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How to troubleshoot CGI scripts

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  • If you have a CGI (Common Gateway Interface) script that is not working, you can follow these troubleshooting steps:

Step 1: Verify script file permissions

  • A2 Hosting's shared web servers run CGI scripts under your user ID.
  • If a CGI script does not run, one of the most common causes is that the execute permission is not set on the file.
  • Make sure that the CGI script file has the correct permissions set.

Step 2: Verify the shebang

  • Make sure the CGI script file uses the correct shebang.
  • CGI script files must start with the correct shebang, or else the Apache web server will not know how to run the file.

Step 3: Run the script from the command line

  • Trying to debug a CGI script through a web browser is often a frustrating process.
  • For example, if you receive a “500 Internal Server Error”, the root cause could be file permissions, a syntax error, or something else entirely.
  • You can obtain much more useful information about script errors by logging in to your SSH account and running the script from the command line.

Step 4: Check web server error logs

  • The web server's error log may contain valuable information about why a CGI script is not running.
  • Scripts that cause a “500 Internal Server Error” or “403 Forbidden” error message are logged in the web server's error log.
  • You can use cPanel to view the error log for your web site.

Step 5: Open a ticket with the Guru Crew

  • When your best attempts to fix a CGI script are unsuccessful, hope is not lost.
  • If you need further assistance, please open a support ticket with our Guru Crew on the Customer Portal at https://my.a2hosting.com.

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