504 Gateway timeout is shown on Joomla websites: server reached MaxClients setting, consider raising the MaxClients setting

Created:

2016-11-16 12:58:24 UTC

Modified:

2017-04-24 11:22:14 UTC

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504 Gateway timeout is shown on Joomla websites: server reached MaxClients setting, consider raising the MaxClients setting

Applicable to:

  • Plesk 12.5 for Linux
  • Plesk 12.0 for Linux

Symptoms

Ngnix goes out of service. Opening or navigating Joomla websites results in 504 Gateway timeout .

In /var/log/apache2/error_log the following error can be found:

[error] server reached MaxClients setting, consider raising the MaxClients setting

Increasing MaxClients setting according to this article results in the same error.

Also in /var/log/apache2/error_log appears an error after reaching MaxClients:

* About to connect() to www.example.com port 80 (#0)
* Trying 123.123.123.123...

This domain is not present on server.

Searching this domain address in vhost's logs results in:

# grep -ir www.domain.tld /var/www/vhosts/system/*/*

/var/www/vhosts/system/example.com/logs/proxy_error_log:2014/12/05 19:14:44 [error] 2330#0: *152093 connect() failed (111: Connection refused) while connecting to upstream, client: 10.10.10.11, server: mywebsite.com, request: "GET /plugins/content/plugin_googlemap2_proxy.php?url=www.domain.tld HTTP/1.1", upstream: "http://%your_ip_address%:7080/plugins/content/plugin_googlemap2_proxy.php?url=www.domain.tld", host: "mywebsite.com"

Cause

Server is hacked using unsecured Joomla Google Map plugin.

Resolution

  1. Suspend found hacked domain using Plesk GUI

    host: "example.com"
  2. Remove Google Map plugin using Joomla administration .
  3. Find other affected domains:

    # find /var/www/vhosts -name plugin_googlemap2_proxy.php
  4. Temporary suspend these domains and remove this plugin.

To prevent this in future, install Joomla only using Plesk and enable automatic updates.

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