Slow load times?


Mike Irwin
January 23, 2003, 12:41 PM
Over the past 2 days I've experienced slow load times, where the page will partially load, and then freeze. Leaving it churn for awhile, I'll get ticked, hit the "stop," and immediately the rest of the page will load completely.

I had thought it was my network at the office, but it happened at home, too.

Anyone else having problems with this?

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January 23, 2003, 12:44 PM
Yep Mike, it's goin around. I emailed Oleg about it yesterday and heard back, but nothing conclusive on the problem just yet.

January 23, 2003, 03:25 PM
It's annoying Derek and me as much as it is you. :(

It'll get fixed as soon as we figure out what's going on. :)

January 23, 2003, 03:44 PM
Speaking of slow load times, I just experienced a slow load time while previewing a reply to a post. The end result was my reply being submitted 3 times even though I was just previewing it. Strange. :(

January 23, 2003, 05:10 PM
I've been occasionally getting a "Page not found" message when replying to posts.

January 23, 2003, 05:56 PM
The page not found error comes up for a lot of things on my end. This site is growing at an alarming rate. I'm not surprised there are growing pains. I'm not worried either, there are only good things coming ahead with this site...

Jason Demond
January 23, 2003, 07:12 PM
It was real slow yesterday, but today seems ok.

January 23, 2003, 08:06 PM
Way too slow right now. What is causing it?

January 23, 2003, 08:15 PM
Uhhhhh......anybody notice the clock?

It's two hours fast right now.

January 23, 2003, 08:18 PM
I have a Para slow load times are constant.....

Empties pretty fast though....


Derek Zeanah
January 23, 2003, 08:32 PM
The problem is this (from my firewall):Ethernet Speeds: WAN 10 Mbps Half Duplex, LAN 100 Mbps Full Duplex
Current connections: 292Now, we can handle a few thousand simultaneous connections without breaking a sweat, but Apache (our web server) ships with the limitation that it can only spawn 256 processes at a time. Each connection uses up a process, so we're running out -- causing wait times and the occasional "connection refused message). There are configuation settings we can change to make processes disconnect quicker and not monopolize one process per request -- we tried some of that and saw no improvement.

Now, site usage doesn't appear to be any higher than last week, but then the average was closer to 90 connections (and 70 Apache processes running) at any particular moment. The 292 you're seeing above is pretty typical right now.

The cause? Best guess is someone is being a -- well, Oleg would get mad at me if I said it -- and deliberately hogging connections to the server. I'd like to find a solution to limit our susceptability to abuse, but if we need to we can simply recompile the web server with higher limits and keep everything happy.

Everything else -- bandwidth, mem usage, connections to the SQL server, etc -- is excellent. We're just running out of Apache processes.

(Now's the moment when Rich is supposed to step in and call me paranoid. ;) )

Make any sense?

January 23, 2003, 09:26 PM
How does one hog connections to a server?


January 24, 2003, 01:00 AM
Thanks, Derek!

January 24, 2003, 02:07 PM
How does one hog connections to a server?

Trade secret. They could tell you but then they'd have to... nevermind. :neener:

Jim V
January 24, 2003, 03:49 PM
I've been getting alot of 404 page not found errors as of late.

You system guys checked to see if you have the same hacker problem that FFF had with pirates using the system to run their stuff?

January 24, 2003, 04:16 PM
I thought pirates roamed the high seas, not giant networks.

Which pages have you gotten 404 for?

Jim V
January 24, 2003, 04:28 PM
It took me 4 tries to get into the recoil spring thread in Handguns-Semiautomatic. I have gotten the 404 error when attempting to open the General Forum, Legal, Mike's thread in this forum where he was mentioning the time being off (if I could have opened that thread, I would not have started mine on the same problem). Take your pick, I've gotten the error message all over THR when opening forums and threads in the forums.

And I've gotten the same error message after hitting the submit button when posting to a thread.

Besides that, there are pirates in Pittsburgh too. :p

January 24, 2003, 04:50 PM

Sounds like Apache is set to throttle the connections. IIS can be set to do that if the available bandwidth isn't high enough to handle the traffic on the theory that it's better to refuse new connections instead of dropping established ones. Since Apache is so ubiquitous on Web servers, I can't believe there isn't a configuration switch in there somewhere.

I keep IIS set to accept unlimited connections on a T-1 line since most connections are handled essentially instantaneously freeing up the server to handle the next connection.

