The Climate Audit system upgrade – help needed

Yesterday while at ICCC, I had a chance to talk with Steve McIntyre at length about the state of the Climate Audit server. As many of you know, Climate Audit failed a couple of weeks ago and was down for almost 3 days due to a hard drive failure. Even with RAID1, it didn’t prevent downtime. Since then I’ve been thinking about making an upgrade, and with Steve’s blessing yesterday, I’m going to go ahead with the project while he’s on travel. Some of the points we discussed are:

  • Climate Audit has become an important repository of data, with links to posts and content made from thousands of websites worldwide, to lose it would be a tragedy.
  • Due to the complex nature of the CA setup, subfolders, BBS, LATEX, etc, we are unable to move to wordpress.com hosting (Where WUWT is at) without some significant work and likely loss of some features.
  • The current CA configuration goes down about every 2-5 days due to Apache failing and needing a restart.
  • CA in it’s current form has a lot of legacy code in place that needs to be updated. Doing so on an operational server is always risky.
  • The current CA server configuration was done under quite a bit of duress and pressure. Readers may recall the downtime in 2007 due to the traffic from the Y2K announcement as well as the flooding in the UK which affected the CoLo there. There’s never really been a chance to fine-tune the setup and to test offline to ensure stability. It has always been a rush job to get it back online.

So with those things in mind, Steve and I have decided to upgrade the hardware platform.

I want to establish RAID5 for added security, plus an automated offsite backup, dual processor, and hot swap drives. The current platform has fixed drives (requiring a de-racking to fix drive issues) single core CPU, and RAID1.
Here is the Intel server platform, the SR1530HAHLX (PDF spec sheet) that I want to acquire for the new home of CA. 1U is required due to costs of CoLo doubling if we put in a 2U rack unit. It will have three main drives running RAID5, plus a small 2.5″ fixed drive used for an automated backup. We also want to establish an automated off-site backup.

This platform will tolerate drive failure better and allow for easier servicing one a drive does fail. Plus since I’ll be able to build it in parallel to the existing operational CA server, install latest code, fine tune it, and then move content, finally doing a swap, downtime will be minimal.

I hope to accomplish this before Steve returns from his trip.

Here is where you come in. Steve has authorized me to solicit for donations to make this happen. The server, drives, etc I estimate will take about 1800-$2000 to put together.

About 50 people donating $40 each would be all it would take. Or 20 donating $100 each. Steve and I think this is acheivable.

So if you feel so inclined here is the donate button. I’ll be building the server which is why my donate button is present below instead of Steve’s His being out of the country will complicate matters of funds transfer.
To help build a new Climate Audit

Thank you all for your consideration.

- Anthony Watts

UPDATE: We have reached the GOAL! Thanks to everyone who helped with the many donations! Thanks to everyone’s generosity, I will be immediately able to purchase the Intel Server and begin setting up a parallel system. I spoke with Steve McIntyre today at the end of our joint session at ICCC and he also sends his thanks. – Sincerest thanks, Anthony Watts

PS I will provide updates as they occur.

UPDATE2: We have enough to complete the job with a quality server. It has been pointed out to me that I should leave the donations “open” so that we may acquire a “rainy day fund” for emergencies such as drive failure or costs of software upgrades. Thus if anyone wishes to add to the goal, we certainly won’t turn it away and your donation will ensure continued operation even in times of faults. For example, with extra cash I will be able to buy some hot swap drive spares to have at ready. But please don’t feel obligated in any way. – Anthony

UPDATE3: 3/13 The new server has been ordered, preconfigured with Linux OS and RAID5. ETA is Wednesday 3/18. I have also ordered some spare drives, thanks to everyone’s continued generosity. There will be a fourth internal drive to use as a backup drive, plus we’ll work on getting automated offsite backup as well. So with RAID5, local second drive backup, and offsite backup, the continuance of the CA “lifeforce” has a high probability. – Anthony

198 Comments

  1. Mac
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:12 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Done.

  2. AndyS
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:19 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Ditto

  3. Jaye Bass
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:22 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Done…but that means I get 5 “free” anti-AGW “editorial” comments without snipping. ;-)

  4. Tim G
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:24 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Sent a little myself. Let us know where we stand….

    –t

  5. benpal
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:32 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Wired a small donation from Switzerland …

  6. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:42 AM | Permalink | Reply

    About $200 in the first hour, thanks to all!

  7. Mark M
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:53 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Anthony,

    Let me suggest another option. Rather than invest in server hardware, etc. consider using Amazon’s EC2 cloud server. This will easily host a full proprietary WordPress install with all the goodies. The key advantage of course is “no hardware”; the cost for a server instance runs about $70 month plus bandwidth (about $00.15 per gb). Database is saved on an EB instance, can be backed -up real time with a “snapshot” that can then be moved to a personal computer as a tertiary backup. Scripts can easily automate this.

    If this alternative make sense and bears further consideration. Let me know. Be happy to help.

    Mark

    a

  8. Patrick M.
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:54 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Cha ching!

  9. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:58 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Mark, I’ll look into it. The advantage I have right now is that the current CoLo is reachable for “hands on” work…and there is no substitute for that.

    Sometimes solutions that you suggest are the better way to go…but I’ll have to check it out….Steve doesn’t want a lot of recurring expense. The CoLo we have now costs a mere $70 a month and has 1000 GB free. To equal that would be $220/mo at the cloud service.

    Anthony

  10. Robinedwards
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:07 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Great work, Anthony,

    Have chipped in a few GBP – my first ever Paypal transaction!

  11. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:11 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Done. I am a lurker here, but Steve and Anthony are doing outstanding work. Thanks to both of you.

  12. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:20 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Anthony,

    Check in the mail today. Looking forward to getting a copy of your Heartland report on the surface station survey results.

    Russ

  13. Mark Smith
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:21 AM | Permalink | Reply

    What Carsten said.

