The Boston Diaries

The ongoing saga of a programmer who doesn't live in Boston, nor does he even like Boston, but yet named his weblog/journal “The Boston Diaries.”

Go figure.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Random quote spewed forth from my computer

Whom computers would destroy, they must first drive mad.

Oh, so they were used after all

So apparently the sites where in actual use, hence the query for which site was under attack. Also, it turned out that the traffic spike I saw might not have been an actual SYN attack, but instead legitimate traffic.

It seems that the company that owns the sites have a domain that has nothing but advertising banners for gambling sites (since that's what they do) for which they bought advertising space on a bunch of porn sites (I'm sure on the theory of “in for a penny, in for a pound” but in this case, “in for a vice, in for a whole slew of vices”) and it caught our server unaware.

It's not like the server can't handle the load, but that Apache wasn't configured for such a spike in traffic. Now that I've tweaked the operating system (Linux):

sysctl -w net.ipv4.tcp_syncookies=1
sysctl -w net.ipv4.tcp_max_syn_backlog=2048
sysctl -w net.ipv4.tcp_syn_retries=2

But also tweaked KeepAliveTimeout, MinSpareServers, MaxSpareServers, StartServers and MaxClients in the Apache configuration (doubled each except for KeepAliveTimeout which I decreased) the server is having no problem keeping up with the traffice (I also copied the site to the second server and round-robinning requests between the two).

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