The nms Project
Web programs written by experts
This page gives you access to various resources that will help you to fix problems that you are having with our programs. Please work through these suggestions in the order that they are given here.
Note: The resources on this page are aimed at people who are installing and configuring one of our programs on their own web site. If you are not doing this, then this page will not be useful for you and you should go here instead.
Frequently Asked Questions
You probably are not the first person to have the problem that you're having. Solutions to the most common problems are in our FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions). Please read that before asking any questions on the support list.
Note that the most common question we are asked is the one about getting an error that says "too late for -T option" when running our programs on a Windows web server. That question is discussed in great detail in the FAQ and questions on this will be referred back there unless you demonstrate that you have read that section.
Mailing List Archives
Even if your question isn't asked frequently, it's still very likely that it has been asked before. All of the posts to our support mailing list are archived, so it's well worth checking through the archives to see if it has been discussed before.
Yes, our archives contain a lot of spam. Unfortunately we need to make our email address as accessible as possible and that means that we end up on a lot of spammer lists. We are working on ways to cut down on the amount of spam that we recieve.
Basic Web Program Debugging
We're aware that many of the people who use our programs are not programmers, so we don't expect you to be experts in debugging web programs. However, there are a number of simple things that you can check. It's surprising what a large percentage of problems are caused by one of these errors.
- If you transfered the program to your web server, did you make the transfer in "text" mode?
- Is the path to "perl" in the first line of the program correct? We have configured it to be the most common value, but your web server may have the Perl compiler in a slightly unusual place. You'll need to check this with your system adminstrators.
- Are the permissions correct? The program will need to be executable by the web server user on your system. It's hard to give any more specific advice, as the specifics can vary from system to system. Your system adminstrators will know what is required on your system.
- Is the path to "sendmail" correct? Our formmail program uses another program called "sendmail" to actually send the email. It's possible to tell formmail where to find this program by setting the $mailprog variable. Once again, your system adminstrators can tell you exactly what this should be set to.
Most of our programs are constantly being improved. If you're not using the most recent version of our program then one of our first suggestions will probably be that you upgrade. So it's probably a good idea to try that anyway. You can always get the latest versions of all of our programs from this site.
It's particularly worth noting that the versions of our programs that are distributed by other sites are not guaranteed to be up to date.
If your problem isn't discussed in the FAQ or the mailing list archives then please use the form below to send an email to our support mailing list. We only ask that you are follow a few simple suggestions when posting to the list.
- As discussed above, mails to the list are publically archived so that other people can read them. This means that you shouldn't include in your email any thing that you wouldn't want to be public knowledge. This particularly applies to usernames and passwords.
- Please don't attach the whole of our program to the email. Many off our programs are pretty large and we already know what they look like. We only need to see the bits that you have edited. In most cases, that will just be the "user configuration" section. It's also a good idea to include the version number of the program that you are using. That's found at the top of all of our programs.
- Similarly, it's generally a bad idea to send us the whole of a complex HTML page. It's a much better idea to just send us a link to the page.
- Try to include as much useful information as possible in your email. Just saying "it doesn't work" isn't much help to us. Please tell us exactly what unexpected behaviour you are seeing. Send us the exact text of the error message that you are seeing. If you're getting a generic "500 error" or "internal error" page then there will usually be more useful information in the web server error log, please send us that too (note that we can't tell you where your web server error log is, as that's down to the configuration of your web server).
- All of the error messages that you will see are plain text. This means that you should be able to paste the text of the message into the your email message. There's never any need to send us an image file. So please don't do that.
If you follow all of these suggestions then we'll be happy to help you in any way that we can. However, you should realise that the nms project is run by volunteers. We all have day-jobs too so we can't guarantee any particular level of support.
You can send an email to the support team by filling in the form below.
- Please do not use this form to report a problem with a site that you do not own. Go here instead.
- Please read all of this page and follow its advice before filling in the form.
- Please note that all messages sent with this form are publically archived. Therefore you shouldn't include any sensitive information like usernames or passwords.
- We only provide support by email. We will not telephone you.