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In admin there is no tab for compiler. And also with backup it just does nothing.

I am at a loss to what the issue could be.

I have reinstalled magento to another folder and compiler is there and backups work.

What i would really like to do is reinstall everything, and at each stage check the compiler and backup. I have tried this but am not sure of the correct route to take to do this.

migrated from stackoverflow.com Jul 8 '14 at 16:10

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Addendum to @Sander Mangel's answer as to why they may have been forcibly disabled:

If you inherited the management of this website, the compiler is probably shut off for a good reason, the previous maintainer may have found that it interacts quite foully with an installed third party module and decided to prevent the issue from resurfacing.

Starting with version 1.6, code optimization has rendered the compiler speed gains to be a moot point, better to shut it off and be using opcache.

Backup is also known to reset file permissions, causing the website to go down after executing backups with a 500 error when suPHP or WHM/cPanel security settings get violated by a bad Magento developer assumption and may have been disabled for the same reason.

You have to run a script to reset file/folder permissions every time you run the backup when this is encountered. The best cure is to much more speedily back up the database with mySQLdump and the code with tarball scripts instead.

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sounds like you either don't have the rights to compiler and backup or the modules are disabled. Check in app/etc/modules for the file Mage_compiler.xml and Mage_Backup.xml and whether or not they're set to false.

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