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How To Install phpNuke 7.5

What is phpNuke?

phpNuke is a web portal and content management system (CMS) which you can use to build your own community. You can post articles and news (or even have registered users to do so), keep side bars of links, and polls. You can create a whole interactive web site with phpNuke.


This tutorial works only with version 7.5, which is no longer available. We were not able to get the latest free version, 7.8 working. We could not import the database (which is a necessary step) due to both large amounts of syntax errors in the database file and that the database file was also too large to import. Splitting up the file only resulted in errors while trying to import the database. It is strongly suggested that you instead use another content management system. We can not provide support or help in getting phpNuke running on our servers.


To use phpNuke, you need to be sure your CGI account is set up. Please see How To Request A CGI Account for more information. You may also need to have a MySQL account set up if the script accesses a MySQL database. Most PHP-based scripts require this. Please see How To Request A MySQL Database. You will also need to obtain a copy of phpNuke 7.5.

We do not recommend you use this version as it is not the latest update. The latest version of phpNuke does not work on our servers at this time.


Remember that only your main account can access CGI scripts on your server. Any hosting or extra FTP accounts that access these scripts may cause your account to be deactivated and you'll have to contact support.

For phpNuke to work correctly, please do not put it or it's directories inside your cgi-bin directory. If you do, the script may not work. It's best to use a separate directory and leave the cgi-bin directory for your smaller scripts.


  1. Extract the files from the phpNuke archive you downloaded into it's own directory.

  2. Open the text file html/config.php in a text editor. Edit the following information. Note that any instance of yourdomaincom should be replaced with your actual domain name without the dot.

    $dbhost = "localhost";
    $dbuname = "yourdomaincom";
    $dbpass = "your_mysql_password";
    $dbname = "yourdomaincom";
    $prefix = "nuke";
    $user_prefix = "nuke";
    $dbtype = "MySQL";
    $sitekey = "Enter any number of letters, symbols, and numbers you wish, but don't use quotation marks.";
    $gfx_chk = 3;
    $subscription_url = "";

  3. Open the /includes/my_header.php file and change the line below:


    to read:

    /* include("ipban.php"); */

    NOTE: You will NOT be able to use IP banning from within phpNuke as a result. If you wish to ban visitors according to IP address, please see How To Ban IPs Or Domains From Accessing A Directory. We are editing this file so that the following line will not appear at the top of every page in phpNuke:

    Warning: open_basedir restriction in effect. File is in wrong directory in /var/www/sites/ on line 15

  4. Log into your CGI server and create a directory (a suggested name for the directory would be phpnuke). Upload all the files in the html directory from the phpNuke directory on your hard drive to the new directory you created on the FTP server. Dial-up users be aware this can take quite awhile to finish.

  5. Log into your database using phpMyAdmin by clicking here. use your database name (for example, yourdomaincom, your actual domain name without the dot) and your database password.

  6. Click on your database name in the left column (ie. yourdomaincom for example).

  7. Click on the SQL tab at the top. Click the browse button and navigate to the sql/nuke.sql found in your phpNuke directory on your hard drive. Click the Go button. If this doesn't work, open the file in a text editor, select all the text, copy and then paste it into your web browser where the large box is in phpMyAdmin. Then click the Go button.


  1. Point your web browser to (replace with your actual domain name and phpnuke with the name of the directory you've installed the phpNuke files in).

  2. Create a Super User (Administrator) account by typing in a username for the administrator, your home page (such as for example), your email address and pick a password. You can create a normal user with the same information. This means you can log in as a normal user using the same login username and password. For security reasons, it's best to say No here and later create a separate normal user account.

  3. Log in using your Admin username and password. You can now configure phpNuke as desired. Note that whenever you click on an icon, scroll down to the bottom of the page to see the configuration options for that section.

Advanced Configuration:

There are several sections to phpNuke, most of which is self-explainatory. Below is an overview of each section. For more information on configuring these sections, please consult the phpNuke web site. Note that when you click on an icon, you have to scroll to the bottom of the page to get to the configuration options.

Administration Menu

Backup DB: Clicking on this will back up your entire phpNuke database.

Banners: You can add banners to a banner rotation here. These banners will be shown on the top of each page. You must add a client before you can add a banner.

Blocks: This is where you can edit the different blocks of content that are on either side of the page. Click on the Edit link in Functions column on the right of any block you wish to change. You can add a new block at the bottom of the page.

