Troubleshooting Guide

In the unlikely event your MODX Cloud website becomes unavailable, this document is intended to help you take steps to troubleshoot and recover the site yourself.

Is It Your Site or Cloud?

If your site is down, the first thing to determine is whether it is your site that is down or MODX Cloud.

Is Cloud Down?

MODX Cloud status is always available at status.modxcloud.com. If there is a major outage, we will publish an incident report including affected parts of MODX Cloud. As these reports are published manually by the MODX Cloud team, it is possible you noticed a site outage before our team has had an opportunity to publish. To determine if MODX Cloud is suffering an outage, check the MODX Cloud Status page. If there is no published report, scroll down to the graphs and see if there is any interruption to the uptime graphs. If the Cloud platform is down, please submit a support ticket.

During a Cloud outage, we will publish updates on the Status page through to resolution.

If there doesn't appear to be any issue at MODX Cloud, the next steps will help you establish the reason for the outage.

Confirm Your Site is Down

There are various reasons your MODX site may not be available. The following tests will help you identify whether the site is universally down or just for you and to provide a clue to the source of the outage.

Check the Cloud URL

If you have not been able to access your Cloud site via the top level domain, i.e., http://example.com, try to access it using the Cloud Address which would look like http://c9876.paas1.tx.modxcloud.com.

If you have set up Web Rules to redirect requests to your own top-level domain, temporarily disable them from the MODX Cloud dashboard and try again to access your Cloud URL. If you are successful it using the Cloud Address, and it is functioning as expected, you should investigate the domain, DNS or the Cloud's Web Rules.

Check for Manager Access

Try to access and login to the site's MODX Manager using the full URL i.e.: http://yourawesomemodxsite.com/manager/. If you can access the login page at the domain and you can login, this is a sign that MODX is functioning, however there is a problem with the site.

If you are able to login, however the MODX Manager is behaving strangely, it is quite possible that the site Cache has become corrupted. Follow the instructions below to back up your MODX Logs and then manually delete the MODX cache directory contents.

Check Your Error Logs

There are various locations to check to see if the code in your site is creating problems:

  • MODX Error Log inside your Manager. To get to this use the Manage > Reports > Error Log menu item in MODX Revolution version 2.3 and above. You must be logged into the MODX Manager to view this error log.
  • From a SSH connection, see PHP-related errors and warnings in the PHP error log: /log/error.log
  • From a SSH connection, see problems with the web server such as rewrite errors in the nginx error log: /log/nginx_error.log

It is often useful to watch error logs as you visit different sections of your site while troubleshooting. For example, to see the last 50 PHP errors and warnings, use the following command:

tail -n50 /log/error.log

To "follow" the log out so that you can keep the terminal open and watch the log as you visit your site, add the -f flag, either by itself or in combination with the -n flag as above:

tail -f /log/error.log
tail -fn50 /log/error.log

You can stop following the log by pressing Ctrl+c.

Check with an External Tool

Sometimes there are connection issues between your computer and your website. To be sure that your site is actually down, you can use a service like Pingdom Tools to do a quick website check to see if it is down. If down, here you can run a Traceroute to rule out any network issues.

Check Traceroute

Traceroute or Tracert (Windows) is typically run from the command line. This will tell you if there are any connection issues between your computer and the site. Alternatively you can use Pingdom's Traceroute tool. If there are no issues, you should check another Cloud you have as detailed below.

Check the Domain

It happens to the best of us; we forget to renew the domain. You may wish to check to make sure the domain has not expired by doing a whois lookup.

Check Another Cloud You Have

If you have another site on MODX Cloud and it's on the same platform as your other site, you can check it to see if it is operational. To determine if your sites are on the same platform, you can look at the Cloud Address. If they both have the same paasX.xxx they are on the same platform.

Eg. a site with the Cloud address of c9123.paas1.ams.modxcloud.com and c9555.paas1.ams.modxcloud.com would be on the same platform. One with the address of c9333.paas1.tx.modxcloud.com would not be on the same platform.

Save Your Logs and Delete the Cache Files

MODX cache files can become corrupted sometimes for various reasons. Sometimes deleting the cache entirely from the file system can bring the site back up from white screens, or broken MODX Managers.

Back Up MODX Logs

Because your log files are located in /core/cache/logs, it's important to back these up for before deleting the contents of the `cache` directory.

  1. Using the SSH information listed at the bottom of the Summary tab of the Cloud in question, SSH into your cloud using a command line tool such as Terminal/terminal (OSX/Linux) or PuTTy (Windows).
  2. Create a new directory for storing the backed up logs by executing the following directive:
 mkdir /home/modx_logs
  1. Copy the MODX logs to the newly created directory with the following command:
cp -R /www/core/cache/logs/* /home/modx_logs/

Delete Cache Contents

As was noted, sometimes the MODX cache files can become corrupted and render a site non functional. The following process will clear everything in the cache, not just resources. It is good for clearing cache if you can't get into your MODX Manager for some reason, or if system settings are cached incorrectly.

Before deleting the cache contents, follow the procedure above to back up your MODX Logs for review once you're site is up and running to see what happened.

  1. Using the the SSH information listed at the bottom of the Summary tab of the Cloud in question, SSH into your cloud using a command line tool such as Terminal/terminal (OSX/Linux) or PuTTy (Windows).
  2. Remove all the folders and files under the core/cache directory by executing the following command:
 rm -rf /www/core/cache/*

Post-cleared Cache Checks

Once you have cleared the cache be sure to check your site functionality as follows:

  1. Visit your website to see if it loads. If so, you're good for now. If not, follow the next step and then submit a support ticket.
  2. Try to login to the MODX Manager at /manager. If you can login to and access the MODX Manager and it's working as expected, you should be good.

If you've cleared the cache and your site is working now, that's great. It would be good to determine the cause of the issue. You should still review the MODX logs you backed up in the previous step and submit a support ticket.

If after clearing the cache there is no change. Please contact support for assistance by opening a ticket from the MODX Cloud Dashboard.

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