TRM Database Pruned

It’s TRM pruning time again.

At about 1100hrs UTC on January 25th the TRM database
was “pruned” again.  Here are the pertinent facts and figures:

  • the criterion used was: select trm from trm where lookupcount > 0;
  • before the prune,
    • the TRM server contained 3540483 TRMs,
    • the MB database contained 2199812 TRMs, of which 206335 had never been looked up
  • after the prune,
    • the TRM server contained 1993316 TRMs
    • although the sigserver said “Read 1978201 total signatures from all indexes”

For pretty pictures illustrating this, check out our
MRTG pages.

See server news for details of previous pruning.

Server Updates

Server updates: quite a collection of medium to small changes, including making artist subscriptions public.

(This change log includes all changes made to the server since the date
of the last release.  Some of these changes are new as of the
above date; some were introduced between the previous release and this one).

Changes mainly of interest to MusicBrainz Users

Artist Subscriptions Made Public

So far your list of subscribed artists has always been completely
private – no-one could see which artists you’re subscribed to, and
no-one could see who is subscribed to any given artist. 
This is now changing.

A new preference has been added, called
“Allow other users to see my subscribed artists“. 
The default setting of this new preference is ON, the opposite of
the previous behaviour, meaning that your artist subscription list
will become public
.  If you don’t want your subscription list to
become public, you have 30 days from the date of this release
to log in and change this preference to “off”.  (You can change the
setting at any time, but if you want to be sure that no-one ever sees
your subscription list, you’ll have to change it to “off” within the first
30 days).

From the date of this release, you can
see how many users are subscribed to any given artist, including
users who have are “privately” subscribed.  However you won’t
immediately be able to see a list of users subscribed to an artist, or
vice versa. 
From 30 days after this release,
you’ll be able to see other users’ subscription lists (if their preferences
let you), and you can see what users are subscribed to any given
artist (but only those users whose lists are “public”). 
During the first 30 days those pages will simply show an error message.

Please read these notes about this
feature if you are concerned about the privacy implications.

New Preference: “When I Vote, Mail Me Notes”

A new preference has been added: “When I vote on a moderation,
mail me all future notes for that moderation”.  Hopefully
the meaning of this is quite clear.  The setting is checked
as each note is added, so you can globally turn this
behaviour on or off for all moderations (i.e. you can’t have this
option “on” for some moderations and “off” for others).

If you are an “Automatic Moderator”

The search page will
now notify you whenever there are any elections in which you may
participate (but have not yet done so).

There is a new preference, “Enable auto-moderator privileges”. 
If you turn this setting off, you can temporarily revoke your automod
privilege from yourself, allowing you to put some moderation to the vote
where it would otherwise have been automatically applied.  To
regain your automod privilege, simply
return to your preferences page and re-enable
the option.  This setting is not saved to the database; if you log
out and in again, the option will always be reset to “on”.

When nominating another user for auto-moderator status, there is now a
“confirm” page, so it’s harder to accidentally nominate someone.


When editing a track, the allowed track number range is
shown and checked against.

The Albums with superfluous data tracks
report now only shows tracks if they are the last track on the album
in question.

The sidebar “Quick Search” now includes search for Editor
(aka user, aka moderator).

On the preferences page, most options now have HTML labels (so you can click
on the text next to the tick box, as well as the tick box itself).  The
voting buttons on the main voting pages have been re-arranged to be easier
to read.  (Changes by Eli Miller – thanks!)

The “login” page is now never shown to logged-in users.  This happened
from time to time, and was always very confusing when it did.  The HTML
for the login box has also been tidied up.  One side-effect of this is
that the odd “jumping” behaviour seen by some Mozilla / Firefox users seems
to have been fixed.

If you use the “Picard” Tagger, then the
artist “album list” page now includes “tagger” links on all the
albums.  Also, the problem whereby sometimes you would see the “Nothing
to see here, move along” page has been fixed.

If you use the “Use Javascript to move the input focus when the page loads”
preference (which is on by default), then the tagger “lookup” page now
doesn’t move the focus, but the “submit a new CD” page

Each album now includes an “Edit releases” link at the bottom, next to where
the releases are shown.

has contributed search
plugins for Firefox

The “Reveal my e-mail address” option has been removed from the moderation
note window.

The album “release editor” now checks for valid dates.

The main artist page no longer shows the “more…” link for related artists
when there are, in fact, no more related artists to show.  (patch by
Matthew Exon)

You can now search for moderations by date / time:
example one,
example two
Searching for moderations (when your search includes both open and closed
moderations) is faster now, after
work by Yary Hluchan
.  Thanks Yary!

From a moderator’s “profile” page, you can now search for their
Deleted Moderations.

When editing your own profile, you can
re-send yourself a “confirm my e-mail address” message at any time,
without having to change your e-mail address to something else and
back again. 
P.S.: all user accounts which have a
stored e-mail address have now had that address validated at least once.

