Frequently Asked Questions

Please check other support resources if you do not find your question here.

Questions

General Questions

1.  I have lost my console access login and password. How can I recover them?
2.  People cannot connect to my web server. What can I do?
3.  My web site is now up and running. But how can I have an address such as www.my-web-site.com?
4.  Does Abyss Web Server support FrontPage Server Extensions?
5.  How can I use FrontPage to create a web site for Abyss Web Server?
6.  How can I control whether Abyss Web Server should start when a Windows session starts or not?
7.  When I replace some pages or images hosted by the server, I still get the old ones when I browse my web site.
8.  I have correctly configured a custom error page. But when I test it, I still get the original error page.
9.  Is there a way to disable listings for some directories and to enable it for the rest?

Scripting Questions

1.  Abyss Web Server displays the source code of my script instead of executing it. What's wrong?
2.  Why is a security alert displayed when I try to view a PHP script?
3.  I am installing a script and I read in its setup guide that I must chmod some files. How can I do that?
4.  What's the difference between the CGI and the ISAPI interfaces?
5.  What's the difference between the CGI and the FastCGI interfaces?
6.  What's the difference between the FastCGI and the ISAPI interfaces?

Databases Support

1.  How can I install MySQL support in Abyss Web Server?
2.  Does Abyss Web Server support database X (MySQL, Access, Oracle, etc.)?

File Uploading

1.  How can I FTP files to the web server?
2.  How can I upload my web site files to the web server?

SSL certificates issues

1.  I am trying to generate a certificate/CSR and the UK is not availble in the country codes list. Have you forgot it?

Windows specific issues

1.  Can I run Abyss Web Server as a service on Windows?

MacOS X specific issues

1.  Can I run Abyss Web Server as a startup item on MacOS X?

Linux specific issues

1.  Can I run Abyss Web Server as a daemon?

General Questions

1.  I have lost my console access login and password. How can I recover them?

You cannot recover them but you can reset them as explained below:

  • Stop Abyss Web Server if it is running.
  • Open in a text editor (for example Windows Notepad, MacOS X Textpad, vi, GEdit or KEdit) the configuration file abyss.conf usually located in the Abyss Web Server installation directory.
  • In the lines between <console> and </console>, locate the line enclosed between <password> and </password> and delete it. This line should be made of a combination of letters and digits as in a5a3a15d71c3d07b94ef96a25c480737.
  • Save abyss.conf and close the text editor.
  • Start Abyss Web Server.
  • Open the console. You will be asked to choose new access credentials.

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2.  People cannot connect to my web server. What can I do?

The problem is that something between your computer and other people computers is blocking TCP/IP traffic. Following is a non-exhaustive list of possible causes:

  • If you are using Windows XP, configure the integrated firewall to allow incoming traffic on the web port:
    • Open the Windows Control Panel,
    • Select the Networking section and open the properties of your network interface,
    • Select the Advanced tab and press the Parameters button in the bottom of the panel.
    A dialog where you can allow incoming connection to some ports is displayed. If Abyss Web Server uses port 80, check the Web Server (HTTP) line. If it uses another port, press Add... and enter this port number. Select TCP, fill the other parameters according to the displayed descriptions, and validate.
  • If you have a firewall or an anti-hacking software, configure them to allow incoming connections on the web port;
  • If you have a router, configure it in order to allow incoming traffic on the web port. Refer to the documentation that comes with your hardware to know how to do so. Please do not ask our technical support about how to do that with your router as this is hardware-dependant and we cannot give you support for what we have not designed (ask the router vendor instead or read the manuals.)
  • Some ISPs are known to block incoming traffic on some ports such as port 80 (default web port). Please ask your ISP about that restriction. If it is the case, configure your web server to use another web port (for example 8000 or 8080.)
To configure the web port, open the console and select Server Configuration > Port.

We also strongly suggest that you read the article Making your site accessible from the Internet for more information.

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3.  My web site is now up and running. But how can I have an address such as www.my-web-site.com?

Please refer to the article Making your site accessible from the Internet if you are using the personal edition Abyss Web Server X1.

If you are using the professional edition Abyss Web Server X2, please refer to the article Using virtual hosting on Abyss Web Server X2.

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4.  Does Abyss Web Server support FrontPage Server Extensions?

