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Thread: 503--Service Unavailable

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Indianapolis area
    Posts
    783

    503--Service Unavailable

    Hi, all...
    I get this odd 503 error quite frequently when I try to log in here...and sometimes in the middle of a session.
    I don't get the 503 anywhere else...404s for sure, but no 503s .

    Anyone else get these 503s? I get them on both Win 7 and Win 8.1.

    Jim

  2. #2
    Jim,

    It's not just you. I get them too. It's partly the joy of a shared hosting environment. Paying for independent hosting, where my site would be all the server has to do, would cost me about 10x as much and that's not affordable. I'm going to request the logs from my host and see if I can find any fixable causes.

    The problem is that if anyone else on the server (meaning other websites) use PHP like the forum does, and one of them "breaks" PHP, then PHP has to be restarted at the server level and that affects all sites.

    I'm watching this and have an alerting system monitoring the site every 15 minutes so I know a little more about what is going on. But I know I have hit a 503 at times when the alerts don't catch it.

    The GOOD NEWS is that in most cases this clears up within about 30-50 seconds. I assume they restart a service automatically on the server if a problem is detected. So if you try to get to a page and can't, just wait a bit and hit F5. And if it is rude enough to error out as you are submitting a post, just wait, hit F5, and then confirm that you want the page to re-submit the form. That usually preserves the input you were crafting at the time.

    Sorry about that.
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams E3, Denis Wick 4AL (classic)
    Instructor of Euphonium and Tuba
    Twitter: davewerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    YouTube: dwerden
    Owner of TubaEuph.com, DWerden.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Central North Carolina
    Posts
    1,997
    I've been getting these for over a week, exactly as you describe. I've come close a couple of times to emailing Dave about it, but the service I get here (DSL through Centurylink) is so wonky that my initial reaction to such problems now is to think it's just the crappy service. Looks like it might be problem on Dave's end.
    Gary Merrill
    Wessex EEb Bass tuba (Denis Wick 3XL)
    Mack Brass Compensating Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J9 euph)
    Amati Oval Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J6 euph)
    1924 Buescher 3-valve Eb tuba, modified Kelly 25
    Schiller American Heritage 7B clone bass trombone (DE LB K/K9/112 Lexan, Brass Ark MV50R)
    1947 Olds "Standard" trombone (Olds #3)

  4. #4
    Right - generally a 503 error is from the web server. Your own internet access would not cause that.
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams E3, Denis Wick 4AL (classic)
    Instructor of Euphonium and Tuba
    Twitter: davewerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    YouTube: dwerden
    Owner of TubaEuph.com, DWerden.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Central North Carolina
    Posts
    1,997
    The "broken" PHP hypothesis is a good one, but it also may be some other process that's dying as well (and maybe cascading the problem). It's happening enough that your provider should be pretty concerned about it. If it's truly a capacity issue for them, they should be working towards increasing their capacity. It's one thing to get something like slow performance from a shared environment. It's another to have relatively frequent lacks of access that return errors to users. That's not part of the deal. And if something is "breaking" PHP -- perhaps some new PHP user who's code is crashing the PHP server -- the provider should be all over that like white on rice. I'd say it's not YOUR responsibility to debug until/unless they tell you that you're causing the problem -- which is highly unlikely. They should be happy to track down what's causing these failures.
    Gary Merrill
    Wessex EEb Bass tuba (Denis Wick 3XL)
    Mack Brass Compensating Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J9 euph)
    Amati Oval Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J6 euph)
    1924 Buescher 3-valve Eb tuba, modified Kelly 25
    Schiller American Heritage 7B clone bass trombone (DE LB K/K9/112 Lexan, Brass Ark MV50R)
    1947 Olds "Standard" trombone (Olds #3)

  6. #6
    Gary,

    There are other complications that drift to the political side of dealing with companies. If I get the wrong tech, they will just try to upsell me to a virtual private server (at 10x the cost). Still, the problems are worse lately (for months) than they have been for the 15 years I've been using this hosting company. Traffic is pretty brisk for my site and they are always free to say I need to go with the VPS. I don't think that should be necessary, and I'm not doing any stuff on my self-programmed (i.e. non-forum) pages that is all that dramatic for a server. The software running the forum is commercial and used quite a bit, but the host doesn't support it directly and can easily blame the software. So I have to finesse this as I go!
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams E3, Denis Wick 4AL (classic)
    Instructor of Euphonium and Tuba
    Twitter: davewerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    YouTube: dwerden
    Owner of TubaEuph.com, DWerden.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Indianapolis area
    Posts
    783
    It's really NBD for me...having to wait 45 seconds to access a site falls perfectly under the heading of "First-World Problems." ;-)
    Thanks for the details!
    Jim

  8. #8
    It happens right around 10am PDT for me typically every day, if that helps you track it down!
    Yamaha Neo w/Trigger, Lacquer
    K&G 3.5D

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Central North Carolina
    Posts
    1,997
    It's more painful from a forum management perspective than from a user perspective. At least these sorts of things are that way for me. Maybe this is largely from all my years in software development and dealing with issues of laziness/incompetence/ignorance from vendors/providers. There are some battles you can't win without changing providers (and that is often a real) pain. And there are some battles you can't win at all without throwing unreasonable amounts of money at them. My internet connection has gotten pretty unreliable over the past year. But I know that complaining to Centurylink about it won't have any result because they and everyone else know that fiber has been laid along the road here and that someone like T-W is going to come in and take all their customers anyway. So the only maintenance they'll do is to continue to splice bad connections on their decades-old copper lines. Follow the money.
    Gary Merrill
    Wessex EEb Bass tuba (Denis Wick 3XL)
    Mack Brass Compensating Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J9 euph)
    Amati Oval Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J6 euph)
    1924 Buescher 3-valve Eb tuba, modified Kelly 25
    Schiller American Heritage 7B clone bass trombone (DE LB K/K9/112 Lexan, Brass Ark MV50R)
    1947 Olds "Standard" trombone (Olds #3)

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