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CODE4LIB  September 2009

CODE4LIB September 2009

Subject:

Re: GPO PURLs

From:

"Edward M. Corrado" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Code for Libraries <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 1 Sep 2009 15:29:02 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (196 lines)

Roy++

I agree while we might use technology to preserve things, it is only a 
tool to help preserve things. It is at best the how, not the which, 
what, why, and when.

Edward



Roy Tennant wrote:
> I think this episode also illustrates, once again, that preservation is not
> about technology at all, it's about *institutional commitment*. The kind of
> institutional commitment that would have implemented and maintained the
> kinds of procedures that Jonathan described. Without institutional
> commitment, no technology on earth can save you.
> Roy
>
>
> On 9/1/09 9/1/09  9:00 AM, "Jonathan Rochkind" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
>   
>> I'd add that not only does it sound like GPO maintained no failover
>> backup, it sounds, based on Jonathan Lebreton's report,  like they
>> didn't even maintain an offline backup, since they're needing to
>> regenerate the purl database from raw data, rather than simply restoring
>> from a backup, which would generally be much quicker then the process
>> that Jonathan Lebreton seems to be describing.
>>
>>  From what info we have, it sounds like GPO simply, well, was very very
>> far from 'best practices' for a service meant to be robustly reliable.
>> On the other hand, we're just going from sort of third hand hearsay,
>> maybe they were doing things more right than it sounds, but some kind of
>> catastrophic unexpected 'perfect storm' still happened to bring
>> everything down. Maybe 48 hours of outage in 10 years (how long has GPO
>> purl been running? Have there been outages like this before?) is
>> appropriate reliability for the level of importance of this service. I
>> dunno.
>>
>> Jonathan
>>
>> Jonathan Lebreton wrote:
>>     
>>> This is indeed an interesting problem - we are all dependent on a
>>> centralized service node.
>>>
>>> Just got off the phone with GPO 9 am 9/1/09.
>>> I was told they are now up to 50% or PURLs restored but the script is
>>> running very slowly line-by-line since the server (they're updating the
>>> production server while it is up) is experiencing unusually heavy load
>>> from the user community and bots scheduled to troll at beginning of the
>>> month.  
>>>
>>> Jonathan LeBreton
>>> Sr. Associate University Librarian
>>> Temple University Libraries
>>> voice: 215-204-8231
>>> fax: 215-204-5201
>>> email:  [log in to unmask]
>>> email:  [log in to unmask]
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>   
>>>       
>>>> -----Original Message-----
>>>> From: Code for Libraries [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf
>>>>     
>>>>         
>>> Of
>>>   
>>>       
>>>> James Jacobs
>>>> Sent: Monday, August 31, 2009 6:06 PM
>>>> To: [log in to unmask]
>>>> Subject: Re: [CODE4LIB] GPO PURLs
>>>>
>>>> Hi all, (cross-posted to purl-dev)
>>>>
>>>> I'm a documents librarian (and member of the Depository Library
>>>> Council)
>>>> and usually just a lurker over here. Thanks Keith and Patricia for the
>>>> easy workaround. I shared this with govdoc-l and on my blog:
>>>>
>>>> http://freegovinfo.info/node/2704
>>>>
>>>> See especially the comment that as of today, only 3,677 PURLs out of
>>>> 116,237 have been restored (3.1%). I would love to hear your
>>>> thoughts/ideas for how this kind of critical system failure can be
>>>> averted in the future from a technological standpoint. Is it possible
>>>> to
>>>> mirror a purl server? Will the same issue occur when GPO moves to
>>>> handles in FDsys (http://www.handle.net/)? Will a distributed
>>>> infrastructure as I've briefly mapped out be able to handle these
>>>>     
>>>>         
>>> types
>>>   
>>>       
>>>> of critical system crashes better?
>>>>
>>>> Please let me know and I'd be happy to share your ideas with GPO and
>>>> the
>>>> documents community.
>>>>
>>>> Best,
>>>>
>>>> James Jacobs
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> Keith Jenkins wrote:
>>>>     
>>>>         
>>>>> Thanks to everyone who helped me confirm that the GPO PURL server is
>>>>> down.  An official announcement on the GPO Listserv said:
>>>>>    "The PURL Server is currently inaccessible. GPO is working with
>>>>>       
>>>>>           
>>> IT
>>>   
>>>       
>>>>> staff to restore service as soon as possible. We regret any
>>>>> inconvenience caused by the server problems. An updated listserv
>>>>>       
>>>>>           
>>> will
>>>   
>>>       
>>>>> be sent once service is restored."
>>>>>
>>>>> While the server is down, here is one workaround (thanks to Patricia
>>>>>       
>>>>>           
>>>> Duplantis):
>>>>     
>>>>         
>>>>>    1. Go to http://catalog.gpo.gov/
>>>>>    2. Click "Advanced Search"
>>>>>    3. Search for word in "URL/PURL", enter the PURL
>>>>>    4. Click "Go"
>>>>>    5. The original URL at the time of cataloging should appear in a
>>>>>       
>>>>>           
>>>> 53x note.
>>>>     
>>>>         
>>>>> This incident, however, illuminates a weakness in PURL systems:
>>>>>       
>>>>>           
>>>> access
>>>>     
>>>>         
>>>>> is broken when the PURL server breaks, even though the documents are
>>>>> still online at their original URLs.
>>>>>
>>>>> Maybe someone more familiar with PURL systems can tell me... is
>>>>>       
>>>>>           
>>> there
>>>   
>>>       
>>>>> any way to harvest data from a PURL server, so that a backup/mirror
>>>>> can be available?
>>>>>
>>>>> Keith
>>>>>       
>>>>>           
>>>> --
>>>> James R. Jacobs
>>>> International Documents Librarian
>>>> Green Library, Stanford University
>>>> P: (650) 725-1030 E: [log in to unmask]
>>>> AIM: LibrarianJames T: @freegovinfo
>>>>
>>>> The more beautiful questions demand the more beautiful answers,
>>>> and if we can learn to ask them, we stand a chance of steering
>>>> clear of shipwreck on our jury-rigged and not so distant star.
>>>> --Lewis Lapham, Lapham's Quarterly I(3), Summer, 2008, p.17.
>>>>
>>>> -----------------------------------------------
>>>> This message may have been intercepted and read by U.S. government
>>>> agencies including the FBI, CIA, and NSA without notice or warrant or
>>>> knowledge of sender or recipient.
>>>>
>>>>   (\
>>>> {|||8-
>>>>   (/
>>>>     
>>>>         
>>>   
>>>       

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