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Blank Screens

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  • Blank Screens

    Thanks to Floris (aka xiphoid) for this FAQ:

    The last month or so I have seen several threads/posts on the support forums with questions and complaints about 'getting blank screens'. There are several simple solutions which I like to point out here, and I think it might be handy to have a reference point, since I did not notice something like this topic appearing in any of the FAQ's.

    Please note that several links in this FAQ redirect to a members only area

    !! First of all, make sure you always run the latest version of vBulletin to be sure you are compatible !!
    ! You can get the latest version from the Members Area !

    !! Secondly, it would be smart to always turn off the forum when you are testing, upgrading or installing !!
    ! You can turn your forum off through the Admin Control Panel > vBulletin Options !

    !! Thirdly, and it would be smart to always have a backup of a working version of your files / database !!
    ! For more information about backing up your database click here !

    You moved your forum from one web server to another or you or your hosting provider upgraded to PHP version 4.2.x.
    When you surf the forums it displays blank pages or blank pages from time to time.

    Your (new) hosting provider might have PHP version 4.2.x installed. You can upload a file called 'phpinfo.php' to your web server in a test directory with content:
    PHP Code:
    <?php phpinfo(); ?>
    If you then run it in your browser, you will see the version of PHP used.

    Upgrade your vBulletin to version 2.2.6 (or higher) it is made to be compatible with PHP 4.2 and works with register_globals turned off (and on)
    (If you think you didn't 'move' your forum properly from one web server to another, here is the manual on how to move a vBulletin forum)
    (For upgrade instructions for vBulletin 2.2.x, click here

    You did not change anything to your forum, and everything is running fine. You get a lot of visitors, and from time to time your visitors run into a blank page. (And you are running vBulletin 2.2.x)

    It is possible that your hosting provider has set a certain limit to the amount of allowed open files on the web server. You could check the error log, it might say [time stamp] [crit] [client IP] (24)Too many open files: /path/to/some/file

    Contact your hosting provider and ask him what the limit is (if any) and if they would be so kind to raise it.

    You just installed or upgraded a version of vBulletin and the installation (or upgrade) went fine. But when you try to access your forum or the admin/ directory you see a blank page.

    Some files like .php are not properly set or recognized by the ftp client, and therefor are uploaded in binary transfer mode. This is causing some files to display blank pages instead of being processed.

    Re-upload the file that you try to open (index.php or admin/index.php) and make sure the transfer mode is set to ASCII. Make sure you do not have a white space before <?php and after ?> in your config.php file (or maybe any other you might have edited)

    You just uploaded all your files to the web server (fresh installation) but you can not access the install.php from the admin/ directory. It shows up as a blank file.

    It looks like you forgot to rename the to config.php (don't forget to enter the MySQL database information)

    Rename to config.php and try running install.php again.
    Make sure you do not have a white space before <?php and after ?> in your config.php file (or maybe any other you might have edited)
    (click here for installation instructions and an explanation about config.php)

    During installation something went wrong and your pages ended up with blank screens.

    If none of the above tips helped, then it could be that your database was corrupt.

    Run a repair and optimize on your database to fix the problem.
    (For more information about database corruption, repair and prevention, click here)
    (For more information about optimizing vBulletin / MySQL, click here)

    Everything works fine, you did not make any changes to your database or web files, and some users who use Netscape as browser complain about blank screens (or only the background color).

    It seems that Netscape is horrible with rendering tables and it just takes a really long time to display them (and in some occasions it doesn't even render it at all; and only displays a background color).

    Inform them to upgrade to the latest version of Netscape, or change browser to (i.e.) Internet Explorer or Mozilla.

    There have been some modifications to your templates and/or files. And now the pages show up blank.

    It is possibly that you have made an error while source code hacking or while modifying your template.

    Revert the templates to original and/or re-upload a clean (un hacked) version of the file.php (where file.php is the file that shows the blank page). If you did a source code hack, make sure you uploaded the file in ASCII transfer mode.

    You get blank pages after installation or upgrading vBulletin and none of the above helped to fix it.

    You probably have a corrupt template set.

    Assuming you have the latest version of vBulletin installed (or upgraded to it)..
    Download the vBulletin zip file from the members area and unpack it. Upload the to your web server and also upload upgrade18.php to your web server.
    Goto your browser and from the admin directory run upgrade18.php?step=2
    Let it only run that and then just close your browser. (Don't continue with the rest of the on screen instructions)

    Even after all these great hints, you still get blank screens instead of a page. Then you can click here to search for threads from users with the same problem. If you didn't find a solution, then you can click here to start a new thread in which you can explain your problem.

    (I want to thank John for helping me screening this FAQ for errors and inaccuracies and I want to thank eva2000 for the great links in the signature)
    John Percival

    Artificial intelligence usually beats real stupidity ;)

  • #2

    I hope everybody has some use for this.
    Thank you John for posting it. Appriciated.


    • #3
      I had a problem with blank pages appearing on my web site for no apparent reason. I posted on this site and followed the advice given. In the end the answer was down to something I had done as follows:-

      I updated to the latest version but this did not solve the problem.

      My son suggested looking at the templates. I had changed the templates to suit my site but I found when I put the templates back to the default that the board worked. By process of elimination I found that I had deleted one of the files on the server which was needed in the footer template and this must have been the reason the page did not show up as it could not print all the web page. It works fine now.


      • #4
        This actually didn't help me. I know that for some odd reason 2.2.9 wouldn't work on my server (blank pages everywhere, all the time) and it wasn't a database problem. They were clean 2.2.9 files, so I just uploaded clean 2.2.7 files (I never downloaded 2.2.8) and then it started working. Odd.


        • #5
          Maybe you didn't run upgrade21 or upgrade22.php and just did upgrade23.php immediatly ... ?


          • #6
            w000t good job floris!
            Come chat with vBulletin fans, enthusiasts, official staff, and team members @ irc chat
            port: 6667

            #vBfans, #vBorg,

            1. -Nov '03- Competion Winner


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