I can't figure out how to get Smart Search to work. I believe I've enabled it appropriately and I've got a small sample set indexed. But anytime I type a search I just get a internal 500 error. Apache logs show:

"GET /component/finder/search?q=not&Itemid=4816 HTTP/1.1" 500 31 "https://www.mysite.com/knowledge-base" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; Win64; x64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/60.0.3112.113 Safari/537.36" port:443

I've tried checking permissions on folders and anything else that might be blocking this search (such as Admin Tools). No luck. Any ideas how I can further debug this?

2 Answers 2


Enable error reporting on the site (change it from "None" to "Maximum" in the Joomla configuration settings), and then check the page, you should see the actual error.

Typically, these fatal errors are caused by a non core plugin as the core smart search doesn't return any errors.


After trying to enable every single debugging setting possible, it never showed the detail of the issue. Just a "syntax error".

However it ended up being something simple. I needed a menu item.

The quick start docs seemed to suggest you could either setup a module interface or component interface. I only did the module interface.

It must be something with my environment, hard to believe a syntax error would be shown here.

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