  14. Mark M
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:24 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Fair enough Anthony. Costs being a factor – can’t integrate that into the recommendation. However, once you read up on the AWS services, you can build and launch a LAMP server in about 30 minutes (via ssh), launch multiple instances for high traffic periods, etc. And since its billed on a “usage basis” only, consider an image for when that Intel does decide its again tired. We could build a CA mirror in a few minutes (slight exaggeration) for a demo and evaluation – with only “hands on” the keyboard! (and my dime). For your backups – take a look at the S3 service.

    Mark

  15. Bruce
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:26 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Raid 10 would be better.

    The Dell 1950 III can have up to 4 SAS drives. Unfortunately it bumps the price cloer to 3000.

    http://www.dell.com/content/products/productdetails.aspx/pedge_1950_3?c=us&cs=04&l=en&s=bsd

    • Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:52 AM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: Bruce (#15),

      Hi Bruce, yes I looked at that server, but decided that might be out of our reach.

      I’ll be offline for the rest of the day as I have a presentation to give this PM

      Anthony

  16. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:26 AM | Permalink | Reply

    done

  17. Brian Johnson
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:27 AM | Permalink | Reply

    All the way from the UK. Every little helps.

    Many Thanks BJ

  18. Robert Austin
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:32 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Contribution sent. Keep the (lack of) faith!

  19. TerryS
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:34 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Oddly enough you dont actually have a “donate $40″ button on there.
    Since I’m a cheapskate I decided the $30 button was closer to $40 than the $50 button.

    • Coalsoffire
      Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:33 AM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: TerryS (#19),
      If you are in Canada the $30 button costs you a few pennies less than $40. So there really is pretty much a $40 button after all. I found that out by processing a donation. Keep up the good work.

    • Dave Dardinger
      Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:42 AM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: TerryS (#19),

      Oddly enough you dont actually have a “donate $40″ button on there.
      Since I’m a cheapskate I decided the $30 button was closer to $40 than the $50 button.

      Ditto. Not that I think the 2k is likely to be missing, but good marketing practice is to make your request as easy to fulfill as possible.

      Also while I understand and respect cheapness, mathematically speaking, and you know how we speak math a lot here, $50 is closer to $40 than $30 is.

      • TerryS
        Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:26 PM | Permalink | Reply

        Re: Dave Dardinger (#56),

        Also while I understand and respect cheapness, mathematically speaking, and you know how we speak math a lot here, $50 is closer to $40 than $30 is.

        But you forget that to get from $30 to $40 requires an upward adjustment of the figures whereas to get from $50 to $40 requires a downward adjustment and since this is a climate blog the upward adjustment is the correct one.

  20. Doug
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:35 AM | Permalink | Reply

    All the federal money going to the alarmists, and every time a skeptic speaks up, they are accused of being paid by oil companies. Sigh. Money sent.

  21. woodNfish
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:39 AM | Permalink | Reply

    I am pleased to be able to help out. This is a great site and you folks are doing excellent work. I notice your cost estimates do not include any labor which I know must be considerable. I hope many more of the readers will give their support too.

  22. Bill Jacobus
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:42 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Just sent $50. As a 1st time reader from Vermont I am very impressed with your efforts! Keep it up!! I’ve fought a battle like this before here in Vermont on “mercury in fish consumption” scares. As a retired physicist I abhor the sleazy tactics these people use in the name of science. Whether it is rigging temperature data or risk levels for methyl mercury in fish flesh, all these people produce the same predictable self serving dribble. I intend to become an ardent reader in the future.
    Bill

  23. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:45 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Thanks, Anthony for making the donation process job specific — I would think that should encourage more giving. And thanks for all your efforts.

  24. Art
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:49 AM | Permalink | Reply

    I’m in for $50 as well. Least I can do for all I have learned here. Please give us an update in a day or so and let us know how you are progressing in terms of reaching the goal. Keep up the good work folks.

  25. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:49 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Almost forgot, but as for my archived data, graphs etc.here at CA, if they get lost in the change-over, no big deal, as I have since moved on.

  26. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:50 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Thanks to everybody in the first 2.5 hours we have about $900 almost halfway.

    • Ryan O
      Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:52 AM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: Anthony Watts (#26), You will be getting some from me, as well. I shall help the heros who are saving the world from all the other heros.

  27. Joe Crawford
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:50 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Check’s on the way…

    As important as this site has become, if enough of us chip in, you can upgrade to a good fully redundant system with off-site backup… hardware & especially disk drives are cheap.

    Joe

  28. Gong
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:55 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Clong! Done!

  29. Tom Vonk
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:59 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Done and good luck .

  30. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:05 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Done.

  31. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:06 AM | Permalink | Reply

    My $50 on the way. This is good. We skeptics need to start putting out–kinda like Blanche in Streetcar.

    BTW. My brother-in-law is a natural-gas lawyer. So this probably counts as eevil funding from Big Oil.

  32. James
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:16 AM | Permalink | Reply

    My suggestion would be RAID 1 with three drives – RAID 5 with three drives is no more reliable than RAID 1 with two. And buy the drives from different vendors.

    • Joe Crawford
      Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:33 AM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: James (#34),
      You’re right about the different vendors. Most people don’t realize the importance of that. A study done many years ago on the reliability of triple modular redundancy found that once you had a single failure, the probability of a second failure went up several orders of magnitude. This was (mostly) because of similar hardware.

      Joe

  33. Steve Burrows
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:20 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Another $50 to keep the discussion going.

  34. DJ
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:21 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Here come’s my $50! Steve has a great friend in you Anthony…this would be a great time for an upgrade to occur. I pray everything goes your way on this because we DO NOT want to lose the Data plus all of the great conversations that has occured on this Site! Invaluable info here, I think! Keep in touch on how things are going…

    DJ

  35. Andrew
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:25 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Donation completed.

    Keep doin’ what you do. :wink:

    Andrew ♫

  36. Bruce Cunningham
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:26 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Ditto on where is all that big oil money! Glad that I can help.

    Bruce

  37. Jeff Alberts
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:35 AM | Permalink | Reply

    I’ll be donating in a minute or two.

    However, I’d like to offer my services to provide some mirror functionality for any of the archived data. I lease a dedicated Linux server for my various web sites, and can provide an FTP location where anything desired can be uploaded. Anthony, I think you have my email if my meager services can be used.

