Snapshot stopped working properly

I logged in to the dashboard (network) and snapshots which were running weekly/monthly/daily stopped working. Managed backups stopped working properly since April as well.
I can click and run backups in the dashboard and download them to my computer just fine. But they won't run automatically and even the ones I create manually won't appear in Dropbox like they should.

  • Konstantinos Xenos

    Hi MechKW !

    Since there are multiple issues as it seems on your post let's take it one by one:

    Managed Backups:
    I've created a Managed Backup without any issues, all debug logs where clear and everything worked perfectly fine. You'll find it under the Managed Backups tab with today's date.

    Running Automatically:
    WordPress has WP_Cron to manage and process scheduled jobs but it's not the most on-time solution nor it always works to be honest. WP_Cron requires frequent users to be visiting your website so it's internal clock is updated for scheduled jobs to run on time properly. If a clock misses it's turn it might end up either missing the whole cycle or even multiple jobs trying to run resulting in an overload of resources so many things can be failing.

    The best solution is to disable WP_Cron and actually use your servers to always make sure that the scheduled jobs are running on time. More information can be found on the wp.org dev docs at https://developer.wordpress.org/plugins/cron/hooking-into-the-system-task-scheduler/ .

    Dropbox:
    To be able to debug that I'll have to request your permission to use my testing DropBox account instead, so I'll have to remove yours for the time being until the tests are done. Tell me if that's an option please.

    ---

    Extra Note: I see quite a lot of log files within our snapshot folder so I'll make sure to go through them as well in case I can pinpoint of why you where having issues since April as you say, but this process might take a while, especially since the Managed Backup worked fine at the moment it might have been any kind of updates plugin/server/wp that could affect anything as you can understand.

    Regards,
    Konstantinos

  • MechKW

    Ok cool. I'll wait and see what happens. In the mean time. I'll look into the system task scheduler suggestion. This makes me nervous though and I don't want to replace automatic cron job management with manual management by me that's going to need to be updated constantly.

    One other question. What is the process by which "Automate" initiates a backup? Is it WP Cron or external? Are all managed backups reliant on wp cron or are they externally initiated.
    I get messages like these "Aug 24, 2018 at 4:33am: Error when attempting full site backup" until Automate eventually gives up tyring to back up the site and then I re-enabled it.

    Thanks for looking into this.

  • Konstantinos Xenos

    This makes me nervous though and I don't want to replace automatic cron job management with manual management by me that's going to need to be updated constantly.

    A server side cron doesn't need an update basically. It's the other way around. A WP_Cron is what needs 'constant update' to read the clock and that's why it requires visitors. A server cron will actually 'check your website every 5 minutes' or at any time you will point it to run. So that acts as an 'automated visitor' let's say and the internal clock will always be updated and correct.

    One other question. What is the process by which "Automate" initiates a backup? Is it WP Cron or external? Are all managed backups reliant on wp cron or are they externally initiated.
    I get messages like these "Aug 24, 2018 at 4:33am: Error when attempting full site backup" until Automate eventually gives up tyring to back up the site and then I re-enabled it.

    On a minified explanation of https://premium.wpmudev.org/docs/getting-started/hub-automate/ . Automate will demand a backup ( this is an extra backup let's say and has nothing to do with any other backups that you have set via Snapshot ) before any updates and there are 2 processes after that. If the backup fails it will retry, but on 6 consecutive fails it will disable itself completely.

    ---

    I will log my dropbox account and see what's going on on that part as well and get back to you with a full rundown as soon as possible.

    Regards,
    Konstantinos

  • Konstantinos Xenos

    Hi again MechKW I'm back with some really interesting findings.

    First of let me say that I've added our account as an Administrator to virtue.studio as I needed access to a 'Tools' menu so I could check all the cronjobs.

    Dropbox:
    I've checked your dropbox account and even though it seems 'connected' it might as well have lost the Authorization so could you "Force Authorize" once more just to be sure on that part?

    I've added one of my own accounts and tested with a Snapshot as well and it didn't upload as you mention -> this lead me to the next part so read carefully please.

    --

    Now this is the interesting part. All of the cron-jobs are In queue and most / if not all without even showing when they are supposed to run. This means that they might as well be in queue indefinitely. Also I tried manually starting a snapshot cron-job without success. This means that something is either breaking crons or for some reason the access is limited as there are no errors returning a s well.

    Now I see in your debug.log some "<unknown file>:<unknown line> " throwing errors that I can't be sure of course from where they are originating but it's surely unusual for a php log to not being able to identify which file throws the error. There are also plenty of Divi related errors.

    One extra notice is that you're running some plugins that are monitoring everything ( i.e. activity monitor etc that might be halting crons or doing all kinds of tricky stuff behind the scenes ).

    Unfortunately this leaves me no choice to request for a theme / plugin compatibility test. This basically means that you'll have to disable all plugins and leave only Snapshot running to test, as well as reverting to a bundled theme ( TwentySeventeen for example ).

    This will narrow down the errors as it will be a 'plain' WordPress installation with no other plugin interfering.

    This is not an easy task by any means and it's always preferable to be done on a staging/dev environment and not on your live if that's a possibility.

    To sum it up. Is it possible to create a staging environment for me and I can do all the tests needed myself for you as I'll be working freely without fearing of breaking your live website.

    If not I'd need server-side Access to create full backups via the server myself and then proceed on checking anything on the live site ( of course it would be best to keep your own server-side full backups as well ).

    You can send me the information needed to make the changes for you privately through our contact form: https://premium.wpmudev.org/contact/#i-have-a-different-question by following this example:

    Subject: "Attn: Konstantinos Xenos"
    
    - Staging Admin login ( if Multisite please provide Super Admin details ):
    Admin Username:
    Admin Password:
    Login URL: 
    
    - Staging FTP credentials
    Hostname:
    Username:
    Password:
    Port:
    Key-File ( and password ) if needed
    
    - Server Admin ( CPanel / Plesk )
    Username:
    Password:
    Login URL:
    
    - Link back to this thread for reference
    - Any other relevant URLs -or- information regarding the issue that was not included in this thread

    Regards,
    Konstantinos

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