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Website and Forum Downtime

Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2015 16:34
by Ben
Dear readers,

We just wanted to take a moment to offer our sincere apologies for the recent and continued downtime that the MRC website has been experiencing. We began to receive reports that the server was becoming increasingly slower for numerous visitors, and eventually in the early hours of yesterday morning (29 June 2015), the website became completely inaccessible due to a severe and complete server breakdown.

We immediately began to investigate the issue, and with the assistance of the server company, were able to determine the reason for this catastrophic behaviour: the MRC site had been the victim of a Distributed Denial of Service attack. Effectively, this is where several clients connect to the server of a website multiple times in quick succession in an attempt to interrupt regular traffic and eventually cause the server hardware to fail. Between 0600 and 0700 GMT, the MRC website received an average of 273,000 requests each second! It was clear that the cause was less than scrupulous.

We are pleased to say that we have now been able to restore the entire website and Forum from backups that are taken from our server daily. However, you will likely notice that the Forum has lost its default style. This was a result of upgrading the software to the latest version, and the theme being incompatible with the new version of phpBB. We will be working to restore the familiar Forum layout in due course. Hopefully though, you should already be able to see faster response times on the new Forum.

There are still some issues that are yet to be resolved (such as the initial connection speed to the website). However, we are working closely with the server company to ensure that the problems are resolved as quickly as possible so that normal service can be resumed.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you most sincerely for your patience and continued support, and in case you have any questions, queries or comments, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Kind regards,
Ben & Alain :)

Re: Website and Forum Downtime

Posted: Sat Jul 11, 2015 05:34
by Andrewb
Hi Ben

I must say I can never understand the reason for this type of thing.

Thanks for all the hard work you put in.