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Install fails silently and consumes too many resources


8 Posts   2355 Views


20 May 2007 at 6:43pm (Last edited: 20 May 2007 7:33pm), Community Member, 6 Posts

When I visit the install.php page it says I can proceed with the installation, but if I click on either the 'Install SilverStripe' button or the 'Re-check requirements' button then the server takes a *long* time to respond. It eventually fails and displays a completely blank page.

Afterwards I am unable to SSH or SFTP into the server for 20 minutes. Apparently, to cope with DDOS attacks, my web host prevents a user from forking too many processes at once.

This is hard to diagnose, because I am locked out for 20 minutes every time I press the button. I think I've checked all the obvious things though:

Apache can create and write to the necessary files.
Maximum memory available is 128M.
I am using SilverStripe 2.0.1 (this is what it says in the silverstripe_version file).
The software versions listed in phpinfo are:
PHP 5.2.1
mcrypt 2.5.7
GD 2.0.28 compatible
mysql 5.0.27
Also asp_tags is set to Off in php.ini.

The only strange thing is that both phpinfo and the SilverStripe installer are unable to find mod_rewrite. I have tested that I can create rewrite rules using .htaccess files though.

So, how can I debug this problem? Should I add log messages to the installer to see where it gets stuck?

Are there any suitable debugging tools for PHP that I could use on a shared hosting account?


20 May 2007 at 8:44pm Forum Moderator, 921 Posts

Is there some sort of error logs you can check, like the cpanel has on some hosts? Usually they report the problem right there and then...



21 May 2007 at 2:13am Community Member, 6 Posts

My host is using cPanel, but the only message appearing on the error log page is:

[Sun May 20 06:22:52 2007] [error] [client] File does not exist: /home/maxim/public_html/500.shtml

That might explain why I get the completely blank page. I'll try creating one and see if it gives some error information.


21 May 2007 at 2:48am Community Member, 6 Posts

That didn't help. I still receive a blank page, but now there are no errors appearing in the log.

btw - It takes about 2 minutes before the blank page appears. While it was loading I looked at the 'Server Status' page in cPanel, and I saw the Server Load increase by 10 times. When it finished, the load dropped right down again, so I think it is putting a lot of strain on the server.


21 May 2007 at 9:29am Community Member, 6 Posts

I don't think this is a problem with SilverStripe after all!

There seems to be something wrong with handling POST requests in any PHP5 script on my web host.


21 May 2007 at 8:37pm Administrator, 685 Posts

I've had that happen when PHP is set up as CGI instead of an apache module.


21 May 2007 at 11:10pm Community Member, 6 Posts

Hi Sam,

Yes, it is running as CGI. Does this mean I can't install SilverStripe? :(


22 May 2007 at 8:07am Administrator, 685 Posts

I'm sorry, but your host has simply set up a faulty PHP5 installation. If POST forms don't work, there's not much we can do!

I've never successfully set up PHP5/CGI to handle POST forms, but I imagine it can't be done.

Tell your host to fix their server, or check out to find a new host!