Plesk is the bane of my existence.
The company I work for has a managed server which we use to host customer data. The server also manages all customer domains and mail accounts. It does so using Plesk, the server management platform designed to give PHP a bad^W worse name. I regularly wrestle with beautiful things like an XML-RPC interface that occasionally lies (inventing errors where none are or returning success for a failed operation). Or the fact that adding a domain to Plesk, even if that domain has no hosting configured, triggers a restart of Apache. Plesk runs on top of Apache. By default, the restart happens before the XML-RPC call has been replied to. Cute.
But today I stumbled across another gem. I try to remove a subscription (essentially a domain) from Plesk via the XML-RPC interface and get... an empty string. No XML document, no non-200 status code, nothing. Apparently the interface has crashed and didn't feel like telling me. Nothing too unusual for Plesk; I'll have to remove subscriptions manually, then. So I log into the web interface, navigate to the subscription, hit the delete button and... the frame gets replaced with a blank page. At least this time the server was considerate enough to give me an HTTP 500 status code.
I fire off an email to the hosting company's support team and half an our later I hear back from them: The subscription could not be removed because a few mail accounts associated with it still had forwarding set. If that's the case you have to manually delete the mail accounts first. So, just to get this straight:
- Despite the fact that removing a subscription removes all mail accounts associated with it, Plesk can't do so if a mail account is configured to forward its mail somewhere.
- Instead of returning an appropriate error message when encountering this problem Plesk just silently crashes.
- If the request to do so came via XML-RPC the crash doesn't even generate an HTTP 500 status code.
And this is the software the hosting company describes as "the best on the market". What does the competition do to be even worse? Randomly delete files? Replace all email bodies with goat porn?