Abyss Web Server doesn't support FrontPage Server Extensions. You should use a regular scripting language (such as PHP, Perl or ASP) if you want to have the features these extensions provide (simple forms, counters, etc...)
FrontPage Server Extensions are a proprietary set of extensions designed by Microsoft and are only supported in its products.
It is hard to support them in Abyss Web Server for both technical and legal reasons.

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5.  How can I use FrontPage to create a web site for Abyss Web Server?

Although Abyss Web Server does not support FrontPage Extensions, you can still design your web site with FrontPage and host it on the web server without any problem. All you have to do is to configure FrontPage to generate standard HTML code and to disable the specific widgets that require these extensions (these widgets are those you can add from the Web Components option in the Insert menu.)
To design your web site using FrontPage (and to avoid any problem with these extensions), open FrontPage, select Page Options inside the Tools menu. Then select the Compatibility tab. Select Custom in the Servers list and uncheck Enabled with MS FrontPage Server Extensions. Press OK to validate.

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6.  How can I control whether Abyss Web Server should start when a Windows session starts or not?

Click on the Abyss Web Server icon (the blue swirl) in the system tray and choose Restore from the displayed pop-up menu. Then in the restored main window select Startup Configuration in the Server menu and change the startup mode in the displayed dialog.

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7.  When I replace some pages or images hosted by the server, I still get the old ones when I browse my web site.

This is usually caused by the browser which continues to display pages and images taken from its cache instead of getting a fresh copy from the server. Try Refreshing the page, if this does not help, force a total refresh of the page by pressing CTRL+F5 or CTRL+SHIFT+R.
Alternatively change the caching policy of your browser or flush its cache.

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8.  I have correctly configured a custom error page. But when I test it, I still get the original error page.

If the error page you see does not have the Powered by Abyss Web Server signature, chances are that your browser is displaying a friendly error page instead of the one sent by the server.
So configure your browser to not show these friendly error pages. For example, if you are using Internet Explorer, select Internet Options in the Tools menu, go to the Advanced tab, and uncheck Show friendly HTTP error messages in Browsing. In Opera, open the Preferences dialog and check Always show the server errors.

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9.  Is there a way to disable listings for some directories and to enable it for the rest?

Starting from Abyss Web Server version 2.0.6, you can configure the scope of the directory listing feature by allowing and denying listing for specific virtual paths. Refer to the Directory Listing section in the user's manual for more information.

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Scripting Questions

1.  Abyss Web Server displays the source code of my script instead of executing it. What's wrong?

Before running a script, you must install the support for its interpreter (the language it is written with which could be PHP, Perl, ASP, etc.) according to the instructions provided in the main support page.
If the interpreter support is correctly set, open Abyss Web Server's console. In the Hosts table, press Configure in the row corresponding to the concerned host, and select Scripting Parameters. In the displayed screen, Enable Scripts Execution must be checked and the script must be in one of the Scripting Paths (or their sub-paths).

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2.  Why is a security alert displayed when I try to view a PHP script?

New versions of PHP activate by default a high security level to avoid problems that can occur when running them with Apache. Since these problems are specific to Apache and do not affect in any way Abyss Web Server, you can safely deactivate the security alert as follows: open Abyss Web Server's console. In the Hosts table, press Configure in the row corresponding to the concerned host, and select Scripting Parameters. In the displayed screen, press Add... in the Custom Environment Variables table and add a variable which name is REDIRECT_STATUS and which value is 200.

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3.  I am installing a script and I read in its setup guide that I must chmod some files. How can I do that?

Chmod-ing is not related to the web server. It is rather related to your operating system.
On Windows, there is no support for chmod. You can only set a file to be read-only or writable. So in the general case, do not worry about chmod-ing files on Windows, ignore these instructions and your scripts will run with no problems.
On Linux and MacOS X, you should use the chmod system command. For more information, open a terminal window or a shell, type man chmod, and press the Return key to learn how to use this command.

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4.  What's the difference between the CGI and the ISAPI interfaces?

Starting from version 2.0, Abyss Web Server supports dynamic documents generation through ISAPI extensions (besides the classical CGI applications interface.) ISAPI extensions are loaded on-demand and become resident in the server process space. This enhances significantly the performance as an extension is only loaded once and does not require any communication overhead with the server. At the contrary, CGI applications are loaded every time they are needed, are executed in another process, and communicate with the server using interprocess communication mechanisms to input and output data.

CGI applications and interpreters are usually easier to setup and more widely available.

