I created a clone of my site in  /development. All appeared to be going fine until I went to set up cron. Then I notice it refuses to take me to the core settings. Anything I click in terms of settings just shows me the admincp/ page. If I use /development/admincp/setting/edit/module-id_core/ I can see the core settings but making a change there and hitting "Save Changes" takes me back to admincp/ and the changes are not recoded. If I try a search on any settings and select and option provided fpr example "cron" it takes me back to admincp/. If I go to maintenance and select "Find Missing Settings" it lists admincp, attachment, contact and then gets stuck in a loop and never completes. Just keeps trying and saying waiting but never goes anywhere. If I go to Appearance>Themes it will let me create a clone of a theme but will not allow me to Edit any of the provided themes, even the clone.

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JohnJr

What do you mean you cloned your site. If you just copied all the files then there are some addition step if I remember correctly.

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What do you mean you cloned your site. If you just copied all the files then there are some addition step if I remember correctly.

Precisely what I did was went to cpanel and said compress all files in folder. I then created a development folder and told cpanel to move them there. I then extracted them, adjusted .htaccess to point to it and tested development site in the subfolder and it worked the same as the main folder. With this I had a mirror of my files using the same database. I then used phpadmin to make an exact copy of the database. I then adjusted the setting file to point to the new database. Tested and all was good. On the new development folder I then upgraded. All seemed to go well, went through all the checks, met all the criteria and all was good. Visited upgraded site and things appeared to have upgraded well. 

 

Then I got to the cron setup for the upgraded site. That is where the issues started. Here I was not given access to any of the core settings. Strange. So then I tried a direct link to core /edit/module-id_core. That got me into the core settings but it would not allow me to edit anything.

 

I then thought well lets go to the themes and work on that as there were some obvious theme issues I needed to work on with the upgrade. There it would not allow me to open/Edit any theme. So I thought lets create a clone theme. I did that per their instructional video. That part went well. Went to try and edit it and still no access to it either. 

 

I did reach out to support for the initial upgrade but they were slow to respond. They finally did respond and sent me to the instructions they would use for the upgrade. They said it would be $120 for them to do it but they did not address my other issues of needing to do a test site run first, which I need to do as I can not have my main site down for long as I make a living with it. Also, I knew I would need to make several theme modifications and did not want a jumbled incosistent site active while I was working through the process. Also, given the time frame of their initial response that was of significant concern as I could not be down for days on end without a final working product timeline in sight given my income is dependent on it. Also, I was concerned as my host has said their changeover to php7.4  would be coming soon and did not want to get caught in the middle of upgrading the site while they changed php versions.

 

This is not to bemoan phpfox. I recognize they seem to be a small outfit. As a small business myself I understand the challenges that go along with administration, coding, upgrades, etc. Unlike other users who I have seen leave negative comments that they need to hire more people, which is easy for people to say that do not manage serious business budgets, I understand the complexities in doing so and providing more robust support.There are MANY things phpfox could improve on but I understnad as a small business you have to pick your battles and weigh your options/alternatives. I too am in that boat daily. I appreciate their providing this forum so members can help members. That is precisely why I use their product so my members can help my other members, thus freeing up my administrative obligations. I also commend them for not censoring their content from the negative comments thus giving a false impression all is great all the time. 

One thing I would like to see is a core set of serious experienced users have their own private group that has a pay to play model. Got a problem, offering $?? to help, based on an honor system of payment after soultion tested. Something similar to what I did in my favicon post after finding no help but knowing others could benefit: Favicons » Social Networking Script (phpfox.com)

 

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JohnJr

Ok, If I remember correctly and I do think they fixed the code issue but this is what I remember.  If you plan on copying you files to make a duplicate site under the development subdomain I did this.

First, I zip the files on my server and downloaded them and opened up the site in dreamweaver (any editing program should work) then I did a find and replace for mydomain.com and replace with development.mydomain.com.  Then I zip it back and uploaded it to my develoment site.

Then I downloaded my database as a sql file to my computer and opened it in notebook and again find and replace mydomain.com with development.mydomain.com and zip it up and uploaded to my development site.

After those where unzipped I went to the setting file (if you don't know what that is private message me and I will tell you).  There you must put in your new database information and user as well as setting up the core host making sure it says development.mydomain.com.

 

Hopefully that helps and I am not missing any steps.  I have done it several times with no issues.  It saved me lots of times compared to redoing all the settings for the different groups.

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Ok, If I remember correctly and I do think they fixed the code issue but this is what I remember.  If you plan on copying you files to make a duplicate site under the development subdomain I did this.

[quote=86514]

First, I zip the files on my server and downloaded them and opened up the site in dreamweaver (any editing program should work) then I did a find and replace for mydomain.com and replace with development.mydomain.com.  Then I zip it back and uploaded it to my develoment site. 

This is essentially what happened when I did a copy to the develpment folder via cpanel. The upgrade part took care of the domain swap.

Then I downloaded my database as a sql file to my computer and opened it in notebook and again find and replace mydomain.com with development.mydomain.com and zip it up and uploaded to my development site.

