Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Vista is faster

Blackboard performed a rolling restart on the nodes yesterday late afternoon and evening, so you should see performance improvements.

The full re-start scheduled for Saturday morning (1:00 to 3:00 am) did not occur as planned, that may have contributed to yesterday's issues.

Once again, we have conference calls scheduled with BB staff to discuss the ongoing problems. I should have some usage and performance statistics to pass on to you for the past month shortly. We have also asked BB to gather those performance statistics for the coming month and for the first two weeks of December.

In a nut shell, we appear to have concurrency rates of around 10%, when national averages are more like 3 to 5%. That means we are very heavy users of the application. (not bad, but interesting.) FRCC appears to have concurrency rates back down in the 3 to 5% range and they are the only college which has moved all of it's LMS operations to Vista. That would seem to imply that when everyone has moved all online, hybrid, and web-enanced courses to Vista we will be back down in the more normal range and our forecasts for purposes of hardware sizing may be more accurate. :^) (I'm looking hard for a bright side here folks, so help me out.)

We also have scheduled the update to the system (application pack 1 and Service pack 1) for December 20th. That means Vista will be unavailable for all of December 20th, probably until 8:00 am December 21st.

I believe that day should be low impact for everyone except CCA faculty. I appologize to CCA - we were afraid to schedule any later than that as we wanted to have time to test the upgrade before Christmas break.


1 comment:

Lisa Cheney-Steen said...

A node is a server really -- each node can handle 25 simultaneous threads. Most threads should be completed almost instantaneously, but things like uploading a large file can consume more time. Sometimes the threads become clogged, resulting in slow response times. Restarting the nodes clears out stuck threads.

We began the term with 5 nodes and now have 7. Initially the system was planned for 40,000 users at 5% concurrency rates. We have around 20,000 active users.

We had planned to grow to 9 nodes for the coming fall term. It looks like we may be there for spring.