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cPanel Updates and httpd.conf

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by spirus60, Jun 9, 2014.

  1. spirus60

    spirus60 Member

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    If I select the manual or never update option for cPanel via WHM will this stop the automated updates to httpd.conf? I realize there will likely be some collateral damage but right now I'm trying to stop the automatic updates to httpd.conf.

    Does stopping the automatic updates to cPanel achieve this objective?

    Thank you.
     
  2. Shavaun

    Shavaun Well-Known Member

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    When you say the "automatic updates to httpd.conf," what exactly are you referring to? The cPanel & WHM update process won't usually make changes to the httpd.conf file unless there is a feature change between versions that requires it.

    EasyApache will change the Apache configuration if necessary, and so will changing the features you select for a domain in cPanel or WHM. For example if you change the PHP handler, or a PHP extension, etc. Those changes are modified for the domain in the Apache configuration.

    There are ways to modify the httpd.conf file so that it won't be overwritten by cPanel & WHM *or* EasyApache. I would recommend that you go this route instead of turning off updates.

    Our documentation on this is here: http://documentation.cpanel.net/display/EA/EasyApache#EasyApache-Development The exact method will depend on what changes you need to make.

    I hope that helps! If you can provide more information about specifically what you need to do, we may be able to provide more guidance.
     
  3. spirus60

    spirus60 Member

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    Shavaun,

    Here's the root issue. I purchased a VM from godaddy but was poorly informed and did not go through the cPanel "creation" steps thus I have a server with cPanel configured but unused save for WHM. To make the site work we've made changes to httpd.conf so we get nice server access via WHM but suffer through cPanel updates to httpd.conf which wipe out our changes. Since there were no changes for months we did not know that we had an issue but of late it's been pretty noisy in this area.

    Yes, we realize that we should have used the include file process but what's unclear to us is if we did not create the account properly (not improperly but not at all) on cPanel which file path do we place our include files?

    Alternatively, we just don't want to receive updates to httpd.conf. Can we just stop these?

    It's a bit of a mess when you don't start off on the right foot. It was just not obvious to me that after standing up the server that I needed to create cPanel account to, well, stand up our server.

    What are our options?

    thanks,

    Steve
     
  4. Shavaun

    Shavaun Well-Known Member

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    I understand now, thank you for the clarification.

    While you could probably finagle a way to make your super custom configuration work without cPanel breaking it every time you modify an account (for example, setting the httpd.conf file and any other Apache configuration files to immutable), I wouldn't really recommend that.

    You would be leaving your configuration in a way that is still susceptible to breaking frequently, which I assume is not what you want. You're probably going to continue to run into issues, and I'm sure it would lead to inevitable frustration and extra work. You'd also miss out on the super awesome cPanel & WHM features, and EasyApache too.

    The following is my advice, but please take it with the warning that I do not know the extent of which your configuration has been modified, or any custom Apache modules that you may be using.

    1. Back everything up. Take extra care with the Apache configuration files, and any include files you have manually created or modified. I would personally make a manual copy of these, because I'm paranoid.
    2. Default your Apache configuration by running EasyApache with any necessary modules. This is also a good time to view what EasyApache can install for you - make sure it has everything that you need, if it doesn't you will still have to install those other modules manually, as custom modules. If you aren't used to EasyApache, you can watch the output log while it builds and get an idea of what it is doing.
    3. Create all of your accounts in WHM as needed, and modify configurations via the cPanel & WHM approved methods. You can add PHP extensions, modules, etc, all through our interface.
    4. Validate against your backed up Apache config, and if necessary make custom modifications following the custom Apache config methods in the doc I linked in my earlier post. http://documentation.cpanel.net/display/EA/Custom+Directives+Outside+of+a+VirtualHost+Tag and http://documentation.cpanel.net/display/EA/Changes+Contained+Within+a+VirtualHost+Directive will direct you to the directories that you need to use for custom modifications that you can not make via cPanel or WHM.

