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Numen - The Latin Lexicon - An Online Latin Dictionary

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

DNS Lookups Cause Site Slowness

As per the usual, I've been tinkering with the back-end from time to time. Things slowly and silently improve -- well, hopefully!

Right now I'm at the University of Kentucky participating in an intensive conversational Latin seminar. Intense is the appropriate word. Today is day 2 of the seminar itself, although I've been here since the 4th of July. We'll see how my Latin improves after 10 days of immersion.

Since I've been here at UKY I found a bug -- well, a performance issue. Some Universities (like this one) don't put individual host names in DNS for their various thousands of connections. UNM happens to be one that does. Normally, my web server is set to perform a DNS lookup on every single connection (inefficient, I know). For a normal internet connection (say, a UNM student or a home Comcast user), that lookup takes microseconds. In the case of UKY, that lookup took 6 seconds ... to timeout. That timeout happened every single time the browser connected. Needless to say, this site must seem incredibly slow at a University like this. I can verify that it did for the short time it was affecting me.

So, to all the UKY students out there ... I apologize for the slowness. I also apologize to all the users of this site who experienced the ... shall we call it a mismatched configuration? On a pleasant note, this was a truly easy situation to resolve. One # (hash) sign in the config file and all is well. C'est la vie? Oui. Or in Latin, perhaps Re vera est? Ita.

Incidentally, I clean up words on the back-end on a regular basis. Since I've been intensely studying here, I've been catching a few more errors than usual!

I also had a suggestion to incorporate the full Lewis and Short dictionary into this site. Great idea! I'm looking into it now.

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