Because ISAPI extensions are loaded in the server process space, they can crash the whole server if they cause a critical error. This is not a problem with Abyss Web Server since it features the anticrash system so it is automatically restarted if such a situation happens. But as a general rule, avoid using ISAPI extensions on a production server if they have not been well tested or if they do not come from a trusted source.

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5.  What's the difference between the CGI and the FastCGI interfaces?

Starting from version 2.3, Abyss Web Server features support for applications and interpreters conforming to the FastCGI specification. A FastCGI application or interpreter is loaded when needed by the web server, it executes a script, and sends its output back to the server. But instead of having its process automatically unloaded from the system as with CGI, it remains in sleeping state waiting for another request from the web server. When the server needs it to process another script, it will simply send a request to the already loaded FastCGI process. This boosts significantly the performance as a FastCGI interpreter or application once loaded can process an unlimited number requests which saves the overhead of processes loading/unloading incurred with CGI.

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6.  What's the difference between the FastCGI and the ISAPI interfaces?

FastCGI interpreters and applications deliver performances comparable to (if not better than) their ISAPI extensions counterparts. Because they run in another process, they cannot affect the server and crash it if they have problems. This makes their use not prone to stability problems ISAPI extensions may cause.

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Databases Support

1.  How can I install MySQL support in Abyss Web Server?

Web servers and database servers are generally independent and do not connect directly. It is the scripts responsibility to do such a connection and to use or store data. Of course, these scripts are invoked by the server and run by the suitable interpreter (PHP or Perl for example.)
As a consequence, install MySQL as explained in http://www.mysql.com, then write or install scripts that can use it.
Here are two tutorials contributed by Abyss Web Server users that are worth reading:

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2.  Does Abyss Web Server support database X (MySQL, Access, Oracle, etc.)?

Database support is independent from the web server. Actually the web server invokes scripts and they are these scripts that connect to the database and use it. In other words, it is up to your script and to the script interpreter (PHP, Perl, or ASP for example) to connect to the database (MySQL, Access, Oracle, or whatever database you use.)
Since Abyss Web Server is able to run PHP, Perl, ASP, and many other languages, database scripting is possible. For more information about how connect to a database, refer to the documentation of the scripting language you use.

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File Uploading

1.  How can I FTP files to the web server?

Abyss Web Server is only a web server and does not include an FTP server. For more information about uploading files to the web server, please read the answer to the following question.

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2.  How can I upload my web site files to the web server?

You do not need to upload files if you have direct access to the computer on which the server runs. Actually you can simply use Explorer (on Windows), Finder (Mac OS X), your usual shell, or any file management utility to copy files to your Documents Path directory (which is by default the htdocs/ sub-directory in the Abyss Web Server installation directory.)

If you want to upload files remotely, there are many scripts that can help you doing so (without requiring an FTP server.) Most of them are called File manager scripts or Upload scripts. We recommend using Web File Browser which is very simple to install and only requires that you add PHP support to Abyss Web Server. You can also find many other alternatives in script repositories sites.

If you want to upload files remotely using an FTP client, you must install an FTP server and make the Documents Path directory accessible for writing. You can find many FTP servers on CNet Download.com by searching for FTP server.

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SSL certificates issues

1.  I am trying to generate a certificate/CSR and the UK is not availble in the country codes list. Have you forgot it?

It is not an omission. The 2-letter country code of the United Kingdom is GB. Please check the official ISO 3166-1-alpha-2 codes listing for more details.

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Windows specific issues

1.  Can I run Abyss Web Server as a service on Windows?

Yes. You can configure Abyss Web Server to start at your computer boot up and to run in the background even if no user is logged on.

To do so, click on the Abyss Web Server icon (the blue swirl) in the system tray and choose Restore from the displayed pop-up menu. Then in the restored main window select Startup Configuration in the Server menu and change the startup mode to Install as a Windows Service and check Start automatically on computer startup. This mode is not available on Windows 95, 98 and ME.

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MacOS X specific issues

1.  Can I run Abyss Web Server as a startup item on MacOS X?

Yes. You can configure Abyss Web Server to start at your computer boot up and to run in the background even if no user is logged on.

To do so, select Startup Configuration in the Server menu of Abyss Web Server and change the startup mode to Automatic startup on computer startup (Install as a Startup Item).

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Linux specific issues

1.  Can I run Abyss Web Server as a daemon?

Yes. All you have to do is to add the -d switch on the command line when executing Abyss Web Server.

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