Emergency, hitting 'redirect to https killed my website'


#1

Please fill out the fields below so we can help you better. Note: you must provide your domain name to get help. Domain names for issued certificates are all made public in Certificate Transparency logs (e.g. https://crt.sh/?q=example.com), so withholding your domain name here does not increase secrecy, but only makes it harder for us to provide help.

My domain is:

http://efficiencyiseverything.com/

I ran this command:

./certbot-auto

It produced this output:

  • Congratulations!

My web server is (include version):

apache, wordpress.

The operating system my web server runs on is (include version):

ubuntu 16,

My hosting provider, if applicable, is:

I can login to a root shell on my machine (yes or no, or I don’t know): yess

I’m using a control panel to manage my site (no, or provide the name and version of the control panel): Filezilla

re-ran the usual renewal code , but today i hit “2.) redirect to HTTPS”.

All of my interns went offline with the current:

This page isn’t working
efficiencyiseverything.com redirected you too many times.
Try clearing your cookies.
ERR_TOO_MANY_REDIRECTS

I cannot figure out what file was modified. Maybe htaccess? I cannot get to wordpress either.

Does anyone know what exactly gets modified in my system or where I can find this in documentation?


#2

It seems HTTP is redirecting to HTTPS (301).
And HTTPS is redirecting back to HTTP (302).
Endless loop…

Is there a redirect in .htaccess that you can modify quickly?

grep -Eri 'rewrite|301|302' /etc/apache2 /var/www/html /etc/httpd


#4
Options +FollowSymLinks



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    RewriteCond %{HTTP:X-Forwarded-Proto} =https [NC]
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RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /
RewriteRule ^index\.php$ - [L]
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule . /index.php [L]
</IfModule>

# END WordPress

#5

Rem these lines out and restart apache:


#6

Now HTTPS is redirecting to HTTPS(301)…
Endless loop.

Find where your 443 vhost config is:

grep -Eri 'efficiencyiseverything.com|SSLCertificate' /etc/apache2 /var/www/html /etc/httpd


#7

I tried removing those lines, it didnt solve the problem so I reverted back. I even deleted the entire htaccess file. Wordpress wouldnt load, but the root homepage still had the loop issue.

I’m self host
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:# domain: efficiencyiseverything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:# public: /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.c om/public_html/
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf: ServerAdmin webmaster@efficiencyiseveryth ing.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf: ServerName www.efficiencyiseverything.co m
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf: ServerAlias efficiencyiseverything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf: DocumentRoot /var/www/efficiencyiseveryth ing.com/public_html
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf: ErrorLog /var/www/efficiencyiseverything .com/log/error.log
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf: CustomLog /var/www/efficiencyiseverything .com/log/access.log combined
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:RewriteCond %{SERVER_NAME} =www.efficiencyi severything.com [OR]
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:RewriteCond %{SERVER_NAME} =efficiencyiseve rything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:# domain: efficiencyiseverything.co
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:# public: /var/www/efficiencyisevery thing.com/public_html/
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf: ServerAdmin webmaster@efficiencyis everything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf: ServerName www.efficiencyiseveryt hing.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf: ServerAlias efficiencyiseverything .com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf: DocumentRoot /var/www/efficiencyis everything.com/public_html
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf: ErrorLog /var/www/efficiencyiseve rything.com/log/error.log
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf: CustomLog /var/www/efficiencyiseve rything.com/log/access.log combined
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:SSLCertificateFile /etc/letsencrypt/ live/www.efficiencyiseverything.com/cert.pem
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/letsencry pt/live/www.efficiencyiseverything.com/privkey.pem
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:SSLCertificateChainFile /etc/letsenc rypt/live/www.efficiencyiseverything.com/chain.pem
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf: # SSLCertificateFile directive is needed.
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf: SSLCertificateFile /etc/ssl/certs/ssl-cert- snakeoil.pem
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf: SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/ssl/private/ssl-cert- snakeoil.key
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf: # Point SSLCertificateChainFile at a file cont aining the
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf: # the referenced file can be the same as SSLCe rtificateFile
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf: #SSLCertificateChainFile /etc/apache2/ssl.crt/se rver-ca.crt
/etc/apache2/conf-available/servername.conf:ServerName www.efficiencyiseverything.com


#8

Other things I can imagine…

Its been years since I first built the website, might have used httpd.conf? It looks familiar. That or made changes directly to the apache settings.

Weird problem that seems almost impossible to root cause.


#9

If it is wordpress you might have to update site links in the database to https it will show http://mysite.com but when switching to https it needs to be changed to https://mysite.com

It is in the “wordpress” database in MySQL or if you custom set it up as something different

In the “wp_options” table, look for “siteurl” and “home”


#10

You need to find where certbot made the redirection…
Find where your 443 vhost config is:
grep -Eri 'efficiencyiseverything.com|SSLCertificate' /etc/apache2 /var/www/html /etc/httpd


#11

An easy way…

apache2ctl -S | grep -Eri rewrite

(Not sure if Eri should be added… If not please correct me)

Thanks


#12

@stevenzhu good idea.
This should be enough:
apache2ctl -S | grep -i rewrite

On second thought, it may not show which file the rewrite line was in…
apache2ctl -S > /tmp/config.file
vi /tmp/config.file
and find “rewrite” then scroll up slowly looking for which file contains it.