Edit Admins: Here you can edit or add site administrators and determine what permissions they are allowed to have.

Forums: This is actually a phpBB forum integrated into phpNuke. For more information on configuring a phpBB forum, please see our tutorial on installing and configuring phpBB. When you are done setting up the forums, you can revisit your phpNuke admin site by typing in your phpNuke admin URL: (for example)

Users Groups: This you can set up special groups of users who participate on your site. You can set up how many points they have to earn in order to get admitted automatically to the special group. Under this area, you can determine how many points a user will earn for each function that they complete.

HTTP Referrers: This will show you a list of sites that are linking to your site. You can delete referrers if you wish.

IP Ban: This is where you would normally enter IP addresses of visitors you do not wish on your site. NOTE: Due to security settings on Active Web Hosting's servers, you can not use this function at this time. You can still ban IP addresses but using a different method. For more information, please see How To Ban IPs Or Domains From Accessing A Directory.

Messages: Here you can add messages to the main newsboard and determine who may view them. This is nice for administrator messages such as site updates and other important information. Other messages should normally be done from a normal user account or a second user account you can set up as adminiatrator.

Modules: Here you can add, remove and change around the different modules on your phpNuke site. Be very careful and do not do anything here unless you are certain you know what you are doing!

Newsletter: Here you can prepare and send a newsletter to your users. It's generally a good idea to prepare the newsletter in a text editor then cut and paste it into the box after you're done. Click the Preview button to see if it looks the way you want it to. Be advised most email programs will use up to only 72 characters in a line. However, the white box may hold less, so some lines may appear to be split up, but might actually appear ok in the Preview. After previewing, you have the option to send or edit it further.

Optimize DB: Click on this icon to optimize the phpNuke database. This can help the site run quicker by removing extra spaces and such that may be taking up room.

Preferences: Here you can change the look of your site and other options.

Sumbissions: You can control user's story submissions from here.

Logout/Exit: Click this icon to log out as administrator.

Modules Administration

Content: Use this area to add a new category or page to your site.

Downloads: You can control downloads that are added to your site. NOTE: Active Web Hosting may shut down any domain that is known to allow visitors to upload files to their server. Only the domain owner may upload files to their server. Before you can have downloads on your site you must create a main category, then click the Add button. From here you can add the link to the file or add a category if you wish.

Encyclopedia: To use this you must first add an Encyclopedia page and click the Add button. Once done, you can add terms and definitions to any encyclopedia you already have online or start a new encyclopedia.

F.A.Q.: This is the Frequently Asked Questions area that you can maintain. Creat a new category and click the Save button to start creating your FAQ. Then in the Functions column, click on the Content link. From here you can now add questions and answers to the FAQ.

News: This is where you may add, remove or edit news articles that are displayed on the main page of the site.

Reviews: Here you can manage reviews on your site. To start, you must first create a new Reviews Page by filling in the title and discription, then clicking the Save Changes button. Then scroll down below that box again and you can add a review by clicking the Click here to write a review link.

Survey/Polls: You can create, add, delete and change surveys and polls to be displayed in a box on your site. You can also send an announcement on your site so others will know there is a new Survey or poll available.

Topics: Here is where you may add new topics for your news section. You can add more icons by uploading them to the images/topics directory found in your phpnuke directory on your CGI server. For best results, your images should be no larger than 80 x 80 and best to be in GIF image format. After uploading your topic graphics, you will then be able to choose from them from the drop down list. If you don't see them at first, be sure to revisit the Topics area of the Module Administration section by clicking on it's icon again.

Web Links: Here you can add links to other web sites. You'll need to add a main category first. From there you can add links or sub categories. You can also manage your links from here as well.

Users: You can add or delete users or edit user information from here.

Logout/Exit: Click this icon to log out of administrator mode.


I get a database error when I try to run phpNuke.

Be sure that you have set up the configuration properly. For more information, please see I get a database error when I try to run a script that accesses the MySQL database.


If you have any problems or questions about phpNuke, please contact the author at the phpNuke site.

Active Web Hosting may not be able to provide support for this program or it's installation.

Alternative Software:

Below you'll find a list of alternative software that you may also want to try. Click on the program name to go to the author's site. Click on the 'Tutorial' link to view our installation tutorial.


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