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04/26/2001 Archived Entry: "Ellis Isle: Uptime Comeuppance"
InternetWeek > Ellis Isle: Uptime Comeuppance > Apr. 26, 2001
Between 1892 and 1924, nearly 23 million immigrants entered the United States through Ellis Island and the Port of New York. Today, an underpowered Web site promising access to records on those individuals isn't nearly as welcoming: It denied access to the vast majority of the 50 million people who hit the site in its first six hours, and it continues to turn people away in huge numbers.
Designers of the site grossly under-estimated 2 things: the amount of traffic to the site and the amount of hardware needed to server up info from the over 1 terabyte Oracle database. Relying on MS web server probably wasn't a good idea either.
In any situation, the more hardware, the better. And since most Americans have Internet access and most of them had ancestors come through Ellis Island, that would mean millions of folks would be interested in the site. Not a tough equation.