phpBB Internal Server Errors

apps

#1

Has anyone else been having problems with phpBB lately? Over the past month or so I’ve been getting a lot of 500 Internal Server Errors, despite the fact that I haven’t changed anything. The error logs show “Premature end of script headers,” but don’t give a line number.

From what I’m able to gather, this is usually either a problem with file permissions or mod_security. I doubt that file permissions are the issue here because it was running fine before and I haven’t changed any of the permissions. And as an experiment I’ve disabled mod_security, but this doesn’t seem to be fixing the problem.

This is really driving me nuts. I’d appreciate any help anyone can offer.

Thanks.


#2

If this is a mod_security issue which I doubt, you can try turning off “Extra Web Security” by editing your domain.

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#3

Yeah, I tried that but I don’t think it helped. This problem is all the more aggravating because it comes and goes. Most of this morning my site was all but unreachable, but for the past hour or so it’s been working fine.


#4

I’ll suggest you to contact DH support. Some people have this problem when the server they reside is overloaded.

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#5

Yes actually. I’ve been running the same installation of phpBB for many months, and all of a sudden it’s unusable because of internal server errors. This started about a week ago. I’ve contacted support about it, but so far none of their (good) suggestions has fixed the problem.

It’s not permissions or anything like that, I don’t think. It’s intermittent–it shows up in the afternoon mostly, and is really severe around 5:00pm my time (Eastern US). My SQL server is acting up too, the other day one of the tables was totally corrupted, and right now it’s not responding.

If you figure out what is causing the errors, please let us know!


#6

Do they tell you that it is your phpBB scripts?

Do they tell you that is more than 200 PMs per hour?

I am about ready to tear out every piece of my hair with these errors.


#7

They told me to check the logs, that some bots can get caught it loops causing extra traffic. They also told me to move the phpBB account to its on user on my account, thus allowing it to have more memory allotment. I did both things (restricted bots and moved to a new user). Yesterday the 500 errors came back. I think it has something to do with SQL performing slowly, but I have no idea how to fix that.


#8

they sent me a email saying the same thing. I run a phpbb forum and it recently has been recieving alot of internal server errors. Ive installed a cache mod which didnt help. Then I got an email today saying that the googlebot was causing traffic and 3 other IPs so they blocked them. But now I cant even access my site due to 500 errors. Did anyone ever come up with a solution? TIA
~Mike


#9

Mine has been running smoothly for the past several days, but then tonight the 500 errors are returning, and the site is also slow to load and requests are timing out. Since the level of traffic has remained fairly constant, I don’t think it has to do with the site traffic or server load or script optimization. So I don’t know what’s going on, and communication from support has become less and less helpful.


#10

[quote]
Mine has been running smoothly for the past several days, but then tonight the 500 errors are returning, and the site is also slow to load and requests are timing out. Since the level of traffic has remained fairly constant, I don’t think it has to do with the site traffic or server load or script optimization. So I don’t know what’s going on, and communication from support has become less and less helpful.[/quote]
An Internal 500 error is usually something related to your site, but this notice in the DreamHost status page should explain why lots of things are messed up this evening:

[quote]6:47PM PST March 28th, 2007

We just had a drop in our network for about half our servers… if you can’t access your site or email now, please hold on… we are looking into it and will update this page as soon as we have more details… [/quote]
So there you go. My sites are down too right now.

Peace,
Gene Steinberg
Co-Host, The Paracast
http://www.theparacast.com
[b]My DreamHost Promo Plan—Use the code: [color=#CC0000]ROCKS[b][/color]


#11

I have been running phpBB since mid november as a test, and have had 0 problems.


#12

Yes, that was a total blackout for all my sites. A shame about the hardware failure but they dealt with it quickly.

So my forums has mysteriously been running without internal server errors recently, and I don’t know what exactly I did to fix it. I did do a minor update to the latest version of phpBB, and deleted a 100 or so inactive users (some leftover spambots I hadn’t yet deleted). So to those still having problems, make sure you’re running the latest phpBB version and that your mods are also updated.

