Perl 6 - the future is here, just unevenly distributed

IRC log for #webwork, 2012-08-20

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All times shown according to UTC.

Time Nick Message
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13:50 mgage hi
13:52 mgage aubreyja:hi
14:22 mgage aubreyja: hi
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15:05 mgage aubreyja_:hi
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15:31 mgage aubreyja_: hi
15:31 aubreyja_ mgage: hi - just between classes, how was camp?
15:31 mgage great -- I'm still exhausted -- that's how you can tell
15:32 mgage I'm combing emails now.  did you figure out what the suspected spamming was?
15:32 aubreyja_ :) - fair amount of ww activity over the week
15:32 mgage we can talk later  after your classes
15:32 aubreyja_ Well, we're still not completely sure, but my suspicion is the iuk course
15:33 mgage is that still on the server (and off line?) -- you can look at the last message that was emailed out -- or at least that is a possibility
15:34 mgage I couldn't get to it from the web but I haven't tried ssh yet
15:34 aubreyja_ it is on the server, but not offline afaik. I'm sort of waiting for direction from jw before taking action
15:34 mgage kk -- talk to you after class
15:35 aubreyja_ Ah, maybe they did take it down
15:35 aubreyja_ Ttyl
17:09 mgage aubreyja: hi
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17:20 mgage aubreyja: hi
18:01 aubreyja Hi Mike - I'm running into some strange errors on courses
18:01 mgage kk -- I'm just about to put a warning message about down time up on test -- so I'm hooked in to maa.  what is up?
18:03 aubreyja just a sec - not sure yet -at least the server is back up
18:07 aubreyja I've repaired the table, but webwork or mysql still seems to think it's broken…(but myisamchk says it's fine)
18:07 mgage incidentally I looked at the iuk-m126 course and I don't think anything nefarious is taking place there.  It looks like raghu is using it as a general mailing list class (which is probably not the intended use but if mailing a large group of people brings the server to a halt we need to revisit the mass mailing module)
18:08 mgage could you gracefully restart the server?
18:08 aubreyja yeah, I've restarted it, but I think maybe there is a global mysql table that keeps this sort of information about tables….
18:10 mgage I've got the ft-bentleyu-ma131 course working -- looks ok to me
18:12 aubreyja ah, ok, great! let me check again - did you check the homework sets editor?
18:13 mgage aah -- no -- that part still seems to be broken
18:14 mgage could it be that that table is still broken?
18:14 aubreyja well myisamchk /var/lib/mysql/webwork/ft-bentleyu-ma131_problem.MYI
18:15 aubreyja reports no errors (as it did previously)
18:15 mgage how about user_problem
18:16 mgage it doesn't look to me like very much had been with this course.
18:17 mgage it's possible that the mysql server needs to be rebooted as well.
18:17 aubreyja yes, probably FLUSH TABLES actually - let me check on that
18:18 mgage It's been some time since I fixed a crashed table.  I believe Gavin has had experience with this -- he deals with a lot of clients on his server and these things come up
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18:35 aubreyja mgage: I think it's working now - can you have a look?
18:36 mgage yep -- looks ok -- no problems in two of the homework sets however -- nor are they asigned.  -- given the open dates however it looks like they were just created.
18:36 mgage what did you do?  flush the tables?
18:37 aubreyja no, not even that hard, I just followed the link above the error message to the set detail for the only existing set (at that time) and it cleared up.
18:38 aubreyja Maybe it was broken in our particular threads, but not broken really, and then the course owner just went in, saw it was working and created new sets...?
18:39 mgage no -- the other two sets were there when I looked half an hour ago.  they were probably created around 8/16
18:40 mgage one of the people assigned to appendix C was my doing
18:41 aubreyja I guess it just took some time for the fix to take
18:43 mgage should I add your macro_template.pl to the wiki on the template page http://webwork.maa.org/wiki/Problem_Templates#.UDKFQdBST88
18:44 aubreyja Sure
18:46 mgage ok -- about the iuk course -- my take is that the "students" are all legit and that it is being used for mass mailings by raghu    -- looking at the recent messages that were stored I didn't see anything that should cause the server to hang
18:48 aubreyja Hmm, the reason that seemed to me to be the cause of the hang was just the proximity in time between the requests to /instructor/send_mail/ and the actual event.  Also, there were a lot of errors around that time in the mail logs.
18:50 mgage ok -- it's possible it was involved.  but I don't immediately expect a spammer.  raghu uses webwork for rather creative purposes so it's not impossible that he has tripped a bug that no one else has found.
