“groups” web server upgrade to SL6.3

The web server that hosts the
groups/conferences/workshops/events.inf.ed.ac.uk web sites, and
various other research sites, is long overdue an upgrade. Currently it
is still running the SL5 OS, whereas virtually all other DICE
computers are SL6.3. If things go to plan, the switchover date will
be Thursday 24th of January at 1pm. During which time all of its sites
will be unavailable for about 5mins.

If you are not responsible for these web sites/pages, then you can
probably stop reading now.

Though the vast majority of site/pages will just work after the
upgrade, sites which use PHP are the ones most likely to require some
remedial work, as the PHP version will be changing from 5.1.6 to
5.3.3.

The new server is up and running, and currently serving the same
content as the existing “groups” web server, but on a URL prefixed
with “sl6.” (that’s SL6 in lower-case) so you can test the
content. When the upgrade is complete, the “sl6.” prefix will be
removed, it is just for testing purposes. For example these:

http://groups.inf.ed.ac.uk/talk/
http://conferences.inf.ed.ac.uk/pact2013/

can be tested by going to:

http://sl6.groups.inf.ed.ac.uk/talk/
http://sl6.conferences.inf.ed.ac.uk/pact2013/

Below is a list of all the .inf.ed.ac.uk sites which are hosted on the
“groups” web server, for which there is now a “sl6.” prefix version
for testing. There is also a list of all non-inf.ed.ac.uk sites which
are also hosted on the server, but as we don’t manage the DNS for the
majority of these, I can’t set-up an SL6 version of the URL. It may
still be possible to test the content though by using an equivalent
groups.inf.ed.ac.uk URL. eg

www.openk.org/

is also available as

groups.inf.ed.ac.uk/OK/drupal/

So to test is SL6 version you can visit:

http://sl6.groups.inf.ed.ac.uk/OK/drupal/

Which gives a blank screen, so does need some work to fix it. In this
case I can tell the owner of the site that apache is reporting this error:

[Fri Jan 11 11:52:54 2013] [error] [client 129.215.25.101] PHP Fatal error: Cannot redeclare date_diff() in …/cisa-web/OK/drupal/sites/all/modules/date/date_api.module on line 780

Presumably because “date_diff()” is now a standard function in PHP
5.3. But I digress.

This email is also available as a blog post at http://blog.inf.ed.ac.uk/systems/2013/01/11/groups-web-server-upgrade-to-sl6-3/

where I will add further comments and hints that turn out to be useful
to people.

Thanks for reading this far.

Neil

= List of .inf.ed.ac.uk sites as their sl6. equivalents =

sl6.groups.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.conferences.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.workshops.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.events.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.proofgeneral.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.www.etaps05.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.www.ilsi.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.www.cav2005.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.www.icdt2005.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.ijaied.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.aied.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.uitp05.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.dbibd-05.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.safecomp.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.waim-05.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.hoppers.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.data.cstr.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.infcricket.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.aicat.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.media.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.newbuildpics.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.ref2014.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.touchscreens.inf.ed.ac.uk
sl6.openafs2012.inf.ed.ac.uk

= Other sites hosted on the “groups” server =

data.cstr.ed.ac.uk
downloads.specknet.org
history.dcs.ed.ac.uk
inf.statmt.org
www.arcoe.org
www.arcs.im
www.bctcs.ac.uk
www.bioinformatics.ed.ac.uk
www.classic-project.org
www.computersciencepodcast.com
www.ehmn.bioinformatics.ed.ac.uk
www.entrepedia.org
www.euphoria-project.eu
www.healthagents.net
www.hscma2011.org
www.hscma.org
www.inspace.ed.ac.uk
www.milepost.eu
www.neosim.org
www.neurogems.org
www.n-s-t.org
www.openk.org
www.pactconf.org
www.smart-society-project.eu

If you don’t have a “groups.inf” style alternative URL to try your site, let me know and I can tell you what it is or set one up.

About neilb

Computing staff at the University of Edinburgh. Part of the Services Unit.
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2 Responses to “groups” web server upgrade to SL6.3

  1. neilb says:

    We don’t generally support CGI on the groups web server, but if we have set it up for you, then CGIs are the other thing most likely to cause problems, again due to the version changes in software between SL5 and SL6.

  2. neilb says:

    The move to SL6 is complete, it look little over the expected 5mins.

    If you have problems accessing your group web pages’ filesystem path, it could be that your machine as stale AMD information. If ‘amq’ shows any mention of “beezer” then this is indeed the problem. Rebooting the machine is the simplest solution, but you may have some success with ‘amq -f’ followed by ‘amq -u /amd/…’ the paths that mention beezer and your group area.

    Other problems, please report via the support form.

    Note that the sl6. versions of the above URLs, no longer work. They were only for testing purposes.

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