December 19, 2004
I am a little confused on the search function. After performing one search, it does not allow me to make another search. I get a message that "You cannot make another search at this time".
Why is this? It just happened to me but it also happened a few weeks ago.
If you see that happen again, check and see if the forum software is logging you out after the first search. I have noticed that it seems to randomly log me out (even though I've set the preference to remember my password and stay logged in), and when you're logged out some of the features go away.
Not sure if that's what's happening in your case, but that's a behavior I've witnessed that annoys me.
The message forum software isn't perfect, and I've found quite a few bugs in it. On the whole I'm satisfied with it. At this point in the season I'm leery of upgrading it (I think there's probably an update available now), because the last time I did, I had to spend about 6 hours chasing down bugs and reporting them to the developer, and had to go to a backup to recover some lost data. I don't want to do anything that might take out the forums for a day or more at the height of the ski season unless there's a major flaw that needs fixing (like a security problem).
But, I'll keep a list of any problems folks experience so I can forward them to the company.
I think the same thing happen to me a month or two ago. As I recall, I was doing a bunch of searches in quick succession and the SW didn't like that at all. I think the error msg it gave me was something to the effect of "too many searches in a short period of time".
I definitely remained logged in, so I simply waited a couple of minutes and tried again. This time it worked. I then kept it to about one search every min or two, and it continued to perform successive searchs just fine.
At the time, my thought was that the SW designers imposed a rate limit to prevent automated, repetitive searches (eg, to harvest valid email adrs), but that's just a guess.
Tom / PM
Yes, that definitely is a feature of the software. The algorithm they use for searching is not very efficient -- it does somewhat of a "brute force" search through all the messages, and is taxing on the processor. So if a few people were searching at the same time, that can bog down the server and make it so folks wouldn't be able to load pages. (At an extreme case, it becomes a denial of service issue.)
So their solution is to "throttle" the search capability so it can't be overtaxed.
Having written search algorithms myself, I'm not too impressed with their implementation. They could be doing better indexing so that searching wouldn't be so processor-intensive. But they don't, so that remains a limitation.