osTicket ‘Access denied’ after upgrade to 1.9.14

After uploading/copying the files from the upload directory to a osTicket installation in order to upgrade it to osTicket 1.9.14, I got the error message ‘Access denied’ when trying to login as administrator to finalize the upgrade. Deleting the osTicket session cookie did not help either.

It turned out that the problem was that all files in the distribution ZIP-file had file permission ‘000’ causing the trouble. A ls -l looked like this:

---------- 1 webNNN clientX 5162 jun 11 18:22 login.php
---------- 1 webNNN clientX 980 jun 11 18:22 logo.php
---------- 1 webNNN clientX 714 jun 11 18:22 logout.php
---------- 1 webNNN clientX 1584 jun 11 18:22 main.inc.php
---------- 1 webNNN clientX 930 jun 11 18:22 offline.php
---------- 1 webNNN clientX 2830 jun 11 18:22 open.php

A simple fix was needed. Make sure you are in the upload folder of the unpacked distribution zip when you do this:

chmod 644 `find . -type f -print`

Find all files and directories modified at a specific date in Linux

To find all files modified on, for example, January 21 2013:

find . -newermt 2013-01-21 ! -newermt 2013-01-22

Find out what real code a php eval(gzinflate(base64_decode contains

When you are dealing with a hacked or otherwise compromised website where someone has installed a backdoor or other kinds of malicious code you will often find php files with code packed into non-readable format using php eval, like eval(gzinflate(base64_decode.

To find out what the code does, copy the entire eval code (including “eval(“) into this site: http://ddecode.com/phpdecoder/

You will in the end get a human readable version of the code. Usually nasty stuff.

Magento2 System Upgrade fails via Setup Wizard – Error in Update!

When trying to upgrade Magento from 2.0.2 to 2.0.4 I got a windows saying Update in progress and the last line from the system log says “./composer.json has been updated” then nothing more happens for quite a long time. Finally an error screen displays “Error in Update!”.

To restart the update process while trying to figure out the error i had to manually delete the files var/.maintenance.flag and var/.update_in_progress.flag.

Magento System Upgrade error

Magento System Upgrade error

To make Magento run in Apache we had set php.ini for the web user to memory_limit=1024M and according to instructions, the cron jobs should be called with the -c pointing to the php.ini used by the web server, in our case /etc/php5/fpm/php.ini.

No error message revealed why the update failed but I found out that the php.ini we used for cron (/etc/php5/fpm/php.ini) had a memory_limit=128M. By editing this file and increasing it to 1024M the update worked.

Magento and always_populate_raw_post_data readiness test fails

When running the Magento readiness test it failed with the message that always_populate_raw_post_data should be set to -1 since it is running under php 5.6. Even though I tried different methods of setting it to -1 and I could verify it by calling phpinfo(); Magento still complained.

The way I solved is a bit rough and it required that I had full system administrator access to the machine (which I had because it was a dedicated server). This is how I solved it:

echo "always_populate_raw_post_data=-1" > /etc/php5/mods-available/always_populate_raw_post_data.ini
php5enmod always_populate_raw_post_data
service php5-fpm restart
service apache2 restart

Magento “Cron readiness check failed” solved

First of all, check the Magento guide on this problem here.

In my case, at first I didn’t get any errors in the cron logs in <web-root>/var/log. When running the scripts by hand as the website user I got the not so informing “Cron readiness check failed” in the <web-root>/var/log/update.cron.log.

The reason the “Cron readiness failed” was actually due to some files in the file and directory structure in the web root that can not be written by the cron update script. In my case I used the AWstats package to create website statistics placed in a directory called /stats. This directory and it’s file was not writeable by the cron script, causing it to fail, even though the directory /stats and it’s files are not a part of Magento.

I discovered this by investigating the content of the file var/.update_cronjob_status. In this file you can find important information on why the cron update script is failing.

postgrey whitelisting outlook.com

Greylisting is a way of reducing the amount of incoming spam and virus emails, in addition to other counter measures. Postgrey is a good choice if you are running postfix.

However, to be able to recieve emails from senders using outlook.com you need to whitelist it. This is because outlook.com is using a different host on each try to deliver the mail, causing delays up to hours, days or the mail not being delivered at all within time limits.

Create/edit the file /etc/postgrey/whitelist_clients.local and add:

# outlook.com
/^mail-*\.outbound\.protection\.outlook\.com$/

Then execute:

service postgrey reload

How to export mailman mailinglist subscribers

There is no built-in function to export the mailinglist subscriber in mailman. If you want to migrate to another software or move to another mailman installation you are in need to export the subscribers. I found this to be the easiest way:

  1. Log in to your mailman mailinglist administration panel, like http://hostname/cgi-bin/mailman/admin/mylist
  2. Replace “admin” with “roster” in the URL in the address bar and press enter, like http://hostname/cgi-bin/mailman/roster/mylist
  3. The subscribers are listed in a bulleted list with the @ sign replaced by ” at “. Mark the list in the browser, right click the selection and “Copy”
  4. Open a plain text editor, like notepad if you are running Windows (avoid Word, Wordpad, LibreOffice writer etc since you will also paste a lot of text attributes in those editors, use a plain text editor)
  5. Right click in the editor and select “Paste”
  6. Search and replace, normally by pressing CTRL-H. Search for ” at ” and replace it with “@” (without the “”) and click “Replace all”.
  7. Save the file

If you are moving the subscriber list into another mailman installation:

  1. In the text editor above, right click and “Select all” to select all text (the list of the subscribers) and then right click and “Copy”
  2. In the administration panel of the new mailman installation, click on “Membership management
  3. Click on “Add new members to the list
  4. In the top box where you can type email addresses one per line, right click and “Paste”
  5. Set “Send welcome message to new members” to “No” (unless you really want mailman to send an email welcoming all the subsrcibers you are adding)
  6. Click “Save” in the bottom of the page

Delete old PHP5 session files automatically

If not specified the PHP5 session files will be located in a directory like /var/lib/php5 and the builtin garbage collection will delete them, normally after 24 hours.

But often systems like CMS:es will put session files somewhere else and if the system doesn’t have it’s own garbage collection those session files will be kept forever. The reason can be to let a website visitor click “keep me logged in” or to remember a visitors preferences on the website. This normally doesn’t impose a problem as these session files are very small and the number of them counts in hundreds or possibly a couple of thousand files.

However, I encountered a site that created a very large number of session files and kept them forever. At some point the session files count was in the range of millions of files causing the system to run out of inodes. A solution could be to investigate how the system was handling session files but the internal workings of the site was outside of my responsibility. Another solution was to increase inodes but this will be a temporary solution.

The solution chosen was to create a garbage collection routine for the site in question, that deleted session files older than x days. The oldest session files was over 4 years old. The decision was to delete all session files older than a month (30 days), causing visitors who logged in, or had their preferences set, for more than a month ago had to re-login or set their preferences again on their next visit to the site. This was accomplished by the following command (which is run by cron every night):

find /var/www/somedomain.com/web/var/session/ -type f -mtime +30 -exec rm {} \;