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      How to Fix the “Upload: Failed to Write File to Disk” Error in WordPress (3 Ways)


      Are you encountering the “Upload: Failed to write file to disk” error message when uploading files in WordPress? Whether you’re trying to add images or videos to your site, this message can be very frustrating, as it prevents you from sharing your amazing visuals with your audience.

      Fortunately, you can troubleshoot this issue by following a few simple steps. In some cases, you’ll just need to contact your web host to get it fixed.

      In this post, we’ll take a closer look at the “Upload: Failed to write file to disk” error and its main causes. We’ll then show you three simple ways to fix this problem. Let’s get started!

      What Causes the “Upload: Failed to Write File to Disk” Error in WordPress

      The “Upload: Failed to Write File to Disk” error message typically comes up when you’re trying to upload media files to your WordPress site. There are a few possible causes, the most common one being incorrect file permissions.

      Every file and folder on your WordPress site comes with a set of permissions. These are controlled by the web server and determine which site users can access and edit your files and folders. Thus, if the permissions are incorrect, you may be unable to perform certain actions on your site, such as uploading images to your media library.

      However, this error could also be caused by other issues, including a full WordPress temporary folder. It’s also possible that you’ve reached the disk space limit provided with your hosting plan.

      Next, we’ll take a closer look at these possible causes. We’ll also walk you through a solution for each scenario.

      Skip the Stress

      Avoid troubleshooting when you sign up for DreamPress. Our friendly WordPress experts are available 24/7 to help solve website problems — big or small.

      How to Fix the “Upload: Failed to Write File to Disk” Error in WordPress (3 Ways)

      Now, let’s look at three easy ways to fix this disk error in WordPress. As always, we recommend that you perform a backup of your site before proceeding. That way, if something goes wrong, you can restore your site to an earlier version.

      1. Change the File Permissions

      As we mentioned earlier, the “Upload: Failed to write file to disk” error is likely caused by incorrect file permissions. If you want to check these permissions, you can contact your hosting provider and ask them if they can do it for you. Alternatively, you can do this yourself by accessing your site’s root directory.

      First, you’ll need to connect to your site via a Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP) client such as FileZilla. You can also access your site’s directory through the file manager in your hosting account.

      If you have a DreamHost account, start by navigating to Websites > Files in the sidebar. Then locate your domain and click on the Manage Files button.

      Accessing your site in DreamHost

      This will take you to the file manager. To access your site’s directory, you can open the folder labeled with your domain name. Inside, locate the wp-content folder and right-click on it.

      Next, select File permissions.

      Locating the wp-content folder in your site’s root directory.

      In the pop-up window, go to the Numeric value field and enter “755” or “750” in the corresponding box. Next, you can select the Recurse into subdirectories and Apply to directories only options and click on OK.

      Changing the file permissions of your subdirectories in FileZilla.

      You have now set the correct file permissions for all subdirectories inside the wp-content folder. This includes the uploads folder, which is where your uploaded media files are stored.

      However, you’ll also need to set the correct permissions for the files within those folders. To do this, you can right-click on the wp-content folder again and select File permissions.

      In the Numeric value field, type in “644”. Then select the Recurse into subdirectories and Apply to files only options, and click on OK.

      Changing the file permissions of your files in FileZilla.

      Don’t worry if you’re still unable to upload files to your site after checking your file permissions. There are a couple of other things you can do to resolve the issue.

      2. Empty the WordPress Temporary Folder

      If changing the file permissions doesn’t solve the problem, you may need to empty your temporary folder. WordPress processes your media uploads in PHP. This means that your images are first saved in a temporary folder on your web server before being transferred to your uploads folder.

      If the temporary folder is full, WordPress won’t be able to write your files to disk until you’ve emptied it. Unfortunately, you cannot access this temporary directory via SFTP.  However, you can simply contact your hosting provider and ask them to empty the folder for you, and then check to see if the error has been resolved. If you have sudo users, you could ask them to clear your temporary folder.

      Alternatively, you can try to resolve this issue by defining a new location for WordPress to store your media (instead of the temporary folder). First, you’ll need to connect to your site via an SFTP client or the file manager. Then locate the wp-config.php file, right-click on it, and select View/Edit.

