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Packet loss causing slow forum

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October 27, 2009 12:08:26 AM

I'm starting to sound like a hater, but i genuinely want to help people on these forums, especially in the Storage forum since thats my speciality. But this site isn't making that easy for me, or even pleasant. Loading pages is terribly slow, over a period of more than 6 months.

Today it was very bad, and i just did a ping over 50 minutes time (3000 seconds), more than half of the pings were dropped. No wonder i get such a bad experience browsing these forums. The pings that do come through aren't slower than 100ms though, so its only the packetloss. Obviously it goes without saying other sites show 0% packetloss so a problem with my connection seems excluded.


  1. $ ping www.tomshardware.co.uk
  2. PING tomshardware.co.uk (89.30.126.28) 56(84) bytes of data.
  3. 64 bytes from 89.30.126.28: icmp_seq=1 ttl=49 time=32.7 ms
  4. 64 bytes from 89.30.126.28: icmp_seq=5 ttl=49 time=29.9 ms
  5. 64 bytes from 89.30.126.28: icmp_seq=6 ttl=49 time=30.6 ms
  6. 64 bytes from 89.30.126.28: icmp_seq=9 ttl=49 time=32.3 ms
  7. 64 bytes from 89.30.126.28: icmp_seq=13 ttl=49 time=32.3 ms
  8. ((snip))
  9. --- tomshardware.co.uk ping statistics ---
  10. 1009 packets transmitted, 472 received, 53% packet loss, time 2930809ms
  11. rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 26.706/31.289/97.992/4.397 ms

To be frank, i expect something more from a website that positions itself as high-tech. Not only can multiple people not edit their posts - one of the very basic functionalities of any forum - but its terribly slow to the point that i use google's cache sometimes to view the thread i want.

Isn't it time to fix this? Is it a money problem? Is it a technical knowhow problem? Do you need any help to fix it? Is there any motivation to fix it?

Personally, i feel very demotivated to continue helping people if it's being made so hard for me to do so. I don't want to be a hater, but i can't stop my frustration from turning into that. Please admins, take a look at the technical issues on this site?

- sub :) 
October 27, 2009 12:12:04 AM

Hi,

This could be a server issue specific to the tom's UK forum or the IP route. There's not much I can do about it, but I will report it to the techs. Thanks for letting me know.

Justin
October 27, 2009 12:28:52 AM

Hey justinblue, thanks for your reply.

Additionally, when trying to post this thread for the first time, i got this Varnish error:

Error 503 Service Unavailable

Service Unavailable
Guru Meditation:

XID: 2040605396

Maybe its related?

Strangely, if i ping from my 100Mbit rackmount server, i don't get any packetloss. But i haven't got this issue with any other site. Anyway hope this helps.

As a workaround, does this site allow using (anonymous) proxies to circumvent being redirected to the UK site, believing im from the US? The /us URL doesn't work for me, as i'm redirected anyway a few clicks ahead.
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October 27, 2009 12:51:34 PM

Hi,

Perhaps it could be. However, the fact you see no packet loss from another computer leads me to believe the problem is an ISP routing issue. Again, the techs will have a look.

Justin
October 27, 2009 5:41:02 PM

For some reason, the speed issue is gone now, and the forums are quite fast. Even faster than before. I didn't change anything though, it might be a peering issue outside of the control of THG, though i did had some slowness in the past with this site that was fairly frequent.

Right now the speed is very good, and should i have problems again i'll update this thread.

Thanks for looking into this, too bad we don't know the root cause. :( 
October 28, 2009 12:50:20 PM

Hey,

I'm not aware of anything our tech team did to fix this (however, they might have done something). More than likely, it resolved on its own.

Either way, that's great news :) 

Justin
!