All My Sites Broke At The Same Time

Had a bit of a panic situation a few minutes ago. I went to login to one of my sites to prep a membership site I am building and got a blank screen with an error code at the top saying my server didn’t have the correct or any “ionCube PHP Loader” installed. I checked a handful of other sites…all down…CRAP!! The error message told me which Loader version I needed but when I followed the link within the error message that version wasn’t there in the Wizard. Turns out I am glad it wasn’t there because that page freked me out because I had no clue how to proceed with it anyway.

I have had to dig around in cPanel before to fix things and have pretty much lucked out apparently because I really am not the computer whiz. If you ever have a problem like this you can try this work around which turned out to be much easier and not incredibly complicated at all. I wish I had taken a screen capture of the error screen so I could show you what it looked like but, I was just scrambling to get it fixed so didn’t think that far ahead.

I use Hostmonster…they use the standard cPanel that I have seen with other hosts so it may be the same fix but, just to be sure if you have a different host check their Knowledge Base in the help section to be sure you are doing it right. There have been a couple of other times that I screwed things up and had to contact a tech to help me. Lucky again that I must have picked a good host because they had walked me through the fix easily and quickly. They have great customer service, something you must have with a host in the event you have a problem that you don’t know how to fix.

First, before I show you the fix I wanted to go into why I think it broke in the first place. This is just a hunch but, very likely since I have never had a problem with anything breaking on Hostmonster’s side. It has been either my screw up or a third party. This is key, I have never let anyone inside my account before because I didn’t know if I could trust anyone to go in, do what they were there for then leave without doing anything sneaky.

So why did I let someone in? Well, it was my only option and this company and the guy’s involved are well-known and have been killing it online for a long time so I felt comfortable allowing them in because of their reputation and had no qualms about them being inside my hosting account.

Basically, they were setting up a special site for me and I am thinking that while configuring the site something got turned off or an earlier version of the ionCube Loader got installed and activated. I got it fixed in about 5 minutes so it wasn’t a big deal and very likely they didn’t know about my other sites going down. I haven’t contacted them yet but, will as soon as I finish this post in case another customer or their’s had the same problem not knowing how to fix it or if it was because they inadvertantly installed an earlier version of the ionCube they could be sure to use the newest version in the future.

In fact it may be quite rare that it happened at all because I use a special theme on several of my sites that needs the newest version of the iCL and it could have been just a fluke. I did go and check the new site after I fixed the other ones to be sure that I didn’t break something on there. All is well there also. I was so proud of myself for fixing the breakdown so quickly I went for a smoke break and thought…Uh Oh!!!….better check the other one. It is fine so very relieved that everything is hunky dorey now.


The fix…here goes…

To find your cPanel easily type in the address bar in your browser like this 

Use your domain name, of course.

Go to your cPanel >> about 3/4 the way down the page you will see a section called Software/Services >> click on the PHP Config icon as shown below…








Then you will see a screen like below or similar…


Step 1:

Choose which version you need…in my case I needed Version 5.2

This is where my luck kicked in again.

First I tried the first option ” PHP 5.2 “

This one did not fix the problem so I took the next logical one which was the 3rd one ” PHP 5.2 (FastCGI) “

Remember, if you are not absolutely sure this is what needs done ( even though I wasn’t ) lol. Check the Knowledge Base or ask for Help from Customer Service. As I said I was fairly confident that I was doing it right, ok…maybe 60/40. lol.

Step 2:

Tick the box for IonCube

Step 3:

Click “Save Changes”

Leave that window open.


Open a new tab in your browser to check or refresh it if you already have it open.

If your site is live again with no other issues that you can see you are done.

If it is still broken, you can either go back and do steps 1, 2, and 3 again or contact support. If you do try again be sure to write down what you do so in the event this doesn’t fix your problem you can relay to the Customer Service Rep what changes you made so he/she can switch it back to the default setting and proceed from there.

But, I am “fairly confident” that this will do the trick. I think… 90/10 this time. I really wish I had that screen shot of the error to show you. Unfortunately I don’t and I don’t really know how to break it again to get it. Not real sure I want to either. 🙂

Hope this helps you out now or in the future.

See you next time….

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