On Tue, 6 Aug 1996 17:28:34 -0700 (PDT) Dave Bigham <dbigham @
>I think it is important to note that the above statistics are individual
>statistics for all of the 166,000+ messages sent from all of the lists.
>They are not from one list at one time. So, for example, *each one* of
>the fastest 50% took 8 seconds to send - each.
If you write down all the 166,000 individual delivery times from fastest
to slowest, the median will be 8 seconds. That is, 50% of these
deliveries will have taken 8 seconds or less, and 50% will have taken 8
seconds or more.
>Thats more that 664,000 message-seconds, if that makes any sense. It's
>not a case of 80,000+ messages being sent in 8 seconds or less.
You're right, but what the users see and care about is the time it takes
them to get their copy of a message posted to the list, ie the 8 seconds
or whatever, as opposed to the 664,000. I moderate one of the lists on
the server in question (I'm in Sweden, the server is in the US), and it
usually takes 5-10 seconds between the time I press the SEND key on my
approval request and the time my copy of the posting is in my mailbox. I
get this copy because I'm subscribed to the list and the message isn't
from me, it isn't something that is sent separately before the mailing is
processed. The list has about 400 recipients, and the server delivers 500
messages in parallel, so most of the time my host is contacted
immediately and it takes a few seconds to deliver the message, hence the
result. For a much larger list I might have to wait behind 2-3 other
people which would receive service before me. In general, with very large
workloads the median increases to 30 sec or so while the 99% average is
not significantly affected (normally still under 2 minutes). While 30 sec
is not quite as impressive, it makes no difference to the average user
who spends over a minute reading each message.