  38. Doug
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:37 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Another big oil donation, of 10% of my net oil and gas revenue for the month. $50.

  39. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:45 AM | Permalink | Reply

    I’m semi-jobless – my pool / spa business is pretty dead, don’t have a full time teaching job (and may not ever the way things are going in California), and subbing barely covers the bills – but I’ll donate a few bucks. Just know that I will have to go alcohol free tonight and watch 24 sober because of you!!!!!!!!!!! :-)

  40. Joe
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:46 AM | Permalink | Reply

    $100 on the way. Have gotten a lot out of Climate Audit and your site and am grateful to be able to contribute something.

  41. James C
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:48 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Done.
    Very glad to be of help.
    regards…..

  42. Kalle
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:52 AM | Permalink | Reply

    I would like to add (even though you probably know this) that RAID is not a substitute for backups (and that means recovery *tested* backups). Especially mysql seems to have a tendency to corrupt its own databases, RAID does not guard against software corruption, only versioned and tested backups do. With the low prices for backup to S3 that is really nice route for backup needs.

  43. Fred
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:56 AM | Permalink | Reply

    ditto, done.

    If you get more than you “need” I say invest it into an even better system.

    This site is worth it.

  44. Bill Jamison
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:07 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Done. It’s not much but I’m glad I can help!

  45. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:14 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Clunk!

  46. David Charlton
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:15 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Done

  47. Carrick
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:26 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Ching ching. Let us know if you need more.

    RAID 5 is a good move, as is the off-site backup system.

  48. Hal
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:28 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Added my $50

    Good Luck and keep up the good work

  49. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:30 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Done. I may be out of work next month, but I don’t regret putting a little money into fighting this important fight.

  50. royfOMR
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:33 AM | Permalink | Reply

    ‘Many a Mickle makes a Muckle’
    I hope that the mickle I’ve just sent off, turns into a muckle!

  51. Robert in Calgary
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:38 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Added my $20 US.

  52. alex verlinden
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:53 AM | Permalink | Reply

    some $ here will be way less than the taxes – “for the good of the planet” – that will be demanded by our respective authorities up untill the moment that they can no longer deny it was ballderdash all the way … (which might unfortunately be quite a few decades …)

  53. Jaye Bass
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:54 AM | Permalink | Reply

    I have a question, do you guys think that RC could launch a fund raiser like this and get a positive response from their readers/contributors?

    • Kenneth Fritsch
      Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:32 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: Jaye Bass (#58),

      I have a question, do you guys think that RC could launch a fund raiser like this and get a positive response from their readers/contributors?

      I would think gifting in carbon credits would have a reasonable appeal.

      • coalsoffire
        Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:39 PM | Permalink | Reply

        Re: Kenneth Fritsch (#64),I would think gifting in carbon credits would have a reasonable appeal.


        No need to donate carbon credits to RC because a gift here is a true carbon offset.

    • DJ
      Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:42 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: Jaye Bass (#58), why? They have a LARGE contributor, called the U.S.Government….or the U.S.Taxpayer!!! The most generous People!

      • Jaye Bass
        Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:36 PM | Permalink | Reply

        Re: DJ (#100),

        Yea that was what I was getting at. Those types tend to think charity or giving to a worthy cause means you spend other people’s money.

  54. PhilD
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:59 AM | Permalink | Reply

    And another lurker coughs up.

  55. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:05 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Done,

    Thanks Anthony and Steve.

  56. RomanM
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:07 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Me too… although the receipt said something about “A. Watts Vacation Fund”… ;)

  57. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:23 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I have one of these Intel boxes, but in the UK. It’s got 2x 1TB SATA drives installed. I’d offer to donate it, but I don’t think there’d be a big saving for you, if any, over a second-user unit in the US.

    I have it spare because I moved a hosting system into the EC2 cloud, as someone’s already suggested. I really recommend this as a better way forward. Snapshotting data, plus your own AMIs give you about a ten minute recovery time, without leaving your desk.All the bandwidth you can eat too. The charges are very reasonable. It’s halved my monthly outlay, and eliminated my hardware costs.

  58. Vinceo
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:34 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $50 on its way. The morning read wouldn’t be complete without Climate Audit.

  59. PhilH
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:36 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Done.

  60. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:41 PM | Permalink | Reply

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  61. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:43 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Since my 401K has turned into a 201K, I’d better donate while I still can. Here’s $50 from Texas.

    Thanks Anthony and Steve.

  62. Pierre Gosselin
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:48 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Last time I donated, I caught holy hell from the old lady after she had seen the credit card statement (thinks hungry kids need it more).
    Would it be possible to donate by cheque from my own US bank account? That way my wife will never see the donation on the credit card statement.
    To whom should I make the cheque out? Please provide a mailing address as well. I’m good for a Benjamin Franklin.

  63. Miguel
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:49 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Done

  64. jeez
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:51 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Pierre–As the moderator for WUWT I will contact you offline. Look for an email from jeez@asshelmets.com. Be sure to check your spam filter as my domain name is uh, a little suspicious.

  65. Pierre Gosselin
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:52 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Russ Steele,
    What mail address and to whom did you make out the check?

  66. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:52 PM | Permalink | Reply

    50$ closer.

  67. Pierre Gosselin
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:52 PM | Permalink | Reply

    jeez-
    10-4!

  68. John Brady
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:54 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $50 from another long-time lurker: worth it to help fund rational argument.

  69. Charlie Iliff
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:54 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I’m in for $50. According to my RegEm run, filling blanks with interpolations and extrapolations from these comments, you now have at least $25,000.

  70. Jonathan
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:54 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $50 sent.

  71. jeez
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 12:56 PM | Permalink | Reply

    You really should use five drives, not three.

    • DaveE
      Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:36 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: jeez (#79), Agreed but the 1U is a restriction.

      Trying to figure where I’m going to get my contribution from. I’m constantly being accused of funding from ‘big oil’.

      I bloody wish.

