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In WOW, I Made a Change on My Home Page, and Now WOW Crashes When I Try to Browse to the Site. Help!
Posted by on 08 March 2013 01:49 PM

If you shoot yourself in the foot by editing your WOW home page in such a way that it crashes on startup -- usually with a very long and ugly error message from "Smarty" -- you need to solve the dilemma of how to actually edit your site when it is crashing on startup. The procedure is simple:

(1) Visit another flotilla's WOW website, say a nearby flotilla. If YOUR flotilla was 070-11-06, for example, "http://a0701107.wow.uscgaux.info" (11-7) will do.


(2) Click on the "About Flotilla 11-7" menu item (or "About <whatever flotilla you chose>"), opening a page 100% created by the system.


(3) In the address (URL) line of your browser, which reads: "http://wow.uscgaux.info/about.php?unit=070-11-07", hack the "11-07" in the address to 11-06 (i.e., to YOUR flotilla), and hit enter. This will open up your About page on YOUR site, bypassing the home page.


(4) Immediately log in, and go to the configure mode. Now you can fix your fatal errors.

Note that while working code that crashes, open up a second browser window to do the testing, keeping the first browser window in the Configure mode. If you forget, and "Return to Unit Site", and the page crashes, SIMPLY USE THE BACK BUTTON ON YOUR BROWSER to get back to the previous page in the Configure mode.

How might you create code so bad that it crashes on startup? Easy:

(1) You tried to use the Smart Tags feature on a page where the contents were copied over from a legacy AIRS (or other conventional) site, and the HTML of that content contains curly brackets {}.  Solution: take out the smart tag flag, and then recreate your page from scratch, using the techniques in the WOW Application Note "The 1-Hour Conversion: Conventional Site to WOW", at http://wow.uscgaux.info/user_docs/AuxiliaryWOW_II_One-hour_Conversion.pdf.

(2) You have attempted to mix JavaScript with WOW Smart Tags on the same page.  The two are incompatible. Note that use of JavaScript on any WOW page is an UNSUPPORTED feature. That is, it will work if programmed correctly, but the National Staff WILL NOT support it.


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