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    • CommentRowNumber1.
    • CommentAuthorUrs
    • CommentTimeJan 8th 2010

    currently I get an error message page "access denied" whenever I hit "edit" on any entry

    (21:38 my local time)

    • CommentRowNumber2.
    • CommentAuthorUrs
    • CommentTimeJan 8th 2010

    I am suspecting this is a problem with the spam filter.

    I am on a new wireless connection. Now most of the time when I dial in, I get "Access denied", and sometimes it works.

    I should have just posted this to Andrew privately. But maybe it is good that other people be altered of this problem. This happened to me before. Sometimes one accidentally triggers the spam filter.

    • CommentRowNumber3.
    • CommentAuthorAndrew Stacey
    • CommentTimeJan 11th 2010
    I've added a little section on this at the FAQ (along with something on the "Internal application error" message). Those who've obtained these messages should expand these entries so that they are actually helpful and informative!
    • CommentRowNumber4.
    • CommentAuthorUrs
    • CommentTimeJan 11th 2010
    • (edited Jan 11th 2010)

    Okay, thanks Andrew. So currently with my new wireless connection I connect and disconnect on average about 4 or 5 times, each time checking if the nLab will let me edit a page. After 5 or so times it works.

    This is a bit suboptimal. ;-) Form what you wrote at the FAQ, I gather I could try to contact that "spamcop" website. I have been looking around on these sites a bit but am not sure if I saw any dedicated link for this issue. I am worried that they might not be able to change my potential-spammer status, as I am dialing in via a major German cellphone company. If they think that company hosts too many spammers, I will hardly be able to convince them otherwise.

    • CommentRowNumber5.
    • CommentAuthorAndrew Stacey
    • CommentTimeJan 11th 2010
    • (edited Jan 11th 2010)

    You should check the actual IP addresses as you may be reconnecting too quickly - some providers will try to give you the same IP if it hasn't been reassigned to someone else. It sounds more like this is happening than that loads of those IPs are getting blocked.

    Try keeping a record of the IPs you get. If you can't figure out how to see it from your computer, just go to what's my ip each time.

    (According to your most recent edits, your IP is coming from the netherlands, not germany.)

    As far as I'm aware, the spam blacklists don't target companies. They genuinely do try to target specific IPs. They detect bad behaviour and block the IP that is doing it. The problem comes when one computer does something bad (sending out lots of spam email is a standard one), then moves on to a different IP, and another computer gets the "bad" IP.

    However, looking at the logs then I suspect that your paranoia is somewhat justified. 20 IPs similar to the one you're using now are currently on the blacklist.

    I think (but am not sure) that IPs stay on these blacklists for a finite length of time anyway, so this problem may go away - it could have been one bad computer polluting all these IPs but after a while they'll all drop off the list.

    • CommentRowNumber6.
    • CommentAuthorAndrew Stacey
    • CommentTimeJan 11th 2010

    I should add that one option to avoid this is to use a VPN to tunnel your connection through your university servers. They shouldn't get blacklisted!

    • CommentRowNumber7.
    • CommentAuthorUrs
    • CommentTimeJan 11th 2010
    This comment is invalid XHTML+MathML+SVG; displaying source. <div> <p>Thanks, Andrew.</p> <p>I am still experimenting with this. This is cell-phone internet connection via a German provider, but also works via that provider in other countries. This morning I went by train from Germany to the Netherlands and at some point I will have picked up a Dutch IP then.</p> <p>Okay, so from what you say I should maybe wait a while and generally try to wait a bit before reconnecting.</p> <blockquote> use a VPN to tunnel your connection through your university servers </blockquote> <p>Aha. Sounds like it will take me some time to figure that out. I'll see.</p> </div>
    • CommentRowNumber8.
    • CommentAuthorzskoda
    • CommentTimeJan 13th 2010
    • (edited Jan 13th 2010)

    It seems that the server is down or extremely nonresponsive at the moment.

    Few minutes later: it is not down but it takes few minutes to load a page.

    • CommentRowNumber9.
    • CommentAuthorTobyBartels
    • CommentTimeJan 13th 2010
    • (edited Jan 13th 2010)

    I just restarted the web server (hard restart), but it's not helping. Some of the instiki processes before the restart were using a fair amount of memory (about 10% each) and (when I add it all up) greater than 100% of the CPU (I don't know what that really means). The new ones are still using up to 25% of the CPU each, but that may be normal.

    I've done everything that I know how to do, and emailed Andrew.

    • CommentRowNumber10.
    • CommentAuthorTobyBartels
    • CommentTimeJan 13th 2010

    Well, it's back now.

    • CommentRowNumber11.
    • CommentAuthorAndrew Stacey
    • CommentTimeJan 13th 2010

    From the logs, it looks like we had a big hit. The claim is that we hit our "MaxClients" limit - that's the maximum number of requests that the server can cope with in one go.

    Looking deeper, we got a humungous amount of traffic from one IP. Here's the stats:

    637 220.187.84.51 676 193.47.80.40 965 87.212.203.135 1113 66.249.65.73 1367 208.115.111.247 2060 173.60.119.197 2979 205.208.124.175 3084 66.249.65.122 crawl-66-249-65-122.googlebot.com 4007 93.158.149.31 spider12.yandex.ru 27878 134.176.68.5 fbzelangenhorst.zmi.uni-giessen.de

    Those are number of requests from that IP over the last 3 days. So that last one is pretty big, and I suspect that most were around the time that it went down.

    Toby did the right thing with the hard reset; it can take a time for the system to rebalance (because those requests are still coming in after the reset). I'm not sure what more drastic action I could have taken, other than to take the system down for a couple of minutes while whatever it was that was trying to hit every link on every page stopped doing so and went away. I guess I could have temporarily put a block on that IP (though that doesn't stop it making requests and each one has to be checked so that the system can say "go away").

    • CommentRowNumber12.
    • CommentAuthorUrs
    • CommentTimeJan 15th 2010

    use a VPN to tunnel your connection through your university servers.

    Thanks again for this hint! I think I now managed to do this.

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