      DaveE

  72. Jim Arndt
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 1:03 PM | Permalink | Reply

    WOW, you guys are great we need to keep this up and maybe we can get a DOD Source server out of it too…LOL. Gave my two cents.

  73. Mick Turner
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 1:08 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $20 from another lurker, thanks for all your great work

  74. Steamboat McGoo
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 1:12 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Done!

  75. Steamboat McGoo
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 1:19 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Anthony,

    I hope you have a “Chris Muir” – of Day By Day fame – moment on this Bleg.

    He reluctantly decided to solicit donations for site support. He figured if he blegged for maybe 5 days (I think) he’d get his needed $20K (again – I think).

    He got it in – like – 90 minutes. :)

    This site is waaaaay important.

  76. GregR
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 1:24 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $100 from me too. Not a poster, but an avid reader and I too have learned a lot from this site.

  77. David Cauthen
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 1:35 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I gave $20 just to avoid the bad case of the heebie-jeebies I get whenever CA crashes. (Yeah, I know I’m a loser.) Thanks Steve and Anthony.

  78. Peter Hevier
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 1:48 PM | Permalink | Reply

    just $20, sorry – bad times :-(

  79. mike T
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:14 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Another UK contribution. This site does such good work – and I’ve learned a lot.

  80. Allen63
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:16 PM | Permalink | Reply

    A token of appreciation for CA and WUWT. The two best climate blogs.

  81. Mitchel44
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:16 PM | Permalink | Reply

    another $50 in the pipeline for this project, I lurk a lot, rarely post, but I’ve been able to track down and comprehend more legit information through this site and WUWT than is available from any government funded information site that I can find

    that statement itself says more than enough about the whole circus

  82. Dewi
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:18 PM | Permalink | Reply

    And some more of the folding stuff from the UK!

  83. Carrick
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:20 PM | Permalink | Reply

    jeez:

    You really should use five drives, not three.

    Or at least four, since you have 3 + 1 parity drive at that point for the RAID-5 system. That allows hot-swapping of a spare & full rebuild in a few hours with zero downtime.

  84. Mike Loegering
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:21 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $30..done.

  85. John Good
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:25 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Just a small donation from the ‘socialist state’ (not so great Britain).The lunatics are certainly in charge of the asylum here and it looks as if US of A is on the same downward trend(a reverse hockey stick) Cheers

  86. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:28 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Done. Thanks to Anthony and Steve

  87. Hemst 101
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:33 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Being a Canuck how could I refuse!! Done

  88. Andreas
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:36 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Costs for HDDs being low as they are, I strongly suggest rather doing a RAID6 (in case of four drives) or a RAID1 (in case of three drives). Why? Because once you consider bit errors the probability of double drive failures becomes more than purely theoretical. A nice write-up of the theory / statistics / mathematics behind RAID can be found here (in German only): http://www.heinlein-support.de/upload/slac08/Heinlein-RAID_Mathematik_fuer_Admins.pdf

  89. Billy Ruff'n
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 2:37 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Done. Thank you.

  90. Daniel Paquet
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:02 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $50 from a prairie lurker. Thanks.

  91. Ryan O
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:08 PM | Permalink | Reply

    As promised . . . donation complete.

  92. Dave S
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:09 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Donation made from the UK – please keep up the great work!

  93. Britannic no-see-um
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:15 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Done.

  94. Clive
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:16 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Thanks for keeping the spirit and information alive at WUWT and CA.

    Clive
    Alberta

  95. Jari
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:18 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Anthony,

    Could you email me the account details, I would like to wire transfer my contribution (account no., SWIFT code etc. needed for an international wire transfer).

    Best regards,

    Jari

  96. jeez
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:19 PM | Permalink | Reply

    European open source guys hate paypal.

    • DJ
      Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:47 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: jeez (#108), It’s to hide the Oil Monie,,quiet is the Word…SHHHHHH!

  97. Varco
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:20 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Contribution made. Keep up the great work Anthony and Steve…

  98. 00
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:30 PM | Permalink | Reply

    RAID5 (parity) is always less safe than RAID1 (mirroring), and you could actually use more than 2 disks as mirrors if really want to avoid disk failures to break the array. RAID5 also suffers from very slow write speed unless you use a real hardware raid controller with bbc memory, but you don’t get this on entry level server models.

    Raid array failures in real life are typically caused by broken controllers, driver/firmware bugs or electrical issues on bus level. Simultaneous failure of multiple disks (because the disks themselves get broken) will very unlikely break your array if you replace broken disks in reasonable time or use hot spares. (And I know what I’m talking about here.)

  99. Mike Rankin
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:40 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Contribution made. Thanks for your valuable efforts.

  100. Jens
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 3:50 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Donation done. Thank you very much for your hard work.
    As have been mentioned before, look into hosting it on
    the EC2 cloud.

    Best Regards
    Jens from Sweden

  101. Mary
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 4:11 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Done. Long time lurker. I haven’t tipped since the Starbuck’s Hypothesis. Great website!
    Mary from Prudhoe Bay, Alaska

  102. schnoerkelman
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 4:16 PM | Permalink | Reply

    With respect to various raid levels the RAID1 with multiple mirrors or RAID6 with multiple parity disks is the most reliable way to go. With RAID1 in a 3 way stripe you can get by with only three drives. It is the most reliable method. RAID6 is like RAID5 but with two parity drives and a three disk RAID6 is possible and just matches the reliability of the 3 way mirror. RAID5 or 6 both have a read-modify-write cycle which make writes slower. ZFS is a new file system from Sun that fixes that problem as well as integrating block level parity checks which provide a substantially higher reliability in the face of controller, cable, and other “silent” failures. There is Lunux, BSD and Solaris support for ZFS and I highly recommend it for servers of this form.
    Another important aspect of maintaining these kinds of boxes is a remote console capability. This can save long drives to the site in the case of most failures, although one will still need to touch the hardware to replace drives or other components.

  103. ColinK
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 4:24 PM | Permalink | Reply

    CA is priceless jewel and must be kept in action. I’m pleased to make a small contribution from the UK.

  104. anon
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 4:28 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Wish it were more, but it is something. Best wishes.