This is what happened when duplicating the database via phpadmin. The  upgrade then did a swap to the /development where relevant. Checked there and all seemed to be good.

After those where unzipped I went to the setting file (if you don't know what that is private message me and I will tell you).  There you must put in your new database information and user as well as setting up the core host making sure it says development.mydomain.com.

Checked setting file and this also appears to be properly handled with /development/ via the upgrade.

Hopefully that helps and I am not missing any steps.  I have done it several times with no issues.  It saved me lots of times compared to redoing all the settings for the different groups.

Comments did help in verifying files but I think the upgrade did handle all those steps pretty well. My general impression is that it may be a permission issue somewhere as it is just not giving me access to the core app. I can go into it via direct URL but even then it will not allow saves, which seems to validate it is a permission issue somewhere. If I am correct the question would be where? 

Last update on March 8, 2021 by Lewis.
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JohnJr

Lewis,

I didn't put the location of the file on purpose as you never know what evil is lurking.  Also, I am probably wrong but I don't understand how an upgrade goes through the code and changes it to the development site unless you did the find and replace in the database first, and replace mydomain.com to development.mydomain (unless maybe you are using a subfolder instead of a subdomain).  The reason I say this is because a upgrade looks at the database first for information about the site before it runs the upgrade and if you have the wrong info in the first place how does it know to change all the locations with the word development?

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It is a subfolder .com/development not a subdomain development.site.com

 

I was not thinking about the file being a potential risk as it was out of phpfox' own info but in case it is I have edited my post. No need in making intrusion easier.

 

Also, it should be noted I really do not want to change all the domain info as my goal is to run the upgraded test version on the clone dev folder and get it fully tweaked and then move it back to the main directory once completed. The clone of the original worked before the upgrade. I could be wrong in my thinking but it seems like runing a find and replace in the way mentioned could risk things not aligning back up when I move it back over. I did a code review and it was like 35K instances when considering the cache and static files. Looking beyond those everything looked good. Also concerned by doing that to the database as it could effect things for example it would change the admin email, html template data, etc.

 

Of all the things I looked at nothing seemed like it would effect permission issues, which it seems like the iusse more likey is in my novice view of the backend platform and database.

 

I was thinking now that I have a new database from my original cloned database that supposedly has been upgraded that maybe I might FTP a new site and running a new install with new database and when that is done simply do a database swap. If the architecture is the same then the swap should work it seems and in the meantime if it is a permission issues that would be taken care of via a new install.

 

I may be completely off in everything I am thinking. phpFox said they wanted $60 to added support. I asked them if they do an upgrade would at least a short time of support be provided to make sure all is smooth. My biggest concern really is they will want to do an upgrade on the live site not the subfolder site. What I already know is that there are some significant templae changes that have to be addressed before I can go live with the upgrade. Being that my users are on almost constantly I can't have them engaging with something that is jacked up until I can figure out how to get all things fixed. I have asked phpFox if they would be willing to do the upgrade on the dev folder version so I can get the template in order first. I am awaiting their repsonse. They said without paid support I am a low priority. I do not mind paying for the support or upgrade or even an upgrade twice if they would do it on the dev site and then help with the move to the live environment but right now I am hesitant in their support as they are not really answering my questions, not answering them well, or there is significant delays between answers.

 

If I can't get this worked out I will move it to a dedicated server where I can lock out any upgrades to php or mysql and never do any upgrades of phpFox. I am pretty happy with the way it is now I am just in a bind because the server it currently is on says they are going to upgrade php and I have no say in that matter. My preference is to do the upgrade and future proof myself but if trying to future proof myself kills my business being future proof is irrelevant. (Rock > ME < Hardspot).

 

 

Last update on March 9, 2021 by Lewis.
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JohnJr

Did you already upgrade to V4?  Because V2-V3 is very different with Apps instead of modules.

Just FYI I didn't put my development site in a folder and used a subdomain instead.  The main reason was I didn't want to take a change and accidentally write over, delete or upload over my main site.  Having it in a folder in your main site seems like a accident waiting to happen.

First, if you already have a live site you can't just copy over your main site with the new files in your development site.  You need to run the update, because any new improvement that are added in the code would be reference in the database (blocks, modules, apps etc).  I have hundreds of hacks and changes.  Thousands of lines of CSS changes as well as modules name changes.  The best way I found for  testing and upgrading my main site is.

Use Subdomain for Development site which is in it own directory and own site in Dreamweaver/Website Editor Software.

Upgrade my Development and review all bug fixes and improvements through

Log File 4.83 (use this in a database query to compare my changed files to files they have upgraded.  If they changed a file that I have already hack/changed I will review to see if my changes are still necessary.  If they still need changing, I will add my hack and save that file in newly made site in dreamweaver called Dev_4.83_upgrade.  I will uploaded these files one by one on my development site to check if everything is working (I document each file with what I changes and why and where it affect on the site specifially like top left block in blogs...etc.)  After everything is complete and works correctly on the development site, I will do an upgrade on my main site.  I will then take that site Dev_4.83_upgrade and copy that entire folder to a new folder called MySite_4.83_Upgrade and ftp all the change files.  This will about 50-100 files only.  Remember I already upgrade my main site and this files where already upgraded under the development site but my hack were checked and added.

