Softaculous Config Issue

Username (e.g. epiz_XXX) or Website


(please specify the website or account you are asking about)

Error Message

All errors related to disabled/optimized functionality for free service.

(please share the FULL error message you see)

Other Information

Is it possible to mark unsupported softaculous scripts. To either hide or notify of an issue relating to the unsupported nature of the script? And/or modify the software to more gracefully handle these issues and carve out a special permissions use case to allow the software to clean up the database related mess that gets left behind when the error relates to database config incompatibility.

It’s my understanding that for the free service we are alotted 400 databases. But not granted the privilege of deleting or listing them when stuff like this happens. Eating into the allowance…

Plus it would just be a better service if I didn’t have to try to install every app to find out if it is compatibility or not.

(other information and details relevant to your question)

I will answer briefly
and the admin will probably have something more to say when he arrives

The list of Softaculous software is maintained by Softaculous. They regularly add new software and updates without our intervention. This means that they may add software which doesn’t work on our hosting or violates our terms.

If so, we usually remove this software if we get reports saying it’s broken.

It should generally be deleted during the uninstall process
sometimes the options for deleting DB and others are within the “advanced” section at the bottom

you can use the DB section inside the Control panel as well as phpMyAdmin

and of course FTP - for leftovers in htdocs
as well as the files on the root itself created by Softaculous ( level above htdocs )


If you have a list of software which is available in Softaculous but doesn’t work on our hosting (with a short note as to why), please share that list so I can verify it and get the stuff removed from Softaculous.

I agree, having to go through the apps list yourself to test what works and what doesn’t shouldn’t be necessary. But Softaculous ships like a dozen new scripts and version every few days and we can’t realistically test all of them.

So if you know anything that’s broken, please let us know so we can get it removed. It won’t prevent you from getting the nasty surprise, but it will allow us to help others from getting so as well.


Actually, I was hoping to go a step further…

And fork some of the apps with alternate versions that work around or mitigate the issue(s) that are identified.

Hiding them wasn’t really what I would prefer.

If there was a “scanner” that ran periodically or on new releases and started flagging them for the community to step in and assess. That would be of even greater value I would think.

Is softaculous even open source? I couldn’t find the source. And if so would you guys be open to maintaining a fork? Or allowing a community fork? I know the latter is a long shot for obvious reasons. Just thought I’d ask.

I’m open to contributing. If it leads to more forks that will work here. Maybe a submission process…

Thanks for the insights. Rather than itemize them, though, I’ll just say: Some of these points were received better than others. Which is to say, it didn’t all apply to what I am observing.

If I should be able to delete my orphaned dbs then that may be a separate issue since I am not able to observe that privilege.

And the removal process should not be relevant here since the install failed to begin with. But I’ll check it out just in case.

Thanks again.

1 Like

To elaborate on the scanner…

Something that either collects or maintains a list of all breaking restrictions imposed on the free service and scans both softaculous scripts and the installable app context for any violations. For the db restrictions maybe it could attempt an install on a sandbox and capture the error. All or most php restrictions would likely be observable with a simple regex type search.

Patching hundreds of different scripts so they don’t require InnoDB, don’t enforce data directories outside the htdocs folder and so on doesn’t seem like a particularly enticing thought to me.

Perhaps it could be turned into a community effort with different people willing to maintain patches for different scripts. But I would expect the majority of people to rather just use different software that does work out of the box, or just use a different (premium) hosting service that runs the software they want without all the fuss.

So hiding broken software is still the practical way.

Softaculous itself is proprietary software. We (or rather, iFastNet) pays a license fee to use it. I don’t know which programming language it uses or what kind of DRM is applied to it.

That… could actually work.

Hypothetically, the Softaculous API could be used to request which scripts are available and detect if there are any updates to scripts to be checked.

From there, you could either download, extract and inspect the Softaculous installation package and scan it for common issues.

But the same API could aksi be used to trigger an installation of that script on a dummy account. If it fails, the script could be marked for review to have a person see if it’s actually broken on free hosting.

  1. I’ve encountered a couple issues so far. Only dealing with php functions being disabled and innodb not being available. I am sure that there would be an easy way to fix the htdocs path violation, though, if someone were so inclined. I’m guessing it would be easier than fixing the database issues too. But ya, scanning for it may be difficult. Unless it throws at install.

  2. bummer…

  3. this api… is it accessible only to the licensee? Or could I access it as well?

And if I can play around with this api do you have a way to let me clean up those orphaned dbs? Or do I have to put in a ticket when I am done?

Last I was aware api’s should not allow for arbitrary code execution. And usually no changes to normal expected behavior unless specifically whitelisted/parameterized. Or at least that’s how it should be for the sake of sanity. For example, pointing to a different repo as the installfrom path.