  105. Kip Hansen
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 4:33 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $20 gladly. Keep up the good work.

  106. TAG
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 4:52 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Another $20 sent through the ether. Paypal will be wondering.

  107. Jim Carson
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 4:52 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $100.

    If you need more say so.

  108. RexAlan
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 4:54 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Done.

    Keep up the good work.

    All the best Rex

  109. Jim Carson
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 5:03 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Antony, if you get more than requested, I hope you’ll use it to defray Steve’s and your travel costs.

  110. Cyril
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 5:19 PM | Permalink | Reply

    40.64€ (50US$) from France
    Merci Anthony

  111. BillA
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 5:22 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Jeez: I usually send funds only through the mail by check. I have Mr. McIntyre’s mail address, but not Mr. Watts’. Would you please send me the surface mail address via email as you did for Pierre (Post #72)?

    I trust you picked up a previous post that Raid protects against drive failures but not OS failure/corruption.

    In my experience (for what it is worth) a system conversion / migration is a significant subsystem in itself. Let me know if you want more on this.

    • jeez
      Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 5:35 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: BillA (#125),

      Assuming this is the BillA from WUWT with the verizon address–done.

  112. John F. Hultquist
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 5:25 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I sent my bit several hours ago but did not add a note then. But I do agree with all the nice things being said including using any extra (above needed hardware and costs) to defray travel costs and so on. Some of my Canadian friends get more work done with a little liquid refreshment around — go for that too! Cheers!

  113. bitwonk
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 5:26 PM | Permalink | Reply

    RAID-10 is a LOT faster than RAID-5, although it requires every drive to be mirrored, so with 6 drives you have 3 effective, whereas with RAID-5 you would have 5 effectively, but every write to disk with RAID-5 requires two reads and two writes. Reads are fast (unless the RAID is degraded), but writes to RAID-5 are MUCH slower than RAID-1 or RAID-10. FYI.

  114. robodruid
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 5:33 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $10 sent. Sorry I work for the govt. 50% has to go for overhead. :)

  115. Geo
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 5:44 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Well, I made a small donation.

    But I tell ya, I think I’m uncomfortable with you two fellows being at the same place at the same time. One of you should be at “a secure undisclosed location” at all times! :)

  116. MrPete
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 5:47 PM | Permalink | Reply

    (From a reliability perspective: Google’s experience is that when one RAID drive fails, there’s a stats-significant increase in probability of a catastrophic failure because of the time spent during rebuild. In that sense, more smaller drives is much better than fewer biggies. Anyone seen 2.5-RAID-in-3.5-space? That would sure help!)

  117. TonyS
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 6:00 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Be warned: They rob you with the harddisk mountings.
    http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/archives/001200.html

  118. Nicholas
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 6:01 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I agree with previous comments about RAID, I don’t see any advantage of simple RAID5 over a mirror. For critical data I’d go with a 4-way mirror. I’ve had several machines I built/administered with drive failures in mirror configurations and almost all of them that I can remember kept running (they were mostly configured with Linux software RAID). If you really need it to continue running after a drive failure consider SCSI drives.

  119. Bill Jamison
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 6:28 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Wow what a great response from the CA faithful! It sure appears that the goal will be easily reached in less than a day – nice work!

    Oh and nice tips about RAID configurations too :)

  120. John Silver
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 6:44 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I will not donate to a RAID 5 system, only to a RAID 01.

  121. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 7:03 PM | Permalink | Reply

    happy to support the ongoing project: thank you for doing this for Steve and for the wider community that continues to benefit from all of CA’s activities and those of WUWT.

  122. From Ottawa
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 7:10 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $30 for your superb site. I’m a former employee of Canada’s National Land and Water Information Service – used to be a hoot to pull the Soils Science guys aside and chat about AGW. Eyes would roll and heads would shake…not a word of discontent though because that would be a severe career limiter. What a sorry state we find ourselves in.

  123. Horace
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 7:23 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Sent my $20. Amazing how many BIG OIL employees read this site. I don’t know what to do with myself when CA goes down – hope this helps minimize the down time.

  124. MarkR
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 7:26 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Oops. I put $40 in SteveM’s tip jar. Hope that will count. PS. Could someone please add a proper search facility?

    • John A
      Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:11 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: MarkR (#140),

      Could someone please add a proper search facility?

      There’s a Google search at the top right. Is that what you’re looking for?

      • MarkR
        Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 10:10 AM | Permalink | Reply

        Re: John A (#146), IMHO The Google is not very precise. I think there are WordPress plugins that do a better job. Worth experimenting with a couple. The amount of info in this site is vast. Needs a more precise search.

  125. spangled drongo
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 7:31 PM | Permalink | Reply

    30usd is nearly 50aud these crazy days but Anthony and Steve you’re worth every penny. Good luck!

  126. Bob_L
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 7:31 PM | Permalink | Reply

    $30.00 is in. That IS my big oil money. The Yukon XL will remain parked for the next week.

  127. Don
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 7:57 PM | Permalink | Reply

    A few dollars more. Keep up the good work.

  128. Paul Penrose
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:06 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I would put four drives in and use Raid 0+1, that way you get mirroring and better performance. Anyway I’ll chip in $50.

  129. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:28 PM | Permalink | Reply

    UPDATE: We have reached the GOAL! Thanks to everyone who helped with the many donations! Thanks to everyone’s generosity, I will be immediately able to purchase the Intel Server and begin setting up a parallel system. I spoke with Steve McIntyre today at the end of our joint session at ICCC and he also sends his thanks.

    I will be looking at all of your RAID suggestions.

    - Sincerest thanks, Anthony Watts

  130. Alan Wilkinson
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 8:28 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Done. Best spend of the week. Many thanks to Anthony and to Steve.

    Backups are good. Disk to backup to is also cheap.

    I doubt Raid 1 vs 5 makes a practical difference. I would spend the money on better controllers and better backups before tarting up the Raid config beyond Raid 1.