      Editing the wp-config.php file in FileZilla.

      Next, you’ll need to paste in the following code right before the line that reads “That’s all, stop editing! Happy publishing”:

      define(‘WP_TEMP_DIR’, dirname(__FILE__) . ‘/wp-content/temp/’);

      Save your changes, then navigate to the wp-content folder, open it, and create a new folder inside it called temp.

      Creating a temp folder inside the wp-content folder.

      When you’re done, you can return to your website and try to upload an image. If the file disk error was caused by the temporary folder, the issue should now be resolved.

      3. Upgrade Your Hosting Plan

      The disk error could also be a sign that you’ve outgrown your current hosting plan. For example, if you’ve been adding a lot of content to your site, including media files, new pages, and plugins, you might have used up all the disk space available in your account.

      Your web host may be able to tell you how much disk space you have left. If you’re a DreamHost client, you can check your disk usage by logging into your hosting account and navigating to Billing & Account > Disk Usage in the side menu.

      Checking your disk usage in your DreamHost account.

      If you’ve reached your disk space limit, you might need to upgrade to a more advanced hosting plan. This will give your site more room to grow. We recommend getting in touch with your hosting provider to discuss the possibility of switching to a higher plan.

      Additional WordPress Error Articles

      Do you want to learn how to resolve other technical issues on your site? We’ve put together several tutorials to help you troubleshoot the most common WordPress errors:

      If you’re looking for more information about running a WordPress site, make sure to check out our WordPress Tutorials. This is a collection of guides designed to help you navigate the WordPress dashboard like an expert.

      Take Your WordPress Website to the Next Level

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      Fix the “Upload: Failed to Write File to Disk” Error

      The “Upload: Failed to write file to disk” error message prevents you from uploading files such as images and videos to your WordPress site. Incorrect file permissions on your site normally cause this error. However, you may also be seeing this message because you’ve used all the disk space offered with your hosting plan.

      In this article, we looked at three simple ways to fix this common WordPress error:

      1. Change the file permissions of your WordPress site using an SFTP client like FileZilla.
      2. Empty the WordPress temporary folder by getting in touch with your web host.
      3. Upgrade your hosting plan to access more disk space.

      At DreamHost, we provide 24/7 expert support to help you efficiently resolve technical issues. We also offer reliable managed WordPress hosting solutions to help you grow your business while also making it easy for you to upgrade to an advanced plan as your site grows.



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      How To Write Your First PHP Program


      The author selected Open Sourcing Mental Illness Ltd to receive a donation as part of the Write for DOnations program.

      Introduction

      The “Hello, World!” program is a classic and time-honored tradition in computer programming. Serving as a complete first program for beginners and a good program to test systems and programming environments, “Hello, World!” illustrates the basic syntax of programming languages.

      This tutorial will walk you through writing a “Hello, World!” program in PHP. You’ll also learn about opening and closing PHP code blocks within your code and using different types of comments in your code.

      Prerequisites

      You will need PHP installed as well as a local programming environment set up on your computer.

      To set this up, follow the How to Install PHP 7.4 and Set Up a Local Development Environment for your operating system.

      Writing the “Hello, World!” Program

      To write the “Hello, World!” program, start by opening a command-line text editor, such as nano, and create a new file:

      Once the text file opens up in the terminal window, type out the program:

      hello.php

      <?php
      echo "Hello, World!";
      ?>
      

      Let’s break down the different components of the code.

      All PHP code falls within a PHP Code Block, starting with <?php and ending with ?>.

      echo is a language construct. Its arguments are a list of expressions following the echo keyword, separated by commas and not delimited by parentheses. echo tells PHP to display or output whatever is included between echo and the ending semicolon ;.

      Between the echo and the ; is a sequence of characters — Hello, World! — that is enclosed in quotation marks. Any characters that are inside quotation marks are called a string.

      After writing the program, hold down the CTRL key and press the X key to exit nano. When prompted to save the file, press Y.

      Once you exit nano, you’ll return to your shell.

      With that, you have written your “Hello, World!” program.

      Running the “Hello, World!” Program

      With your “Hello, World!” program written, you’re ready to run the program. Use the php command along with the name of the program file as follows:

      Running the hello.php program that you just created will cause your terminal to produce the following output:

      Output

      Hello, World!

