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How to prepare for Boingboing and Digg?

In the last two weeks, I saw two of our servers being pounded to death because of Boingboing and just early today, Digg (You guys know who you are. *hehe*). On a shared hosting environment, this could be disastrous.

What could happen?


  • Your site would crawl due to massive number of visitors in a short span of time.
  • If you’re running on a database driven-site/blog like WordPress, mySQL might max out and crash.
  • You’d ran out of bandwidth and get suspended by your web host.

What you need to do to prepare for this?

  • Inform your web host *before*, NOT during or after you got dugg or slashdot. Remember that in a shared hosting environment, all other sites hosted on the same server will suffer the same fate.
  • If you have WordPress, you may want to install the wp-cache plugin. It can greatly reduce server load.
  • If you can, convert the page to HTML or static page so mySQL won’t choke and Apache can take the extra load or user connections.
  • If you have lots of images or downloadables, host them elsewhere temporarily, like Flickr or PutFile, to reduce bandwidth consumption and file requests.

Lastly, prepare for some huge bills from your webhost afterwards. People usually think being dugg or slashdot could translate to more earnings. What they forgot to take into account that the bandwidth consumed in that short duration could practically put a hole in their pockets.

Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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9 Responses

  1. Yeah, I know who I am. Screw DIGG!

    What I hate about DIGG is the mob mentality so prevalent. Site was down so they buried the entry and flagged it as inaccurate just a while after it reached front page.

    I’d rather check out my friends’ bookmarks on del.icio.us or stumbleupon.

    Honestly, I never expected to get dugg.

    Welp, ’til next time!

  2. eric says:


    abe ito rin ba ang dahilan sa pagkalugmok ng blog ko kanina? eheh

    natakot ako akala ko na-hack blog ko. kaya bigla akong nag test post

  3. jhay says:

    Hmm…I think it would be cumbersome to inform the webhost prior to posting an entry because you can never be sure that it will get dugg after you post it or later on in the future when a reader does spend some more extra seconds to click on the digg this icon or link.

    Unless you use a dummy account and digg your own post and so on like what a friend of mine does. It’s shrewed but it does work in increasing traffic.

    Like Sir Angelo Racoma, I’m a bit scared of getting dugg. It could quickly eat up my month’s bandwidth and since I using the free .com.ph domain + hosting, I don’t know if I would get the additional bandwidth also for free. I noticed this when a post of mine was dugg, though it didn’t reached the top of the front page, traffic spiked and my bandwidth consumption shot up by 12% in just a day.

    I’ll now go and look for wp-cache plugin just to get a little prepared for the next digg mob attack. ;)

  4. Mike Lopez says:

    Angelo, just curious – aside from the traffic (which apparently is too much), did you benefit from the sudden digg ‘mob attack’?

  5. A clarification. I called them a ‘mob’ because one said ‘hey, this site’s down. it must be crappy,’ then all other seemed to think likewise and comment with the same thoughts. Thing is, the site just overloaded and the content was valid. But people still flagged it as inaccurate or lame.

    How stupid.

    Anyway, I don’t have ads on my site, and I probably won’t put up any, at least in the short term. And the economic benefits of getting DUGG go far beyond ad clicks (since DIGGers are techies anyway, and are likely to be adsense blind).

    I actually got dugg once already, but it was an article I wrote on ForeverGeek about four months ago. Our server was able to handle the load, and up to now people link to and comment to that post of mine (about podcasting) and consider it to be a good resource on basic podcasting.

    Of course, a few weeks after, we challenged the DIGG model and DIGG banned us for a while. We realized DIGG wasn’t really the democratic system we thought. There are internal filters and influences. Within (or around) DIGG exists TPTB – the powers that be.

    As we at Enthropia and BloggyNetwork would say, the benefit of getting DUGG frontpage wouldn’t be monetary, but this would help increase your popularity and readers’ regard for you and your site. It’s one good way to build up your reputation on the Net.

    Suddenly my feedburner subscriptions jumped up two- to three-fold. I’m hoping for increased _quality_ readership from this point on.

  6. AhmedF says:

    The feed count always jumps – its an illusion. Just FireFox Live Bookmarks – in a few days it will fall.

    At the same time, a user cannot ‘predict’ the digg/boingboing effect happening. I would imagine everyone is trying to create compelling content that will generate links and so forth.

  7. Actually, my feedburner subscription count has jumped up since they changed the way they counted subscribers (that was about two months ago). And yes, I checked the stats. It seems most of the new subscribers are firefox live bookmarks.

    Thanks for submitting the story, Ahmed! :P Seems you’ve quite got the DIGG magic.


  8. rain says:

    Ano ba yung BoingBoing na yan? Nakakain ba yan?

    *evil laughter*

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