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[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2015-12-09 15:25:58
last modified: 2016-01-07 09:00:33

Comments on the following newsitem

The SSDs used by BOINCstats are currently four years old and are getting worn-out. Especially the ones in the update server are getting bad, spitting out errors all the time. Today this even resulted in database corruption.

To give the server some relief I have reduced the number of incremental updates to once every four hours. It will stay like this until the campaign at Bitcoin Utopia has completed and the SSDs have been replaced.

Host updates have been suspended until maintenance on the servers has been performed!

[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2015-12-20 20:10:53

You may have noticed some intermittent downtime, that's because we have another harddisk failure, this time in one of the webservers. As it's RAID it keeps running but it increases the load on the server. When the load is too high it stops running BOINCstats and all traffic goed to the other webserver. But there is a reason we have two. This second one can't cope on it's own.

I have no other choice than to stop running incremental updates until the harddisks are replaced.
Please do not PM, IM or email me for support (they will go unread/ignored). Use the forum for support.
[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2015-12-20 21:23:32
last modified: 2015-12-20 23:54:48

Things are not going well. Both servers are struggling. I'm going over to the DC with an old hard disk to see of I can patch things up.

I really would like to move BOINCstats to the cloud but it's too damn expensive.

Addendum: I scavenged a harddisk from another system but that has to go back. Tomorrow I'll buy a new drive an put that in the server.
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[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2015-12-20 23:43:09
last modified: 2015-12-20 23:47:25

Just a quick question, just throwing it out here: seeing how much the donations for BOINCstats are falling behind, is it really a good idea to shell out nearly €2500 for maintenance? There doesn't seem to be that much interest anymore. Kind of struggling with justifying with the amount.

I'm I doing the right thing?
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noderaser
 
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2015-12-21 04:39:55
last modified: 2015-12-21 04:41:46

Looks like the money from Bitcoin Utopia could be ready in a couple of weeks, assuming the BTC value doesn't keep sliding. I for one wouldn't object to asking for a recurring goal at BU, many BOINC users owe a lot to this website. Are the revenues from things like advertising, Bitcoin and Gridcoin donations included in the donation tracker?

I appreciate all the work you've done for us over the years, and hope we can count on BOINCstats for years to come. I know you have a lot invested in this site, but could adding some people to the team help out? I also have some shared webspace with very high storage and bandwidth quotas, which I am nowhere close to touching, if that could help in any way.
[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2015-12-21 08:49:40

noderaser wrote:
Are the revenues from things like advertising, Bitcoin and Gridcoin donations included in the donation tracker?

Bitcoin/Gridcoint: yes, but they are mostly very small donations.
Advertising: No. These I use to cover extra expenses for which I do not open donations items. For example, the actual hosting costs more than €300 (depends on energy usage, mostly between €320 and €350). I also buy the occasional replacement hardware with this, like harddisks, memory modules, cables etc.

noderaser wrote:
could adding some people to the team help out?

We tried that, no volunteers.

noderaser wrote:
I also have some shared webspace with very high storage and bandwidth quotas, which I am nowhere close to touching, if that could help in any way.

Thanks, however those two are not a problem. BOINCstats just needs a lot of processing power to generate all the stats. That's why there is a beefed up server with loads of RAM and SSD's to generate those stats and two not too shabby webservers to get it out to the world.
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[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2015-12-21 12:53:11

Harddisk is replaced, trying a incremental update now.
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walli
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2015-12-21 15:11:29

Hi Willy,

sorry for my late response (I was the guy who asked about your "infrastructure" a month ago). Sad to read all this. I had Murphy for a visit, too; a lot of equipment went on its final journey .

Referring to http://www.bitcoinutopia.com/2015/10/boincstats-hardware/, do you need additional 2.5k€ (which you mentioned in this thread here) next to the Bitcoin campaign or will it partly be covered by that? I don't know how the campaigns work (in general), but I hope you can get some donations out of it soon.

You mentioned on the campaign page that you are thinking of the Samsung 850 Pro SSDs, but why the 128GB model because the 256GB is "only" 1,5x of the price (currently ca. 85€ vs. 125€, at least in Germany)? Do you need so much speed for the RAID? I hope you are aware of the Linux problematic with the Samsung SSDs, if not google for "linux samsung ssd queued trim". In short: If you use the 8xx series SSDs with kernel < 4.0.5 (iirc) you have to face data corruption if you take no precautions.

We tried that, no volunteers.


What does that mean? No people/volunteers found at all or just no eligible supporters/candidates?

I have to go now, but I'll send you a PM later.

walli
[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2015-12-21 15:25:18

walli wrote:
Referring to http://www.bitcoinutopia.com/2015/10/boincstats-hardware/, do you need additional 2.5k€ (which you mentioned in this thread here) next to the Bitcoin campaign or will it partly be covered by that? I don't know how the campaigns work (in general), but I hope you can get some donations out of it soon.

