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Server maintenance & upgrades
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binksy
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2015 4:56 pm Post subject: No icon Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

This is a copy from HH as frog is going to be doing some maintenance & upgrades within the next few days!

Citrix XenServer 6.5 was released a few weeks ago and it offers significant performance improvements. We are currently running 6.2, the previous version, here's a comparison chart of some of the improvements.



Citrix XenServer is the environment in which the HH and THG virtual machines (VM) are running.

Over the next couple of days frog will upgrade our XenServer installation to 6.5, this is going to involve the following steps.

* Setting up a new backup system for creating and storing VM snapshots on a remote server.
(Currently our backup system operates on the database, website and game servers, rather than the whole VM.

* Researching the safest/easiest/least messy method of upgrading to 6.5. This will boil down to either;

a) wiping the server, installing 6.5 and then dropping the latest VM snapshot backups on to it.

b) upgrading the current 6.2 installation.

All of this is going to be new territory for frog.

I think it's best to do this upgrade before investigating the ping issue relating to the TF2 servers.

A couple of points regarding the TF2 ping issue.

* It started out of the blue and after several weeks of trouble-free operation. This means it's not a capacity issue. It's not that the hardware and OS configuration that we have isn't suitable for the job.

* Pings spikes only seemed to occur on the TF2 servers, whereas a ping log from the server to my home network for 12 hours stayed in the range of 13.6ms to 28.4ms during the period that people where experiencing ping spikes on the TF2 servers.


Hopefully its not to much of a headache for frog and all goes well. As he mentioned it is all new for him this xen software.

However he is the man and I have faith it will all go well
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 07, 2015 4:42 pm Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

Here's an update...

Without going into too many details, there isn't a feasible upgrade route for updating 6.2 to 6.5 with our current situation (no physical access, no SAN, remote network etc.)

So snapshots of the VMs will be made, the server wiped and 6.5 installed, and then the snapshots imported.

This is probably going to result in the best part of a day of downtime.

Before doing this I'm going to have a few trial runs on a test server, if I can muster one together, so that I can figure out what is going to work best with regards to various VM image formats and the shuffling of data (130GB).

The actual upgrade is most likely to happen in the early part of next week. I'll avoid the weekend and start early on a weekday so that, with any luck, everything is back up and running by the evening.

p.s. Don't fret, upgrades, such as this, will be few and far between. 6.2 was released in June 2013. The timing of the release of 6.5 is just unfortunate, as it's so soon after our move.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 07, 2015 10:21 pm Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

Thanks for the update frog much appreciated  Wink
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2015 2:19 pm Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

On Monday 9th March, the following maintenance will occur. Most things will be offline for approximately 9 hours.

Shutdown of HH website, mumble and all game servers
Shutdown of THG website, mumble and TF2 servers #1 & #2
Export of HH and THG virtual machines. (~4 hours)
Installation of Citrix XenServer 6.5. (~45 minutes)
Import of HH and THG virtual machines. (~4 hours)
Upgrade XenTools (~20 minutes)

You'll be able to track progress at http://gg.gg/serverupdate (bookmark this)


Last edited by frog on Wed Mar 11, 2015 11:31 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2015 8:35 pm Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

Hope it all goes to plan frog gl & thanks for the update, let me know if you need any help with anything  Wink
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2015 1:08 am Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

Thanks for this Frog, good luck with the maintenance!
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2015 2:44 am Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

Thanks for the update man.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2015 9:02 am Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

Todays maintenance may take some time & our servers maybe be down this evening due to the long maintenance and upgrades that are taking place..

THG & HH  can all play here 193.0.159.201:27045 "Spread the IP if its needed"

I will add the ID to our steam group also THG Kris has a 2nd backup server sorted out if this one has any issues  Wink

Hopefully our main servers will be up and running asap  Engy  Medic
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2015 12:08 am Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

11.10pm and we are back well done frog and those involved Smile
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2015 12:31 am Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

Well done and thank you to everyone involved for their hard work  Very Happy
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2015 1:20 am Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

Thanks, it ended up being rather a slog with a sudden steep learning curve.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2015 10:01 am Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

Great work frog, you got there in the end m8 well done much appreciated cheers  Cool
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2015 9:59 pm Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

Thanks frog for all the work, if you need help i might be able to give some, i never worked on Xen but worked VMware and Hyper-V before
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 2:04 am Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

We're not quite out of the woods yet.

This is a fresh build that needed to happen so that I could get tcpdump on to the THG VM before network connectivity had died. The strange thing is that networking would work fine for a time, but then out of the blue it would drop and not comeback, even after a reboot of the VM and the VM host. I was unable to find any reason for it doing so.

Network support reached a point where they were unable to offer any further assistance unless I could provide a tcpdump. Now that it is installed, and if it happens again, then we should finally be able to pin down the issue.

Additionally, I have 2 IPs on order that share the same range. Which provide another option that remove any potential issue caused by the use of differing ranges between the 2 VMs.

If another network issue occurs and isn't quickly solved by a tcpdump or IP change, then I have suggested to Binksy that we ditch the use of VMs and directly share the dedicated server using multiple IPs.  

It's taken up a huge amount of time for me and has been quite a stress, in addition to the other work that I have got on.

I can only apologise for the down time.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 9:32 am Post subject: No icon Re: Server maintenance & upgrades Reply with quote

Great work "again" frog I know you have worked very hard and its consumed allot of your time which I'm sure we are all thank full for Wink I deffo am as it would of taking me allot longer than your self to keep fixing this issue.

Hopefully we can get to the bottom of it else I'm sure we can come to a solution 1 way or another.

Fingers crossed  Medic


Last edited by binksy on Sat Mar 14, 2015 12:35 pm; edited 1 time in total
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