I attempted to upgrade a Drupal site from 6.13 to 6.14 today. Or, over the last 24 hours.
Listen, I know Drupal is complicated. Anything on version 6 is going to be complicated, with many hands involved and inevitable unseen bugs. But some things should still never happen. This is a site with around 35,000 nodes – not small – but the upgrade process announced that it had to rebuild the access privileges. OK, fine. It’ll take a little while, but go ahead.
Twelve hours – TWELVE HOURS – later, it briefly flashed that there had been an error, provided no information on-screen or in the logs about what the error was, and bounced back to the home page inviting me to try again.
I had been monitoring the server during this process with innotop – a marvelous utility – just to make sure that things weren’t hung and that it was actually working. During this time, it executed over FIFTY MILLION MYSQL QUERIES.
I’m sorry, that’s insane. 50,000,000 queries, to try to do a single point-zero-one upgrade. That’s over ONE THOUSAND QUERIES PER NODE. I cut my teeth squeezing assembly language into 256-byte blocks. I know that world is dead and buried, and machines are a billion times faster and bigger now, but it’s not like efficiency doesn’t matter anymore. There is no way you can’t tell me that such an upgrade process couldn’t be improved by hundreds of orders of magnitude.
And then it didn’t work anyway! And I even rolled it back and tried it again, following every instruction to the letter, and another twelve hours and another silent failure.
So screw it. No upgrade. I give up! Maybe things will be better in 6.15. But I know now to spin up a spare server to try it on, so I don’t swamp my live boxes with this nonsense.