      Let’s go over what the program did in more detail.

      PHP executed the line echo "Hello, World!"; by calling the language construct echo. The string value of Hello, World! was passed to the construct.

      In this example, the string Hello, World! is also called an argument since it is a value that is passed to another part of the code, such as a construct or a function.

      The quotes that are on either side of Hello, World! were not output to the screen because they are used to tell PHP that this section of code contains a string. The quotation marks delineate where the string begins and ends.

      Since the program ran successfully, you can now confirm that PHP is properly installed and that the program is syntactically correct. Before going any further in the code itself, let’s take a closer look at the PHP Code Block.

      Working Outside the PHP Code Block

      Within a .php file, anything outside of the PHP tags is treated as HTML or plain text. The PHP language was originally written as a way to extend the functionality of HTML. With this in mind, you may include multiple PHP code blocks throughout a file. Anything outside the code block will render as HTML or plain text.

      Update your hello.php file:

      hello.php

      Hi Sammy
      <?php echo "Hello, World!"; ?>
      
      How are you doing?
      <?php echo "Swimmingly!";
      

      Save the file and rerun it:

      Output

      Hi Sammy Hello, World! How are you doing? Swimmingly!

      Diving into the code, you’ll notice that Hi Sammy and How are you doing? are both outside the PHP code blocks and therefore render as plain text when running the program.

      This file contains two PHP code blocks. The first code block includes both the starting and ending tags, while the second code block, being at the end of the file, leaves off the final closing tag.

      Including the closing block tag ?> is not required. When ending a file with a PHP code block, it is recommended to leave off the closing tag. Any character, even a blank space, which is rendered after the closing tag will be output to the screen as HTML or plain text. This can cause unexpected consequences with the function of your application because certain functionality, such as a redirect, will not process if anything has been output to the browser. When writing a file that contains only PHP code, never include the closing PHP tag.

      As code gets more complicated, like when splitting concepts over multiple code blocks, it can be beneficial to leave notes for ourselves and others. You can do this through the use of comments.

      A comment in code is a line that will not execute as a part of the program. Its only purpose is to be read by a human who is looking at the code. One thing that comes as a shock to many developers is how much time is spent reading code versus writing code. This means it’s essential to have code that is as easy to read as possible. You can accomplish this in a few ways:

      • Use coding standards. These are a collection of guidelines and best practices for organizing and formatting code clearly and consistently. In PHP, the most common coding standards are those developed by the PHP-FIG (Framework Interop Group).
      • Choose ease of reading over ease of writing. Use descriptive variables over short variables. It’s not about how many lines of code your write, but how long it will take someone to read those lines and understand what’s going on.
      • Comment for clarity. While it isn’t a hard and fast rule, if you’ve followed the previous two bullet points, your code should explain what is happening, while the comments explain why something is happening the way it is.

      When writing comments in PHP, there are two types of comments: single-line comments and multiline comments. Single line comments can start at any point on a line and end at either the end of the line or the end of the code block, whichever comes first.

      The most common way to start a single-line comment is with the double forward slash (//), although PHP also recognizes a hash sign (#) as a valid start to a single-line comment:

      hello.php

      Hi Sammy
      <?php echo "Hello"; //, World!"; ?>
      
      How are you doing?
      <?php echo "Swimmingly!";
      // other options: Floating along
      

      Save the file and run it again:

      Output

      Hi Sammy Hello How are you doing? Swimmingly!

      The first comment starts in the middle of a line. A closing quote and semicolon were added after "Hello" and the rest of the line was commented out. Commenting out one or more lines of code is often used in debugging to test how the code responds if certain elements are removed.

      You use a second comment to give a secondary option for an answer. The next step in your project may be to respond with one of several different options each time you execute the application. The comment is used as a reminder for other options that could be added.

      Multiline comments start with /* and end with */. The PHP interpreter will ignore any text or code within those characters. To provide more options, let’s change the last line to a multi-line comment:

      hello.php

      Hi Sammy
      <?php echo "Hello"; //, World!"; ?>
      
      How are you doing?
      <?php echo "Swimmingly!";
      /* When responding with one of a number of answers, here are some other options:
      * Floating along
      * Fin-tastic
      * Going with the flow
      * Treading water
      * Swamped
      */
      

      Using a multi-line comment gives more room to add detail or formatting to once again make the code, and the intention of the code, easier to understand. This multi-line comment includes line breaks and added * as a delineator for a list. The */ combination signifies the end of our comment block.

