Posted Mon Apr 30, 2012 10:17 AM
As some of you may have noticed, I upgraded the forum software yesterday (Sunday, April 29th). Took the better part of a day, including the preparations made before I even took the forum down (started at noon, ended about midnight!), but it's generally a good idea to be running the latest version of the forum software. Most of the changes are under the hood and are either performance related or SEO related. The forum skin isn't quite back to where it was before, but I'll spend some time tweaking it over the next few days, as well as fixing any issues people point out (such as not being able to switch from the Mobile Skin back to the regular skins, which I fixed a few minutes ago).
My primary impetus in upgrading the forum was to eliminate the "Server Too Busy" messages everyone was seeing. Looks like this was related to a bug in the Reputation System. There's one table in particular that has grown as large as the posts table (over 1.5GB!), which is a bit ridiculous for tracking something as small (relative to posts) as reputation points. I've disabled the reputation system until I hear back from Invision on how to fix the issue. If you do continue to see this "Server Too Busy" message, please let me know and I'll investigate. I'll be keeping an eye on the server load and slow queries as well.
One big change with this new version is the ability to archive topics "in place". This means I can specify that (for instance) topics whose last activity was three years or older are to be "archived". These threads will then be moved from the primary "posts" table into a new table, greatly reducing the size of the "posts" table. The only difference from a user standpoint will be that threads which have been archived cannot be replied to. If I archive all threads three years or older (again, date of last activity, not when the thread was created), this will result in a 70% reduction in the size of the posts table. The net gain from this is a large improvement in speed when visiting active topics, posting new messages, and reading archived topics (you won't know a topic is archived except the reply button is not available).
I can easily "unarchive" any threads and make them active again, so this isn't a one way street. If you do spot an archived thread you want to respond to, and have good reason to, please let me know and I'll re-open the thread.
And finally, I'm working on solving the problem where the forum is non-responsive every day at 4am (CST). Hope to resolve this soon!
Thanks for your patience,