Tag Archives: technical difficulty

esme part 2

Well, wow. I’m really getting annoyed with how BSD handles library paths. The ldconfig command has markedly different behavior than under Linux – and even though I take great pains to make sure I am using it the BSD way in stead of the Linux way, it doesn’t always work.

I installed Cyrus SASL today from an official package off of OpenBSD’s site. The package installation apparently didn’t even issue the correct ldconfig command. So, in order to use the library, I had to issue another command – so it could find 8 more libraries that were missed the first time around.

After that, I yelled at OpenLDAP until it finally compiled with SASL support and then repeated the same sort of yelling and screaming fit at Exim before it learned how to play nice with LDAP, SASL, and MySQL.

This took me all of 3 or so hours to accomplish. That’s just plain wrong. Normally, on a machine with this much horsepower, I’d be done with this kind of installation in well under one. I’m beat for the day, so am not gonna play with more stuff at the moment, but tomorrow’s schedule is BIND, SpamAssassin, and amavisd-new (including their supporting libraries and applications). Oh, and Mailman as well, of course 😉

Yeah. The ML is actually gonna be coming back in the forseeable future 😛


Adam, Nathan, and I are going in together on some more hosting. This time around, the box is with Layered Technologies and is running one of their L2 plans – AMD Barton 3000+ with a gig of ram and 80gb hd, 5 ip’s, 10Mbps bandwidth, and a TB/month allowance to spend it on. Her name is Esme, and she’s running OpenBSD 3.8.

The three of us are grabbing the machine for different purposes. Nathan wants another off-site storage solution. Adam wants somewhere to post little toys. I want to extend the SIMud empire’s network presence and reliability. There’s a lot of joint stuff between these purposes, of course.

I’ve been doing most of the setup work right now… I guess since I’m most experienced when it comes to this sort of stuff? Shrug. I’ve been having some – shall we say – issues with OpenBSD so far, but I think I’m over all of the ugliness for now. I hope.

PHP was a nightmare to get running for some reason. I compiled MySQL and Apache by hand. Individually, they ran just fine. Once I threw PHP into the mix, however, it borked something fierce. However, it looks like I am not alone when it comes to problems getting MySQL and PHP to play nice on OpenBSD. Following his advice, I have everything working quite happily now.

My general plan for the machine’s integration into the network is that it will become our master DNS and LDAP server. It will host the mud (taking the burden from A’tuin), and will be where everyone’s email lands. A’tuin will become a slave DNS server, will continue to use LDAP for user accounts, and will probably continue to offer generic web and database services to people. Falku (the pair server – whose name we didn’t choose, of course) is going to drop any associations with the simud.org domain, but will continue to host this site and the comic.

Should be a good deal for everyone involved. Mud gets reliable again, usage drops on A’tuin – thus freeing up cpu and memory for those people who’ll continue using it, and my monthly hosting bill still only lands at around $60 😉

pinnacle down 2.0

Aaarrrggghhh!!! It’s time for another bad haiku.

Bleepitty bleep BLEEP!
Again, with the crashing
Amused, I am not

This crash didn’t last as long as the previous one. And, also unlike the previous crash, only Pinnacle was affected this time. We think it was our fault, somehow. We. I was in a strikeforce who had only just attacked Bat’zul.

The fight was literally only seconds old when the server went down. I took a picture, but was most dissapointed to discover that the HUD was removed by default. Thus, the big “CONNECTION LOST” message isn’t hovering over the middle of the screen. I’d also have liked to have the party roster in the picture, just to verify who all helped crash the server 🙂

So… after a few minutes, when the server came back up, we had to do the entire last mission all over again. The bright side of all of this is that we got to kill the mini-boss a second time. He drops lvl 23 single origin enhancements. So, we each got two off of him from that 🙂 Then the final boss seemed to drop between 2 and 4 more SO’s for people. So even though the entire run took us something like 3 hours to complete, it was muchly worth the trouble.

I went from barely into lvl 16 to just under 19 from all of that. I have FOUR zombies at a time now 😛

*Muahahahahaaaahaa..ha…haha* *cough* *sputter* HA!

pinnacle down

Le sigh. My CoH/CoV server is down right now. I should write a bad haiku, because, well… that’s what one does when servers go down, isn’t it? 🙂

like rivers of ice
my connection timed out
the server has crashed

Last week, I finally picked up City of Villains when I noticed that the price had dropped to $30. Happy deal since I already have an active City of Heroes account and the expansion just plugs right in w/o increasing subscription costs or anything.

In the grand tradition of all things of this nature, I was compelled to see what could be done about raising an undead army. Several hours of play later, I have a 14th level mastermind (necromancy/poison spec). He’s neato. While his individual attacks don’t do a terrible amount of damage, he currently has three zombies who are also attacking at the same time. I can generally drop a single yellow mob before he has time to react. I don’t handle additional mobs as quickly, since I generally burnt everything on the first kill and have to wait for everything to cool down, but that’s ok.

I have hit points. Lots and lots and lots of hit points. Granted, my character himself isn’t all that impressive. He has no defensive abilities and is one of the squishier archetypes in the game. But, when you take into account the three literal meat shields he has in constant attendance, the amount of damage required to take me down becomes significantly increased.

