myPHP Guestbook V. 4.10.4

FAQ - Frequently asked questions

 

Below are answers or tips to some questions that have been repeated over the years. Additions will follow if the occasion arises.


  • 1. Installation:

The error messages are usually due to the fact that the program cannot connect to the database. Two "classic" errors are the cause in most cases:

1. When entering the access data to the database (database host, database name, user name, password), a blank space is inserted unnoticed, usually at the beginning or end of the entry. This can most likely happen if the access data is not typed in, but inserted into the input fields by "copy and paste".

Solution: The avoidance of this error is obvious.

2. Another reason that can be encountered from time to time may be the password for database access. If this password contains special characters such as $ or / or similar, it is possible that these are masked by the installation script and thus the password is falsified.

Solution: Change the database password so that it contains no special characters or only the special characters that the program displays as being problem-free. When entering potentially problematic special characters, the input field is highlighted in red and marked with a warning symbol. When moving the mouse over the warning symbol, the unproblematic characters are displayed.

The session necessary for logging in cannot be created, the necessary directory on the server is missing. This is a problem that occured in the early days of myPHP Guestbook, but is very rare today.

Solution: See the description in the "ReadMe.pdf" attached to the download.


  • 2. Usage:

This is a critical point that is asked for again and again, although its avoidance has been described repeatedly in the "Help" for the myPHP Guestbook as well as in the guestbook on this website. During the installation of the myPHP Guestbook, the system automatically checks whether the connection to the installation file is via a secure https connection or not. The result of this check is saved in the configuration file. If a switch from "http" to "https" is made subsequently, the internal links of the Guestbook must be adjusted according to the specifications in the configuration file.

Solution: Download the file "config.inc.php" from the directory "includes" from the server to your own computer. Open the file with an editor. Change the path for the variables $url and $url02 from "http" to "https", save the change, reload the file to the server. That's it.

Same cause and identical solution as the question before, see above.

Yes, the predefined protection after an installation, that every newly uploaded image and every image posted in a guestbook entry is initially blocked and only becomes visible after the individual case has been checked and approved by the admin, can be deactivated if desired.

Solution: See the instructions in the "More configuration options" section under the "Help" link in the admin panel.

If a new version of the myPHP Guestbook receives a new CSS file, then only because this is considered necessary, e.g. because new functions have been added that affect the display on the screen, because optical features have been added or display deficiencies have been corrected. To ensure that the calling browsers also load and use the new CSS and not the old file from the cache, not only the content respectively code is simply changed, but the file is also given a new name.

To continue using the earlier CSS file, it would either have to be renamed to the current name or the path for inclusion would have to be adjusted accordingly. Whoever does this, however, should not be surprised or complain about subsequent deficiencies in presentation.

It is basically neither advisable nor necessary to make any changes to the outsourced, external CSS file. This makes an update of the script unnecessarily difficult and complicated. Every individually desired adjustment of one or more styles can (and should!) be done in the admin area under the block "CSS Style" and there the link "Edit Style". This also applies to styles that are already contained in the external file. This is because the code that is set under "Standard Style" in the admin panel is read in after the external file and thus overwrites any other styles in this outsourced CSS.

This stereotypically repeated request is the classic. For understandable reasons, I will not put a to-do list on the net at this point. - Therefore, here are just two hints for now:

1. Check your e-mail box once in a while.

2. If you only forgot your password, but at least know your username and the admin email address, you can get a replacement password after three unsuccessful login attempts using the "Forgot password" function.

For what goes beyond that: Contact me.

No, a captcha or any security queries, calculation tasks to be solved or similar are not necessary. The built-in automatic spam filter reliably checks entries in the guestbook for typical characteristics of spam when clicking on the button to enter/save and reliably prevents critical bot entries.

And please: If you are reading this now, you don't need to sit next to it to prove that you are still capable of posting any brainless crap. - The spam filter is designed to prevent automated bot submissions, not to protect against human spinners. The latter cannot prevent a captcha either.


  • 3. Privacy policy:

In the database table, in which the individual guestbook entries are stored, no IP is saved for the respective entry. As far as the IP of a visitor is recorded for certain functions to protect against misuse, this is usually only done anonymously and for a limited period of time in separate database tables. The anonymised IPs can no longer be personalised and can therefore not be assigned to any person or connection.

Only IPs of spam entries are saved in plain text for a limited period of time. This serves to protect legitimate interests. However, this function can also be deactivated in the admin area, so that no IPs are recorded at all, neither for spam entries nor in anonymous form.

The script myPHP Guestbook uses, depending on the configuration, up to four technically necessary session cookies, but only a maximum of two of them concern the "normal" visitors of a website. The other two concern only the admin and are only active within the admin area.

The maximum of two cookies, which can affect anyone, do not record any personal data of the user, but one contains only a session ID formed by the server, and the other contains the language setting chosen by the visitor, if applicable. Both cookies become ineffective and are deleted when the browser window is closed by the user. The setting of these cookies can also be completely deactivated by the admin. For further details see the section "Privacy and the myPHP Guestbook" under the link "Help" in the admin area.