Error message displayed on search results screen or search results screen is blank

An error occurred in the search system

This indicates something went wrong with when padre processed the query. This could be an issue with the indexes (such as a corrupted or missing index), or it could be a result of padre returning malformed XML to the modern UI which then cannot be parsed into the data model.

Inspect the source code of the search results page (select view page source in your browser window) - there may be additional information such as a Java stack dump inside HTML comments. Also inspect the modern ui logs for the search package that you are querying (indicated by the collection parameter in the URL.

It is also worth checking the search.json response which may include a more details.

Blank search results page

A blank search results page could be a result of the following:

  • it could indicate that a server error occurred - check the modernui.log for the search package you are querying to see if an error was logged.

  • the template may not have been configured correctly - it may not return anything if there are no search results, or if no query is supplied.

  • if the search results are wrapped by a CMS (e.g. that parses the Funnelback JSON) then there might be an error recorded by the CMS.

Stack trace returned within the search results page

If template debugging has been enabled you may see a stack trace returned within the search results page.

This error will provide information on the cause of the problem. You may need to view the HTML source to see a full error message.

Error message shown in a results summary

If you get a normal looking set of search results, but see an error message presented within the search results summary this could be caused by Funnelback indexing an error that is returned when fetching the page.

This can occur if the website that you are indexing is misconfigured and it returns an ok (HTTP 200) status code when accessing the page, regardless of if an error occurred or not. This will normally happen if the site owner has provided customized error pages (e.g. page not found) but the site is misconfigured to return the OK status message.

You can confirm this is the case by viewing the cached version of the web page. This is either accessibly from the search results page (this will depend on how your template is configured) or by accessing the URL contained in the cacheUrl element for the affected result in your search results JSON.

The only way to fix this problem is to get the site owner to configure the website to return the correct status codes.