Matt (friend from TAMS, works hacking perl for NCSoft’s billing system) finally got around to playing CoV. For some reason, he never really did CoH. It was actually his fault I got started in the first place, and then discovered that he wasn’t playing 😛 Hooray for consternation. Well, early this week, we actually managed to party together in CoV. It’s great, our chars were not only the same level with similar power sets (he’s a dark blast/miasma corruptor), we were actually working on the exact same quest arc.

This must be a new CoV feature, because I certainly don’t remember it happening in CoH. But when we completed his first mission, a dialog popped up on my screen, asking if I wanted to receive credit for having completed the quest as well. There was much rejoicing. In CoH, I have very strong memories of doing the same handfull of missions multiple times in rapid succession in order to complete it for each of our individual party members who had it.

What was also fun is because he’s so inexperienced at the game this week was really only his second time in a party. It was great 😉 We’ll learn him better next time, eh?

tektonic problems

As some of you may know, I have stopped hosting my own servers recently – in stead paying for space on other peoples’ machines. This site (as well as a few others I run) are located on pair Networks space.

However, several of my projects (the mud for one) require more than mere web space. Thus, I investigated alternative options and have been enjoying TekTonic‘s VPS service for the past several months (the hostname being A’tuin).

Yesterday afternoon, they had a serious networking problem. I found out about it around an hour after things went down (my IM started ringing off the hook as users from all over checked in to see what was wrong). I submitted a trouble ticket and got a prompt answer – that things were down and they were fixing them.

An hour later, a sales rep closed my ticket, saying that the problem had been resolved and the affected servers were booting back up.

An hour later, we still didn’t have service. So I started sending follow-ups to the first ticket in hopes of receiving news of the problem. No such luck. They didn’t respond to any of my querries, and they didn’t post any news of the problem to their support forums.

This morning, I sent a 911 ticket to the sales department, and after about 20 minutes, got another short response. This is the last I have heard from them. They’ve still not posted a formal announcement of the details and I am definately not the only user being affected by this.

The TAMS Alumni site is probably located on the same machine as mine (since they’re successive IP’s), and some other users have complained on the forums (this thread, not about our problem but it was the newest thread in the outage category). Another good thread on the subject on their forums is here. There are at least 5 more threads all related to this same problem – and still no official announcement on the subject 😛

My saga of tickets so far goes like this (timestamps are east coast):

#33610: atuin.simud.org unreachable

me, 01/16/2006 6:24:09PM

For at least an hour it seems, my VPS has been inaccessable via any means. An SSH session I had open to the machine was just hung and any attempts to connect to any services running on the account or log in to the web interface at [address] have failed.

Since there is no message posted in the forums, I am assuming this is a new issue. Thank you for getting this back online as soon as possible.

them, 01/16/2006 6:25:49PM

There is a network issue at present that is affecting a large number of our servers.
We are working on the issue as fast as we can.


them, 01/16/2006 7:29:42PM

We had some power issues on some the racks, it has been taken care of, the
servers are coming back up and may already be up.

-Ryan M. Adzima
Tektonic Network Solutions | sales@tektonic.net

[ticket closed]

me, 01/16/2006 8:19:06PM

It has been 50 minutes since you declared the problem solved, yet, my machine is still down.

me, 01/16/2006 9:22:31PM

Hello? Any response would be nice.

My VPS is still not up, it has now been about two hours since you said that devices were coming back up. I’m guessing that it doesn’t take this long to boot a machine.

[two more posts of this nature snipped because they’re not that interesting]

#34155: poor customer support

me, 01/17/2006 12:32:46PM


Yesterday afternoon, there seems to have been a fairly big networking/hardware problem that affected multiple servers, including the one that my services are operating off of.

I submitted a trouble ticket and got an almost immediate response – they were actually working on the problem. Then, an hour later, Ryan Adzima closed my ticket saying that problems had been resolved.

They have not. My machine is still inaccessable, and despite my submitting multiple follow-up requests to the ticket, I have not heard back from the support department since they closed my issue in the first place.

As I am rapidly approaching 24 hours of downtime and since that ticket (#33610) is apparently being ignored, I am attempting submission of a new one in the hopes that I will actually get a response this time.

<Insert angry words here>

them, 01/17/2006 12:53:42PM

The support department is quite busy right now dealing with an outage on a particular server that was affected by the power issue. They are troubleshooting the problems but it looks like it may be a hardware issue. I understand that this is an unacceptabel amount of time, but the team has been up all night dealing with it.

-Ryan M. Adzima
Tektonic Network Solutions | sales@tektonic.net

[ticket closed]

I love how he can’t spell the word unacceptable 🙂

stupid spammers

Sigh. I’ve been hit by spam-bots every few weeks since bringing this new site online, but was vaguely content with my previous hack of not displaying comment information/links on the main page. I’d forgotten about permalink pages.

Yesterday, I got strafed – every single entry in the blog got spammed. Thus, I got to hack a bit more code to remove comments from those pages as well. It was surprisingly painless. I’m actually sincerely surprised at how simple it was. 😉

Now, I just get to remove the offending entries from the database because I’m picky like that. 😛