Martin Atkins (mart) wrote in lj_dev,
Martin Atkins


I've been doing some fixing up of an LJ installation for winchell recently, and it has brought to light some issues which arise with LJ on other sites as it is currently distributed. I'm posting them here so they will be noticed and at least recorded somewhere. I've also included some other bugs which have been identified in the past so that they are all here in one place should someone fancy going and fixing stuff...

  • The old LJ source distros used to come with an SQL script which installed all of the FAQ entries into the database, but since they are associated with userids which don't match up with the people on LJ who updated them, the FAQs don't display since the WHERE clause in the SQL query doesn't ever match. As a site grows, users will begin to match these, but they will be the wrong users and confusion will ensue. I fixed this on winchell's site by just changing it to not display the username. A better solution might be to not bundle the FAQ stuff at all since most of it's pretty LJ-specific anyway. This means that faq.bml and faqbrowse.bml need to move into ljcom rather than livejournal.
  • The most recent source tarball has problems which have been fixed more recently, but no more tarballs have been created. For example, the example VirtualHost configuration doesn't include the stuff which makes the userpics script execute. The solution is to make a new source tarball from CVS and possibly automate monthly CVS releases since nothing goes into the CVS until it's been tested by Brad anyway.
  • The SQL script which puts the data in also puts in the system styles, which have various styleids. This means that the first user-created style on another site has a mad-large styleid and a bunch of styleids are wasted. This problem has been known about for yonks, but I just thought I'd include it for completeness.
  • Related to the above, the styles are linked to the user 'system' which isn't created automatically. If the admin doesn't realise this (It's not documented AFAICS) a malicious user can later create a system account and edit or delete the styles.
  • The BML configuration still references /home/lj for a bunch of things. I ran into this yesterday when doing some stuff with to /support/index.bml which has two include files.
  • The "Welcome to LiveJournal" email contains references to our LiveJournal. It also mentions paid accounts even on a site which doesn't have different account types. The solution to this is unclear, since that email is generated from a file and therefore can't contain code. Perhaps that file should be created by the script which configures LJ, or at least be different in livejournal to ljcom...</p>

I'm sure there are more I've forgotten about, but these are the ones I can remember right now.


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