Bam! Atomic Avenue Gets *Much* Faster!

If you read my previous post on the subject, you know that my tech-loving heart was broken recently by the goofy connector placement on the WD300 Velociraptor drives I’d ordered which made them refuse to fit in the servers for which they’d been ordered. With great sadness, I’d been forced to return the drives to NewEgg, and by hunting the whole bloody internet managed to scrounge up a single replacement drive in the “Backplane” model which was meant to fit in servers, albeit for a C-Note more than the more common version.

The replacement arrived about a week ago, and I ran a trial moving the Atomic Avenue database over to it. As I suspected, it resulted in an improvement, but it was relatively subtle: about .4 seconds saved on an intensive database search that normally takes about 4.8 seconds to complete. This sort of incremental improvement is the stuff that IT upgrades are made of, generally, but it’s nothing to write a press release about.

Still, I was encouraged and ordered a second drive. It arrived the very next day, and today we managed to get it loaded up with the ComicBase covers library. After redirecting the Atomic Avenue site to look on thew new drive, I started running some speed test on the site.

OMG! I couldn’t believe the difference! Individual comic detail pages now load in an average of about 1.3 seconds—almost twice as fast as before. And Title pages, which typically show up to 50 covers per page, more than doubled their speed. Right now, with three massive file copies going on with the server, as well as a full backup, there are only a couple of pages on the site which take more than 2 seconds to load!

Like an idiot, I of course have to push my luck with this. The big file copies mentioned earlier are in preparation for moving the actual Atomic and sites over to Velociraptor-based partitions in the near future. I doubt it’ll make a lot of additional speed difference to the outside world, but our own tasks of pushing updates, doing site compiles, and the like, may get a bit swifter. Even if they don’t, the $300/drive I spent on these seems like money well spent indeed!

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