This post shows how we measure and interpret load times on Wikipedia. It also explains what real-user metrics are, and how percentiles work.
Long ago, the Wikimedia Operations team made the decision to phase out use of Ubuntu servers in favor of Debian. It's a long, slow process that is still ongoing, but in production Trusty is running on an ever-shrinking minority of our servers.
In the last blog post I described where Thumbor fits in our media thumbnailing stack. Introducing Thumbor replaces an existing service, and as such it's important that it doesn't preform worse than its predecessor. We came up with a strategy to reach feature parity and ensure a launch that would be invisible to end users.
Thumbor has now been serving all public thumbnail traffic for Wikimedia production since late June 2017.
Željko Filipin, Engineer (Contractor) from Release Engineering team. That's me! 👋
New language support for Bengali, Greek, and Tamil. New advance edit quality support for Albanian and Romanian. We cleaned up the old 'reverted' models where better support is available. We're working on moving to a new dedicated cluster. We improved some models by exploring new sources of signal and cleaning datasets. We started work on JADE and presented on The Keilana Effect at Wikimania.
One of our quarterly goals was "Define a metric to track OpenStack system availability". Despite the weak phrasing, we elected to not only pick something to measure but also to actually measure it.
The current physical servers for the <wiki>_p Wiki Replica databases are at the end of their useful life. Work started over a year ago on a project involving the DBA team and cloud-services-team to replace these aging servers (T140788). Besides being five years old, the current servers have other issues that the DBA team took this opportunity to fix:
- Data drift from production (T138967)
- No way to give different levels of service for realtime applications vs analytics queries
- No automatic failover to another server when one failed
24% of Wikipedia edits over a three month period in 2016 were completed by software hosted in Cloud Services projects. In the same time period, 3.8 billion Action API requests were made from Cloud Services. We are the newly formed Cloud Services team at the Foundation, which maintains a stable and efficient public cloud hosting platform for technical projects relevant to the Wikimedia movement. -- https://blog.wikimedia.org/2017/09/11/introducing-wikimedia-cloud-services/
Today, we discovered a major regression in Wikilabels. We've patched the issue and made an emergency deployment. We also deleted some labels that were saved while the system was compromised. In this post, we'll describe what happened.
Today, I'm writing to announce a breaking change in ORES that will come out about a month from now. It will only change how information about prediction models is stored and reported. This information is used by some tools to set thresholds at specified levels of confidence (e.g. "give me the threshold that gives 90% recall"). In this blog post, I'll explain how this is currently done and how it will be done once we deploy the change.
Back in year zero of Wikimedia Labs, shockingly many services were confined to a single box. A server named 'virt0' hosted the Wikitech website, Keystone, Glance, Ldap, Rabbitmq, ran a puppetmaster, and did a bunch of other things.
At 1100 UTC on June 23rd, ORES started to struggle. Within a half hour, it had fully choked and could no longer respond to any requests. It took us 10 hours to diagnose the problem, solve it, and consider it solved. We learned some valuable lessons when studying and addressing this issue.
The Wikimedia Foundation’s new Scoring Platform team, led by Aaron Halfaker, will be working on democratizing access to AI, developing new types of AI predictions, and pushing the state of the art with regards to ethical practice of AI development.
(reposted with minor edits from https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/labs-l/2017-July/005036.html)
Two outages with documentation. Revscoring 2.0 coming with better model information and "thresholds". New support for Romanian, Albanian, Tamil, Greek, and Bengali. We're officially welcoming @awight to the team!
Debian Stretch was officially released on Saturday, and I've built a new Stretch base image for VPS use in the WMF cloud. All projects should now see an image type of 'debian-9.0-stretch' available when creating new instances.
We are currently in the final stages of deploying Thumbor to Wikimedia production, where it will generate media thumbnails for all our public wikis. Up until now, MediaWiki was responsible for generating thumbnails.
Back in the dark ages of Labs, all instance puppet configuration was handled using the puppet ldap backend. Each instance had a big record in ldap that handled DNS, puppet classes, puppet variables, etc. It was a bit clunky, but this monolithic setup allowed @yuvipanda to throw together a simple but very useful tool, 'watroles'. Watroles answered two questions:
One of the goals of the Wikimedia Performance Team is to improve the performance of MediaWiki and the broader software stack used on Wikimedia wikis. In this article we’ll describe a small performance improvement we’ve implemented for MediaWiki and recently deployed to production for Wikimedia. It highlights some of the unique problems we encounter on Wikimedia sites and how new web standards can be leveraged to improve performance.