  131. Jon
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:01 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Anthony:

    Your proposed setup has the wrong emphasis. The data is valuable which means the backup solution is important not the mirroring. My suggestion: you either need RAID 1+0 if you’re hitting the database hard (RAID5 is not good for a db setup). Otherwise given your uptime requirement, I suggest either RAID6 or RAID5+hot spare. Also consider that not all disks are equal. “Enterprise disks” are both smaller and have a higher MTBF the combination of which is a much higher capacity normalized MTBF.

    But again: backup is more important!

  132. James Allison
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:35 PM | Permalink | Reply

    A few kiwi dollars from down under.

  133. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 9:37 PM | Permalink | Reply

    UPDATE2: We have enough to complete the job with a quality server. It has been pointed out to me that I should leave the donations “open” so that we may acquire a “rainy day fund” for emergencies such as drive failure or costs of software upgrades. Thus if anyone wishes to add to the goal, we certainly won’t turn it away and your donation will ensure continued operation even in times of faults. For example, with extra cash I will be able to buy some hot swap drive spares to have at ready. But please don’t feel obligated in any way. – Anthony

    • Geoff Sherrington
      Posted Mar 11, 2009 at 6:24 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: Anthony Watts (#151),

      Would it be prudent to establish a contingency fund for such unforeseen events as, for example, a law suit, or the engagement for a fee of an agreed consultant to decide an impasse? I’m happy to repeat the equipment donation execise in full. On a regular basis, even, if that was consistent with philosophy and modus operandi.

  134. Jim Arndt
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:00 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Best spent money in a while. Keep it up! With quality site like Anthony’s and Steve’s we can be sure of a neutral source for all.

  135. Geo
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:05 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Anthony–

    I made a minor contribution, so I feel free to give a minor piece of advice:

    “Rainy Day Funds” are fine for capacity/horsepower improvements down the line. We all know that hardware gets cheaper over time, and y’all can look at your own traffic reports and speculate on the future.

    But when it comes to reliability, I’d urge you that rainy day funds are better off spent up front –hot spares, redundant everything, etc. Don’t be afraid to go there.

  136. bbeeman
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:14 PM | Permalink | Reply

    CA is worth the effort. Great job.

  137. John F. Hultquist
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:33 PM | Permalink | Reply

    As these were supposed to be traveling days some folks may not have visited the site today. I did but wasn’t really expecting too much to be going on. The point is: Let this hang out there for a couple of days and let the readers run with it. It is not a tax (cap-n-trade) or some such. We are happy to help — especially when we know about the need.

  138. Jim Burnham
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 10:56 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Let it rain! $50 for the fund.

  139. rephelan
    Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:20 PM | Permalink | Reply

    No obligation. Take my money. please. and consider not just back-up but replication and roll-over capabilities. Both Steve and you are too important for catastrophic failure these days. I didn’t get to NYC today because of a class, but I trust you noticed the attention you got? It’s deserved.

  140. Posted Mar 9, 2009 at 11:59 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Clunk. I just want to endorse Joe and Geo’s comments earlier and other similar advice to spend up now, for redundant everything; and automate everything, with some consulting time perhaps on automated alerts on server problems, remote access, disaster recovery plan (e.g. hurricanes, rising water levels, the plague etc.) Good luck!

  141. Bill
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 12:06 AM | Permalink | Reply

    You suggested “with extra cash I will be able to buy some hot swap drive spares to have at ready”

    In the long run, you might be happier keeping cash on hand to be able to order a replacement drive with overnight shipping.

    Disks often don’t “age” well if they sit, powered off, for long periods; murphy’s law says that the cold spare you’ve kept sitting on the shelf will either (a) not spin up, or (b) die soon after you swap it in; by the time you need it the warrantee will likely be long-expired.

    Of course the new disk you buy on failure could also be bad, but at least it will still be under warrantee.

  142. Nicholas
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 12:10 AM | Permalink | Reply

    David L. Hagen: I’ve heard plenty of horror stories about Adaptec products. I think they’re a bit like Mercedes, they worked out that people will buy the product on the basis of name alone so they don’t have to try to make it actually work well any more.

    I’d get a 3ware. They’re expensive but good. I’ve heard good and bad things about LSI (mostly driver problems).

    • Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 12:58 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: Nicholas (#160),

      Regarding Adaptec, they are off my list due to some bad experiences also. Some people swear by them, others at them, I’m one of the latter.

      • Ben
        Posted Mar 11, 2009 at 10:37 PM | Permalink | Reply

        Re: Anthony Watts (#172),

        Agreed, Adaptec is nothing special, from personal experience I prefer LSI’s products. If reliability is important I recommend redundant power supplies and Hot-spare RAM (Advanced ECC) Maybe hot swap power supplies are not available on 1U?

        Take a SERIOUS look at HP’s DL series. Hot-spare RAM (adv ECC) and HOT ADD RAM (usually) and get a proper caching RAID card. Built in RILO too!

        Moneys sent…..

  143. Nicholas
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 2:08 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Update: I’ve confirmed that LSI are good. The problems that I heard about were actually due to a third party BIOS that interacted with the onboard LSI chip. I’m told LSI controllers work well in Linux and BSD (and I believe 3ware do as well). So if you want a RAID controller those are the brands I’d look for.

  144. crosspatch
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 2:43 AM | Permalink | Reply

    If you have the extra bucks, I would do a couple of things:

    1. get a pair of NICs and bind the ethernet interfaces together in active/standby (failover) mode. Most colo providers support such a configuration. They just give you two ethernet ports on the switch instead of one. If the NIC fails or someone bumps a cable, it fails over automatically to the other without manual intervention. Extra points for the colo provider if they give you ports on two different switches.

    2. Redundant power supplies and make sure it really can run on only one even when banging hard on the disk.

    3. A nanny script run out of cron that checks to see that apache is running and if it isn’t restarts it unless a “switch” has been set … usually by “touching” a file s… o you can take apache down if you need to without the nanny restarting it but otherwise if it finds no apache process running, restarts it.

    4. Not sure what OS you are using but for remote management, my favorite lately has been Ubuntu Linux. I remotely managed a data center in Chicago a few years back with an array of about 600 servers and exactly zero staff in that city. I could upgrade all 600 from my livingroom. We used a custom Debian build but that is basically what Ubuntu is anyway.

