[Typo3-typo3org] Hosting the TYPO3 sites

Robert Lemke robert at typo3.org
Sun Apr 10 23:01:09 CEST 2005

Hi Michael and folks,

in the meantime I have of course talked with Jan-Hendrik. He was a bit 
irritated about the wording I chose and saw it as a public accusation.

I am sorry if this was the impression. What I try to do is as objective as I 
can and discuss these matters publicly so we can find a solution together.

On Sunday 10 April 2005 21:40, Michael Scharkow wrote:

> What can a hoster do with the current t3.org setup? I think the
> netfielders have done what could be given the current setup: MySQL does
> not scale too well, caching has not been used enough until now, the
> whole T3 installation is quite monolithic and therefor has to do dynamic
> lookups for a) docs, b) TER, c) fe-user stuff, d) mailinglists, e)
> comments and forum-like stuff, f) younameit
> If that can be split effectively on multiple machines, with more
> caching, I'd expect a lot better performance. I don't see how the pure
> hosting (hardware, bandwidth) has been a limiting factor.

To be honest: I don't know what a hoster can do. And that won't be my task 
either. But I think that there are solutions for this. 

One thing we do currently is activating the cache headers and a proxy, and yes 
that will probably improve speed a lot. But on the other side: What are we 
going to do in 1 year from now? We have a powerful server running almost idle 
for quite some time now, so from my naive point of I ask myself, why don't we 
use it already?

> >      what I definately need for debugging is:
> >
> >        - control on restarting the webservers and flushing the
> > accelerator cache
> >        - an (S)FTP account for the TYPO3.org filebase
> >        - access on the PHP error log and the Apache logfiles
> I fully agree, and I think the responsible people should be root on
> "their" machines, since those boxes are not doing anything else anyway,
> do they?

I now have access to the log files. Jan-Hedrik said that I'd have full control 
over the .org server when he moved it to a different hosting platform 
(Virtuoso) and the prerequisite for this is using a proxy.

> I don't see why Jan-Hendrik should disagree with this, unless you tell
> people that we move because netfielders sucked (which would be a gross
> lie as everybody knows). It's less work and costs for them, and
> everybody appreciates what they have done and still do for TYPO3.

Jan-Hendrik emphasized many times while we were talking that his motivation 
for hosting the lists and TYPO3.x is supporting TYPO3. He was demotivated in 
the past because the suggestions he made for improving the TER etc. were not 
put into practise because Kasper, who was responsible for TYPO3.org at that 
time, was overloaded with core work. 

I don't know how the situation was exactly and I personally think that it 
doesn't matter right now. As everybody can see, the situation has changed, we 
are now teaming up and the process is public. Maybe I'm the bottleneck 
currently but that is not the plan for the future. 

So what we need now is *someone* who dedicates himself with much energy to 
provide a hosting which is as reliable as possible, create a hosting strategy 
for the future and covers our back while we are working on the implementation 
of the new TER. 

Hosting strategy and developing the TER are two things which have to happen 
simultaneously and independently.

> >   - keep the mailing lists at netfielders if they really put effort into
> >     switching to Sympa or making them controllable via SOAP in a certain
> >     way.
> The lists and newsgroups work like a charm and I see no reason to
> complain to netfielders. If Sympa is a better solution than mailman, go
> ahead...

Yes, I don't complain about the lists themselves. Our idea at the beginning of 
this year was to have a FE plugin for administrating list subscriptions on 
TYPO3.org. Not really important but just a nice feature and part of the 
concept for an improved TYPO3.org.

I asked J-H if that is possible and if he would do it until date X. Date x has 
passed exactly one month ago, that's what I complain about.

> >   - Distribute hosting of the different sites instead of having one
> > provider for all. In particular I'd like to see the following
> > distribution if all parties agree:
> >
> >     netfielders: www.typo3.com, edu.typo3.com, gov.typo3.com,
> >                  news.typo3.org, typo3.netfielders.de
> >     ELIOS:       bugs.typo3.org, association.typo3.org, wiki.typo3.org
> >     punkt.de:    all remaining *.typo3.org, demo.typo3.com,
> >                  lists.association.typo3.org
> Is this an arbitrary suggestion, or does stuff that belongs together
> move to the same hosts? I see that the non-t3-powered stuff is hosted at
> elios, but why association.*? And why lists.association at punkt.de?
> But generally I welcome splitting up stuff (into really separate
> installations please!) because it reduces points of failure and we can
> split administrative and content responsibility.

Yes, that is my motivation: Splitting up the sites just a bit gives us much 
security. If one of them, ELIOS, netfielders or punkt.de fail, we can switch 
to a different location very fast. Of course I don't expect any of them to 
fail but you don't expect your server to fail either, that's why you have a 

> > Now I ask you to give me answers and your opinion to the following
> > questions:
> >   - Do you agree with this decision?
> Yes.
> >   - Should anyone else be asked before taking this decision? We need some
> >     really trustworthy people and a quick and future-proof solution at
> > the same time.
> I think the only really future-proof thing IS splitting up hosting
> because hosters will stop their support, hardware will break, and
> therefore we should be worried about replacing things quickly instead of
> arguing about the trustworthiness of some or another company offering
> support.
> TYPO3 has become too big to handle for Kasper alone, for netfielders
> alone (given that they probably have other things to do for a living
> ;)), and this is actually a good thing for an open source project.

This is also my opinion.

What I *wish* so hard is that we'd all work together on the best solution. 

Let's be honest: All three hosters + mittwaldmedien are competitors. I think 
I'm not that wrong when I assume that either one wouldn't like to see the 
other taking credit for hosting TYPO3.org.

But wouldn't it be enough putting the logos of all let's say four companies on 
TYPO3.org titled with "These fine companies are hosting the TYPO3 project"? 
It costs so much energy, for me at least, to think about who I scare away if 
I decide this or that. Is it too idealistic to think that working on this 
together is possible?

On 22./23. of April I will travel from Lüneburg to Karlsruhe and have a talk 
with Jürgen and a sysadmin of punkt.de. We want to discuss a possible 
structural and technical hosting strategy. You might say that punkt.de's only 
motivation for hosting TYPO3.org is using this opportunity for marketing 
purposes and nothing else. Even if that was true, which I don't believe, I 
wouldn't care; I just want a reliable TYPO3.org.

Have a good Sunday night,

Robert Lemke
Assessor - TYPO3 Association

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