Kilg.us – Fantasy Stat Tracker …Tracker

A blog about the development of Kilg.us – The Fantasy Baseball Stat Tracker

Posts Tagged ‘Status’

2017 Season

Wednesday, March 8th, 2017

First, let me apologize for Kilg.us being offline for so long. I’ve heard from many, many of you asking about the status of the tool for 2017.

The good news: I rebooted the server and it came back online, so I expect Kilg.us to run through 2017.

The less good news: I have no time to manage, maintain, or update Kilg.us. It is, unfortunately, at the bottom of the priorities in life at this point. So, as has been the case the last few years, I will make an effort to keep Kilg.us online but I don’t have time for bug fixes or offering support to users. That means when features fail (like the daily boxscores which relied on a 3rd-party email service that stopped offering an appropriate free tier for us to use; or the Invite a Friend function) I don’t have the bandwidth to diagnose and fix them. As long as the data source for Kilg.us keeps working as it has in the past, I’ll try to keep Kilg.us up. But, it is almost a decade old at this point and is in desperate need of  lot of technical cleanup, so I can’t promise how long it will stay available.

That said, I need to think about the future of Kilg.us. If it is going to stay available long-term I either need to find a financial model for Kilg.us that allows me to dedicate work hours to it, or find another group or individual interested in taking Kilg.us off my hands. If anyone with a deep technical knowledge (Rackspace Cloud, PHP, MySQL, XML) is interested in taking over Kilg.us, you can reach me at admin@kilg.us to discuss.

For now, hopefully daily stats start flowing into Kilg.us as you all get back to using it. Remember that there are always funny glitches around Spring Training stats (and how some of those might carry into the regular season for players sent to the minors).

Good luck with your teams in 2017!

2015 Season

Monday, April 6th, 2015

The new season is upon us! I’ve had a number of people checking in to see if Kilg.us will be functioning again this year. It looks like our data feeds are still working, so at this point I don’t have plans to shut Kilg.us down.

Daily boxscore emails should resume tomorrow. If you would like to change your settings for which teams you receive, please access your account settings.

As a quick reminder: Kilg.us is in maintenance mode. If something goes down, I’ll try to fix it in a timely manner. At this point I don’t actively use Kilg.us, though, so it isn’t a high priority. Last year I posted some things to keep in mind about the operations of Kilg.us. Please take a look.

Good luck with your 2015 season!

Email Boxscores and 2014 Update

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014

As of tomorrow morning (4/10), Kilg.us should resume sending daily boxscore emails for teams that have requested them.

In order to avoid the flood of unsubscribe and SPAM reports with the first emailings of the new season, I discontinued daily boxscore emails for all teams that haven’t been updated since the start of 2014. If you think you should be seeing a daily email but don’t, check your settings and confirm the team has been signed up. I don’t believe any teams that have been updated since the start of the year have been affected, but it’s always possible.

Obviously, I’ve been a little slow getting things up and running for the new season. I’ll blame a perfect storm of vacations, the constant distraction/entertainment of my first sons’ birth, and starting up a new business (Super Humane. If you have a company that needs some help making the world better through technology—the mobile web in particular—I’d love to chat!). On top of it all, I’m not actually participating in a fantasy league this year for the first time in recent memory. Nonetheless, my intention is to continue operating Kilg.us for the 2014 season.

A few reminders of what the continued operation of Kilg.us involves:

  • We use a free but limited stats feed in order to have up-to-the-second stats. Sometimes it has issues (like Spring stats trailing into the season…), but 99% of the time it works.
  • The stats already in Kilg.us are all we have. We can’t add games played/pitched, WAR, or anything else that isn’t there now.
  • Kilg.us was built to display real-time stats. We added “season-to-date” later, then tacked on the daily boxscores to help people who couldn’t log in every night. Kilg.us was never intended to help slice and dice stats.
  • When things go wrong (it seems to happen once or twice a year), I’ll try to fix it as quick as I can. It usually takes a day or two.
  • If you have a problem, email me. I don’t regularly use Kilg.us anymore, so I need people to point out issues when they arise. I’ll respond as soon as I can.
  • You’re welcome to manage your team, all your teams, all the teams in your league, or whatever you like. We’ve got over 6000 teams being managed by 3400 users right now.
  • Kilg.us is free! Which is great! Especially when generous folk are willing to donate to offset the hosting costs associated with it!

Best of luck for your 2014 season!

Server Issues this Morning

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

This morning a lot of people awoke to find Kilg.us was kicking out errors and was showing all players had been lost from all team. Frankly, not a nice way to start the morning!

Luckily, the issue was resolved with a quick reboot of the server. It seems to have been an issue with one of the database tables, but I’ll be performing some additional diagnostics to try to determine what caused all the errors this morning. For now things should be back up and running.

Sorry for the inconvenience!

Database Failure

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

Well, things seemed to go great with the migration. I posted to the blog that everything was running great. An hour later the database server crapped out. I’ve spent the last 4 hours trying to recover with no luck. As best I can tell, the permissions tables in the database got screwed up. I’m completely baffled as to how it could have happened. I’m very frustrated by this, but I need to sleep so it will have to wait for tomorrow.

In the meantime, I have pointed to the old database server. Kilg.us code is still running on the new servers, but it is looking to the old servers for data. This probably means that Kilg.us will continue to run at about the speed it used to.

Tomorrow I will attempt to export the databases from the other server again and re-import into the new database servers.

Sorry for the unexpected, additional down-time after I re-launched Kilg.us. If I can find a cause for the problem, I’ll definitely pass it along with any update tomorrow evening.

