Hostmonster 500 Internal Server Error (SHTML Wrapper)

David Nash linux, php 4 Comments

A client using Hostmonster was doing some hair-pulling over what appeared to be a .htaccess problem while installing a Symphony site I developed. We thought it might be related to the fact it was running on a subdomain.

The server would give a blank page, and on the HTML source would show something like “500 SHTML wrapper”.

It turns out this happens when group write permissions are set on the script. Via the Hostmonster Cpanel File Manager, you can right-click the file, click permissions and uncheck “write” and the script should run.

The way I worked this out was: first, rename .htaccess to something like _htaccess, so we know that’s not getting in the way.

Next try viewing a file like favicon.ico (this was served correctly). Then upload a simple PHP script like phpinfo.php, with contents:

<?php phpinfo(); ?>

When I did this I was still getting the 500 error. I found in a Hostmonster forum someone had mentioned group write permissions, which I started experimenting with until it worked.

Comments 4

  1. Thanks for this – you’ve just saved me hours worth of tearing my hair out. I’d changed the permissions of the root folder whilst doing some other changes try and make the site more secure after another of my sites got hacked. The site just disappeared and I would have spent hours going through what could have potentially corrupted. Turns out just simply changing the permissions to remove the group write sorted it. Thanks!

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