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Tech:Editing MediaWiki files causes Wikitravel to suck

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Revision as of 19:36, 15 October 2007 by Evan (talk | contribs) (How to fix it: Cache blowout)
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What happens

Whenever an admin edits a MediaWiki namespace template it causes the entire site to purge the cache. This sucks because it takes a while and will often bring the site 'down.' Editing these files essentially causes the site to seemingly stop responding. This is highly annoying for me, but I imagine it's many times annoying for someone whose searching Wikitravel in an internet cafe in en:Transnistria.

I'm not sure if this is an en: only problem, but I imagine the large number of pages on the English language Wikitravel has something to do with the problem.

I haven't seen this problem on ja or fi. Jpatokal 04:48, 12 October 2007 (EDT)
I wouldn't expect you to. What happens is that when you update a core template file the system looks to see all of the pages affected by that change and removes them from cache, so that they will display the corrected version of that template on the next page load. However, if too many high traffic pages fall out of the cache at once, the system can't really keep up. KevinSours 12:04, 15 October 2007 (EDT)
There's something wrong with the system then, because eg. editing UploadText should only affect Special:Upload, but it seems that any change to any system message causes the entire cache to be purged. Jpatokal 13:31, 15 October 2007 (EDT)

When it happens

Whenever an admin edits a MediaWiki file/template.

What should happen

The site/server should be able to handle the purging of the site's cache.

How to fix it

Upgrade the server or anything that will allow the site/server/whatever handle the cache problems.

I wonder how Wikipedia handles this? They have umpteen times more pages than we do, but I don't see WP go down because somebody tweaks the settings. Jpatokal 04:48, 12 October 2007 (EDT)
Hmmm. Great observation. Maybe because they are continually updating the servers? -- Sapphire(Talk) • 09:42, 14 October 2007 (EDT)
I'm pretty sure its because they don't blow out their cache when the settings get tweaked. KevinSours 12:00, 15 October 2007 (EDT)
I'm pretty sure they do, actually. But they have several more caching servers, so the load is handled a lot better.
Probably the way to fix this problem is to install the new squid servers, which will make Wikitravel work a lot more like Wikipedia. --Evan 15:32, 15 October 2007 (EDT)