[EDIT]
I think we may both be thinking about how NGINX shows the output.
Not sure apache will show what we are looking for (which file contains the rewrite).
This may come close enough:
apache2ctl -t -D DUMP_VHOSTS

If not, then try the long and hard way:


#13

I am trying to mess with the wp_options but I’m running into two stupid problems. HediSQL on my windows isnt connecting, maybe I need to whitelist or SSH in, but I cant access it from there. I’d simply mess with mysql, but when I select * from wp_options, I’m getting too much text to put on the screen.

The long hard way results in:

/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:# domain: efficiencyiseverything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:# public: /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/public_html/
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:  ServerAdmin webmaster@efficiencyiseverything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:  ServerName  www.efficiencyiseverything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:  ServerAlias efficiencyiseverything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:  DocumentRoot /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/public_html
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:  ErrorLog  /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/log/error.log
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:  CustomLog /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/log/access.log combined
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:RewriteCond %{SERVER_NAME} =www.efficiencyiseverything.com [OR]
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf:RewriteCond %{SERVER_NAME} =efficiencyiseverything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:# domain: efficiencyiseverything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:# public: /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/public_html/
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:  ServerAdmin webmaster@efficiencyiseverything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:  ServerName  www.efficiencyiseverything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:  ServerAlias efficiencyiseverything.com
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:  DocumentRoot /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/public_html
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:  ErrorLog  /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/log/error.log
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:  CustomLog /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/log/access.log combined
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:SSLCertificateFile /etc/letsencrypt/live/www.efficiencyiseverything.com/cert.pem
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/letsencrypt/live/www.efficiencyiseverything.com/privkey.pem
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com-le-ssl.conf:SSLCertificateChainFile /etc/letsencrypt/live/www.efficiencyiseverything.com/chain.pem
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf:          #   SSLCertificateFile directive is needed.
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf:          SSLCertificateFile      /etc/ssl/certs/ssl-cert-snakeoil.pem
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf:          SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/ssl/private/ssl-cert-snakeoil.key
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf:          #   Point SSLCertificateChainFile at a file containing the
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf:          #   the referenced file can be the same as SSLCertificateFile
/etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl.conf:          #SSLCertificateChainFile /etc/apache2/ssl.crt/server-ca.crt
/etc/apache2/conf-available/servername.conf:ServerName www.efficiencyiseverything.com

#14

I came here from your HN post.

From the mysql console do a describe wp_options to show the columns. One will be called something like name or property or option etc.

Then use that to reduce your query

Select * from wp_options where name = 'siteurl' or name = 'home'

Change “name” to whatever the first non-integer column is called in the table


#15

That is the file you need to look at:
/etc/apache2/sites-available/efficiencyiseverything.com.conf

Post the contents here if you are not sure what to remove.


#16

Latest update, I modified my wp-config file and now the homepage loads. The rest of the pages are not loading and it seems the redirect still exists in wordpress.

Today I have also updated all http:/ to https:/ in both the database and many wordpress files. I can log in, but the wordpress dashboard isnt coming up. Very strange. the css on the non homepage cant be found either.

Where does certbot change redirects?

Here is a printout of that file, I did comment out the rewrite rule, did not seem to change anything.
# domain: efficiencyiseverything.com
# public: /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/public_html/

<VirtualHost *:80>
  # Admin email, Server Name (domain name), and any aliases
  ServerAdmin webmaster@efficiencyiseverything.com
  ServerName  www.efficiencyiseverything.com
  ServerAlias efficiencyiseverything.com

  # Index file and Document Root (where the public files are located)
  DirectoryIndex index.html index.php
  DocumentRoot /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/public_html
  # Log file locations
  LogLevel warn
  ErrorLog  /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/log/error.log
  CustomLog /var/www/efficiencyiseverything.com/log/access.log combined
RewriteEngine on
RewriteCond %{SERVER_NAME} =www.efficiencyiseverything.com [OR]
RewriteCond %{SERVER_NAME} =efficiencyiseverything.com
RewriteRule ^ https://%{SERVER_NAME}%{REQUEST_URI} [END,NE,R=permanent]
</VirtualHost>

#17

That’s the part that would have been added by Certbot.


#18

It seems to be functional at this point.

http://efficiencyiseverything.com/ redirects to:
https://efficiencyiseverything.com/

and
http://www.efficiencyiseverything.com/ redirects to:
https://www.efficiencyiseverything.com/ which redirects to:
https://efficiencyiseverything.com/


#19

Thats only the front page.

Wordpress is broken.

Seems css problems are common, I cannot tell if this is the only issue.


#21

Finally solved.

  1. Following a tutorial I added a redirect similar to what certbot ads to my .htaccess. This redundancy was awful. Pestered until I finally deleted the code.

  2. I needed to update wp-options and wp-config to use https://website.com/wordpress/ A tutorial I used got rid of the use of /wordpress/ but this wasnt discovered until late.

Lots learned. I knew there was a loop, but wasnt sure what files were controlling and how.

The 3 files that ‘talk’ about routing are

/etc/apache2/sites-available/example.com.conf
/var/www/example.com/public_html/.htaccess
/var/www/example.com/public_html/(wordpress)/wp-config.php

Thank you for getting me to understand what was going on. Between this and PHP laravel, I feel like a wordpress wiz now :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


#22

Glad to hear it worked out