Release Notes (use this to check the features and whether they affect my hacks/changes.)

Upgrading my site their phpfox works really good now.  I add all my CSS through CSS Editor and that works perfect.  I have added/changes hundreds of phrases and that is not affected by the upgrade either.

I have done this process several times in the past two years and it has been working great.  Although, this is not a live site but I don't think there will be an issue.  Do the upgrade on the development site...do the testing.  Then if everything is good, close down the main site for a few hours.  Do an upgrade, then upload the new files which takes 5 minutes at most.  So I am estimating my upgrades to take less than 30 minutes.  The longest time will be change folders to 777 for the upgrade and changing them back after upgrade.

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Yeah, phpFox said I was on V3. I am working on the upgrade in a development folder. 

 

I understand the caution of folder vs. subdomain. It was just easier in the folder and I thought it was going to be a relatively quick and painless process. I am always super careful on chnages. In fact when I make changes I never overwrite. I disable a file by tweaking its name and the upload the new. That makes reversion easy and allows for easy testing between versions.

 

I like your method of managing upgrades. I use Excel to note all changes keep multiple copies and note with specific details on what the change does and specific lines of code changed. I use Dreamweaver to develop with but I use FileZilla to FTP my stuff. I find there is more control that way and gives me better insight to the server, permissions, changes, etc.

 

I definitely agree with doing a dev site and not upgrading a live site until happy. Lots of headaches when a live update dosen't work out. I would be in a major bind right now if I had went for a live upgrade, which is why I hope support will work with my development upgrade instead if I end up needing to use them. Live upgrading is just a heavy risk to take even with full backups of everything.

 

Oringinally I cloned my site and did the upgrade which is working well except the whole access to core settings and the theme editing issue. Like I said before I really believe this is a permission issue somewhere.

 

Today I created a new development folder (renamed my orinignal upgrade to developmentA) and started with a fresh install, whole 9 yards with new database and everything. That went relatively well but I do see some format issues. However the access to core is working on the new clean install, which seems to validate it is a permission issue again somewhere on the upgrade. Then I tried to swap databases in the server settings file and that did not work.

 

At least with using FileZilla I can do a direct comparrisons of the file permission structure a file at a time side by side. That is a long haul though as there are lots of files.

 

Tomorrow I think I will create a clone instead of using the cpanel method and will do a direct download of all files and then upload using FTP to a new dev folder. If it is a permission issue that may fix it. I will do this on a 3rd dev folder so I will have 3 side by sides and can compare the differences. I wish I could say this was a fun learning experience as I do enjoy this kind of work but given it is a mission ciritical site I will have to defer to interesting over fun. The road to success is always paved with failures. We learn and grow through the process.

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JohnJr

You are changing the permission of the files for the upgrade and then changing them back according to phpfox instructions?

Dreamweaver doesn't take long as I zip everything when I move stuff.  I zip on my server when I need to download the entire site to check development.mysite.com and when I upload it back I zip it up again.  What took hours before takes less than 5 minutes now.  The only files I don't zip are my hack fixes uploading to my main site.  But since that site only consists of fixed files I just upload the entire site to my server.

Excel is so perfect for changes.  Have tabs for AdminCP, Groups, CSS, and Code...  Then you can use comments to store code, CSS, or additional information that would take up too much space on the worksheet.  Did I tell you I love comments!!!

I wanted to put everything in a database like code stuff but excel lets me change the font color so red font represents something I remove and green font represents something I added.  Grey font represents something I commented it or greyed out in PHP.  I use a lot of colored fonts to represent warning on upgrades to check to issues with hacks on new upgrades already done...saves a lot of time on writing explanations.

Good luck and hopefully this gives you some ideas :)

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Thanks, also some good pointers there. I love comments and love colors. If someone looked at books I read before the internet was commonplace they would swear I was the one who developed color coding of code that is now widely used. My wife has laughed at me for decades on my incessant use of highlighters when I read/study. She thinks it's funny how virtually every line is highlighted. She sees using highlighters (the way most people do) as a method to highlight importance whereas I see using coloration and highlighting as a method of organizing thought.

I did follow the upgrade guide on permissions. It may be that initial clone however had permission issues not directly related to the upgrade permissions. 

I initially tried the zip/unzip method similar to what you described but still had issues. I do not understand why but sometimes direct file transfers work better. I have been told that intelligent FTP programs can sometimes better understand when a file needs to be transferred in binary mode, which can have an impact on permissions. My site's are rather large and have tons of user generated content so this of course does have the drawback of elongated file transfer times, which I am in the middle of now. If it however corrects the perceived permission problem then the time lost (while doing other tasks in the meantime) will be more than made up for on the savings used to troubleshoot.