18:55 aubreyja Also, I think MAA would probably not want a course being used like this, especially on courses. Even if it is harmless, they would probably consider it a misuse of resources….
18:56 aubreyja e.g. the most recent AboutIndia.msg…
18:59 mgage true enough -- I've noticed this myself from hosted2  on the other hand it wasn't hurting anything there  and many of his outreach efforts are different and interesting.    If they are paying for this course (which I suspect he is not) then MAA might need to be careful.  They should handle these things gently in any case.
18:59 aubreyja Yeah, I agree
19:01 mgage in any case -- if a mass mailing like this was indeed the cause of the melt down we need to track it down because a large class could quite possibly have a mailings at least half this size.  -- the AboutIndia message is just first alphabetically -- I can't quite tell what the last message was -- we might wan to talk to raghu
19:01 aubreyja the file creation date is 8-19-2012 - I think it's also the most recent
19:02 mgage oh -- ok.  I sure didn't see anything in that message that would cause trouble.
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19:03 aubreyja yeah, it's pretty clear it wasn't spam - not sure what to do at this point
19:03 aubreyja it looks like they took the course down,
19:05 mgage I seem to be able to get into it from the admin page
19:10 aubreyja interesting - well I hope they at least email Raghu. My actual suggestion was that they first try to contact the owner of the course to find out what is going on...
19:11 mgage yep -- did John get this message as well?  -- I think the emergency is over so they should be encouraged to deal with it.
19:11 aubreyja yeah, he was cc'd on it
19:12 mgage jt also knows these people.  roughly speaking they know enough about unix to be dangerous (which is how my sys admin feels about me :-) )
19:13 mgage and of course he's right
19:19 aubreyja oh, did you mean jt or jw? I'm sure jw was cc'd
19:20 mgage I meant jw.  It's just that JT knows raghu and his wife since they live near him.
19:20 mgage they teach in nearby schools.
19:21 mgage -- the macro_template.pl file is up on the wiki
19:22 aubreyja great, thanks!
19:23 mgage something I'd like to get done this week is to get a better solution to the references problem
19:24 mgage I wonder if drupal has some kind of solution -- do you know an expected ETA of drupal (in test form) for webwork.maa.org?
20:25 aubreyja I haven't made djun's account yet - I only heard back from Arnie - I know you're on board with it but sort of wanted to hear from John W.  But I'll just go ahead and create the account and I'm sure Djun will have it up soon
20:25 aubreyja And, it would not surprise me at all to learn that Drupal has a solution for us.
20:27 mgage ok -- let's see what happens with that.  If you look back though webwork-devel you'll see that I was having some issues with medeley (and tyler agreed). there are some other more open source solutions that might work -- but they might be overkill if drupal has something suitable.  Also medeley is a moving target so it might actually work for us in the near future.
20:28 mgage I think it's important enough to be able to present an attractive list of references that can be easily updated that we should make it a fairly high priority before the semester starts.
20:29 mgage another high priority is getting Worcester code camp scheduled -- is the weekend of Oct 12 ok with you -- its around Columbus day which is often a one day holiday at U of R.
20:32 aubreyja Yeah, that should be fine - I can probably make most any weekend, we'll have to see what Peter's schedule looks like
20:32 mgage right
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20:47 mgage I guess its WeBWorK::Fitchburg   -- Worcester is a bit further away from there than I realized
20:49 aubreyja djun's set up with his sudo account, fyi
20:50 djun look out, world :)
20:50 mgage go for it
20:50 djun thanks
20:51 djun I will get started on configuring Drupal later today
20:52 mgage great
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21:14 aubreyja djun - btw, the docs server will be down tonight for a couple of hours, starting at 6:30pm EDT, for a memory upgrade
21:14 djun ah, ok.  Thanks for letting me know.
21:20 mgage aubreyja: I just got to Rob Beezer's request on essaymacros.pl -- did you do something about this already?
21:29 aubreyja No, I haven't had a chance to follow up on it.  Where does he have a course? If it's on test, he should get Geoff's changes - test is running an up to day webwork2-dev?
21:29 mgage I think he is on hosted2 at the moment.  And both hosted2 and test are a bit behind -- I didn't want to update them just before I left town :-)
21:30 mgage I'll update hosted2 this evening and test once it is back on line
21:54 aubreyja on my way home - ttyl. Should be around later too if anything comes up
21:54 mgage ttyl
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