Strange behaviour before upgrade & worse afterwards

I had a problem before upgrading Wordpress in that I was unable to create new sites on my multisite network. My setup was the Wordpress 3.1, Buddypress latest version (I think it was 1.29, but the one prior to the new upgrade) & my theme is the Blogs-MU theme from WPMU Dev. It seems that whenever I try to create a site it appears to create it but then shows unable to connect to the database when trying to access the site. I began to deactivate all plugins but that wasn't helping. Then came the upgrade announcement so I upgraded in the hope that would solve my problem. I have also upgraded Buddypress & all the relevant plugin upgrades that are published. Now, I not only can create a site but my existing sites are not showing up either. When viewing the list of sites in the community it shows the correct number created but none of them are there. I have tried to access them by entering their url and they are there & working properly so there is no problem with the actual sites, just they don't show up in the main site. I have contacted my host where I have complete server access anyway right down to control of what operating system I use after I noticed when I try to access PHPAdmin to the database it asks for the username and password even though I am logged in to cPanel. They corrected this problem and so I would have envisaged that had solved the problem but sadly not. Any advice would be appreciated.

UPDATE: Incidentally I don't believe this is a problem with Wordpress/Buddypress or plugins etc, I believe it is a server problem. Can anyone shed any light on how though? The reason I say this is because I have added another Multisite on the same server to test it & cannot add sites on that one either. The setup is the same and IS correctly setup for multisites as the original one has created at least a dozen sites on it previously. It seems the problem may have occurred at the time the connection failed to PHPAdmin. Now I have resolved that problem is there something else I may need to do to ensure the database connects properly? Thanks again,


  • Philip John

    Hiya Mark,

    It does sound like you have some serious issues with your install there.

    Are you getting any specific errors?

    What you really need to do is go back to basics in order to isolate the problem. First off, de-activate all your plugins and revert to the default theme.

    If you're still getting the issues you should get access to your PHP error logs to see if there are any specific errors that may indicate where the issues are.


  • Atkotech

    Thanks Phil. Yeah I disabled the main features such as Buddypress & all it's plugins. My only thoughts before I continued down that route is that the first network has a number of plugins added but the second one is a new network. The only similarity is that they both use the same theme are network sites & both use Buddypress. Aside from that the obvious one is they are both on the same server which is why I thought it may be server related. My host inadvertently suspended my account which they admitted was incorrect and could not establish for what reason and immediately reactivated it. Whilst it was suspended, although I could log in to my cPanel I could not access the databases. When I reported this to them that is when they said your account appears to be suspended but we don't know why, we will correct that for you. They 'reactivated' it & now when I access cPanel & go to phpadmin I CAN now go to my database without the need for a username & password as it was before locked during suspension. I'm concerned that their actions at that point has done something and not anything else such as plugins etc. As I say the similarities between the 2 networks are minimal really aside from those main features & the server itself.

  • Atkotech

    Hi Phil,

    No sorry the setup is not like that. I have my own VPS & the two are both setup on the same server but under separate hosting accounts so they are both setup under the root for their own account. As far as setup is concerned it is as follows;

    Server Operating System: Linux Environment runnng latest Centos 5.X
    Being that this is a VPS I have complete access to the server & use WHM, cPanel & also Webmin.
    With reference to Wordpress I am currently using the latest version on both Networks.
    Both are obviously setup for Multi-Network running.
    Obviously totally unconnected and using separate databases.
    They both use Buddypress & the MU Blog theme
    The second one only has 14 plugins where the original one has a lot more.
    I shall disable all plugins and on the second one and work my way through it to see if that changes anything but I still cannot help wondering if this is server related. It just seems too much of a coincidence that this started to happen when the account was mistakenly locked and now ever since then I have been unable to create sites. I should also point out that I am pretty sure I only created the second multisite SINCE the account was locked.

  • Philip John

    I have my own VPS & the two are both setup on the same server but under separate hosting accounts

    Okay, that's good and thanks for the extra info.

    Let us know how you get on with those checks, too.

    I'm wondering whether your install may have been compromised and that's what triggered the account suspension.

    Have a look in your users area of the dashboard and make sure the count of admin accounts is the same as the number of admins actually listed for a start.

    You might also want to try running WP Security Scan to check for vulnerabilities.


  • Atkotech

    On both accounts though? Wouldn't that be too much of a coincidence as they are unconnected albeit on the same server? Wouldn't that be more likely, dare I say it that the server was compromised rather than Wordpress, although that in itself would be highly unlikely given the security on it. Incidentally I do have the 'Ultimate Security Checker' plugin running on the first Network so that should highlight any such issues and my Network is rated 'A' by the plugin which indicates it is secure. I'll check on those plugins on the second network and update you. Thanks for all your help, Phil.

  • Atkotech

    I definitely don't think it is that plugin nor any other as far as I can see as I have disabled them all. Now I have installed TWO more test networks on my server and they cannot create sites either. One of my themes needed updating and after I updated it I then opted to update the network of sites on my original network and I got an error as follows;

    "Warning! Problem updating . Your server may not be able to connect to sites running on it. Error message: A valid URL was not provided."

    I am convinced it has to be the server because why would existing sites not show up now? What absolute server requirements are needed? Maybe the hosting company disabled something by mistake. I have root access to my server so I can check any necessary requirements.


    P.S I decided to check everything against your install guide too for multisite and your guide clearly states that the public_html folder and wp_content directory should both have permissions set to 777. Mine is set to 755 for the public_html and if I try to make it 777 I lose everything. I get an error stating possible misconfiguration contact webmaster. Changing back to 755 and the network returns. Could this in any way be connected? It seems strange how I was able to create sites before but not any more yet I'm sure these haven't been altered since the network setup.

  • Mason


    As we haven't heard back from you we're going to assume the problem
    was sorted out and mark this ticket as resolved.

    If it wasn't resolved, or you have any more questions related to this
    thread please feel free to post them below and tick the 'Mark as Not
    Resolved (re-open)' box below the post area (or else we'll miss it!)

    Otherwise, thanks for using the forums, and for being a member of WPMU
    DEV, it's a pleasure to help you out and we look forward to being of
    assistance in the future.


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