blank page when deleting user with large number of posts

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seppo
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blank page when deleting user with large number of posts

Post by seppo » Thu Jul 19, 2018 9:16 am

I have a spam-problem at the forum, seemingly recaptcha is not stopping them.

But when doing the cleanup, I have faced problem that causes lot of manual work: When I try to delete a spam-user with lot of posts, I end up with blank page. The result is, that while deleting the user it did not finish the task, leaving all the posts orphaned and I need to manually delete all of them as I cannot run the script again, as it tells me "The user has no posts to retain or delete.", while the forum is still full of them.

I tried increasing max execution time by htaccess to 600 (10 mins), but that did not help. Still, after 10 seconds or so, I get blank page. Is this a bug or can I overcome it somehow? Is there other ways to delete spam users posts? The method I have now used is this one: administering the one user profile, selecting from delete user -area at bottom from dropdown to delete posts too, and pressing send-button. Successful if user has only few posts, but with thousands of posts, blank page. And then I have to delete those posts one by one. And just this one user has over 12000 posts..

Is there a better spam tool for phpBB?

janus_zonstraal
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Re: blank page when deleting user with large number of posts

Post by janus_zonstraal » Thu Jul 19, 2018 9:24 am

Most people here say that the Q&A is the best anti spam metode

Use a Question which can't be Googled
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david63
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Re: blank page when deleting user with large number of posts

Post by david63 » Thu Jul 19, 2018 9:32 am

I would guess that the blank page is due to a timeout error - you should be able to confirm that in your server error logs.

I don't think that you can change the server timeout via htaccess - it is something that your hosts will need to change in the php.ini file on the server.
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KevC
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Re: blank page when deleting user with large number of posts

Post by KevC » Thu Jul 19, 2018 9:33 am

It's a big ask for the server to delete hundreds or thousands of posts in one go like that. If they're all in one forum you can change the 'topics per page' to something large like 500, then delete whole pages of topics in one go or make a new forum, move them all in to that and then delete the forum (the posts will go too).
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seppo
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Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 1:41 pm

Re: blank page when deleting user with large number of posts

Post by seppo » Thu Jul 19, 2018 9:45 am

Thanks janus_zonstraal, I will be trying that for sure :)

david63, I thought of the timeout too, and thought a htaccess would help there as I though it would overcome the possible limit by php.ini of the host. As it is shared host, I suppose they cannot change it for one user. I was a bit hoping there would be a tool for phpBB that would do the same task but in multiple turns, thus overcoming the timeout problem.

kevC, thanks for the tip. I have previously used that (as a tip for others, I installed a plugin for my browser to select all checkboxes, as phphBB does not have that option), but was kind of hoping there would be already a tool for that, i.e. to delete all posts of certain user/s. But I guess this is the only way currently.

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AbaddonOrmuz
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Re: blank page when deleting user with large number of posts

Post by AbaddonOrmuz » Thu Jul 19, 2018 6:22 pm

Modern shared hosting allow you to change some values through cPanel that you usually need to change in the php.ini file, like max_execution_time.

Ask to your hosting provider.
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