I just started a new job at a small magazine as an IT guy. It all worked fine, but I'm worried about some issues with our VPS installation.

Since I started working here (26 days ago), our Wordpress' databases crashed more than once. When I check with our host, they tell me about possible server overload. I am not convinced.

Actually, it did just happen again, even though we are experiencing one of those slow-news days, and about 30 people were on the site when the crash occurred.

To be honest, I worked a lot with Wordpress and this never happened to me, let alone at this frequency. My colleagues told me that this is how things were always going.

Is this normal? Should we be looking for another contractor?

EDIT — some technical details on our setup

The technical details are a bit problematic: the company hired a third-party contractor to manage all the hosting stuff. Those guys refuse to cooperate with me, resisting even giving me information I requested and proper access to log files.

But what I know is that it's a VPS running under Ubuntu with NginX and MySQL (no details on the versions used.).

When I asked for log files related to the last crash, I got a long list of this :

160226 12:56:35 [ERROR] /usr/sbin/mysqld: Table '<table_name>' is marked as crashed and should be repaired
160226 12:56:35 [Warning] Checking table:   '<table_name>'
  • The error log should have details (if you have it complete) for the version, when it is restarting. From the 2 lines, we know that some of the tables are MyISAM. – ypercubeᵀᴹ Feb 26 '16 at 13:32
  • And we can't conclude that the instance crashed and restarted. It's possible that some (or just 1) MyISAM tables were crashing but the instance was fine and running. That would explain the wordpress site to be not responding. – ypercubeᵀᴹ Feb 26 '16 at 13:34
  • About the question "Should we be looking for another host ?", it should rather be: "Should we be looking for another contractor?" – ypercubeᵀᴹ Feb 26 '16 at 13:38
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    Unfortunately, that's all I got and my request for further information is yet to be answered. Hence the question ! Oh, and you're right, it's about the contractor, question updated (again) ;) – sudo --do-it Feb 26 '16 at 13:59
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    "Those guys refuse to cooperate with me" - talk to your boss, if you get no satisfaction from him/her, start looking for another job, your days will be filled with misery and woe. If your boss is on your side, write a nice polite letter to the head of your contracting company demanding cooperation within 14 days or you'll be taking your money elsewhere. You should at least have access to the MySQL client for what is, after all, your own data and you shouldn't have to go grovelling for what are your own logs! – Vérace Feb 26 '16 at 16:02

Don't ever use MyISAM. Ever. Under any circumstances. Just don't. If you need its performance characteristics for some reason, use MariaDB with Aria tables.

MyISAM is not crash safe, and will corrupt data when it breaks.

Also, my webserver with WordPress has over 5k posts and has never crashed its db.

This is not normal behavior.

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