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Inkbunny is growing up! SSD drives and more RAM

Hi everyone

This post is for anyone curious about what hardware goes in to keeping Inkbunny ticking.

Inkbunny's user base is growing rapidly so it's time to upgrade our main server "Fluttershy" again!

Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, we can easily afford to expand the server's capabilities when we need to.

We have ordered 2 x SSD disk drives to use in mirrored RAID mode for our database and we're doubling the RAM to 32GB.

The performance improvements should be huge as the web server and database will no longer be sharing a disk pack, and the expanded RAM will allow us to cache the whole database in memory.

We're expecting up to 3 hours downtime starting about 10 hours from when this journal was posted.

After the upgrade, Fluttershy's specs will be:

8 x 2.33GHz Xeon CPU cores
32GB DDR3 RAM
1TB 15kRPM SAS disk pack in RAID 5 for the web server and assets store
2 x 60GB SSD disks in RAID 1 for the database

At this stage the server load (and added cost) doesn't justify having separate database and web application servers. But that is a move we expect to make once we reach the limits of what one server can handle.

We do have a secondary server "Angel" that provides data mirroring and onsite backup, which works in conjunction with multiple offsite backup systems. But it is a low power machine designed for bulk storage only.

Thanks!

IB
Viewed: 384 times
Added: 4 years, 2 months ago
Site News Item: yes
 
digisushi
4 years, 2 months ago
+fav! cool news! =D
Kuto
4 years, 2 months ago
sweet.
LupineAssassin
4 years, 2 months ago
Phenomenal!! ^^
Coop
4 years, 2 months ago
Thought itd be like 12tb hdd with 64gb ram
starling
4 years, 2 months ago
We only have about 500GB of image files at the moment. xD
Flygon
4 years, 2 months ago
It's astounding how tiny galleries are!
Danjen
4 years, 2 months ago
That's what she said!
Flygon
4 years, 2 months ago
*glances at icon*

Well, yeah. Duh.
MightBeFurry
4 years, 2 months ago
Thank you! Healthy specs ^^
EmmetEarwax
4 years, 2 months ago
Downtime # 3 to my knowledge.
Bahlam
4 years, 2 months ago
*yay*
Ookamithewolf1
4 years, 2 months ago
Anyone who names their mane server 'Fluttershy' is OK in my book. (gives big thumbs up)
starling
4 years, 2 months ago
And the grumpy bunny is the backup server. :3
soggymaster
4 years, 2 months ago
Hellz yeah SSDs.

I'll say this about sites hosted on SSDs.  They're snappeh.
Danjen
4 years, 2 months ago
I like my websites to be young and undeveloped~
TellyLittle
4 years, 2 months ago
SSD are very quick, but, um, wouldn't constant little file updates on them wear them out more quickly then less frequent updates?
starling
4 years, 2 months ago
Maybe some time ago SSD wasn't ready for prime time. They're as reliable as any drive these days. If they fail sooner than mechanical drives then it's no big deal. We get all replacements for free.
EvilCapitalist
4 years, 2 months ago
Hope your SSDs are SLC and not MLC. o.O

Unless you're spending the earth, SAS 15k is far better for database operations and typically better for RAID operations too. SSDs have an alarmingly high failure rate, you should be running them in AT LEAST RAID-10/RAID-1+spare, so 3 or 5 drives.
starling
4 years, 2 months ago
SSDs are suuuuper fast compared to SAS. Way faster read/write and almost no seek time. An SSD failure is no big deal in Raid 1. All the hardware is replaced for free anyway. :P
EvilCapitalist
4 years, 2 months ago
If you have a failure in RAID-1 you lose a lot of access speed. Besides, for server applications the bottleneck is never going to be disk IO unless you're hosting on a VPS, it's always going to be network latency.

Stability is far more important than raw disk IO speed and picking devices with only a 3000-5000 rewrite lifecycle probably isn't the smartest choice, imo. If they're SLC SSDs, by all means ignore the above.
starling
4 years, 2 months ago
We can get a failed disk replaced in about 3 hours. :3 Our system notifies us instantly of failures.

In our case, the network is not the major bottleneck as our network port speed is faster than most disks. Waiting for disk and CPU is the bottleneck when complex operations need to be performed for hundreds of users at once.

As you will see from the performance graphs before/after, changes in disk type and more RAM make a huge difference to a busy server. https://inkbunny.net/journalview.php?id=79210

EvilCapitalist
4 years, 2 months ago
Judging from the specs you offered up, I'm assuming eight Xeon cores would be 2x L5410 or E5410 Xeons, which would mean you're using (FB)DDR2 RAM. There's definitely a performance gain from adding RAM, 16GB isn't very much for serving a large site.

Other performance gains you'd probably be able to attain quite easily would be:
- Caching: I'm not aware if IB uses any, if it does it's quite transparent, but this can lower the disk IO usage quite significantly.
- Splitting operations onto seperate VPS's: This doesn't really give you a performance increase, perse, but allows you to see where the CPU / RAM usage is in order to optimize without having to buy multiple servers.
- Switching to Oracle: postgresql is not fast, though a lot of its features are better than Maria/MySQL. Oracle single connection license should be affordable with the amount of donations coming in (unless you're avoiding proprietary techs for ethical/moral reasons).

All in all, it's nice to see IB getting a much-needed upgrade. If you can get hardware replaced in 3 hours then I guess hardware with high fail rates isn't really an issue. I assume you lease, rather than buy, your hardware?

Keep up the good work. :3
NinkT
4 years, 2 months ago
Great job guys!  Now get some sleep hehe
Sho
Sho
4 years, 2 months ago
That's great! ^_^ I'm sure IB will feel snappier. =3
Kolo
4 years, 2 months ago
I like your server naming customs.
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