Despite that I still suspect it’s the SQL server that was at fault–it sometimes took a long time to finish its tasks, and my SQL logs had hundreds of thousands of slow_query entries. I’m not a SQL wiz by any stretch, but I suspect that those slow queries were delaying the php scripts from finishing and causing excessive stalled sessions of php.cgi on my server, in turn causing the 500 errors. When the 500 errors were bad, I was noticing that they were restarting my SQL server more than once a day. I wonder if something was wrong with it that has been fixed. The traffic on the forum has been about the same, so it wasn’t just simple database strain causing the slowdown.

Then again, I don’t think that small forums have these issues, and I am sure that any good sized phpBB forum is going to tax the server, and a larger forum probably needs a dedicated server. We’ll see what happens when phpBB 3 comes out, hopefully they’ve made it a little less resource-intensive for larger forums.


#13

[quote]Yes, that was a total blackout for all my sites. A shame about the hardware failure but they dealt with it quickly.

So my forums has mysteriously been running without internal server errors recently, and I don’t know what exactly I did to fix it. I did do a minor update to the latest version of phpBB, and deleted a 100 or so inactive users (some leftover spambots I hadn’t yet deleted). So to those still having problems, make sure you’re running the latest phpBB version and that your mods are also updated.

Despite that I still suspect it’s the SQL server that was at fault–it sometimes took a long time to finish its tasks, and my SQL logs had hundreds of thousands of slow_query entries. I’m not a SQL wiz by any stretch, but I suspect that those slow queries were delaying the php scripts from finishing and causing excessive stalled sessions of php.cgi on my server, in turn causing the 500 errors. When the 500 errors were bad, I was noticing that they were restarting my SQL server more than once a day. I wonder if something was wrong with it that has been fixed. The traffic on the forum has been about the same, so it wasn’t just simple database strain causing the slowdown.

Then again, I don’t think that small forums have these issues, and I am sure that any good sized phpBB forum is going to tax the server, and a larger forum probably needs a dedicated server. We’ll see what happens when phpBB 3 comes out, hopefully they’ve made it a little less resource-intensive for larger forums.[/quote]
I don’t want to dissuade you from using the message board system you want, but I tried a phpBB 3 beta a couple of months back, and I wasn’t impressed. I use MyBB for my smaller forums, and I think it is far, far superior to phpBB in terms of standard features and its control panel.

For my largest forum, however, we use vBulletin. At $160 for a user license, it may seem a bit much for a forum, but it runs beautifully here and it’s used by large companies to manage huge boards.

We will also go dedicated, probably late this year if our growth pattern continues. Then DreamHost will let us name our own server :slight_smile:

Peace,
Gene Steinberg
Co-Host, The Paracast
http://www.theparacast.com
[b]My DreamHost Promo Plan—Use the code: [color=#CC0000]ROCKS[b][/color]


#14

Frankenstein? :stuck_out_tongue:

I use Vbulletin as well, though for much smaller forums currently. I needed something that was stable and I knew would last a long time (with support), so I went that route. I’m also very familiar with how to modify and run a Vbulletin board, as I have in the past for others, so that was also part of my decision making process, as I figured if I needed to tweak or cut down on things, I could do it much easier with something I’m familiar with :slight_smile:


#15

[quote]Frankenstein?

I use Vbulletin as well, though for much smaller forums currently. I needed something that was stable and I knew would last a long time (with support), so I went that route. I’m also very familiar with how to modify and run a Vbulletin board, as I have in the past for others, so that was also part of my decision making process, as I figured if I needed to tweak or cut down on things, I could do it much easier with something I’m familiar with[/quote]
Nah, probably “Rockoids,” which is the name of the main alien characters in the series of SciFi novels I wrote with my son. Or “Starship,” which is what I use for my main desktop workstation.

Our vBulletin forum is at http://theparacast.com/forums if you want to see what we did with it. I went with the standard layout, added a different background (my co-host on “The Paracast” calls it “Macintosh blue”), the announcement mod and some minor tweaks. That makes it easy to manage, and it doesn’t hog resources.

There’s been a big spurt of growth in recent weeks, where we went from 5,000 messages to over 6,500 really fast, and average 100-150 messages a day now. So we’ll be at 10,000 shortly if this keeps going. That will be one milestone, but the real achievement will be 100,000 messages.

Understand the forum only started 13 months ago, from nothing.

Peace,
Gene Steinberg
Co-Host, The Paracast
http://www.theparacast.com
[b]My DreamHost Promo Plan—Use the code: [color=#CC0000]ROCKS[b][/color]