      Using DocBlocks for Documentation

      There is a special type of multi-line comment called a DocBlock. This is a unique way of documenting the functionality of a particular file, class, method, or other structural elements. Although a DocBlock starts and ends like any other multi-line comment /* */, they are designed to give specific detail for working with an element. Not only do these details provide an overview of the code for developers, but they may also be used by a code editor (or IDE) to provide suggestions and validation.

      A DocBlock consists of several parts. The first is a brief summary to introduce the element and a longer description if more context is needed.

      The final section that makes a DocBlock unique is for tags and annotations. These provide a way to succinctly and uniformly provide meta-information about the associated element. Tags can, for example, describe the type of information that is accepted or returned by a method or function. It may also provide details about the author or copyright of a file:

      hello.php

      <?php
      /**
       * DocBlock example
       *
       * @author Sammy <sammy@digitalocean.com>
       */
       ...
      

      While you should strive to write code that is clear and easy to follow, adding clarifying comments can add additional context that will increase the understanding of the code and the choices behind the code.

      Conclusion

      In this tutorial, you have written the “Hello, World!” program in PHP. You learned about opening and closing PHP code blocks within your code and using different comments to clarify and add context as your code gets more complicated. From here, you can continue learning by following the How To Work with Strings in PHP tutorial.



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      How To Use argparse to Write Command-Line Programs in Python


      The author selected the COVID-19 Relief Fund to receive a donation as part of the Write for DOnations program.

      Introduction

      Python’s argparse standard library module is a tool that helps you write command-line interfaces (CLI) over your Python code. You may already be familiar with CLIs: programs like git, ls, grep, and find all expose command-line interfaces that allow you to call an underlying program with specific inputs and options. argparse allows you to call your own custom Python code with command-line arguments similar to how you might invoke git, ls, grep, or find using the command line. You might find this useful if you want to allow other developers to run your code from the command line.

      In this tutorial, you’ll use some of the utilities exposed by Python’s argparse standard library module. You’ll write command-line interfaces that accept positional and optional arguments to control the underlying program’s behavior. You’ll also self-document a CLI by providing help text that can be displayed to other developers who are using your CLI.

      For this tutorial, you’ll write command-line interfaces for a program that keeps track of fish in a fictional aquarium.

      Prerequisites

      To get the most out of this tutorial, we recommend you have:

      • Some familiarity with programming in Python 3. You can review our How To Code in Python 3 tutorial series for background knowledge.

      Writing a Command-Line Program that Accepts a Positional Argument

      You can use the argparse module to write a command-line interface that accepts a positional argument. Positional arguments (as opposed to optional arguments, which we’ll explore in a subsequent section), are generally used to specify required inputs to your program.

      Let’s consider an example CLI that prints the fish in an aquarium tank identified by a positional tank argument.

      To create the CLI, open a file with your text editor:

      Then, add the following Python code:

      aquarium.py

      import argparse
      
      tank_to_fish = {
          "tank_a": "shark, tuna, herring",
          "tank_b": "cod, flounder",
      }
      
      parser = argparse.ArgumentParser(description="List fish in aquarium.")
      parser.add_argument("tank", type=str)
      args = parser.parse_args()
      
      fish = tank_to_fish.get(args.tank, "")
      print(fish)
      

      You can print out the fish in tank_a by running:

      • python3 aquarium.py tank_a

      After running that command, you will receive output like the following:

      Output

      shark, tuna, herring

      Similarly, if you ran aquarium.py to print out the fish in tank_b with:

      • python3 aquarium.py tank_b

      You would receive output like the following:

      Output

      cod, flounder

      Let’s break down the code in aquarium.py.

      First, you import the argparse module to make it available for use in your program. Next, you create a dictionary data structure tank_to_fish that maps tank names (like tank_a and tank_b) to string descriptions of fish held in those tanks.

