Having a problem with a CRON job.

I made my first subscription on our live site to recur every month. Then I went into the Subscriptions control panel and changed the subscription that I had just made to recur every day so that I could test it. After that I remembered that it needs to have a CRON job on the server so I set it up to use the first method using a shell script listed here: http://cartthrob.com/docs/docs_subscriptions/#setting-up-rebilling.

I set up the CRON job to run every day at 6:00 AM. Then this morning I received an email with the following text in it:

CartThrob has noticed that your system folder path does not appear to be set correctly. Please open CartThrob's Extload file and update the URL: extload.php

My system is above web root so I changed the $system_path in extload.php to $system_path = "../system"; which is relative to the themes folder. Then I scheduled the CRON job to run a few minutes into the future to see if it would work. The time came and went and there were no new orders placed.

I then checked the subscription next billing date and it was set for today.

Then I thought that perhaps I was using the wrong script for the CRON job so I changed it to method 3 trying PHP's "passthru" function and rescheduled to a few minutes into the future.

Once that was changed I was sent an email when it ran saying "Permission Denied". So then I changed it back to method 1 using the shell script, reschedule, and waited for an order to be processed. Nothing.

I'm using Authorize.net CIM for my payment gateway. Any idea what I'm doing wrong?

Thanks for your help!

Running ExpressionEngine 2.7.3 with CartThrob 2.5 on Media Temple GS

  • "relative to the themes folder"? Is your system folder at the same level as your themes folder or above your themes folder? Commented Feb 10, 2014 at 22:56
  • @JohnWBaxter It's above my themes folder by one level. Commented Feb 10, 2014 at 23:05
  • In the extload.php file it has this comment: * This variable contains the server path to your EE "system" folder. * This path MUST be relative to the position (*!IMPORTANT!*) THEMES FOLDER * If you would prefer to use an absolute server path, uncomment the "system_server_path" and update the full server path to your system folder * This should not be set as a web URL I guess I should probably try setting the server path Commented Feb 10, 2014 at 23:08
  • I just changed it to the full server path and reset the CRON to run and still nothing happened. Commented Feb 10, 2014 at 23:18

1 Answer 1


Because solving this may end up being fairly complex I suggest you schedule a Phone/Skype appointment with the CartThrob/Mightybigrobot support team at http://support.mightybigrobot.com. A member of our support team can speak with your personally and will custom tailor a suitable solution to this issue.

Grid server at Media Temple has some php configurations that may be part of the problem. It could have something to do with open_basedir (but I don't think so) or weird path resolution (which I've seen there too). We've run into some real doozies with MT Grid Server. And who knows, it could be something to do with EE / CT… Schedule a call (provide credentials if possible) and we can take it from there.


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