Website returns 403 Forbidden or blank page: AH00529: pcfg_openfile: unable to check htaccess file, ensure it is readable




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    lev k


    just want to say, its not always the user.

    sometimes its the group.

    somehow it changed to psacln.

    somehow example: client deleted the httpdocs folder and then recreated it.

    so, solution is chown ftpuser:psaserv httpdocs in this situations

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    Lev Iurev

    Hi @lev k , yes, that's correct, however article describes specific case when user is not in psaserv group

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    Brian L

    I am getting the same errors described in this article, but it does not look to be permissions.
    After a service restart of Apache I can run the command:
    lsof -c httpd | grep "apache-shm" | wc -l
    And the count will be in the 20's or so.
    As the day(s) go on that number will grow and grow up into the tens of thousands and eventually bomb websites on the Plesk server with a 403 error and the errors mentioned in the log files in this article.

    Once it bombs out, the apache-shm count will go back down, sites will return to normal, but it will start to slowly climb back up.
    Have had a support call/remote session with Plesk support, but have not had any luck finding a fix.

    CentOS Linux release 7.5.1804
    Plesk Onyx Version 17.5.3 Update #54

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    Ivan Postnikov

    Hello @Brian,

    As the issue is complex I suggest creating a follow-up ticket to Plesk support and double-check the issue.

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    Robert Maggi (Edited )

    Hi to all,
    in CentOS 7, I solved like this:

    sudo vi /etc/httpd/conf/httpd.conf

    and setting:
    <Directory />
    AllowOverride none
    further on..
    <Files ".ht'">
    #Require all denied

    save, and restart Apache with:
    sudo systemctl restart httpd

    Plesk>Website&Domain>Hosting Settings, setting Document Root: / (using your website name)

    Plesk>Website&Domain check the name of System user
    Use this user (and password) to login in WinSCP (or similar) , navigate to /var/www/vhosts, right button on your website folder (, set 755 (octal) permission

    and the problem has disappeared.
    I hope it is a starting point for someone.


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    Nelson Leiva

    Hi Robert Maggi,

    Thank you for sharing your solution. I'm sure it will be helpful for other Plesk users.

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