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[bioontology-support] BioPortal down again

John Graybeal jbgmeta1 at
Fri Apr 8 17:27:56 PDT 2016

Hello Jon,

Thank you for your feedback, and I’m sorry for your trouble. We identified a likely source of that particular issue, which occurred overnight local time, and have been working to fully analyze the issue and ensure it does not arise going forward.

In  response to your question, we have been working heavily on hardening issues (reliability, optimization, reporting, operations) since November, and continue to give that very high priority. Of course while some tasks are quick to accomplish, some take a bit longer — you can see many tasks that we have already performed in the monthly release notes at We have discussed these challenges on the list within the last 2 months, and I will be updating the list with our progress in the near future.

And still other tasks take much longer, and we do have longer term strategies for improving the system’s capabilities, performance, and reliability. Our ability to execute these will depend on resources available, vs critical features and operational support requirements. As you may know, we have limited staff to provide the BioPortal services, and we are therefore unable to make it a fully productionized, 24x7 system. We appreciate all our users’ reports and contributions toward improving the system.

Speaking of which, I’d like to take this opportunity to remind our users that bug and issue reports are always welcome. We particularly appreciate details about the issues, and your usage, that can help us fix problems and prioritize our response. We really appreciate information about exactly what you did, what resulted, how often it has happened, what you’ve tried, and what use cases you have (for example, using it in training courses) can all be very helpful, both in troubleshooting and suggesting alternate approaches. (For example, some users have found installing their own Virtual Appliance, perhaps with a limited set of ontologies, is better suited for their specific situation.)

Thanks again for your willingness to share your frustration; we intend to keep making things better going forward.



> On Apr 8, 2016, at 3:04 AM, jison at wrote:
> Folks
> I really appreciate a lot all the hard work on BioPortal, over the years.  But really, the server is down a lot and I can't
> rely on it during e.g. training courses (I'm at such a course right now).  Please - is there a plan to improve reliability?
> Cheers
> Jon
> _______________________________________________
> bioontology-support mailing list
> bioontology-support at

John Graybeal
Technical Program Manager
Center for Expanded Data Annotation and Retrieval /+/ NCBO BioPortal
Stanford Center for Biomedical Informatics Research
skype: graybealski

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