New Server

New Server

It has been a very bumpy ride, but we are finally at the point where we can announce that the new server is ready.

A few months ago, we started down the road to replacing our aging servers. The plan was to have this done and ready by Jan 1, 2023

The first server arrived and it was the wrong part #, not even close to what we wanted and ordered. The RMA process was rather smooth.

While waiting for the slow boat from China (it was made in Mexico, but that doesn’t matter), we heard that if we add the lightspeed plugin for Apache (the software that runs the web services) that the current server would be significantly faster. We tried that and it was, really fast, however, we had some hiccups and decided that it would be better to remove that module for now, however, it will be installed on the new server.

The replacement / second server arrive a few weeks after the RMA was accepted for the first server.

This shipping box for the replacement server, looked like it got run over by a tractor-trailer hauling bananas, then a school bus, full of children followed by a 747 from Spirit airlines. Needless to say, we didn’t keep it. In reality, it looks like it got stuck in a conveyor belt and every box on the belt hit it.

The RMA was slightly less smooth this time, but we got it taken care of, and the third server (replacement, replacement) arrived in great condition, without the right part, well packed, with no boot prints, crushed box, or conveyor drive belt marks. Success!

We quickly got it built and ready for prime time.

The new server will be two Intel Xeon processors each with 6 cores (that is 12 CPUs in total), 32Gb RAM, and 2x 4Terabyte hard drives (primary and backup). It will be running AlmaLinux 9, Apache with the lightspeed drop-in. It should be really fast.

The server is sitting in the rack, running through its burn-in process. Once that has been completed we will be ready to start the migration.

At 8 PM, February 17th we will start the migration. Our process of moving each site one at a time and then changing the DNS for that website should mean little to no downtime.

If a site fails, we will change the DNS back and the site will be operational on the old server. At that time Joe will work to figure out what broke on that website and then move it again, once it has been resolved.

As long as you avoid working on your website during the transfer, you will not lose any data. And since this is a direct move to the new server, there is no way for files to become missing, or for images to change. For any file that fails to be copied over, Joe will manually move that file and associated data.

The old server did an amazing job, it was put into service on August 2nd, 2013, it has 1 CPU with 4 cores, dual threaded, and 4Gb of RAM. As of this post, it has been running 907 Days, 22 Hours, and 15 Minutes without a reboot, but who’s counting?

You can find updates on the status of the replacement server on our status blog (