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GoDaddy and the Blank White Screen

GoDaddy and the Blank White Screen

It’s been some time since we’ve had to examine the installation process for Associate-O-Matic on GoDaddy. But over the past few months we’ve been seeing a lot of users with very similar questions about how to do it, and it’s almost always the same answer. So to assist anyone else who might be having difficulties in the future, it’s time to put together an updated guide to setting up AOM on everyone’s favourite domain registrar.

The scenario we’re getting is that users are uploading the AOM files and folders to their GoDaddy website, and when they try to access the storefront or control panel, they’re greeted with a blank white screen. Normally this would indicate a PHP problem. But as we’ve seen through the years with GoDaddy, it’s actually something else entirely.

To troubleshoot the problem, we need to go into the /ioncube directory and load the wizard: www.mysite.com/ioncube/loader-wizard.php (with the actual URL to your site replacing ‘www.mysite.com’). Note that some of the images shown below relate to another webhost. But the overall appearance will be the same regardless of who the host is.

Once it loads up, select Shared  (which will be the case over 99% of the time). Then on the next screen enter GoDaddy and www.godaddy.com in the boxes (Name and URL of your hosting provider):

Ioncube wizard initial screen

Ioncube server information screen

You will then be presented with a page of information regarding your specific setup:

Ioncube instruction screen

Basically the on-screen instructions (in the grey box) are telling you to do two things:

1) Download and install the loaders. Ioncube uses a standard set of loader files which are often either automatically installed for you, or already present on the server. GoDaddy being GoDaddy however, this process never seems to get off the ground, so you’ll have to do it manually.

On the screen you’ll see a selection of download options for the specific loader package you’ll need. Most people will opt to use the .zip file. Click the link to download the file, which must then be unzipped in your computer. If you navigate to the loader zip file in your computer and right-click on the file name, you may have a built-in Extract function to unzip the files. Otherwise free unzip programs are available online by the bucketload.

Once you have successfully unzipped the loader files, you’ll need to upload them to the /ioncube directory of your site. You can then proceed to the next step of the online instructions:

2) Set up the ‘zend extension’ line. The instructions will show you a line that starts with ‘zend extension =’ and then a file path. This tells PHP where to find the specific ioncube loader file needed for your installation. This entire line needs to be located in a file called php5.ini. You may already have this file in your directory, or the wizard may tell you that it has created one for you. Or you may have to create the file yourself.

Either way, the file must be present, and the zend extension line must be in the file. If you see the file in your directory, open it and make sure the line is there. If it’s not, copy and paste the line, preferably at the top. If you have to manually create the file, paste the line into it.

If ioncube creates the file for you, it will generally have a lot of standard directives in it. You can usually ignore most of this. The zend line is probably the most important thing. You may or may not also have a php.ini file (minus the ‘5’). You can ignore that file.

Once you have the php5.ini file correctly set up with the ‘zend extension’ line, make a copy of the file and place it in the /ioncube directory folder. This makes sure that PHP can find the information it needs. If you want, you can just create a second php5.ini file in the /ioncube folder and then paste the zend extension line into this copy. Ultimately, you want to end up with two php5.ini files – one in your root directory and one in your /ioncube folder, both files having the ‘zend extension’ line in them.

At this point, you can click on the ‘Test the Loader’ link at the bottom of the grey box.

Ioncube unsuccessful test results

Because of the nature of the DNS network structure that GoDaddy utilizes, it’s very possible that the Wizard will still give you some sort of error message, as indicated in the above image. This is because the changes need about ten minutes to filter through the system. If you wait and check it again or re-run the wizard, you should then see the following screen:

Ioncube Wizard Success screen

You should now be able to access your Associate-O-Matic storefront (shop.php) and control panel (admin.php). Please note that if you are using the 30-day Trial version of AOM, you must have the aomtrial.license file installed. This file is a separate download from the rest of the AOM files, and without it, you will receive a ‘fatal error’ message. The Lite and Full versions of AOM do not require this file.

Go back to the AOM download area for the aomtrial.license file (look for the large RED download button and installation instructions).

One last point to mention is that GoDaddy does not support ioncube if you are using a hosting package on their Windows servers (This refers only to the GoDaddy servers, not your computer’s operating system). You must use Linux to operate ioncube. And ioncube is required to run Associate-O-Matic.

Which is a roundabout way of saying that AOM will not work on GoDaddy unless you are using their Linux package. If you do happen to be using Windows with GoDaddy, contact them to see if they can switch you to Linux instead.

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2 thoughts on “GoDaddy and the Blank White Screen

  1. […] procedure is covered in much more detail here, if you’d like to read more about […]

  2. […] file to direct PHP on where to find the loaders. This process is detailed mainly for GoDaddy users here, but it can serve as a basis for many other web hosts as well (note that GoDaddy will not allow the […]

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