Various things in moderation notes are now automatically turned into
hyperlinks to moderations: e.g. “moderation #123”,
auto hyperlinks in mod notes to other mods: e.g. “moderation #123”,
“mod 245725” or “edit #36483” would all become links to their respective

New and Changed Documentation

The page about disc IDs contained a link to what
is now some rubbishy “link farm” web site; that link has therefore been
ruaok’s bio has been updated. 
The home page contained some invalid HTML, which has now
been fixed. 

Changes mainly of interest to MusicBrainz Server Programmers

The INSTALL file has been updated; PostgreSQL 7.4 or later is required,
and the list of dependencies from CPAN has been updated. 
Also a link to the DebianServerSetup
wiki page
has been added.

admin/RemoveOldSessions now also removes orphaned lock files.

admin/ now correctly sets the next sequence values
on the three “*_open” tables.  (This bug would manifest itself as
duplicate key errors whenever the moderation was closed).

The URL rewriting (e.g. of /artist/GUID etc) is now implemented
via MusicBrainz::Server::Handlers, not mod_rewrite.  In doing so
it’s now possible to use the “/artist/…” URL space for other things, e.g.
HTML pages (note: this page currently gives an error).

The SQL scripts have been tidied up (sorted, layout standardised etc). 
DropViews.sql now drops the views, not creates them πŸ™‚

Artists, users and countries are now cached using memcached
The country list is no longer stored in each user’s %session.

The MusicBrainz::Server::DateTime module has been added. 
The MusicBrainz::Server::DeferredUpdate module has been rewritten
somewhat, including the ability to handle deadlocks. 

You can now customise the cookie name used (the default is
We now check for, trap, and work around HTML::Mason‘s unhelpful
behaviour of turning repeated arguments into an array reference.

Extra logging has been added TRM requests and to the
TrackInfoFromTRMId query.  In the latter query,
results are limited to 100 tracks, and looking up the “silence” TRM is now

Bugs and RFEs Closed

Dave Evans

Brainzers around the world

Nikki and I are randomly hacking on MusicBrainz when I became curious about the distribution about brainzers around the world. One SQL query later we have:

country | count


fr | 1664

de | 1498

uk | 1031

dk | 746

ru | 670

nl | 454

pl | 409

ca | 348

au | 271

it | 270

This is compiled from email addresses of registered users that use their country top level domains. This obviously cuts out all the .net, .com, .org addresses, which is a lot of people. But this gives a decent idea of the reach that MusicBrainz has into the nooks and crannies of the planet. It turns out that we have members from 105 countries, which if we’re counting 238 country tlds, that comes to 44%. Wow!

Read on for the complete list…

Continue reading “Brainzers around the world”

New servers purchased

Great news folks! We just purchased two new servers:

  • Dual 2.4Ghz Xeon Supermicro 1U servers
  • 4GB RAM
  • SCSI III support
  • 1 server has 1 72GB hot swap drives and the other has 2

Each one was a whopping $950 — a really awesome deal! Now I need to purchase a RAID controller and we can give the TRM server its own machine, which should alleviate some of the bottlenecks we’ve been seeing.

Jamie Munro suggested looking into purchasing the domain, so I put in a (joking) offer of $50. The owner replied telling me that he paid over 20 times that and that he would not go for it. No surprise there. So, next time we have $1000 to splurge on a nice shortcut domain, we could consider doing this.

Thus, chances of this happening are next to nil. At least we tried. πŸ™‚

Unwrapping the thanksgiving present

whicken sent MusicBrainz a Thanksgiving Day present that consisted of nearly 3000 AR relationships, and I finally had the chance to import the data and play with it. A few of URLs to check out:

I didn’t know that 2Pac == Makavelli — I’m getting excited about AR. Can you tell? If you want to see the data whicken sent our way, look here.

Thanks tons Wendell!! (whicken)

Back to Advanced Relationships I trudge…

The last two weeks were pretty much dedicated to trying to make ends meet. Fortunately I managed to get some contract work that paid fairly well and was somewhat related to my spare time projects like MusicBrainz and XSPF. In the last two weeks I managed to earn 1/4 of what I earned all of last year. That speaks highly of the last two weeks and poorly on the last year.

The upshot is that I have time to get back to MusicBrainz hacking. That means I’m back on the project that won’t die: Advanced Relationships. Every time I think I am done, someone points out 2-3 new problems that set me back another week. Its been like this since the end of December, and its getting a bit frustrating. The positive thing about this is that I’m doing AR right — no ‘lets put this out there and we’ll make if work really well later‘. Besides, every-time I’ve half-assed a feature on the server, everyone has always let me know what they think, and its never pretty. πŸ™‚

Continue reading “Back to Advanced Relationships I trudge…”