IOW, while the connection may last for hours, the server may only spend a few seconds handling it over that time. All the rest of the server time can be used to deal with other connections "sharing" the same time.

Derek Zeanah
January 24, 2003, 08:21 PM
Sounds like Apache is set to throttle the connections.Maybe. Just grabbed the output from netstat and saw 53 Apache processes servicing requests from the same IP. That's out of a total of 152 processes. Another was using 9; the rest used 3 or less.

Multiple potential causes exist. We're looking into them. :)

Thanks for being patient.

Jason Demond
January 25, 2003, 07:37 PM
Story here. (
Computer Worm Slows Net, Grounds S.Korean Surfers

By Jane Macartney and Bernhard Warner
Saturday, January 25, 2003; 10:53 AM

SEOUL/LONDON (Reuters) - A rapidly spreading computer worm on Saturday infested networks and bogged down Internet traffic across the globe, crippling online services in one of the world's most wired countries, South Korea.

Called "Sapphire" or "SQL Slammer," the worm carries a self-regenerating mechanism that enables it to multiply quickly across the Internet, said Mikko Hypponen, manager of anti-virus research at F-Secure, the Helsinki-based computer security firm.

"It is so good at replicating that it generates massive amounts of traffic that will slow down networks," Hypponen said. "The end user never sees it. They only experience the slowdown on the Net."

Security experts blamed the worm for crashing almost all Internet services in South Korea.

It was the first time South Korea's broadband and mobile Internet services have been shut down on such a scale, although hackers are fairly active in the country where 70 percent of households have Internet access.

"It is highly likely hackers have launched an all-out attack on the country's Internet system," Yonhap news agency quoted an official of the Ministry of Information and Communication as saying.


The problem was not limited to South Korea, with systems slowing from Japan to Europe to the United States, officials said.

The worm has been likened to the "Code Red" bug of July, 2001, an infestation that slowed traffic dramatically on the Internet. The authors of that malicious code remain a mystery.

The worm infects computer servers that run on Microsoft Windows 2000 SQL software. Once it attaches to a server it transmits multiple data requests in a random manner to other IP addresses on the Internet looking for more vulnerable servers to infect.

The effect is a flood of traffic that bogs down ISP networks and can even knock Web sites off-line, Hypponen said. He added the worm was probably installed on a faulty server by a virus writer or hacker within the past few days.

A patch is available on Microsoft's Web site,, he added.

Left unchecked, Hypponen warned that the worm could continue to create large network disruptions for ISP customers, plus knock out some Web sites over the coming days.

Hypponen said it had disabled the email server of a corporate client in Slovenia. Meanwhile, ISP customers in the United States and Britain lodged distress notes on Internet message boards on Saturday complaining about slowdowns in Internet traffic.


The biggest impact appeared to be in South Korea, however, where police were called in to investigate the matter.

The infestation impacted the country's largest ISP, KT Corp, bringing down its entire Internet service, said a company spokesman.

He said services were down for several hours in the afternoon but were now recovering. However, the networks of number two operator Hanaro Telecom Inc and number three Thrunet Co were still experiencing trouble.

The crash was triggered by a huge volume of transmissions flowing into KT's Hyehwa service in Seoul, officials said.

All of South Korea's major high-speed Internet services use the KT server, so all suffered the same interruption of service.

Graham Cluley of Sophos Anti-Virus, a UK virus detection firm, said the first reports to his firm came from companies in Asia. A number of companies in Europe have also contacted the firm reporting a degradation in Internet speed, he added.

AOL, the world's largest ISP with over 35 million subscribers, appeared to survive unscathed. A spokesman for AOL the Time Warner Internet unit said the worm had no impact on its service.

January 26, 2003, 09:51 PM
slowdown, yes.

I haven't seen a thr slowdown. I believe what is being called a slowdown is an occasional/routine failure to finish serving a page.

January 29, 2003, 01:59 PM
This is pretty weird. I can log on and read almost any thread on thr but it absolutely wont let me reply at my 'absolute rights thread offshoot'. All pages load snail slow and eventually stop usually in the middle of loading.

I've no clue why it let me reply to this forum but wont let me in others. I am not having this problem on other forums. I post on about 3 or 4 other boards and dont have a problem with them.

:banghead: Its the skull & bones people I tell ya. They dont like my brand of freedom talk. Right or wrong, they dont want it to catch on...:D :scrutiny:

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