Server Issues

August 2nd, 2007: Filed under  by Alexander Catapang @ 1:49 pm

One of the servers stopped responding awhile back, affecting 1/4 of the game rooms and site page loading. There was some downtime of about 30 minutes while waiting for the machine to be rebooted. It’s now back online and everything appears to be ok again. Sorry to those who have been affected and had to wait before being able to play again.

Server Update

July 13th, 2007: Filed under  by Alexander Catapang @ 10:48 pm

Fixed a geo-targeting feature in one of the servers that’s causing some significant slowdown in banner delivery, which in turn is also causing slower loading of main site pages sometimes (whenever this particular server is accessed). It’s strange because the problem only appeared now (I just noticed it today actually), while this geo-targerting feature has been added for quite some time now. Anyway, it’s been fixed.

Network Issues

July 6th, 2007: Filed under  by Alexander Catapang @ 2:01 am

There has been some network issues with my hosting provider that lasted for about an hour. It affected the loading of the main site pages, and 1/4 of the game rooms. They’ve fixed it now, and everything is back to normal. Sorry to those who have been affected.

I just realized this has been my first post in almost 5 months! And it’s even about a network issue. Haven’t been able to update the site much (other than some maintenance stuff), but I’m doing some progress elsewhere. Will keep everyone updated eventually…

Update to Sign-In Issues

February 23rd, 2007: Filed under  by Alexander Catapang @ 7:52 pm

The sign-in issues detailed in the previous post have been fixed… I hope. While the functionality remains the same and there is really no visible changes client side, the sign-in process has been completely revamped. Since players run different Flash versions on different OS varieties, sometimes certain incompatibilities arise which may be very hard to track. The new approach should eliminate such issues.

This actually required major code changes server-side, as the core design has to be changed. I’ve been planning these changes for quite awhile now, but I have been hesitant because it might introduce a lot of new issues. The modified game servers have been running for more than 24 hours now though, and so far, there doesn’t appear to be any problem. I only spotted one new minor potential issue, but it has been corrected already. So far, so good.

The new design actually has a few more significant benefits. I expect things to be a lot less resource intensive (basically, this can allow me to run more game servers per computer), and inter-server communication is now possible (previously, this has to be done partly client side which is prone to traffic delay and is not really very effective either). This also makes it easier to support some other planned new games. All the changes have been worthwhile I think.

Some other minor game updates also made it to yesterday’s changes:
– winners are now announced in the Spin-A-Bingo chat as well
– more compact announcement of winners in the bingo games
– place an icon beside the player names of the last game’s winner(s)
– minor client bug fixes (certain situations only e.g. with new sign-ups, not even sure if these are really existing problems, or just a result of the recent changes)

Issues

February 9th, 2007: Filed under  by Alexander Catapang @ 4:11 pm

There appears to be an increasing number of players who are recently having intermittent issues signing in to the games. They can log-in to the chat area, but the game area will just stay in the welcome screen. So far, the only thing in common among those who reported this problem is that they are using IE 6.x browser and Flash player 8.x or higher, however not everyone with the same configuration actually experience this problem. I’m guessing that there may have been new Windows updates lately that could be affecting certain system configurations.

In the meantime, I suggest to everyone experiencing this problem to try to refresh the game window (pressing F5 should work in most browsers). Hopefully, this will allow you to sign-in properly if the first attempt fails. This is just a temporary potential solution until I figure out the real cause of this problem. I have been seeing similar reports on a technical list lately, so this could really be an IE/Flash version configuration conflict that just recently appeared.

The other, and probably more long-term, solution is to change the current sign-in process of the games. I have actually been considering this for quite awhile now, as I think it is really needed in order to more efficiently support some new turn-based games that I am planning. This requires major game server changes though and may introduce potential new issues as well, so I am still considering my options (as there are a few possible coding approaches to this) before I do the actual changes.

Happy New Year!

December 29th, 2006: Filed under  by Alexander Catapang @ 1:57 pm

It will be year 2007 in a few days. I haven’t had the chance to greet everyone a happy holidays!

Looking back, I have not really been able to update the site as much as I wanted to. There are too many plans, a lot of great ideas, but for some reasons, even if I think I actually have enough spare time, I have not really been able to sit down and work on things. It was HeyBingo’s 2nd year anniversary last September, but even that just passed without any fanfare. I would have wanted to introduce a major site update/feature, or even a new game.

I even had one player ask me why the game player mascot is not wearing any Christmas hat this year, which made me realize that there are quite a number of players who have been playing on HeyBingo for a long time now, and are still here playing (thanks to all of you: and yes I added the missing hat just in time, I guess this will be a “tradition” of some sorts already from hereon).

This year, I have also seen the Spin-A-Bingo game copied on another more established game site (I didn’t realize HeyBingo is that popular already for other sites to even notice). There has also been some problems with sponsorships (maintaining the site does cost money), and the worst is probably still yet to come, but this doesn’t really bother me much, since from the beginning the site was intended mainly to just be a platform to showcase the games I am doing. And I know the site has probably inspired a few other developers in one way or another.

The year 2006 has been very good for me, the blessings still far outweigh the minor hardships/problems I encountered. I guess I have been too preoccupied with various personal things, which is not really a bad thing in itself, but I know I could have given the site more time that it deserves. So next year, one of the things I am really bent on doing is to finally wrap up many of the things I’ve been working on for the site.

Here’s to a better year for HeyBingo! I hope you and your respective families will also have a more prosperous, peaceful and blessed new year ahead. Happy new year everyone!!

Server Issues

December 28th, 2006: Filed under  by Alexander Catapang @ 6:51 pm

One of the servers has been acting up lately (3 forced reboots in a week), resulting to some downtimes in the game rooms located on this particular server, as well as slower loading of the site pages itself (when the server hangs-up). I think I might have to purchase a new server already, I’m guessing there is already some hardware failure somewhere. However, it’s the holidays and it takes a couple of days to fully set-up a new server, so in the meantime I have moved things around so that the problematic server won’t be in use anymore. Hopefully the other servers won’t be affected by the sudden additional loads. I have also opened up the remaining Spin-A-Bingo room which has been closed for a long time now.

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