Web Edition Tips

The quest to get Web Edition apps running properly on my web server is frustrating.  Every server is different it seems and finding info is truly a PITA.  I have to thank some timely tips from the fine folks at Real Software.  Hopefully you might find these helpful.

Problem #1:  My apps were never shutting down on the server.  I logged into my Plesk account this morning and discovered about 30 cgi processes running for one app I’ve been working on.  Only 1 other person knows of this app so having that many processes was disturbing and obviously not right.

Solution:  My Apache configuration timeout value wasn’t set properly.  I had to create a vhost.conf file and set the Timeout 300.  This let Apache quit the app after 5 minutes.  Of course, for my Plesk account that meant SSH’ing into the file system and via command line do all that (not my strongpoint).

 

Problem #2: Partially because of problem #1, above, I’ve had to manually kill the processes when I upload new versions of the app on to the web server.  That’s not so bad, but when it’s starting up again you sometimes get a Server Error 500 resulting in an error that goes something like this:

Application launched, but unable to connect using port xxx

Hit refresh and the app starts properly but that’s not cool telling your client that what they have to do.

Solution:  A temporary fix comes from the NUG list where Darryl Snover added one line to the CGI file that Real Studio generates.  On line 286 of the appname.cgi file, add a ‘sleep(1)’.  So this becomes:

system(“/$appname_escaped –port”) == 0 or return “$!”;

}

sleep(1);

return 1;

Hopefully you find these tips useful.

 

3 thoughts on “Web Edition Tips

  1. Yes, web edition is still a hard thing if you find errors. Today I had a web app not working silently on a linux box. The reason is that there is a firewall blocking it and I just found it by checking what services are in the background. Now the server has the firewall disabled and the web app runs…

    Maybe RS could release a check list for possible reasons on failure?

    • It’s a great idea, but unfortunately, the list will be long and varied. Each server is it’s own unique PITA. The problems I have on my shared account through BlueHost are wildly different from those on my Debian Plesk VPS account.

      Heck, I have an app that runs great in FireFox and Chrome on the Mac. Won’t run at all in Safari from the server even though my client runs it all day in Safari and I can run it in debug locally using Safari. I have no idea why I can’t run it while he can.

      The other issue to overcome is that troubleshooting apps on the server you may or may not have complete control over is difficult. Desktop apps are easy because Microsoft, Apple, and Linux (for the most part) have settled on ‘standards’ for their apps.

      My experience has also been that local debug apps (standalone) behave slightly different than from the CGI apps you run on the server. Debug on Mac, run on Linux, throw in Safari, FireFox, Chrome, and Internet Explorer and you have a very big, hairy, difficult task of narrowing issues down.

  2. There should be something like a person on realsoftware side wich can setup the WebApp hosting to be working correctly (as were all paying for a product thats hard to install, were developers remember not Installers or aldo di apache man). Would be fair to me.
    Anyway this is not the case, also there is no docs (yet?!?) to tell what minimum apache settings are needed (general). Im sure its gonna workout someday to be working as it should but how long would this take?

    For now im not gonna bypass the cgi (and edit it as you did). Im gonna wait and waste some money (i already spend on WE). Desktop is still workingout ok, WE is not yet deployment proof (as i find its state now).

    My we apps ive made, are working finally thanks to you all (not edited the .cgi).

    Anyway, i love to read these blogs..;) happy developing..

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