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Changes, June 17th 2011
Date Posted: 17th Jun 2011 at 11:48 PM
* Changed backend to ignore views from the uploader when viewing their own threads (Saves 1 or 2 queries)
* Switched the language query to use mtscache instead of memcache - mtscache allows me to also pull from APC/xcache which is much quicker local storage, but fallback to memcache if it doesn't exist.
* Added check for download.php - when you aren't displaying comments, don't bother getting quick reply box. (Saves an include or two)
* Converted download.php to unix format, not dos.
* Changed check for showing CEP info to not trigger (and then return false) when in TS3
* Optimised print_output function
* Changed a lot of old microtime_float()'s to microtime(true) and reworked the various timing displays
* Removed reference to warning functions from download.php
* Removed an unneccesary file_exists()
* Tweaked datastore load to not load forumcache for some pages (index and sitemap) - saves a bunch of memory since it's a *bit* list.
* Converted a bunch of == '' to empty() instead.
* Adjusted Featured download banner on featured threads to be more jQuery UI like
* Removed old Sims 2 Mesh Tool Closed Beta forum
* Tweaked datastore cache for forum list to not load unneccesary items
* Removed an extra blank table row from download pages when the creator has no profile picture
* Fixed issue with incorrect Content-Length when rewriting cache hit status, which also fixes issues with CloudFlare CDN
* Reworked guest login box to take less space vertically.
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Download Browser changes
Date Posted: 13th Jun 2011 at 11:41 AM
The seperate "Filter" box has been removed, and incorporated into the box above that lists the forum description (and "Switch" box, ie the TS2/TS3 icons).

The text for showing / hiding the filter section has been changed.

The text for "To show the filters see the sidebar" has been removed along with other text on that line.
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Scorecard graph changes
Date Posted: 2nd Jan 2011 at 6:39 PM
The scorecard graphs now display Views and Thanks as additional lines on the monthly (per user) and monthly (per thread) charts. No additional changes have been made to the daily (per thread) charts except to make the bars smoothly gradient down, and to make them sorted from highest to lowest.
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Download view changes
Date Posted: 2nd Jan 2011 at 6:38 PM
The download view has been changed in the following ways:

- The colorbox to show favourites has been changed to a (Who?) at the end of the sentence instead of a full link
- The details of comments / replies, number of thanks and number of favourites at the top of the overview page now shows to everybody not just the creator
- A direct link to the scorecard graph for that download has been added, viewable by the creator (and admins) only
- A link to a colorbox version of the Thanks list has been added to the top of the overview tab
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Changes to getimage.php on thumbs.modthesims.info
Date Posted: 2nd Jan 2011 at 4:56 PM
The getimage.php script has been updated to:

- Only get the specific attachment fields it needs, and not the whole row (which included the zipinfo and other description stuff not needed for serving the file)
- Cache detection has been added, and cache times now sent back correctly
- Send back a 304 Not Modified if the browser has it cached
- Detect and send back the correct MIME type for the image
- Code *generally* cleaned up, and old stuff removed.

The caching changes should mean a little less load on the server, which is a good thing, since it's busy pretty much all the time.
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Who Posted changes
Date Posted: 1st Jan 2011 at 7:25 PM
The "Who Posted?" page (how many people knew that even existed?) has been changed in the following ways:

- A link has been added to the top of threads with the Views (moved up) and the Who?, along with number of replies
- The Who? link opens a colorbox with the list of who posted and how much
- The forumdisplay has been modified to not open a new window for the Who Posted? and instead open in a colorbox
- The who posted list has had the following adding:
# Avatar
# Coloured username
# User title
# Whether they are the thread starter
# Badges
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More colorbox changes
Date Posted: 28th Dec 2010 at 3:00 PM
The colorbox css and js have been modified to show the title in an overlay above the image, but only on hover (so you can move the mouse out of the image to see the full thing).

Additionally, the 2 sets of "Screenshots" on download pages now are defined in their own groups (so 3 images now shows at 3 images, not 6).

Additionally, the type detection has been forced to 'photo', to fix problems with links going to getimage.php.
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Colorbox / Lightbox / Facebox
Date Posted: 26th Dec 2010 at 9:26 PM
I've gone through and changed all of the old "lightbox" style image popups, as well as the PM "facebox" popup into the new style "colorbox" popup with a new style.

I may, at some point in the next few days, switch to using Fancybox instead, since I like the look and feel of that a bit more (and it seems to support multi-line captions which is something colorbox doesn't do so good at).

I've also fixed up iMTS2 and additionally changed the scorecard graph there to point to the new one.

Todo: Fix the "old" manage attachments page, as it's busted
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Social Groups Home page optimised
Date Posted: 12th Dec 2010 at 9:52 PM
I've gone through and optimised the code on the Social Groups Home page to remove the big giant list of public groups, and make it into an AJAX call. I've also cached some objects and generally made the page load faster.
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Interesting stuff with caches.
Date Posted: 13th Oct 2010 at 9:29 PM
Note, this post is highly technical. If you aren't interested in server-level optimisations, click away now!

So Membase came out very recently, and since looking at it at work I figured "what the heck" and installed it in place of memcached on static. It's a lot easier to track whats going on, as you can see here:

Lots of pretty, realtime, graphs. But you'll notice that the most hit things are the templates (the things that make up the bits and pieces of the site like the navbar or the header or foot) and stuff like that. So later on I figured, well, I have XCache running (to cache the PHP opcodes), so why not make use of it's variable caching mechanism too?

So, what I did was to adjust the caching technique for the templates so that instead of getting any uncached templates from memcached (which involves a trip via TCP/IP to static, and then to memcached, and then back again), I instead just switched to straight up xcache_* functions. Obviously any uncached templates are grabbed from the database and placed into cache again.

What I noticed was that the actual template fetches from memcache account for fully 66% of all memcache key hits. You can see this from this graph:

You can see that immediately the number of get requests plummeted around the time I copied in the new code. Considering that the actual amount of RAM used by the templates is fairly small (around 700-800kb), these templates account for a large portion of the traffic going around the MTS network.

What does this mean for the site? Well, since the mostly used stuff is now cached locally in memory, it's inherently faster than all the network traffic that would otherwise be there. And since the static box is the one that actually used to handle all those memcached requests, this means less traffic on that box, and thus means faster serving of static images, javascripts, css and so on.
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