DB access became awfully slow

Asked by:
HubFans / n/a Points
2013-10-29 2:00 pm EST
Website Troubleshooting
My website is database driven. www.floredefrance.com

A few days ago I noticed that my pages were VERY slow. Visitors confirmed that too.

Some pages load OK: those not requiring db access.
but try a query like searching for ophrys with the search box on the top right corner or go here:
http://www.floredefrance.com/liste.php?searchcrit=ophrys and you will see what I mean.

My code has not been updated recently, neither has the DB content. All was working very smoothly until then.
Code is using PDO so no problem about connexions staying open and clogging the server.

Tech support told me that it was related to Max_Connections being reached.
I know that servers allows for 30 concurrent connections, I probably never go near that: No Max_connexions error in pages or in error_log.
Tried show processes in phpMyAdmin: max I saw was 3 at once...

the processes generated by keyword search are VERY long and most of them show "Copying to tmp table"

Tried the same simple query straight in phpMyAdmin on my home computer and on the online server: less than half a second on my wamp at home, process time by the server being irregular but always over 40 seconds !!!! I even one time got 117 seconds !!!!!!!!!

Any ideas ? I'm starting to get mad...

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16,266 Points
2013-10-29 2:27 pm EST

Thank you for your question. I did take a look at the account and see that the max_connections response was provided by our System Administrator team. They have tools to see deeper in the account and find reasons why the database would be performing slowly.

You may want to re-contact support and ask for a Systems Admin review of the site and possibly the access logs, provided you can give a specific time the slowness occurs. They will check into various aspects of the site and see what a) could be the cause, and b) what improvements need to be made, either on the site or with server side configuration.

Kindest Regards,
Scott M

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Hello, thanks for your answer.
Well if the sys admin team sees things, maybe they can provide more info about this ?
For now, the only action I got is a repair&optimize tables, which was the first thing I did when I noticed the problem, and with no effect whatsoever...

Two facts remain:
-it worked perfectly and now it doesn't any more without any change in the code or db content: what does that say about the source of the problem ? Server side !
- tech support doesn't seem to have tried database query in phpMyAdmin, although it would prove that my code is not in cause...

Now what can I do ?
38 Points

2013-10-29 4:30 pm EST
Hello Thierry,

Sorry to hear about your database issues. If the systems team is reviewing it then you should definitely wait on their response. As indicated by Scott above, the best thing you can do is see what Systems finds on the issue. Apologies that there isn't an "instant" reply - this will take a little research. The problem can also be related to a long query in the database or issues outside of your website, as you are indicating.

I also reviewed the ticket currently active your account. You had provided a query. I went ahead and added a test user to try it after checking the load the server. Here are my results:

/* 0 rows affected, 4 rows found. Duration for 1 query: 18.455 sec. */

The problem with comparing your WAMP server with the Web server that your site is loaded on is that your WAMP installation is on a system that is used only by you. The webserver is based on a shared server hosting. If there was something bogging down the SQL server, it is possible that it may have affected your site and your mySQL queries.

For this reason, it would be best to review the issue based on the findings from the systems team. They would be the best equipped to verify the issue on the server since they have a broader view of the server issues.

Arnel C.
17,314 Points
2013-10-29 10:36 pm EST

2013-10-30 3:20 am EST
Thanks for your contribution Arnel.
Yes you are right: my best bet is to wait for the tech team to finish it's investigations in the matter. Patience is no always my most prominent quality...
Thanks for trying the query. As you saw it took a little under 20 seconds to retrieve 4 random rows.
I understand what shared hosting is, and I like it: without it I would not be able to have my website as it is purely non commercial and I cannot afford a dedicated server.
Nevertheless, I was pretty happy with performance, having page loading time of 1 or 2 seconds max. But here we are talking of loading times 10 or 20 times longer ! And everybody knows what happens to your visitors in that case... Shared hosting is very good but not to the point where overall performance is so bad.
I stand my point on one thing: it worked perfectly fast before and it does not now. Something is wrong and need to be fixed.
Best regards.

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2013-10-30 2:10 pm EST
Well I just got my answer: people at webhostinghub are just liars...

A few weeks ago I got an email notice about my plan being named "Spark", but not to worry: nothing would change:
"just a change in nomenclature"
"will not affect your bill or services in any way."
"nothing else will change in your plan. You will continue to have access to all the unlimited hosting and other features that you signed up for."
"This change will not affect any of your billing info, renewal terms or any of your websites."

Big fat bunch of lies.

Today I got the answer from technical support: "Your account is being throttled due to the amount of information you are parsing through."

Well I signed for unlimited didn't I ?

And of course: "You may also want to look into upgrading the Nitro or Dynamo plan. Each provides significantly higher I/O and CPU limits, which may be necessary for your account."

In my book this translates as "your unlimited offer is now limited and if you want to keep your website running as before you have to pay more"
How much more ? Well I don't know.

But behold the best part: my website is too heavy for the poor servers of webhostinghub: One of my tables hold 30000 records !!! the next two are also monsters with less than 800 lines each.
Of course, with the astounding number of visitors I get each day (between 50 and a 100 last time I checked) I'm bringing down the server on a regular basis...

You know what: this level of dishonesty really makes me mad...

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Hello Thierry,

I apologize for the issues and the marketing terminology which is confusing. I actually asked about this myself after looking at your issue. The terminology of "unlimited" applies to disk space and bandwidth (as stated in the website here). It does not apply to the resources available to the account. So, it may appear to be that "unlimited" applies to EVERYTHING about the account, when in reality the resources are not unlimited-. I also asked about the threshold for the Spark accounts in comparison to the original, and it is my understanding that they actually increased the threshold over the old settings by 10%. The main difference has to do with how they are monitoring resource usage by accounts. Previously, it used to be difficult to pick out the abusers, and now they can better manage it so that the entire is not immediately affected.

Apologies again, for what may seem to be a misunderstanding in terminology and also the affect that the changes may be having on your account. I do understand your anger towards the service since your understanding of the service was that "unlimited" applies to all of the aspects of the account. If you wish to address management, your best recourse is to email manager_feedback@webhostinghub.com. They do take all of these emails seriously.

Kindest Regards,
Arnel C.
17,314 Points
2013-10-30 3:39 pm EST

2013-10-31 12:35 am EST
Well, I will get to management about the issue, because I think you (and tech support for that matter) are missing the point here: what annoys me is that your people decided to throttle the SQL engine powering my website, in effect killing it, and even more, they did that without notice and warning. This is absolutely and totally unacceptable.
Worse: they took a long time to admit it, misleading me with alleged bad code in my pages.
And now they are nitpicking as you are about the use of the word unlimited.
Call me naive but your features page still states "unlimited MYSQL databases".
You might want to change that to a more realistic "unlimited number of small and restricted MYSQL Databases".
Best regards

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