Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Sentinel's Fate is Live!

Our QA department passed the servers and everything has been unlocked. Servers are up and people are online. So far everything looks great. I'm sure there will be minor issues throughout the day, so I'll be keeping my eyes and ears open for them.

Enjoy the expansion and let me know what you think!

Launch Update

It's almost 5am on the morning of launch. A few others from the game team have arrived.

The DBA's have completed the database schema changes and our Operations department should have published the expansion code to all of the servers by now. As soon as our QA department arrives the servers will be brought up for a smoke-test.

We just finished making some last-minute optimizations to our world server. This server is responsible for handling communication between all the zones as well as caching worldwide data such as vendors, guild bank items, etc. The issue on Nagafen yesterday seemed to stem from the worldserver hitting the process memory limit while loading all of this data.

So tonight we went over the code and found some places where we could drastically reduce memory during loading. We've made those changes, built the new server and copied it manually to Nagafen's host machine. Our initial test of bringing Nagafen up looks good and it didn't crash this time so everything appears to be working. We still need to have QA confirm that everything is working as expect.

In general, we would never make changes in this situation without ample time to test, but the three of us are pretty confident that the changes are low-impact and will allow us to get Nagafen back online. Worst-case scenario we just use the old version and keep the broker offline a little longer.

We don't plan to roll this version out to other servers though until it has been properly tested by QA.

3, 2, 1, Launch!

It's 2am and I'm now at work. Curretly there are only a few of us from the game team here; myself, Nandy Szots, John Rohrssen, Nick Parkinson and Paul Molina.

However, our operations department and database admins are also here and have already started preparing the servers for the expansion.

There isn't as much to do until the servers have been updated other than to start looking into a problem that Nagafen had last night.

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Eve of Sentinel's Fate

It's about 8:30pm on the night before we launch Sentinel's Fate, the 6th expansion for EverQuest II. This is also my first launch as Lead Programmer so I'm pretty excited albeit a little nervous.

This expansion hasn't been without it's challenges. Most of the team has been on a crunch schedule for several months and it still feels pretty frantic. It's kind of like when you're leaving the house to go on vacation and you just know you're forgetting something.

That's enough for now though. I'm going to try to get a few hours of sleep before heading into the office. Check back later for more blog posts throughout this launch event!

See you in a few hours.