*This thread will be moved around to the top of sections that have a major event.*
Despite the large volume of people who access the site during big launches and events, our super duper servers - paid for by our super loyal L2 members - can usually cope.
However, as seen during Dragon's troublesome early minutes on orbit during CRS-2 (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=31195.msg1019736#msg1019736
), a massive peak can strain the servers and slow the site down (and even knock the site down for a few minutes, as one solution is to reboot the servers).
It's rare, but per the above example, we were getting hit hundreds and hundreds of times per second by thousands of visitors, and many of those visitors were mashing the refresh like that arcade game Track and Field (remember that? http://tinyurl.com/c3tf9kn
). Only mainstream sites that have a room of in-house servers can cope with such demand.
Again, we have very capable servers here thanks to the L2 subscriptions funding them (massive database, good bandwidth, etc - remember, the forum side is heavy bandwidth), but an action we will now take, if we see the forum slowing down, is to move to member only as a temp measure. In other words, stopping guest access to the forum, if only for a few hours.
So IF that is ever required, it's a good idea to make sure you are logged into the forum BEFORE such an action is required. In other words, be logged in for major events.
To gain a membership/login, it's very simple, it's free and it even allows you to post on the threads, etc.
Simply click here: http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?action=register
and fill out the form (20 second process).
WE DO NOT USE YOUR E-MAIL FOR ANYTHING DODGY. The e-mail you use to register is simply used to send you a confirmation e-mail. It's never sold or passed on or used for anything and only I can see it as admin, no one else. You will get one e-mail and that's it. You do not need to set up a "email@example.com
" e-mail address to carry out the above process. Using a working e-mail address also means you can set it up for notifications on threads or PMs, only if you wish (it's not default), recover a lost password and even be one step away from it being upgraded to L2. No one has ever been spammed by registering with this site's forum.
Note, once you set up your username and password, your account will be active. You do not have to wait for an e-mail and click an authorization link, etc.
So bottom line is, guests are always welcome here, but to avoid any potential disappointment of losing access to the forum during a major event due to demand, make sure you set yourself up with a membership and be logged in that day.