It had been a little more than a month, since I first started working on Drupal. Between the four or five, let’s call them, misadventures that I had, I did manage to make a fully functional website.
Among other functionalities, the site included the ability to register (via social networks), create, read, update and delete various content, and keep track of aggregated content. Overall, a site, that I was confident, would offer enough to the user. However, the usage of aggregated content, led to a rather unexpected event.
With the site functional, I took a brief hiatus to get feedback and comments on it. I did get a few users, but all of them were the kind that were waiting to spam my site! At least, I knew the site was out there, and very much accessible.
As I was grappling with the steady stream of feedback I was getting from my focus group, my site kept steadily chugging along. As the days went by, the site was pulling in feeds from various sources, and turning them into nodes. Until, one fine day, this happened.
Without a warning, my website was pulled down. Here’s what I received from my hosting provider.
We notice that there has been High HTTP Requests for the Single Domain Linux Hosting associated with your website.
The domain was consuming all Apache threads resulting high load on the server.
Such activity is strictly against our AUP. Hence we have suspended the hosting services for your website .
Abuse Mitigation Team
Hosting solutions are largely priced based on the resources consumed. My Drupal based website used shared hosting – server resources being shared by multiple websites. Since the pool of resources was used by multiple sites, there were stipulations on how it could be used. The acceptable usage policy (AUP), though vague, pin pointed high number of requests that increased the server load. Thus, violating their terms of service.
I figure that this was primarily on account on the number of feeds the site was aggregating and publishing. It has happened before – I used up my resources when I setup a predictions game on Drupal for the world cup. There, too, I had my server go down until the new month began, and the quota of resources for that month reset. With my current hosting provider, however, it was to do with infringing on their policies.
I tried figuring out how I could resolve it. But, soon realised that there is no point hosting on shared resources. I would rather just deploy on Amazon Web Services…