    5. If I was bulding it out I would be tempted to use something like this with two servers in a 1U box that mirror each other and use something as simple as “heartbeat” so that if the primary server dies, the backup takes its ip address and you keep on keeping on.

    Just food for thought, I suppose. Some of the ideas I presented might be beyond the range of the finances or skills or might not be, I don’t know. But it is meant to show what is available and I have used such things before in production with good results.

  145. steve
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 9:10 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Well better late than never I guess. Money is on the way. If you have enough for all the hardware upgrades, use my donation to go to Starbuck’s before the install as a continuation of that fine Steve M. tradition.

    • Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 12:53 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: steve (#164),

      Funny you should mention Starbucks…Steve and I hashed out the details at the Starbucks in downtown NYC near the hotel. The tradition continues

  146. Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 9:49 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Sent in a donation yesterday – can’t think of many better uses for my money. Since I’m not rich enough to buy a public servant, but maybe I can help purchase a server for the public. Keep up the great work.

  147. Richard deSousa
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 11:26 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Great news, Anthony and Steve, that you made your goal! Gotta keep James and Gavin and Michael honest!!

  148. Xandr
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 11:31 AM | Permalink | Reply

    FYI: Karl Denninger of Tickerforum.org has a supposedly pristine 2nd hand server for sale, that used to run his big-big forum:

    http://www.tickerforum.org/cgi-ticker/akcs-www?post=86615

    This guy knows his hardware btw.

    We have one extra server now available that is no longer needed for local requirements or redundancy, and before I stick this on Craigslist I thought I’d offer it here.

    Here’s what’s in there.

    QuadCore Processor
    4GB RAM
    Intel RAID disk coprocessor card WITH battery backup. Card has a separate PowerPC CPU on board that offloads all RAID processing. INSANELY fast.
    5-slot SATA RAID chassis, installed, with five (5) 250GB Seagate drives. Can be configured as RAID 5, 2x Raid 1 + hot spare, or in any other way desired.
    Standard VGA video card
    Gigabit ethernet controller on motherboard
    Multiple USB and Firewire ports
    DVD R/W drive (for software loading, etc)
    4u Rack Chassis
    Two 5-1/4″ HH (or one FH) external drive slots open (for tray-based backup drives, tape drive, etc – note, insufficient depth for a DLT drive)

    This machine is stupid-fast. Disks will be wiped and, if desired, loaded with FreeBSD 7.1-STABLE (either i386 or amd64, your choice) – the i386 code can only “see” 3GB of RAM, the amd64 code can see the full load. Will also run WindowsXP if you insist or Linux.

    This is a RACKMOUNT server, not a desktop machine. You CAN use it as a desktop machine but the video card is nothing special, as all you usually want is something that can put up a display in such a machine, so if you intend to use it as a desktop machine you will want a different video card.

    Rails not included as the length of the rails desired depends on your rack arrangement. Rails available from Newegg for under $50.

    $2k + shipping to wherever you are takes it. Everything is burned in, known good, and both cosmetically and functionally perfect. All inside-case wiring has been wire-tied back and neatly routed, and auxiliary cooling fans have been installed. The machine is absolutely ready to go without exception.

  149. mpaul
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 12:41 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I agree with the previous comment about amazon EC2. Its the best way to go. There’s really no need to have hands-on access to the server. If something is wrong with the EC2server, you simply move your image to another node. Your image and data reside of Amazon’s S3 (which is a state-of-the-art cloud based storage complex), so if something gets corrupted on the EC2 server, its simple to restore the environment on a different node. But if EC2 is too expensive (I suspect you can do it all-in for about $250/mo), then at least use Amazon’s S3 as backup. RAID is essential and necessary, but not sufficient. You need to do off site back-ups to a professionally run data center that has physical security, fire suppression, diesel back-up generators, etc., etc. Trying to do all this yourselves is a bit like a climate scientist stubbornly refusing to use professional statisticians.

  150. David Jones
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 1:00 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I would prefer to pay by check or online transfer (either US$ or UK sterling) or credit card. I always have problems when using Paypal!

    Please let me have relevant info and donation will be on its way!

  151. BillA
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 1:10 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Avoid single points of failure.
    In a time of vanishing information (such as Wikipedia and the Socialist International – the Carol Browner incident), it will also be important to control content, backups, deletions, software etc.
    Absolute integrity is essential for people with these powers.

  152. Freddie Stoller
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 1:24 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Mr. Watts, I hope you’ll take my Donation from Switzerland, I’ll guarantee it’s not money hidden from the IRS.
    To Mr. McIntyre, please stop in Switzerland on your way back for Thailand, I’l show you some snowy mountains and a lot of glaciers.
    Regards to you all, keep your super work going. Freddie

  153. Pierre Gosselin
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 2:00 PM | Permalink | Reply

    A very few thousand dollars for a system that most likely will change the direction of climate science and the policies that sprout from it. We are indeed getting a Big Big Bang for the buck.
    Too bad government doesn’t use money like we do.

    • Paul Penrose
      Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 5:32 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: Pierre Gosselin (#176),
      Yes, but if we had to pay Anthony for his time at the rates that consultants typcially charge the government, it would easily exceed the cost of the hardware. Do not underestimate Anthony’s value here.

  154. Pierre Gosselin
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 2:06 PM | Permalink | Reply

    David Jones,
    I had the same situation yesterday. Jeez was kind enough to provide me with an address to mail the check to.
    He (or other moderator) will probably fill you in el prompto on what to do – so stay on the line.

  155. jeez
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 2:16 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Click on the paypal link then click on the contact info on the upper right corner.

  156. DJ
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 6:45 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Wow,it took approximately 12 hrs.& 16 min. to bring in monies for such a great cause. That’s from post#1 to Anthony’s first post saying we made it…I hope the monies keep coming in for this Blog represents what really is going on in Climate Science and as it should be…Great Job People!!!