Kilg.us Migration

Monday, May 2nd, 2011

I intended to migrate Kilg.us to its new servers tomorrow, May 3. If all goes well, the limiting factor on how long Kilg.us will be down is the domain transfer. This can take up to 48 hours, but will go through in 1-3 hours for most people. I intend to take Kilg.us off-line as soon as I get home from work tomorrow (~6pm mountain time). With this approach, I expect the migration and any subsequent troubleshooting should be finished tomorrow night.

Please check Facebook and Twitter (@kilgustracker) for updates on the migration.

So close…

Saturday, April 16th, 2011

By now, everyone should have received their daily boxscores. If not, please comment below.

We were not without bumps, unfortunately. That I am aware of so far:

  • As many a 50 boxscores were sent out multiple times (apologies!)
  • The public SMTP I tried to use apparently uses a 24-hour window (rather than a day) for its quotas

The duplicate boxscores was just a goof by me. Last night as I was running my final tests, I commented-out the line that removes an email from the queue after sending because I didn’t want to keep re-entering data into the system before each test. I forgot to un-comment that line when I was done. Because of that, when the system pulled the first 50 boxscores to send, it still left them in the queue. When it went to pull the next 50, it returned the same group. I noticed this after a few times through the process, so hopefully everyone that got duplicates only saw a trickle–not a deluge–of them.

The SMTP issue is frustrating. In my testing, I was able to generate the full list of emails. I assumed the quota would reset at midnight. Apparently that wasn’t the case. So hundreds last night plus hundreds this morning meant the sending account was locked out mid-process. To resolve this, I used one of my personal accounts to complete the send. Many of you will have seen messages come from “matthew@encoredigitalmedia.com” rather than Kilg.us. I figured this was better than making you miss a day’s boxscore.

I have spent most of the last two days trying to get a dedicated Kilg.us SMTP server up and running so I don’t need to worry about stupid quotas and such. Unfortunately, I have absolutely no experience with setting up SMTP and have had just about zero success–hence the use of a public SMTP to get this moving. If anyone knows SMTP and can offer a helping hand, I would be greatly appreciative! Get in touch by email (admin@kilg.us), comment here, or on Twitter (@kilgustracker) or Facebook.

All that said, I think all emails should have been delivered and I have received feedback from some people whose emails weren’t rendering properly before that they look good now. All in all, I’m going to call this one a draw. I’ll keep plugging away today in hopes of a perfect push tomorrow.

Why it went wrong

Monday, April 11th, 2011

As many of you experienced, this morning the Kilg.us daily boxscores went horribly wrong and began sending piles of duplicate mails to everyone. If I haven’t apologized to you yet: I’m sorry. I try very hard to make sure any changes I make to Kilg.us won’t have an adverse effect on users. I bungled this one, but at least I think I’ve figured out what happened.

I mentioned previously that I moved the daily boxscore email script to the new Kilg.us server. That is why emails went out to anyone. On the new server PHP is installed differently from the old server. As a result, when I run the CRON job to generate the emails, I needed to use an application to call the script rather than just calling PHP to execute it. I chose to use a program called wget. The idea is that wget makes a call to a URL and that URL (a PHP file) generates and sends the emails. Before scheduling the morning’s emails, I tested to ensure the process worked. When I tested, though, I only used a sub-set of data. I didn’t really need 350 emails coming into my inbox, so I tested with a couple emails each for those sent to a team owner and those sent to a team viewer. That worked great.

When the CRON job ran this morning, everything seemed to go well until duplicates started showing up. A second round, then a third, then a fourth and so on. Interestingly, each wave was 15 minutes apart. As it turns out, if wget can’t complete a request (in this case a VERY long request for 350 emails), it tries again. By default it will try up to 20 times to fetch a file. Because the script takes so long to run, I believe it exceeded the server time-out.  When the script timed out, wget requested it a second time, then a third, then a fourth and so on. I believe this is what caused the duplicate emails.

I’ve made three adjustments to address this. First, I increased the server time-out for this process. Second, I have changed the CRON job to tell wget never to retry the fetch if it fails. Third, I’ve broken the massive emails process into multiple chunks. This is a temporary fix until I convert to using PEAR::Mail to more intelligently manage the process. I’m done for tonight, but that will probably be the priority tomorrow.

So that’s all of today’s work. Six hours sunk, but I think the emails will work in the morning. I’ve pushed back the time that the emails go out by a couple hours to they’ll line up with when I roll out of bed in the morning. If things go off-track, I’ll be able to curtail things faster than today. If all goes well, I’ll move the schedule back to the early morning hour so everyone has the boxscore email when they get up in the morning.

Keep your fingers crossed…

 

Careful what you wish for…

Monday, April 11th, 2011

On the positive side, email boxscores finally went out this morning. And based on the number of emails I’ve received, they reached a lot of people! Unfortunately, after the initial batch they continued to send another 6 or 7 times. I believe I have that process stopped.

At first glance, I don’t know why this happened. The script that sends the emails is unchanged from what used to work (just migrated to the new server). That would seem to suggest there was a problem with the CRON job scheduling. I’ve deleted all CRON jobs from the server and will be doing some more research to try to determine what went wrong before I re-schedule the script.

I’m sorry to all of you that were flooded by emails this morning. I’ll do my best to ensure it doesn’t happen again.

Migration and Boxscores

Sunday, April 10th, 2011

Things are proceeding well with the migration of Kilg.us to a new host. The cloud server is up, the web server is installed, database server configured, postfix installed, SSH/SFTP running. I’ve even migrated the codebase with success, although it is all still running on the old Kilg.us database. Tomorrow I hope to get the database copied over and see how things work.

For tomorrow I have moved the CRON job that mails daily boxscores to the new server. An initial test of it was successful. I’m optimistic that tomorrow morning everyone that wants boxscore emails should receive them.