I also can’t see my comment while typing. Just a blank screen. I sure hope my typing clases at Mckinly middle school paid off…

  12. @il muro di manayunk

    It’s so fast now.

    You mean You’re so fast now. On your new Veloforma…

    Speaking of the VSP, is it ready for 2015 yet? I mean, the site has been up again for, like, a day now.

  13. Thank God we’re back and running. I can only take so much analysis of Manchester United formations and transfer rumors.

    Rode in my first event of the year last Sunday. 80k event plus 70k extras for more volume. Training with a coach since October is paying off big time. 

    As of next week more intensity get’s folded in. Need this site up and running to compliment the developing guns and engine.

    FYI here is the new 9 bike / commuter ‘Serse’

  14. On the plus side of the site being down, my productivity levels were through the roof, on the negative side of it being back up, work will witness a sharp decline in productivity which may trigger some interest from the authorities that be.

    Shit happens

  15. @frank, I’ve used WPengine for all of the WordPress sites I’ve been obliged to deal with over the last several years, and they kick ass.  Good call.

  16. With the site being down for so long, I found myself spending more and more time contemplating N+1. So much so, that I found it impossible to contain my velolust. The order for the N+1 was placed on Monday. I got a call from my LBS today. She has arrived. I will have a final fit-out on the weekend before taking her home to be pampered, adored and ridden hard.

    The bank balance has suffered a serious blow. I blame you @Frank!

  17. @frank

    @JohnB

    Welcome back, Life is now good.

    Stop teasing with the promises of additions to the V Gear, just hurry up and make it so.

    Should be easier now that I’m not fighting the server gorrilla now.

  18. @harminator

    @brett

    @frank

    Why didn’t you just turn it off and back on again?

    For more better tech jargon say “Did you re-power cycle the unit?”

    So 2000’s, now it’s have you tried deleting and reloading the app?

    welcome back keepers and the rest of you.

  19. RIP Claude Criquielion, fine champion. With thanks to Winning Magazine’s The Fabulous World of Cycling for the memories…

  20. @brett

    As I am currently warming the bench for the unemployed team, my mornings usually start with a strong short coffee whilst perusing the international websites of note. Praise Merckx you have returned!

  21. Don’t know if this is some sort of teething issue, but when you go on ‘The Rules’, the ‘Recent Posts & Articles’ that appear are posts from years and years ago.

    Witness-

  22. Six weeks of recovery most of it with no Velominati.

    Thank god there was still porn.

  23. I feel like the methadone clinic just reopened and the hard core guys are lined up at the door – thank you “Dr.” @Frank!

  24. @ChrisO

    Six weeks of recovery most of it with no Velominati.

    Thank god there was still porn.

    word of warning to those at work, don’t google ‘bicycle porn’.

  25. The Phoenix rises better and healthier.  Many thanks, it’s been a killer with only work to do while in the office.

  26. @The Grande Fondue

    Frank: your work on this is really appreciated!

    @ChrisO

    Six weeks of recovery most of it with no Velominati.

    Thank god there was still porn.

    This wins the internet!

    Speaking of porn, I found an original report of Eddy Merckx winning the 1974 World Championship: http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1946&dat=19740826&id=BIkxAAAAIBAJ&sjid=1KEFAAAAIBAJ&pg=871,2871537

    “…masochistically breaking trail through the humid air for four other riders.” I like that line!

  27. Thanks be to Merckx for all your hard work, frank.

    I would have reduced the servers to rubble with a chain whip, pedal wrench and headset press had I been in your position.

  28. Dear Frank, Thank Merckx you’re back – I was having severe withdrawal symptoms. Kudos t\o you for all your hard work on whatever you did – I can’t even comprehend the complexity of it all.

    The world is now spinning a little more smoothly now that we’re back in business.

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