[OSGeo-Discuss] server down?

Frank Warmerdam warmerdam at pobox.com
Thu Jul 22 08:22:01 PDT 2010

Paolo Cavallini wrote:
> Il 22/07/2010 16:33, Howard Butler ha scritto:
>> The support of OSGeo's system infrastructure is a volunteer affair.  If it is not
>> up, or not up to your standards, it is because you haven't volunteered to help fix
>> it :)  We can do better with your help.
> Mine was not a critique to the efforts of volunteers (never!), but to the strategic
> decision to leave the infrastructure management to volunteers. I think we need
> professional support in this area, to have better performances and higher availability.
> I repeat: no critique whatsoever to volunteers, just a suggestion for a strategic change.
> All the best.


We have paid a premium price in the past to Peer1 for supported servers.
This did give us servers that "stayed up" reasonable well, but does not at
all address the need for specific services on those servers - nor did it help
with the fact that our services overwhelmed the hardware in question.

We also in past paid for some admin help in originally setting up OSGeo
servers and migrating some stuff.  That was somewhat helpful, but no "get
everything done right away" panacea.

Recently we have purchased new servers which we are hosting at OSU OSL
who provide professional (though somewhat overtasked) administrators who
assist in keeping up virtual machines for us.  But setting up our
particular services still falls to us.

Hiring well qualified system administration support that could take on the
wide variety of our needs is not very practical.  The cost for good
admins is high, and the amount of stuff we would want them to take on
is quite likely more than they could do.  So we are attempting to apply
our modest funds in ways with high leverage, and to share volunteer
efforts in system administration between many projects to make the best
use of time.

In the particular case of being able to upload OSGeo4W packages and regenerate
the package list we are depending on a variety of cobbled together scripts.
The OSGeo4W project has never been identified by the OSGeo board as being
an "OSGeo effort", nor offered any resources.  So even if we had hired
admins, it is not clear that OSGeo4W assistance would be high on the list
of tasks.  One persons "critical service" is another persons low priority

I think we are functioning reasonably well within the financial, volunteer
and "many critical services" situation we face.

Best regards,
I set the clouds in motion - turn up   | Frank Warmerdam, warmerdam at pobox.com
light and sound - activate the windows | http://pobox.com/~warmerdam
and watch the world go round - Rush    | Geospatial Programmer for Rent

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