[Toolserver-l] Next level of stabilization

DaB. WP at daniel.baur4.info
Sat Feb 28 23:21:06 UTC 2009

Am Saturday 28 February 2009 22:58:23 schrieb Lars Aronsson:
> River Tarnell wrote:
> > i've read your mail twice, but i don't really understand what
> > sort of answers you're looking for.  you seem to be more
> > interested in the people side of the problem, e.g. how we can
> > get more people to contribute; is that correct?
> My problem is a lack of speed. When I say "geotagging", I want
> geotagging to happen, but so far it is delayed by this and that.
> When I want to add interwiki links (using Multichill's suggester),
> the failed s3 replication delays a large portion of that work.
> I'm trying to find out what sides there are to this problem. I
> suspect there is a people side and a money side, and if we can
> solve these, the technical side will just be fun to solve. Maybe
> there is a legal side too.

there is a money side, a people side, a technical side and a time side, yes. 

> > if you have specific technical questions/problems, i can answer
> > those, or explain why things are as they are.
> I have tons of these, but I'll save them for another thread.
> > as far as resources go: yes, we're short of money.  we have just
> > about enough to keep the toolserver running most of the time,
> > but with more money it could be a lot more reliable (and
> > faster).
> How does this money flow? Does the toolserver have a budget of its
> own?  A balance sheet that shows what you've used the money for?
> Is the server wholly owned by Wikimedia Deutschland? They're
> hardly short of money, are they?

the most parts of the toolserver-cluster is owned by the german verein (that's 
Wikimedia Deutschland). The verein gave the toolserver-people a buget for 
several things like new-hardware, hosting, repairs etc.. The buget has 2 
problems in my eyes: It is too small to make the toolserver real stable (it's 
more or less enough to expand the slow ways as before) and the greatest part 
has to spend in december (that has to do with the date of the foundraising).

> Are the current admins
> doing some tasks that can be delegated to unprivileged users?

non of I knew of.

> Are there some projects that only use database dumps, and no
> replicated data, that could run on a separate (low security)
> server with a more liberal admin policy?

In theory: yes, but for pratice you would need another server too.

> Yes, probably.  Is there a budget, a balance sheet, a bank
> account?  On the Toolserver Wiki, the donation page asks for
> donations to be sent to Wikimedia Deutschland or WMF.  If both
> organizations have a problem to send money out of their countries,
> that seems suboptimal.

no, it is not, because both organisations own allready parts of the toolserver  
and we have to keep that allready in mind (legal problems for example 
(germany has another level of privacy-security then the US for example)).

But it is problematic for us to get hardware by other chapters if the hardware 
has to be in the ownership of that chaper (because then we would have to 
respect allready 3 differend law-systems or 4 or 5).

> > the main problem with having chapters buy stuff is most
> > countries restrict how a non-profit organisation can transfer
> > funds/assets, in most cases forbidding them to simply buy
> > hardware and give it to the WMF or wikimedia.de.  this means we
> > could end up with 20 servers, each owned by a different chapter,
> > which makes support/RMA/etc. a nightmare.

Like River says :).

> Fortunately, the Swedish chapter doesn't have any such
> restrictions.  (There's no tax exemption in Sweden anyway.)  So
> far, we have been more active in other areas than fundraising, but
> we still asked if we could send $2K of our surplus to WMF. That
> request was turned down, so we're now looking for some other goal.

> We'll probably support travel costs for the chapter meeting.

that's a nice idea (because you can't buy a server with 2K$ of corse).

> Our next chapter board meeting is on Monday evening, March 2.  Do
> you have any suggestion I should bring forward?

If you (your chapter) can collect money to help the toolserver in any level 
that would be great. If the swedish chapter can realy send money or hardware 
to the foundation or the german verein without legal problems that would be 
even greater.

But you have to know that servers are expensive: A single databaseserver is 
8.000€ and beyond (and the hosting come on top of that).


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