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  1. #1

    Upgrading our server for Joomla sites

    Greetings folks,

    I'm new to this forum and need some advice on the upgrading our dedicated server.

    We're an ad agency running 45 Joomla CMS websites (and growing) on a Lunarpages Dedicated server account.

    Server 1 Setup (web server):
    Intel Pentium 4 CPU 3.00GHz
    3 Gig ram
    160 gig scsi HD
    Standard LAMP setup
    CentOS 4.7
    PHP 5.2.8
    Apache 2.2.11
    MySQL 5.0.81

    Server 2 Setup (mysql server):
    Intel Pentium 4 CPU 3.00GHz
    4 Gig ram
    160 gig scsi HD
    Standard LAMP setup
    CentOS 4.7
    PHP 5.2.8
    Apache 2.2.11
    MySQL 5.0.81

    Our bandwidh for Server 1 is around 400-600 gigs per month.
    The HDs on both servers are ar 84% capacity.

    We run a lot of Joomla sites. Joomla is a bit of a resource hog.

    Before this 2 server configuration, everything was on server 1, including the MySql processing. The problem we had then was that our daily backups were taking 10-16 hours to run and load average would go ballistic during that time (6-12 load avg). The load avg would then drop below 1 when the backup was done.

    Per Lunarpage's advice we moved to a 2 server setup with all db serving is done on Server 2. We also have Rsync running every 30 mins to sync the home directory of Server 1 to Server 2. Nightly backups are then made from server 2. This approach was designed to offload the db and backup tasks from the webserver so it can just serve pages.

    I have Munin running to analyse the webserver performance.

    We made this upgrade 2 weeks ago by adding the second server described above.

    The webserver is running really slow. Munin show that over the last week our Load Average has averaged at 2.3 with a max of 47 and a min of .23. Rarely do I see it dip below 1.

    This problem started happening after Lunarpages moved Server 1 to a different Datacenter in Las Vegas but kept server 2 in the original data center. Right before this move we were getting great Load Avgs (.52). When I complained to one of their sys admins (after the move) they told me that the separation had no effect and that what was causing this problem was the Rsync that was running.

    1. is the separation of the 2 servers in different data centers causing this performance problem?

    2. Is there a better way to upsize our web server(s) so we can handle the load we currently have and handle the future business we'll be adding?

    3. If Rsync is the problem, then how else can I get the server backed up without impacting web server performance?

    IOW: Is there a better way to serve lots of Joomla sites?

    Thanks so much for any advice you can spare.

    Jack Hughes

  2. #2
    1. Yes.
    2. Upgrade, and use only one server, or two in the same location.
    3. Not a problem.

    To be honest those processors are quite old, but an upgrade could cost you quite a bit as well.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Dallas, TX
    Wow, $130 for a Pentium 4 per/month. You can get Quad cores for that price. Geez!

    You might just look at upgrading the CPU, as well as upgrading the drive's speed, or add more drives and use RAID 10.

    1) Yes
    2) Upgrade the CPU
    3) Rsync isn't causing any of the problems

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Did you try JRE - cache component? It creates static pages for visitors (not for users that login) and it can save a lot of resources.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Rsync sometimes uses a lot of resources. Do you compress the files on the fly while you send them to the 2nd server?

  6. #6
    No I haven't tried JRE. I'll look into that. Thanks for the tip.

  7. #7
    From what I can tell they aren't compressed. They arrive on the 2nd server as they were on the 1st.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    You can easily test it not rsyncing for one night , although IMHO it shouldn't affect that bad, I guess that the latency between each server when it does connect to the DB server is keeping PHP process running for more time than what it should.

    I suggest you to have both servers on the same location.
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Seattle, WA
    I would suggest getting one big server rather then two servers in different datacenters.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2002

    Backups can put alot of strain on a server, especially if you have loads of data to backup.

    I think Lunarpages gave you good advice in getting a second server to seperate the database from the static web content. Though, you should ask them to move the servers to the same location.

    It would be of no use to upgrade your cpu, but you might want to look into increasing the performance of your disks. Raid 10 that was suggested earlier is a good choice if you are looking to speed up the backups.

    Make sure the backups are set to incremental, so you do not backup just about everything everytime you make a backup. You only need to backup what has changed. Only do full backups now and then.

    There are litteraly tons of tweaks you can do. I am sure you will sort it out with the help of Lunarpages.
    Last edited by Maximiliam; 07-10-2009 at 04:45 PM.
    I like to help

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