    The benefit of all of that work and (hopefully brief) customer downtime would be that you would have a configuration that will support all of the cPanel & WHM features, including EasyApache.

    The home page for our EasyApache documentation is here: https://documentation.cpanel.net/display/EA/ If you haven't looked through the EasyApache yet, I'd recommend taking a glance so that you are fully comfortable and familiar with what it will do before you run it. You can get all of the way to the last step without actually affecting your server in any way, just don't click any of the 'Build" buttons until you are ready to go.

    I know this is a ton of information, but I hope it is helpful for you. If there is anything else we can do to assist, please let us know.
     
  5. spirus60

    spirus60 Member

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    I hear you. In the mean time, did I achieve the "immutable" by setting cPanel updates to manual? Will this buy me some time to give this a go?

    I really need an interim solution.

    thanks again,

    Steve
     
  6. Infopro

    Infopro cPanel Sr. Product Evangelist
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    Twitter:
    To what, not having your server configured properly? What changes, exactly, are you adding to the httpd.conf? With those details I'm sure someone here can assist you with an interim solution that's best, long term.
     
  7. Shavaun

    Shavaun Well-Known Member

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    If a file is set to immutable, nothing (including cPanel & WHM) can change anything about the file. I have honestly never tried to set the httpd.conf file to immutable and then made account changes in cPanel or WHM... I'm afraid I can't provide more insight as to what will happen, other than it is most definitely not supported. I do understand that you have customers to take care of though.

    Is it the cPanel updates (as in, from version 11.42.x to 11.44.x, or even a minor revision change), the nightly runs of upcp (our update process), or when you make changes to accounts in WHM that is breaking things? It won't actually harm anything to turn the nightly updates off - so you can always try it, with little danger, since you can just turn it back on.
     
  8. spirus60

    spirus60 Member

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    I suspect it's been quite some time since you've purchased a VM and started this whole process from the beginning. I'm here to say that there's quite a gap, perhaps only via godaddy, from buying a VM and a cPanel license and checking all of the boxes that are intuitive to you.

    One of the issues is that godaddy drops you on their server page and presents an icon for "cPanel" which takes you to WHM. So as a newbie I'm thinking that I'm done and off I go, naively, to the server to load SW via yum. Big mistake.

    Perhaps one of you evangelists can help convince folks like godaddy to properly route you through the process so that you don't end up in limbo as my site has done.

    Continuous improvement eh?

    - - - Updated - - -

    does anyone know if I select "manual" for cpanel updates if this selection will stop updates from being made to httpd.conf? Since "immutable" is not one of the options I've seen in WHM so I'm not sure what exact option you're referring to.

    thanks again for the help.

    Steve
     
  9. cPanelMichael

    cPanelMichael Forums Analyst
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    Hello :)

    No, disabling cPanel updates will not prevent modifications to the Apache configuration file. It's modified from several additional processes. Immutable is a file attribute that you set from the command line to prevent changes to a file. EX:

    Code:
    chattr +i /usr/local/apache/conf/httpd.conf
    Thank you.
     
  10. Shavaun

    Shavaun Well-Known Member

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    I agree wholeheartedly that there is a gap in information. Feedback like yours is invaluable to us, and I know it doesn't give you any of your time back that you have spent dealing with this issue, but hopefully your feedback can prevent other users from the frustration.

    Unfortunately I can't really help with GoDaddy's process, but I am working on a document right now that will include information on what to do if someone else finds themselves in your situation. I would definitely recommend letting GoDaddy know what they can do to make the process smoother.

    I hope that making the file immutable provides at least a temporary resolution for you. You're probably aware of this, but just in case you aren't:

    If your GoDaddy server is "managed" (you are paying them to do the administration/resolve issues) they may be able to help you with making sure the file doesn't change. They may even be able to assist with updating your configuration so that you can do things in cPanel and WHM without breaking it. I know absolutely nothing about their tech support, but just throwing that out there. If it is an "unmanaged" server and your situation warrants it, then they may be willing to help you resolve the issue in a specified maintenance window for whatever their fees are.
     
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