The 2500 is mostly covered bu the BU campaign.

walli wrote:
You mentioned on the campaign page that you are thinking of the Samsung 850 Pro SSDs, but why the 128GB model because the 256GB is "only" 1,5x of the price (currently ca. 85€ vs. 125€, at least in Germany)? Do you need so much speed for the RAID? I hope you are aware of the Linux problematic with the Samsung SSDs, if not google for "linux samsung ssd queued trim". In short: If you use the 8xx series SSDs with kernel < 4.0.5 (iirc) you have to face data corruption if you take no precautions.
walli

Did not know that, but I'll be using those drives in combination with a LSI hardware RAID controller. That may alleviate the problem. Also, at my dayjob we have several servers also with a LSI controller/Samsung SSD combination with no problems so far.

As for 128vs256GB: 1.5 times 1500 is a lot of money.

walli wrote:
What does that mean? No people/volunteers found at all or just no eligible supporters/candidates?

Nobody volunteered.
Please do not PM, IM or email me for support (they will go unread/ignored). Use the forum for support.
DanUntied
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2015-12-22 03:12:36

[BOINCstats Willy wrote:

Just a quick question, just throwing it out here: seeing how much the donations for BOINCstats are falling behind, is it really a good idea to shell out nearly €2500 for maintenance? There doesn't seem to be that much interest anymore. Kind of struggling with justifying with the amount.

I'm I doing the right thing?

I certainly believe this site is worthwhile as I assess it every day.
I am happy to support this site too with the occasional donation, and am glad that there are many others as well that are/have been supportive.

Is it possible to bring back the donation acknowledgements, and still keep those anonymous who choose to have it anonymous? This might increase the donations a little.

I deeply appreciate your efforts and attentions to this site my friend, and believe many others do as well.
Sorry for recent struggles/expenses.
Dan
[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2015-12-22 07:24:46

DanUntied wrote:
Is it possible to bring back the donation acknowledgements, and still keep those anonymous who choose to have it anonymous? This might increase the donations a little.

Do you mean the page with a list of all donators?
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walli
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2015-12-22 16:15:51

Willy wrote:
The 2500 is mostly covered bu the BU campaign.

Ah, ok.

Willy wrote:
Did not know that, but I'll be using those drives in combination with a LSI hardware RAID controller. That may alleviate the problem. Also, at my dayjob we have several servers also with a LSI controller/Samsung SSD combination with no problems so far.

I only wanted to mention that, because I have no experience in running SSDs on hardware controllers. We run software RAIDs here in our servers.

Willy wrote:
As for 128vs256GB: 1.5 times 1500 is a lot of money.

But if you then just need half of them...? That's why I asked if performance is the key factor for the drives/boxes (as far as the controllers and boards can manage the full throughput, but you are from the business, so I guess they will ). At least I think you don't need that much performance for the webservers, do you? But maybe you don't even need so much space as well...

What RAID(s) are you using in the stats server?

Willy wrote:
Nobody volunteered.

Strange... there must be so many talented and reliable admins among us...

Btw., is there a backup plan if something may ever happen to you?

Hopefully, the Samsung SSDs work better. 10 years/150TBW warranty should raise some feeling of safety.

walli
[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2015-12-22 16:41:44

Willy wrote:
As for 128vs256GB: 1.5 times 1500 is a lot of money.

walli wrote:
But if you then just need half of them...? That's why I asked if performance is the key factor for the drives/boxes (as far as the controllers and boards can manage the full throughput, but you are from the business, so I guess they will ). At least I think you don't need that much performance for the webservers, do you? But maybe you don't even need so much space as well...

It's not the space I need. I need about 100GB (probably a bit more as the DB grows). The database server normally runs two RAID 10 configs on eight 80GB SSD's. One for the stats database, one for all temporary data during updates. It's a bit quicker that way. Currently it's running on only one RAID 10 because the temporary one is completely worn out and can't be used anymore.
So it's speed I'm after, not storage space.
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[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2015-12-22 16:44:11

I just had a chat with somebody from Amazon. He told me it should be possible to run BOINCstats on Amazon for a little more than the current monthly cost. Of course he than has a sales pitch that justifies the cost, most of it may even be true. What's sure is that when BS is on Amazon there will be no more hardware replacement cost.

I think I might try to get a running BS on the free trial they offer. See how that goes.
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walli
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2015-12-22 21:57:20

[Willy wrote:
I just had a chat with somebody from Amazon. He told me it should be possible to run BOINCstats on Amazon for a little more than the current monthly cost. Of course he than has a sales pitch that justifies the cost, most of it may even be true. What's sure is that when BS is on Amazon there will be no more hardware replacement cost.

Oha, I haven't tried the AWS myself, but I know it's a very complicated calculation. Maybe this one https://awstcocalculator.com/ *can* help you. I would not assume that you can hold 300-350€ with AWS per month for whatever the Amazon guy told you. I would think of twice the costs. But you want to give it a try, so I'm curious...
walli
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2015-12-22 22:10:38

Ah, found a more detailed calculator here: https://calculator.s3.amazonaws.com/index.html

The most savings can be accomplished by using flexible resources (e.g. Spot or Reserved Instances @ CPU), but I'm afraid your services cannot use them; and dedicated resources are a little expensive .
rwky
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2015-12-30 21:36:11
last modified: 2015-12-30 21:36:35

AWS can be expensive, one of the killer things is bandwidth, boy that can cost a fortune.

