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Newsletter halts on blank page?

Started by SergeantAsh, July 26, 2010, 02:56:58 PM

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SergeantAsh

I have a forum of approximately 5000 members, I have just tried sending a Newsletter to all members but upon hitting SEND the page halts for a few seconds, then changes to a blank white page, looking at the Code view of the page it simply has basic headers without any content, nor body.

If I inspect the SMF Mail Queue (which is enabled), approximately 100 or so emails are queued, but the count doesn't increase upon refreshing so I assume the SMF Newsletter script has failed.

For information only, my Mail queue is enabled and set to 10 per minute, 5 per screen refresh but I'm not sure whether this is relevant.

I have tried sending just to a single post group of 300 members but the same occurs, it hits approximately 40 members, then stops at the white page.

Anyone any ideas?
Quote"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

YogiBear

This depends on how many per hour your host will allow without causing a server bottleneck. The best way would be to ask your host how many per hour then set the throttle (the number per minute) accordingly.
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SergeantAsh

Quote from: YogiBear on July 26, 2010, 03:32:11 PM
This depends on how many per hour your host will allow without causing a server bottleneck. The best way would be to ask your host how many per hour then set the throttle (the number per minute) accordingly.

Thanks for your answer but that wasn't my question :(
Quote"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

CapadY

Maybe not your question but at least a possible solution for your problem
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SergeantAsh

Quote from: capady on July 26, 2010, 06:23:35 PM
Maybe not your question but at least a possible solution for your problem

I do appreciate the help but I don't think that it is at all related. An email limitation of my hosts wouldn't affect the SMF application, particularly when queuing is setup within SMF.

Upon sending, I just get a blank white screen, surely that is an SMF bug?

100% unrelated to my host in my opinion.
Quote"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

Kill Em All

This could possibly be a hosting issue. No this isn't a SMF bug unless you have file permissions set incorrectly, all files should be 644 while all folders should be 755.

Your host could be limiting your amount of emails you can send out. This can def be related to your host.


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SergeantAsh

Quote from: Kill Em All on July 28, 2010, 12:15:56 AM
This could possibly be a hosting issue. No this isn't a SMF bug unless you have file permissions set incorrectly, all files should be 644 while all folders should be 755.

Your host could be limiting your amount of emails you can send out. This can def be related to your host.

But with queuing within SMF enabled, the script that actually sends the newsletter isn't physically sending the emails right? I assume that it is storing the email content within a DB table so as to allow the queuing script itself to send them.

Therefore, there is no reason why an email limit on my host would terminate this script and result in a white/blank screen?
Quote"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

SergeantAsh

Here are the sending limits imposed by my host:

http://wiki.dreamhost.com/SMTP_quota

But I still dont' see how the process of sending these emails into the SMF queue would relate to any of the above limits, surely if this were the case it would be the queue script that was killed, not the Newsletter sending process?

If you guys are right, can I get around this by altering the queuing configuration?
Quote"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

YogiBear

I'm sure someone can explain this better but here goes...

Imagine a motorway (the server) which can handle x number of vehicles (packets of information) per hour without causing a traffic jam. Along the motorway are sliproads where cars (packets of information) are waiting to join that motorway.  If too many cars (packets of info) try to join at any one time the best scenario is a traffic jam. If a car (packet of information) forces itself onto that motorway the worst is a series of accidents causing a tail-back. The wreckage is your broken page or a timeout or the host halts your service.

Your host's sending limit is 100 per hour which is pretty standard.

QuoteIf you guys are right, can I get around this by altering the queuing configuration?

Set throttle (sending limit) to 1 per per minute. If the host is in a position to handle more onto the server in any given period it often will but doing this plays safe.

Now, if all the above doesn't work then we go to Plan B.  :)
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SergeantAsh

Quote from: YogiBear on July 28, 2010, 10:29:54 AM
Set throttle (sending limit) to 1 per per minute. If the host is in a position to handle more onto the server in any given period it often will but doing this plays safe.

Now, if all the above doesn't work then we go to Plan B.  :)


Thanks for that Yogi, I do understand the concept although the way that the Newsletter sending script is dieing confuses me as I thought it was just writing database rows ready for the Email Queuing function to actually send them.

