Board Speed + Modem Type?

(This is kind of a poll, but it’s also kind of a general question, too-)

      • There have been threads for some time about how the board has gotten very slow for many people over the last few months, particularly during daytime hours. I have been one of the complainers myself because I went from being able to get any thread in 15 seconds to waiting sometimes as long as 5-7 minutes, and often not getting anything at all. I don’t have this problem anywhere near to this degree on any other website I can recall.
  • I fired up an old PC (586/120 MHZ 16M-ram) today and have been making the rounds and noticed that this computer takes about 25 seconds to load a SD page, but it always loads it. The only thing this one has that the other (newer) one doesn’t is a hardware modem. I had never tried this one before when the other one wouldn’t get through, but I am wondering, is there any reason that having a hardware modem would help? [-I thought of getting a hardware modem for the newer one for other reasons, but never did] The hardware modem on the older PC is even a 33K, where the newer Winmodem is a 56. Do you have trouble getting on to the SDMB (especially during reg. business hours) and what kind of modem do you have? - MC

Well, it took nearly a full minute to load this reply, and I’m currently on a T3. At home, I have 1MB DSL, and the boards are slow as molasses during the daytime. Once the evening rolls around, they are very fast, but during the day, the congestion is just too bad. The servers they run this board on are not up to the task during the day. They need new servers BADLY. So, during the day, it doesn’t matter whether you’ve got Gigabit ethernet, or a 28.8 modem.


Despite the claims of scalability by vBulletin - the makers of the software running SDMB, it is clearly not. PHP with a MySQL backend is hardly a recipe for speed under heavy load. Look at your typical message board page. It contains a lot of unnecessarily dynamic content - with lots of database calls through script, likely without a compiled middle tier. Lots of database calls and interpreted code will make your web application slow unless you pay careful attention to detail and focus on efficient code. Ideally all these database calls should be running against summary tables through a compiled business layer. I’d be willing to bet that their are tons of deadlocks throughout the day. Upgrading the server (hopefully servers eek!) might help, but it’s a band-aid solution.

But what do you want? It’s free. Just use it during off peak hours or something :slight_smile:

Well, using my combination of Cable modem and Opera web browser, I usually load most pages at the SDMB in no more than 15 seconds. If I use IE with the cable modem, it takes considerably longer to load a SDMB page.

Try browsing differently. I never have to wait much at all and I only connect at 29.3kbps.

Starting at page 1 of General Questions or whatever, as I scroll down the page, each thread title that looks amusing I right-click and Open-In-New-Window, then go back to the list of threads while each of them loads. At the end of page one I then hit the link to page 2, and start reading the 15 or so threads that are already open waiting for me.

Am I the only one who does it like this?

I forgot to mention something that might be pertinent. Most of my browsing is done from 1:00 a.m. to 4:30 a.m. Chicago Reader time.

I browse the boards from the office (Multi-homed ISP. Bandwidth: More than you can throw a stick at, plus the stick, OK ?) as well as from home (ISDN), and the only noticeable difference is linked to the time of day.

During US daytime, load times go through the roof.

Points rather specifically at a server/server connection problem.

S. Norman

There seems to be a server problem at SDMB at certain times of the day . . . (When all the Americans start posting)

However you will get much better performance using a hardware modem, that a same speed software modem. I can’t say if a hardware 28k is faster than a software 56k tho. sorry.

      • Revisited: After making the OP, I unhooked the one monitor I have from the old PC and hooked it up to the new PC (PII 350/320M RAM) and what-do-ya-know, it couldn’t get one darn thread page , -on the SDMB. As usual, most everything else on the internet loads in 5-10 seconds. ~ In a couple weeks I will have both set up complete to where I just have to unconnect with one and connect with the other one (only one phone line) and I’ll be able to investigate further. - MC

I’m suspecting you meant to say “modem” instead of “monitor”.

It doesn’t matter how I do it. For starters, you’re implying that I can even get to the G.Q. page. On weekdays, from about 10-5, this will usually time out. When it doesn’t, I’ve tried your method, but having multiple windows trying to open sucks some of my bandwidth away (I think), and everything will time out. I get better results when I focus on getting only one thread at a time to download.

And, ftr, I’ve got a 56k modem.