If you don't mind me asking, what are the current specs of all the hardware you use? Also what OS does everything run on?
[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2015-12-30 21:51:53
last modified: 2015-12-30 21:57:13

Copied from another post:


  • Two firewall servers
  • Two webservers, each with 2x Xeons X5570 (2.93GHz 8 cores), 24GB, HW RAID, 4 HDD (OS), 4 SSD (data)
  • One stats update server, Opteron 6134 (2.3GHz 8 cores), 32GB, HW RAID, 2 HDD (OS), 8 SSD (data), 1 HDD (backups)
  • One ATS
  • One PDU
  • One KVM
  • One 1GB switch
  • Lots of cables


All crammed into a 15u server rack with dual 100Mbit network connection, dual power supply, backup up by a huge APC and three diesel generators (not mine ).

To offload the webservers CloudFlare is used.

If you don't mind I don't like to share which OS/software the firewalls and servers are running. Just imagine something with no GUI.

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DanUntied
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2016-01-01 01:45:22

[BOINCstats Willy wrote:

DanUntied wrote:
Is it possible to bring back the donation acknowledgements, and still keep those anonymous who choose to have it anonymous? This might increase the donations a little.

Do you mean the page with a list of all donators?


Yes, though going forward to provide the opportunity to remain anonymous would probably be best. I imagine it was removed for privacy issues.
Current donators still have their crowns for acknowledgement of course to reflect their being donors.
Dan
Zydor
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2016-01-01 22:15:05

Willi

Can you give a summary of costs out of pocket you are, and how much there is to go, to get this back on a solid footing - I'm trying to get a handle on how much all this is costing you ?

I'm losing track of the amounts in the chat below.

Regards
Zy
[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2016-01-01 22:36:58

Zydor wrote:

Willi

Can you give a summary of costs out of pocket you are, and how much there is to go, to get this back on a solid footing - I'm trying to get a handle on how much all this is costing you ?

I'm losing track of the amounts in the chat below.

Regards
Zy

If the donation items are all 100% and the BU campaign is completed then all costs are paid for. Several hardware replacements were paid for by the advertisements.
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2016-01-01 22:53:08
last modified: 2016-01-01 22:53:36

Okie Doke ....

How can I email you .... I can help, but need to email you
Skivelitis2
 
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2016-01-03 15:42:31
last modified: 2016-01-03 15:43:27

DanUntied wrote:

[BOINCstats Willy wrote:

DanUntied wrote:
Is it possible to bring back the donation acknowledgements, and still keep those anonymous who choose to have it anonymous? This might increase the donations a little.

Do you mean the page with a list of all donators?


Yes, though going forward to provide the opportunity to remain anonymous would probably be best. I imagine it was removed for privacy issues.
Current donators still have their crowns for acknowledgement of course to reflect their being donors.
Dan

Crunchers being competitive by nature, has any consideration been given to granting different colored crowns based on donation level? Also, is there a way to donate directly without going through PayPal? To make a long story as short as possible, myself and a few friends donate plasma a few times a month in honor of one's young daughter who was badly burned in a house fire. The plasma donation center provides a nominal payment on a debit card that is not linked directly to my name or address. I had thought to use this card to donate, but PayPal will not accept.
[BOINCstats] Willy
 
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2016-01-03 17:54:47

Skivelitis2 wrote:

Crunchers being competitive by nature, has any consideration been given to granting different colored crowns based on donation level?

There are several ideas to do something with the donators. I'll see if something can be cooked up.

Skivelitis2 wrote:
Also, is there a way to donate directly without going through PayPal?

Yes, via direct bank transfer.

Skivelitis2 wrote:
To make a long story as short as possible, myself and a few friends donate plasma a few times a month in honor of one's young daughter who was badly burned in a house fire.

Worthy cause, I salute you.
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caffeineyellow5
 
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2016-01-04 01:34:00

For $90 USD you can get SpinRite and fix the SSDs in level 2 without buying new ones! Please consider this for fixing (getting longer life from) and upkeep. It will cut down on cost of buying new hardware as often and maybe even in this case now, trying to figure out any new software RAID configurations, etc. Check this out before you spend the money on anything:

Video (the conversation starts at 38:15 to about 59:15):
https://twit.tv/shows/security-now/episodes/387?autostart=false
and read along
Transcript (the conversation starts about a quarter of the way down, search the page for when Leo says, "Who'da thunk it?" down to basically where Leo says Leo: We've come a long way, baby):
https://www.grc.com/sn/sn-387.htm

Great conversation to learn about SSDs even if you don't choose to use the SpinRite to fix yours.

SpinRite:
https://www.grc.com/sr/spinrite.htm

I have been using this for many years and it has saved me so much money over 20 years or so of computing on HDDs, SSDs, USBs, and even my DVR.

Mike
1 Corinthians 9:16 + Ephesians 6:18-20

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