I'll do as you suggest, fingers crossed that'll work, I'll report back :D

AHHHHH something just occured to me - is the big problem here that the emails are sent by a page load, not by a server-side com object or some sort, therefore the whilst the email sending page is only writing rows to the database, the codebase itself that is prompted by ANY smf page load is also sorting the 'queueing' functionality of SMF, and therefore kicking up the white page?
Quote"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

YogiBear

You've effectively pre-guessed Plan B, Sgt, which is to upload a third party software such as phplist which sorts all this for you and is geared toward sending out large/very large e-mailings. The basic version is free but there's now also a pre-hosted version...

http://www.phplist.com/


:)

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SergeantAsh

#11
Well...tried tonight with it set to send 1 per minute, 30 per page refresh - after clicking send I opened the SMF Mail Queue in another tab and kept refreshing to see the emails build up...it got to 114 and then the sending page died again at the white screen :(

If I disabled the SMF Mail queue, the minute I hit SEND, I get the white screen.

Is this definitely 100% a host issue? I'm still not convinced, seems SMF-related to me?

What if I set the queue settings to Enable and set it to send 0 per minute - in theory won't that stop the script even talking to the host's email services and just queue them within the SMF database/app? i.e. that'll prove whether this is SMF or the host?
Quote"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

Kill Em All

What version of SMF are you using? You never did say.

Yes, you can change it to 0, but I'm not sure if that would show the issue or not. It could still technically be the host's fault still.


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SergeantAsh

I'm using v2.00 RC3, sorry for not mentioning before.

What about if I configure an invalid email server within the SMF 'Mail' admin panel, turn on queuing - in theory this won't interact at all with my hosts email server and will just queue all of the mail? I could then turn on the queue and allow it to start sending?

The issue seems to be in the creation of the Newsletter emails, NOT in the queuing functionality.
Quote"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

Norv

Hey SergeantAsh,
did you get to the bottom of this issue? Did you try what you said you wish to try?

Sorry for the extremely late reply. This does sound to me like a potential SMF bug though.
To-do lists are for deferral. The more things you write down the later they're done... until you have 100s of lists of things you don't do.

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SergeantAsh

Quote from: Norv on November 06, 2010, 11:39:29 AM
Hey SergeantAsh,
did you get to the bottom of this issue? Did you try what you said you wish to try?

Sorry for the extremely late reply. This does sound to me like a potential SMF bug though.

Thanks for your reply Norv, no I didn't ever find a solution to this issue, and hence it has prevented me from contacting the members of my forum :( I do firmly believe that it is an SMF fault.

Can you help? Does RC4 bring any upgrades to this functionality?
Quote"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

Norv

I'm afraid RC4 doesn't really help, because we didn't realize it may have been an issue in SMF. I am investigating the issue and will let you know ASAP of any results.
To-do lists are for deferral. The more things you write down the later they're done... until you have 100s of lists of things you don't do.

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SergeantAsh

Quote from: Norv on November 06, 2010, 04:53:09 PM
I'm afraid RC4 doesn't really help, because we didn't realize it may have been an issue in SMF. I am investigating the issue and will let you know ASAP of any results.

Thanks very much Norv, if I can help, assist or provide any logs, I'm more than happy to help!!
Quote"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

Glasso

Just a note I have made a cross reference to this topic on my topic about the same issue:
http://www.simplemachines.org/community/index.php?topic=407210.0

SergeantAsh

Quote from: Glasso on November 06, 2010, 06:21:22 PM
Just a note I have made a cross reference to this topic on my topic about the same issue:
http://www.simplemachines.org/community/index.php?topic=407210.0

Nice one, well spotted with that comment you found in the code!!

// Send 50 at a time, then go for a break...
Quote"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

GravuTrad

Is this bug solved?

And does it exist an option to send them by a precize timout (ex: 50 mails by hour)
On a toujours besoin d'un plus petit que soi! (Petit!Petit!)


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Illori

by default in smf 2.0 there is a mail queue. admin -> mail -> settings and you can configure it to how many messages get sent at a time.

GravuTrad

Seen, by minute. ok thanks.

And so this bug is marked solved, i hope it is.
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GravuTrad

But not this option for 1.1 branch version....
On a toujours besoin d'un plus petit que soi! (Petit!Petit!)


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Illori

and this feature will not be part of 1.1.1* at any point in the future.

GravuTrad

For sure lol... ;)

But no mods for it too...
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