  157. A. Pointer
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 7:39 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Sent 20 dollars via paypal yesterday, much to other half’s disdain. CA and WUWT have become daily reading lately – so glad to be of some help in this important struggle against mankind’s latest example of arrogance and stupidity. Science has been corrupted by political interests, and the mainstream media is effectively controlled by corporate and government interests (anyone who doubts this should take a look at the impossible physics of the WTC collapses). The climate debate has become a classic case of Ibsen’s ‘Enemy of the People’ i.e. the individual is always right, although I think there are now many more individuals than there used to be. I studied the environmental sciences in the early 90′s, and went along with AGW mainly because I believe in the precautionary principle, and because reducing our dependence on carbon fuels is not that bad an aim. But it should be clear to anyone with an analytical mind that the data is dubious, the models fatally flawed, and that CO2 emissions are not a significant factor. Funnily enough my totally non-scientific other half never believed in the possibilty of AGW – she always thought it was a ludicrous idea, and that it was the warming of the 1990s was all due to natural variability. Anyway, the case for AGW is falling apart, thanks to the good work of Anthony, Steve and many others. Best wishes from Scotland.

  158. Tom B.
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 8:35 PM | Permalink | Reply

    OK, donation on its way, hope this helps with the ‘slush fund’ and for that rainy day… Don’t hesitate to prompt us for more as like many on this site I feel this is an invaluable service….

    Tom B.

  159. Howard
    Posted Mar 10, 2009 at 10:51 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Keep up the great work.
    Waiting for AGW to save me from another refreshing -24C day here in Alberta.

  160. SkepticSwede
    Posted Mar 11, 2009 at 8:04 AM | Permalink | Reply

    I now read this blog on a daily basis. Steve McIntyre time and time again crushes sloppy scientific work! I do think Anthony sometimes is out on a limb, but in the name of science I sent $20 yesterday. The Swedish media has left science for hysteria.
    We need more voices like Steve McIntyre. Even James Hansen has put out a paper where he shows that IPCCs scenarios are exaggerated. And, he got it rejected by ERL! Don’t believe me? Google Hansen and “Implications of “peak oil” for atmospheric CO2 and climate”

  161. Carrick
    Posted Mar 11, 2009 at 3:46 PM | Permalink | Reply

    SkepticSwede, peak oil doesn’t “fix” anything. We have literally thousands of years worth of coal to burn in known resources.

    • DeWitt Payne
      Posted Mar 11, 2009 at 4:29 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: Carrick (#187),

      Site rules forbid discussion of peak oil. There are plenty of other sites where that can be done. But you might look at the references here (before it’s likely snipped) for a different view. Please don’t comment further here on this subject as we’re already well into forbidden territory.

  162. Neville Stern
    Posted Mar 11, 2009 at 9:36 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Ditto done, for maintenance and good cheer.

    Keep it up, and best wishes from Down-Under.

    nrs

  163. alex verlinden
    Posted Mar 12, 2009 at 2:50 AM | Permalink | Reply

    the night always brings solutions … I already paypalled a small sum, but this morning, the idea came to me in a flash … in the future, why don’t we turn, for such problems, to our regular sponsors ? Exxon ! Shell ! … :-)

    • BarryW
      Posted Mar 12, 2009 at 6:58 AM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: alex verlinden (#192),

      Why not stimulus money? Steve, Anthony, and others have been doing the Gov’s QA for awhile now so shouldn’t they be funded?

  164. Nicholas
    Posted Mar 12, 2009 at 5:10 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Ben, Supermicro make 1RU servers with redundant power supplies. However, I’ve had experience with about 50 Supermicro servers and I don’t recall one which had its power supply fail, so I’m not sure that’s really the best place to spend money. I sometimes find redundancy makes things worse, because yes there are two parts there so if one fails the other will still work, but then you have three things that can go wrong – the two redundant parts plus the bit in the middle which joins them, and if the bit in the middle fails all bets are off.

    I have some experience with HP DL series servers from a few years ago. I thought they were inferior to similarly priced Supermicros, although they have the advantage that you don’t have to put them together yourself.

    • Ben
      Posted Mar 12, 2009 at 9:36 AM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: Nicholas (#193),

      Nicholas, having worked in very large datacenters the order of common failures are:

      1) Harddrives
      2) powersupplies
      3) Fans
      4) Array cache batteries
      5) Tapedrives (less common becuase there are fewer used)
      6) Mem modules (varies with the number of DIMMs)

      Other spurious componets MB, CPU, backplanes are far less common.

      Setup SNMP traps for the hardware monitoring agents to notify of redunacy failture and impending failures, surely the facility that you are renting the rack space from offers this service. I know another layer, but done RIGHT its the only way.

      Again, if this is offsite, an accessible RILO or similiar~ish KVM over IP is worth its wieght.

  165. Jaye Bass
    Posted Mar 12, 2009 at 6:30 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Agree on the Supermicros, they make pretty good stuff.

  166. Tom Bakewell
    Posted Mar 12, 2009 at 4:50 PM | Permalink | Reply

    A small offering in return for some of the finest brain candy I’ve run across since understanding why and how raypaths can curve in the seismic world.

    thanks again for all of the exceptional work and effort.

    Tom Bakewell

  167. Nicholas
    Posted Mar 12, 2009 at 8:52 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I definitely agree about KVM over IP or similar technology. I believe Supermicro offer remote management cards for a couple of hundred dollars which allow you to access the console via TCP/IP.

    Ben, I think it depends a lot on which products you are using. Some suppliers make more reliable power supplies than others. I agree hard drives are definitely #1 on the list hence RAID is worthwhile. For us, #2 is probably RAID controllers unfortunately, but they do get pretty hammered on file servers running big web sites. Maybe we’ve just been lucky with our power supplies….

  168. Geo
    Posted Mar 17, 2009 at 4:11 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Thanks for the update on the 13th, Anthony. And thank you for your contribution of labor with all these amateur cooks in the kitchen to jostle your elbow. Optimum hardware configuration debates on the internet are more dangerously controversialist ground than even AGW –more of us know just enough on the subject to have firm opinions on the matter we are all too willing to share! :)

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