Well, It's Been Awhile
If you were keeping up with Technic Tuesday over the past month, you'll know that we've been uncharacteristically silent these past two weeks. There's a couple reasons for that- for one, the site and API have been behaving, meaning that a lot of people care a little bit less about what we're up to these days. The second reason is we are deep into crunch on a pack that will be released very, very soon. We'll tell you more when we're ready to get you hype.
If you haven't played Blightfall yet, just go ahead and stop what you're doing and go play it. It's a perfect example of the sort of pack we'd love to see more of on the Platform, and we're very excited to have it here. What we're even more excited about is that Blightfall's author, Talonos, has joined Technic as a Pack Welder! We have him working on our best, most super secret project and we've already seen some really incredible progress! We know it's going to be a great pack and we can't wait to tell you more... soon! (TM)
So Let's Talk Uptime
What are the numbers these past two weeks? Well, we're definitely proud of them, let's take a look: here are the statistics for Tuesday, February 17 through Wednesday, March 4.
- Platform Uptime: 99.69%
- Fresh Modpack Installs: 2.6 million
- Modpack Runs: Over 12 million
- Launcher API Uptime: 99.96%
- Launcher API Estimated Satisfaction (T=0.1 seconds): 97%
- Launcher API Requests: About 300 million
- Official Solder Uptime: 97.05%
- Official Solder Estimated Satisfaction (T=0.1 seconds): 91%
- Official Solder Requests: About 140 million
We've been having some occasional solder outages on the weekend, culminating into a a pretty major one this past Saturday. We're currently working on porting the API half of solder to NodeJS so that we can give it the same treatment we gave to the Launcher API. This alternative NodeJS implementation will be open source for anyone who wants it, but our belief is that only that official Technic solder receives a level of traffic that justifies its use.
Some Pretty Great Platform Changes
These past couple weeks, while I've been getting this new pack in order, sct has been working on some truly excellent changes to the platform. Pack pages are now better-laid out for pack authors to communicate with their users and drive discussion. He's also been hunting down some of the remaining issues and sprucing up the admin site for us. Here's the changes that matter to you guys:
- We made changes to the way the Platform's Redis cache is configured. You should now experience far less 500 and 520 errors while navigating the Platform.
- Packs now have a Discussion tab which allows all users to post status messages to the modpack.
- The Overview of a modpack now contains the data which used to be contained in the About tab.
- The About tab has been replaced with an Updates tab, which now contains the pack news which used to be in the Overview tab.
- The "announcement" widget in the right gutter, which is usually the latest Technic news, will be a modpack's latest update when navigating a modpack page.
- Made a few improvements to the way the site acts in maintenance mode.
Speaking of Maintenance
Our host for everything except the Launcher API has been performing rolling maintenance on most of our boxes over the course of this week. This is a mandatory maintenance for us, and we do not have the power to stop or reschedule it. You may have noticed a brief outage a few nights ago as the search box had maintenance performed on it. There may be momentary glitches throughout the weekend as various web servers and nodes have maintenance performed, but our balancers should pull the serviced nodes out of the rotation almost immediately after the service begins. There are two key maintenance windows you should be aware of. Sunday evening, there will be some brief website downtime as the site's cache machine is serviced. On Saturday evening, there will be downtime on both the website and the API as the database is serviced. This will mean a worldwide launcher outage during which you will not be able to install or update packs. These outages will both last less than 20 minutes and the services will be restarted just as soon as we get the OK from our hosts.
Older Packs And You
If you don't play our older packs (Tekkit Classic, Tekkit Lite, Yogbox, Big Dig, Hack Slash Mine, and Voltz) you may notice them missing from the launcher now. Don't worry, they're still here! You can pull them up and install them from the Search or Add Packs bar just like any other platform pack. Additionally, users who have these packs installed will still see them in their rightful position. Some of these packs, such as Hack Slash Mine or Voltz, could make a return as default packs in the launcher if they receive an update from the individuals who they now belong to. But for now, we wanted to hand over more launcher real estate to your packs, so it's easier to play a lot of Platform packs without doing a lot of scrolling. These older packs were taking up a lot of space for people who aren't too interested in them, so now only currently-maintained official packs have a slot in the launcher by default.
Currently, the only way to add these hidden packs are by search in the launcher. We're currently working on adding the ability to copy platform API links from these official packs' pages just like any other Platform pack. In the meantime, just search!
Launcher Updates: v4.283
These are all the launcher changes since v4.272: v4.282 has been live since February 24. v4.283 went live tonight. These changes are not significant, as I have been spending my time working on packs these past few weeks.
- Updated German launcher translation.
- Updated Chinese (Taiwan) launcher translation.
- Some behavior fixes for official packs that have been removed as default packs.
- The currently-detected OS is now printed in the log at launcher start.
- Minecraft now correctly receives its logging configuration from FML instead of the Mojang launchwrapper. This will allow Minecraft to format its logs correctly when launched from the Technic Launcher.
- The statistics for a modpack will now round to the nearest value instead of always rounding down. This should cause the statistics shown in the launcher to more closely track those shown on the Platform. There will still be occasions, due to API caching, when the launcher will show slightly lower values than the Platform, however.
- The statistics for a modpack will now always show at least two significant figures at all times. So "5K" will become "5.2K", etc.
- The incremental garbage collector has been turned off in Minecraft once again. We chose to experiment with forcing Minecraft to run with it because of the sheer number of sources advising us to use it. However, it made performance significantly worse in a number of situations.
- Errors when attempting to authenticate with Mojang will no longer show an error to the user identifying the failed connection as "auth.minecraft.net". The target server will be correctly identified in error messages as "authserver.mojang.com".
As always, thank you for reading, and thank you for playing Technic! Feel free to stop by IRC and reddit and let us know what you've built lately. And don't forget to play Blightfall and tell Talonos what you think!