The first very visible step in the plan to rename things away from the term 'labs' happened around 2017-06-05 15:00Z when IRC admins made the #wikimedia-labs irc channel on Freenode invite-only and setup an automatic redirect to the new #wikimedia-cloud channel.
Updates now coming to the phame blog! We made presentations and gathered new collaborators at the Wikimedia Hackathon 2017 in Vienna. ORES is back in api.php. Wikilabels has stats. ORES in CODFW fell over for a while, but it's back.
I wanted to let you know about an upcoming experimental Reddit AMA ("ask me anything") chat we have planned. It will focus on artificial intelligence on Wikipedia and how we're working to counteract vandalism while also making life better for newcomers.
In this update, I'm going to change some things up to try and make this update easier for you to consume. The biggest change you'll notice is that I've broken up the [#] references in each section. I hope that saves you some scrolling and confusion. You'll also notice that I have changed the subject line from "Revision scoring" to "Scoring Platform" because it's now clear that, come July, I'll be leading a new team with that name at the Wikimedia Foundation. There'll be an announcement about that coming once our budget is finalized. I'll try to keep this subject consistent for the foreseeable future so that your email clients will continue to group the updates into one big thread.
(This post was copied from https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/ai/2017-March/000145.html)
I hosted the AI Wishlist session at the Developer Summit(T147710). At that session, we brainstormed a set of AIs that we think would be interesting to implement. Generally I asked people to do their best to follow template that would help us remember why the AI was important, what it would help with, and what resources might help get it implemented. See artificial-intelligence
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We The Revision Scoring Team
are happy to announce the deployment of the ORES review tool as a beta feature on *English Wikipedia*. Once enabled, ORES highlights edits that are likely to be damaging in Special:RecentChanges, Special:Watchlist and Special:Contributions to help you prioritize your patrolling work. ORES detects damaging edits using a basic prediction model based on past damage.
(This post was copied from https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/ai/2016-August/000068.html)
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I just finished deploying an update to Phabricator which includes a simple but rather useful feature:
When @Ryan_Lane first built OpenStackManager and Wikitech, one of the first features he added was an interface to setup project-wide sudo policies via ldap.
For nearly a year, Horizon has supported instance management. It is altogether a better tool than the Special:NovaInstance page on Wikitech -- Horizon provides more useful status information for VMs, and has much better configuration management (for example changing security groups for already-running instances.)
I've just installed a new public base image, ' debian-9.0-stretch (experimental)' and made it available for all projects. It should appear in the standard 'Source' UI in Horizon any time you create a new VM.
Andrew will be upgrading our Openstack install from version 'Kilo' to version 'Liberty' on Tuesday the 2nd. The upgrade is scheduled to take up to three hours. Here's what to expect:
In T135327, the WMF Technical Collaboration team collected a list of Phabricator bugs and feature requests from the Wikimedia Developer Community. After identifying the most promising requests from the community, these were presented to Phacility (the organization that builds and maintains Phabricator) for sponsored prioritization.
If you are exclusively a user of tool labs, you can ignore this post. If you use or administer another labs project, this REQUIRES ACTION ON YOUR PART.
The Kubernetes ('k8s') backend for Tool Labs webservices is open to
beta testers from the community as a replacment for Grid Engine
Starting Thursday May 12th, 13:00 PDT ( 20:00 GMT ) we will be having the first weekly Code Review office hours on freenode IRC in the #wikimedia-codereview channel.
horizon (OpenStack Dashboard) is the canonical implementation of OpenStack’s Dashboard, which provides a web based user interface to OpenStack services.
tools-login.wmflabs.org is on a new bastion host with twice
the RAM and CPU of the old one. This should hopefully provide a better
bandaid against it getting overloaded up. More discussion about a
longer term solution at https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T131541
On Tuesday, 2016-04-05, we'll be upgrading Kubernetes to 1.2 and using
a different deployment method as well. While this should have no user
facing impact (ideally!) the following things might be flaky for a
period of time on that day:
Not a lot has changed for Wikimedia's instance of Phabricator over the past few months. That's because a lot has been happening behind the scenes, as well as upstream at Phacility. Members of the Release-Engineering-Team and Team-Practices group have been working since December 2015 to integrate various upstream changes, however, nothing was released to our production instance because there were so many important features that were in-progress and not yet fully usable. Additionally, we had to figure out exactly how these features would fit with the specific needs of our project and test a lot of functionality to be sure that we would not break anyone's workflows.