Ruby processes spawning rapidly

This would be my first time posting here and I'm hoping to get some enlightenment on my problem.

I have Mac OS X Server Leopard v10.5.2 with 4GB of RAM. We recently had a new site developed for our company and it was developed on ROR.

I'm running an out of the box configuration for Ruby on Rails. Bluecloth is installed but everything else is stock. The database is MySQL.

The app is created on Windows workstations and then deployed to a svn repository that runs on Linux. To get the app running in my environment I had to troubleshoot and make a few tweaks to the rb config files to run the app. Each time our provider would make changes to our site they would send me the revised files via email and I would put them in place and restart my web services.

I have since set up SSH so that our provider could push out updates to my server without any intervention by me via subversion. We have subversion and the symbolic links all set up and running. But ever since these changes have been made my rails app has gone crazy on me. Fastcgi will intermittently spawn 10-13 ruby processes one after the other rapidly. Some of the ruby processes will eat 1-3MB of RAM per 1-2 seconds and will eventually take all 4GB of RAM that the server has and then the app will stop responding.

Our provider has looked over the Apache logs as well as the logs in the rails app itself and they tell me I need to configure mod_fastcgi to only allow so many ruby processes to run. On their linux server they have mod_fastcgi configured to run static with only (2) ruby processes.

I'm not a web developer or a web guru- just a simple server administrator that can't seem to find any information out there related to my problem. One thing to note is that the old site I was updating manually when changes were made never had this problem and still doesn't. I've compared config files in my rails app and everything is essentially the same.

Since our service provider knows nothing about OS X and how it's configured, they can't assist me very well.

Any help or suggestions would be great!

Well the obvious thing is to see how those essentially similar files differ. By your own admission you're not an expert so their might be something subtle lurking there. It's been a while since I used fastcgi but there used to be a log file where it would log stuff like it crashing & having to restart, might have some interesting info. As far as I recall configuring the number of fastcgi process is done either in the .htaccess file in the rails app's public folder, or in the corresponding virtual host entry in apache's configuration.