So even if someone does create a fix it can’t be shared that way, the easiest way.

And the dummy account…

Would that be in the client area? Where I first get taken to when I login, then I have to click the manage button to get to the stats page that also has links to the file manager and the control panel?

I noticed that it shows an indication that I have 1 of 3 accounts created. Is this what you are referring to? Or is that for something else?

Are these also not removable/deletable once created?

You can just delete the databases yourself through the MySQL Databases section in the control panel.

But if you remove the installation through Softaculous, it should also give you the option to delete all files and databases.

Softaculous has an “Enduser API”, which I think you could use as well. Although I have no idea how authentication would work in that regard. Our Softaculous installation is frankensteined on top of cPanel installed on .

I haven’t tried to use it myself. But if you want to try and see if it works, then please do try!

In my proposal, we (InfinityFree) would set up this system, and we would maintain a set of hosting accounts which we can use to try the installations. They are “dummy” accounts because they are only used for testing, not for actual website hosting. But functionally they are the same.

Yes, you can deactivate an account whenever you want and create a new one in it’s place.

I have locally reviewed the files from Softaculous (ampps)
in fact its folder where it stores scripts.

My idea was:

  • each script contains a file called notes.txt

  • search all files named notes.txt that contain the word innodb in the scripts directory

and then I got a result like this

where it can already be seen to some extent whether innodb is required or not
(only 40 out of 446 )

I believe it can be done faster that way (read that file) to create some list of potential candidates for additional check instead install each script separately

more zoom

The problem is of course also when a script is hidden from the user to not install it
and such should be reviewed periodically because after an update it is possible that it no longer requires innodb and the like, which requires a lot of work and does not have much benefit
because most users here want to have a website and don’t know how to write it
so WordPress is a handy tool for this, also some users install a forum soft.
A very small percentage include those who install something else.


Also, the innodb reference could be old or deprecated there. The errors that I saw referred to keys that were to long. Not sure how that works for every app but I know that I have never come across an enforcement api for the engine itself. Usually it wouldn’t be necessary if you are creating your own custom setup. So I would assume that it being referenced in a notes file would be to curb support requests for that specific requirement that it had or still has. I am also assuming that a schema that works on myisam would also work on innodb.

That is interesting that you don’t have more custom apps with this service. Maybe that could be attributable to the restrictions themselves pushing a would be custom setup away…?

Ok… Now I see the remove db UI. Sorry didn’t see it before.

I’ll try to check out that api this weekend. :crossed_fingers:

If there is a way to just mark the app in softaculous(maybe modify the description markup) to simply warn us of the violations instead of just removing it from the list that would certainly be preferable. That way we can forgoe that route and move straight to whatever makes sense for our goal. Be it upgrading service or forking for educational/limited use purposes.

Interesting! I forgot about Ampps and the rest of their free suite. Turns out you can just download a Softaculous installation package and look inside.

Only downside is that Softaculous is apparently written in PHP (should have known that from the URL :see_no_evil:) with IonCube code encryption. So it’s hard to see exactly how it works, let alone change it.

The database queries and schemas for InnoDB and MyISAM are pretty similar from the user perspective. InnoDB has a few features that MyISAM doesn’t support, but beyond that they are pretty similar.

The reason InnoDB support is something that would help is not because a lot of software explicitly requires InnoDB. It’s just that InnoDB is the current default in most MySQL installations and so that’s what people develop their software on. And then it’s easy to assume a specific characteristic just works everywhere when it works on your system.

Which includes adding indexes to large columns. Which InnoDB can do and MyISAM can’t.

This is why scanning the notes.txt may not help. The developer may not be even fully aware that not every installation supports InnoDB.

InnoDB has been the default in MySQL for quite some time now and with the latest MySQL versions, they set a clear course of moving towards eliminating MyISAM entirely. So I expect this issue to be come worse over time, not better.

In my opinion, the right time to move towards InnoDB was a few years ago. But iFastNet disagrees, and in the end they are responsible for the database servers.

Plenty of people here do custom coding. They do plain HTML, custom PHP or perhaps use a framework.


If they are holding back on security upgrades because the engine is being removed from the core:

It looks like it’s mostly under the hood mods so far and the suggestion is to move it to a plug-in. So might be available for as long as the plug-in stays maintained…

Sure innodb will become less and less of a deviation. But something tells me that there are at least a couple features/reasons that will remain appealing to ifastnet in this context…

Resource consumption is the main one. At least according to iFastNet, CPU and especially memory consumption with InnoDB is much higher than on MyISAM. Since we need to stuff as many databases as we can on a single server to keep the free service sustainable, higher memory consumption can have some very bad consequences.

iFastNet still intend to move towards InnoDB at some point in the future. They just don’t consider it to be that urgent.


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