CGI / Perl Help
  1. What Is CGI?
    CGI, Common Gateway Interface, includes programs that run on the server to enhance the quality and functionality of a web site. There are many resources on-line that allow the downloading of free cgi scripts and we have many available for you to use within our Online Control Panel. 

  2. Do You Allow CGI to Run on your Servers?
    Yes, we do allow running of cgi scripts on all our servers and all our packages include a cgi-bin, however you will need to ask us to activate this for you. 

  3. Where do I put my CGI Scripts?
    It is best to place all CGI files directly into the cgi-bin. This makes things easier to maintain an troubleshoot. 

  4. What is the path to Perl?
    Before a cgi script will work certain modifications must be made to them. Certain paths must be specified in some scripts. After the "#" in the first line of the perl script, the path to perl must be specified. The path on our servers is #!/usr/bin/perl

  5. How do I set Directories for my CGI Scripts?
    When you configure a cgi script for "any" server, it may ask you to set variables such as the base, relative, and CGI directory/url settings. Here's an "example" using Matt Wright's script. Obviously, each script may vary, but this should provide you with some basic idea: $basedir = "/home/yourlogin/public_html/wwwboard"; $baseurl = ""; $cgi_url = ""; Most scripts come with documentation on how to set these directories. Please make sure you read and understand it before configuring the script. 

  6. What are File Permissions?
    There are a number of file permissions, which can be used for a variety of different purposes. There are three categories of permissions, which are: Owner Permissions: The owner is you. In most cases, this is not so much of a concern, as you can only obtain owner permissions by logging on to FTP into your account using your Username and Password. Group Permissions: The represents a group of users who have access to a particular directory. For example, a password protected directory, whereas only members can access it upon providing the correct Username and Password. In this case, any permissions you assign to "Group" would be applicable to users with access to that particular directory. Public Permissions: This is the most important one of all. Public permissions determine what your world wide visitors can and cannot do with your files. Always make sure you understand what a particular permission does before assigning it to a file. If not, you may wakeup to find your website has disappeared because someone has been able to modify your files. 

  7. How do I set File Permissions?
    1. Login with your FTP client 2. Open the directory where the file you wish to set permissions on resides 3. Right click on the file and select CHMOD or change permissions. Often you can "select" the individual permissions you want, or simply enter the 3 digit number if you know what it is. Most instructions included with downloaded scripts will tell indicate this to you. By default, all files uploaded to the server automatically have permissions set to 644. The setting 644 is relatively safe, as it provides "Read" and "Write" access to the owner, while limiting the rest of the public to "Read Only" access. When setting permissions for cgi scripts, the most common permissions setting is 755. 755 allows the owner "Read and Write" access, while allowing the Group and Public "Read and Execute" permissions. So what does that mean? In short, when users access your cgi script, the server has been instructed to grant them permissions to "Read and Execute" it. Remember that a script is a program that must be processed by the server. As long as the script is written properly, you can safely allow users to execute it, and thus providing the desired results. For example, if they wanted to post a message to your wwwboard discussion forum, then they would need these permissions to execute, which would write their new message to an html file, which is displayed on the main forum. The new message would reside in a directory on your site so other users could view it. Most cgi, perl and other scripts you'll be installing come complete with instructions telling you which permissions you'll need to set them to. 

  8. What should permissions be set to?
    Most CGI files need to be set at 755 and data files at 644. 

  9. My FormMail script disappeared!
    To protect our servers from Spam Attaches, our servers will delete any outdated email script they may find. Please go here for the latest version. 

  10. How do I use formmail?
    Please go here for the latest version. View the README file here Please read the FormMail FAQ page here
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