ProMods and TMP: The First Weekend

As most of you will have noticed, two weeks ago TMP opened their servers for ProMods. Seeing so many of you try it out made us very proud of the hard work we have delivered over the last months. Apart from some small hiccoughs, we can safely say that the launch was an enormous success.

If you missed the whole ProMods Multiplayer compatibility story, read:
https://blog.promods.net/2019/10/promods-goes-multiplayer/

If you are running into problems getting it to work, click here:
https://truckersmp.com/knowledge-base/article/614

If you want to see the current state of the servers, go here:
https://truckersmp.com/status

Infrastructure

We had anticipated an increase of activity on our services, but the way you guys hit us last weekend struck us as a complete surprise. All of our old records were shattered. We have never seen so many people on our forum at the same time before. We have never seen so many people register in a single weekend. We have never served this amount of bandwidth in a weekend. And the list keeps going on. We want to thank you for this overwhelming support!

A special shoutout must be made to Rick from Simulator Radio. He kindly offered some additional servers for the free download service, which really saved us that weekend. The demand for our services was 5 times higher than we had anticipated, giving us some serious headache. We did add more bandwidth to the free download server ourselves, but we were unable to keep up with the demand. Simulator Radio reached out and offered 3 high performance servers, which we added to the pool on top of our existing servers. During this time, we noticed a 99% success rate of downloads completing compared to a very small percentage of people complaining about problems (in the scheme of things).

In the image you can clearly see a rise in requests. This was very much unexpected – for the first 24 hours, Cloudflare kept us online, but we had to upgrade some services to prevent any future outages. The top 5 requests came from the following countries:

  • Germany at 4,463,016
  • Turkey at 2,403,503
  • Poland at 2,183,169
  • Russia at 1,379,813
  • France at 1,338,208

Looking back at the launch now, we have gathered a lot of useful data for future releases. We will evaluate them to improve our systems for the future. A small word of advice to the players; In the future we plan to have a new ProMods version available before TMP opens the servers, so you can already download the mod beforehand.

Last but not least, of course we enjoyed ourselves as well by driving around our map. Below are some of the screenshots that our team members took during their journeys.

Changes in the download methods

Since 2013, our paid download service has been strictly set to $1 per download and we have kept that unchanged. Initially our payment gateway only supported USD. Times have changed, as has the popularity of our mod and the infrastructure we are hosting it on, therefore we have now changed the currency to EUR.

Why is the Euro a better option for us today?

  • the vast majority of ProMods users are European
  • the Euro is a leading worldwide currency and still gaining popularity
  • our payment gateway partners now finally support Euro payments
  • all of our infrastructure and server hosting bills are paid in Euro
  • PayPal takes a big chunk in fees for every Dollar exchanged to Euro

We are aware that changing the currency increases the price slightly, but we believe this shouldn’t be a major issue for our loyal fans. There is no plan to increase or change our pricing further, any time in the future. The main pack is set to €1 and the TCP to €0.50.

While our funds will increase slightly we can spend more money on our core infrastructure, amongst which the free download servers. Thanks to this change we can now offer a 50% speed increase on the free servers, to 300kb/s. The maximum amount of concurrent downloads remains set to two.

About our server infrastructure

Maybe you wonder what your €1 contribution means to us? Well, we use it to keep our infrastructure running and we cover our software licenses to keep expanding the mod.

Our main front-end systems run on on a network of servers hosted by Linode in Frankfurt and New York, and they are cached in the cloud globally by CloudFlare. They include two web servers that host the forum and the blog, a database server and a development server for the production environment of ProMods.

Paid downloads are hosted on servers provided by Amazon S3 and cached worldwide, through our partner Payloadz.
Free downloads are hosted on servers provided by Scaleway in Paris and Amsterdam. We scale these servers based on demand, and we typically use at least four to cope with a new release launch.

When we started in 2013 we hosted the mod on a simple file-sharing site, but it was enough to crash the website instantly. We had never imagined in our wildest dreams that our project would grow this big. On average ProMods generates a whopping 100TB of data traffic every month. Enough to get us lifetime bans on popular file-hosting sites.

Each month, the combined websites serve almost 40 million requests and despite DDoS protection, there are still 50,000 attempts to attack our site.
As you can see, these systems require money to keep ticking. Your contribution helps us paying for these servers and delivering our mod.

Alternative payment options

We often get questions about alternative payments by members  “not wanting a PayPal account”.
First of all; you can use a credit card without logging into PayPal and creating an account.
If you do have an account but require alternative means to top it up, you can bank transfer funds to your PayPal or use PaySafeCard to do so.

Unfortunately we currently do not have a solution for countries where PayPal is blocked by the government, our apologies for that. We can however reveal that our partner Payloadz is looking to support multiple alternative payment gateways some time in 2019.

Thank you so much for supporting ProMods!