Monthly Archives: March 2011

Slowing down engine for update next week

Next week we’re going to be introducing another major change to the mechanics of submission engine in order to improve speed and performance. In order to test this properly, we need a bit of a backlog so we’re slowing it down a little now and over the weekend to allow a backlog to slowly build up. This will of course be cleared once the update is complete and we’ll post updates via this blog.

Trial System Improved

For bookmark sites we use a trial system. The site initially goes into the system in trial mode which means that it will be used as an additional site for a handful of submissions each day. This allows us to check the logs and make sure it is performing well before going live.

The reason we do this for bookmark sites and not the other tools is due to the sheer number of bookmark submissions made each day. If a mistake has been made, we don’t want to make thousands of erroneous submissions as that would certainly put up a red flag!

Before now, trial sites only had a few daily submissions (usually 20) for a few days before going live but what we’ve done now is modified the system so that it will gradually increase the number of submissions that goes to it daily until we feel that it is ready to go live. What this means for you, is that you might start seeing extra sites in your submission schedule!

They have always been there but with around 20 submissions spread over thousands of members, it was unlikely that anybody even noticed the extra ones! But now that this will be increasing it’s more likely that you’ll see some submissions with more sites than usual. These are just freebie extras and don’t affect your daily limits in any way 🙂

Jobs Now Editable After Completion (For Secondary Submissions)

Previously, a job could only be edited whilst it was still in progress. It did not make much sense to allow editing of a job which was finished. However, with the introduction of the Secondary Submissions feature, a job is never really finished as it can always be re-scheduled to go to any new sites that were added after the last submission.

With that in mind, we have now enabled editing on jobs even after completion.

Some False Negatives Being Reported

A false negative is where the status report says that the submission failed when it fact it succeeded. Now this is better than a false positive of course but it would be better if the reporting was more accurate!

The reason this is happening is that we check for the success of a submission by examining the output that comes back. Usually it shows a summary of the latest bookmarks and we can scan that for the URL, an excerpt of the title etc to see if it went through. But sometimes the output just redirects to the wrong page, or it times out before showing the bookmark etc. If this happens, proof of success cannot be found so the error “Success Not Reported” is shown. This inconsistent result is the reason why we are unable to report the actual URL of the bookmark created – there’s no way to do this accurately for all submissions.

However upon closer investigation we are finding that many of these failures aren’t failures at all. We’ve been manually checking accounts of failed submissions and finding the bookmarks there. So what we’re going to be working on is a new mechanism for checking success that will actually go back into the account and load up the latest submitted links from the account profile page. There are some technical issues we need to work on before we can do that but hopefully we can implement this mechanism some time next week.

The sites that seem most affected by these false negatives are:

  • Digg Direct
  • VoteTags
  • Buzz Bookmarks
  • Zoom Bookmarks
  • Taagz

5 Million Submissions Reached Today!

IMAutomator has been very busy lately! The engine is now performing a great many daily submissions and the total number now exceeds 5 million!

Note that the engine is now fully on schedule and we’re getting good success rates for most sites. We’ve not added any new since since the Release 2 launch whilst there were submission problems but now that they are sorted we’ll be working on site support for the most part over the next week or so.

Submission Success Rate Improvement!

At last we’ve found a configuration that has shown a marked improvement in the success rates! We’ve been through three sets of IP’s to find one that works well and we’ve also made some changes to the way we will re-try failures before they are deemed as permanent failures.

We’ll continue to monitor the progress over the next 24 hours or so and we still have some other measures we can implement internally.

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