July Is Here

Posted By: Tony Baird

Last Updated: Wednesday July 1, 2009

I cannot believe it but we’re now into July it feels like just yesterday June was starting time sure does fly by.  Things have been great due to the fantastic growth we’ve seen over the month smashing our old record for number of new accounts in a month (old one was set in May 2009).  As a result of this things have been busy as we work on adding capacity such as adding a new VPS node Marlin and most recently a new web server Venus (was an old server name but we want all planets used for names).  We’ve done a lot more than just add capacity though we’ve been working on various things.

LxLabs the creators of the HyperVM panel we use for managing all our virtual private servers closed their doors after the death of their founder and lead developer.  As a result of this we have not had a client accessible panel for nearly a month now which is obviously not a good thing.  There are alternatives out there but we believe they just are not that great or they have not been worked on in years.  As a result of this we’ve been working on our own system called VezozVM which was going along nicely until recently when things got backed up on the Hawk Host front.  We hope to have this out in some capacity in July our goal was before the end of June but with software that never seems to happen.  With Hawk Host having better delegated support though things should move along again.

The other big development in June was the fact starting in July (which is today) we’d have some of our support handled outside our too knowledgeable Level 3 support team.  Basically what this means is for a lot of issues our support team are not necessary and they should be handling more important things.  So we were going across the internet searching for a company to help us with this problem.  We found one highly recommended who would be assisting us with handling support issues that do not require our Level3 staff.  As a result of this we’ll have more time devoted to the more complicated tickets.  We also of course will continue to keep our servers up and running with low loads and great uptime which is why a lot of our users use our hosting in the first place.

I cannot forget our trusty web server LiteSpeed every month the guys over at LiteSpeed Technologies are working on optimizations, compatibility fixes and new features for their awesome web server which we use on all our servers.   There was the introduction of several versions the most recent being 4.0.5 which introduces some nice features that we were missing.  The big one is our frontpage support it is now nearly perfect there should no longer be a need for support tickets about broken frontpage extensions out of nowhere.  It uses mod_auth_passthrough which is what cPanel uses for Apache in their frontpage support.  So if extensions break now they would in Apache as well which means a reinstall on the specific extension and it should be fixed.  Also a small fix yours truly found with encoding types sent by CGI scripts such as PHP.  The wordpress spell checker gave a bunch of random characters rpreviously this was due to the handling of UTF-8 + GZIP which only Opera can handle properly.  LiteSpeed now handles this the same as Apache with regards to this when the script sends it’s own encoding type do that only and not GZIP as well.  We are also testing their 4.1 version and most servers are actually using it now which introduces asynchronous I/O which should help when cases where the i/o wait might be higher than normal (maybe for a user generated cPanel backup).  The web server should handle it better than before so the pages will continue to serve extremely fast rather than just fast.

So what are the big plans for July?  Well as it stands we’ll be working on VezozVM and continuing to develop various internal tools or optimizations to make our servers run much faster.  The only thing on the server front is we estimate that either late July or early August we will need to upgrade our backup machine.  Right now it’s a 4x1TB Raid-5 system which was great when we had a few machines but we have quite a few now.  We will probably be upgrading it to a 12 drive system with 3 sets of 4 drives in a raid-5.  The reason for this is we want to handle more simultaneous tasks and backups on our CDP server but at the same time have the capacity space to make it easier to manage.  This setup should give us around 9TB in total of space in comparison to our 3TB right now so it’s a big improvement.

That’s all for now.  Remember to keep recommending us to your friends and posting reviews on the internet to make Hawk Host bigger.  As we grow we can continue to expand our offerings, add new features and improve our services.

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