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Blank Page trouble related to lack of understanding.

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Forum User
Registered: 11/13/12
Posts: 35
Location:Indiana US
Without warning GoDaddy changed servers on me as I awoke one morning to find BlogDogIt.com (one of my Geeklog installs) missing without a trace.

I have a Wordpress and a Zencart site hosted in the same space and they were up and running (thanks to the fact they were GoDaddy 'Click-to-install' apps.) My home-brew static sites were up and running but both my GL_1.8.1 and GL_2.1.0 sites were presenting with only blank pages.

A check of this website for support on my troubles seemed to suggest the problem was "path" related and the suggestion to review the "Blank page" faq was the most common advice.

This of course was no surprise since the unannounced change of server foisted upon me via the shared hosting provider necessarily meant a change of server paths.

I was quick to catch-on that the information was wrong in my sites' configurations and promptly entered the database(s) via phpmyadmin and changed those paths to their new values.

I struggled for far too long trying to get things working and I knew I had to be missing something. As soon as I was able to get some errors to log I began to see errors such as the following:

Text Formatted Code
Unable to unserialize a:5:{i:0;s:10:"contribute";i:1;s:6:"search";i:2;s:5:"stats";i:3;s:9:"directory";i:4;s:7:"plugins";i:5;s:5:"prefs";} for Core:menu_elements

The whole concept of "serialized strings in mysql databases" was completely foreign to me but turned out to be the root of my problem.

The data in my database entries for the various paths would appear similar to:

s:17:"/path/to/geeklog/" and what I did not know was that the "s:17:" portion meant that there are seventeen (17) characters in the string presented between the double quotes.

So when I updated the path entry to s:17:"/NEWpath/to/geeklog/" I was shooting myself in the foot. Once I got wise and corrected it to read s:20:"/NEWpath/to/geeklog/" everything started behaving like expected.

I might have saved myself a whole lot of trouble had I only employed the handy/dandy migration assistant in the beginning (but that would fly in the face of my desire to live and learn.)

Speaking of living and learning: In the midst of this exercise I upgraded my beloved GL_1.8.1 site to GL_2.1.2 and am pleased to report that it can indeed be done. It is not for the feint of heart but I believe I can add another geek stripe to my sleeve for the effort Wink

I just wanted to share this experience for the record, in the hopes it might help some other Geeklog fan who knows just enough to be dangerous (like me.) Twisted

Status: offline


Site Admin
Registered: 09/27/05
Posts: 1468
Thanks for sharing your experience.

For those who may run into a similar issue when your hosting environment gets updated (or you update a Geeklog plugin or something) you can use the Geeklog Rescue Tool included with the install files that allows you to change the critical configuration values (along with disabling plugins and blocks).
One of the Geeklog Core Developers.

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