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Thousands of session files being written to disk

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  • [Forum] Thousands of session files being written to disk

    We have just acquired a new vBulletin 4 forum that has something weird going on. The site only runs VB. The site normally has a few hundred people online at one time. For some reason, vBulletin is writing tens of thousands of 0 byte session files to the disk and I've got no idea why. We run several VB 4 boards and have not seen this behavior anywhere else. The session table IS being used (We can see records pop in and out as time goes on) so I'm very confused as to what is happening. I have googled, dug through the admincp settings, asked colleagues, and we still can't figure out what is going on. It's almost as if every single page load is generating a new session file on the disk. Luckily this is on a SSD or the process would be killing us.

    Any ideas for us?

  • #2
    vBulletin doesn't write session files to the disk. It stores session information in the database. However PHP can be configured to automatically create session file for every visitor.
    Translations provided by Google.

    Wayne Luke
    The Rabid Badger - a vBulletin Cloud demonstration site.
    vBulletin 5 API


    • #3
      I understand and know that VB writes sessions to the database, which is why I mentioned it in my first post.

      We run a rather large network of VB installs on our servers - Each site has the exact same PHP configuration. This is the only one that is constantly writing session files to disk. I guess I was hoping there was a flag somewhere that would cause VB to do this (Since we have no idea what the previous owners did) that I had never seen. It was a long shot but worth a try.


      • #4
        Found the culprit (Thanks for confirming that VB will never write sessions to disk).
        Did a recursive grep for 'session_start()' and found a facebook.php file in includes/facebook that was initializing sessions on every page load. I guess we need to do a clean up of this site to see what else is hiding in there...


        • #5
          facebook uses PHP sessions, and there isn't much we can do about that. If you have facebook connect enabled, then it would be on ever page.

          You could limit it to logged in users, or users who want to register.


          • #6
            Yes - Digging into this this morning and this particular site does have Facebook connect enabled. It doesn't make sense, however, for it to need to write a new (empty) session file for every single page load. When we've got 25M+ page views /month on this one site, that's just nuts.

            How do you suggest "limiting it to logged in users or users who want to register"?


            • #7
              You could create a plugin, that disables facebook connect (the setting's in the AdminCP) for non users, when not on the register page(s). You'd want to go to to get more help with this.


              widgetinstance 262 (Related Topics) skipped due to lack of content & hide_module_if_empty option.