Major server problems

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Blogging
November 12th, 2004 • 1:06 am

I am currently experiencing major server problems.

On an almost daily basis now, my provider says that there is something in my blogging system that keeps monopolizing server resources, to the tune of 80% or more of CPU power (which is obviously unacceptable for my provider, who hosts many different customers on his server).

We have yet to determine what is causing this. Right now, there are two major hypotheses: either it’s a bug in the blogging system itself (I am using pMachine with a few recommended hacks) or there is an external agent causing the problem by constantly accessing my site in an intensive, automated fashion. This external agent could be a spider or robot that scans my site on a regular basis and gets stuck somehow, or it could be an actual person with malicious intent. I have no idea. At this point, I have to consider all the possibilities.

The problem is that, according to my provider, there’s no trace in the logs. Typically, logs will record errors/failures — but in this case, the problem is that the requests are successful and keep hogging the CPU.

This problem could be related to the spam registrations that I’ve been getting on a regular basis lately. (See this item.) But then, I am not the only one getting those, and I don’t see anyone else complaining about CPU hogging problems.

This is very discouraging, because of course my provider is blaming my blogging software, and I have to try and get support from the creators of the blogging software, which is not easy for something that’s not exactly happening to thousands of their users. I am way out of my league when it comes to PHP scripting and trouble-shooting server-based blogging software. And I am not particularly interested in changing my entire blogging system or switching providers, which would be a big undertaking.

I have started a thread on the pMachine tech support forum and, if you have any suggestions, I’d appreciate it if you could post them there or send me an e-mail by clicking on my name below.

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