      You instantiate an instance of the ArgumentParser class and bind it to the parser variable. You can think of parser as the main point of entry for configuring your command-line interface. The description string provided to parser is—as you’ll learn later—used in the automatically generated help text for the CLI exposed by aquarium.py.

      Calling add_argument on parser allows you to add arguments accepted by your command-line interface. In this case, you add a single argument named tank that is a string type. Calling parser.parse_args() instructs parser to process and validate the command-line input passed to aquarium.py (for example, something like tank_a). Accessing the args returned by parser.parse_args() allows you to retrieve the value of the passed in tank argument, and use it to print out the fish in that tank.

      At this point, you’ve written a command-line interface and executed your program to print fish. Now you need to describe how your CLI works to other developers. argparse has strong support for help text to document your CLIs. You’ll learn more about help text next.

      Viewing Help Text

      The aquarium.py file you just wrote in the previous section actually does more than print the fish in a specific tank. Since you’re using argparse, the command-line interface exposed by aquarium.py will automatically include help and usage messages that a user can consult to learn more about your program.

      Consider, for example, the usage message aquarium.py prints if you provide invalid arguments on the command line. Try invoking aquarium.py with the wrong arguments on the command line by running:

      • python3 aquarium.py --not-a-valid-argument

      If you run this command, you’ll receive output like this:

      Output

      usage: aquarium.py [-h] tank aquarium.py: error: the following arguments are required: tank

      The output printed on the command line indicates that there was an error trying to run aquarium.py. The output indicates that the user needs to invoke aquarium.py with a tank argument. Something else you might notice is the -h in-between [] characters. This denotes that -h is an optional argument that you can provide as well.

      Now you’ll find out what happens when you call aquarium.py with the -h option. Try invoking aquarium.py with the -h argument on the command line by running:

      If you run this command, you’ll receive output like this:

      Output

      usage: aquarium.py [-h] tank List fish in aquarium. positional arguments: tank optional arguments: -h, --help show this help message and exit

      As you may have guessed, the -h option is short for, “help.” Running python3 aquarium.py -h (or, equivalently, the longer variant python3 aquarium.py --help) prints out the help text. The help text, effectively, is a longer version of the usage text that was outputted in the previous example when you supplied invalid arguments. Notably, the help text also includes the custom description string of List fish in an aquarium that you instantiated the ArgumentParser with earlier on in this tutorial.

      By default, when you write a CLI using argparse you’ll automatically get help and usage text that you can use to document your CLI for other developers.

      So far, you’ve written a CLI that accepts a required positional argument. In the next section you’ll add an optional argument to your interface to expand on its capabilities.

      Adding an Optional Argument

      Sometimes, it’s helpful to include optional arguments in your command-line interface. These options are typically prefixed with two dash characters, for example --some-option. Let’s rewrite aquarium.py with the following adjusted content that adds an --upper-case option to your CLI:

      aquarium.py

      import argparse
      
      tank_to_fish = {
          "tank_a": "shark, tuna, herring",
          "tank_b": "cod, flounder",
      }
      
      parser = argparse.ArgumentParser(description="List fish in aquarium.")
      parser.add_argument("tank", type=str)
      parser.add_argument("--upper-case", default=False, action="store_true")
      args = parser.parse_args()
      
      fish = tank_to_fish.get(args.tank, "")
      
      if args.upper_case:
          fish = fish.upper()
      
      print(fish)
      

      Try invoking aquarium.py with the new --upper-case argument by running the following:

      • python3 aquarium.py --upper-case tank_a

      If you run this command, you’ll receive output like this:

      Output

      SHARK, TUNA, HERRING

      The fish in tank_a are now outputted in upper case. You accomplished this by adding a new --upper-case option when you called parser.add_argument("--upper-case", default=False, action="store_true"). The "--upper-case" string is the name of the argument you’d like to add.

      If the --upper-case option isn’t provided by the user of the CLI, default=False ensures that its value is set to False by default. action="store_true" controls what happens when the --upper-case option is provided by the CLI user. There are a number of different possible strings supported by the action parameter, but "store_true" stores the value True into the argument, if it is provided on the command line.

      Note that, although the argument is two words separated by a dash (upper-case), argparse makes it available to your code as args.upper_case (with an underscore separator) after you call parser.parse_args(). In general, argparse converts any dashes in the provided arguments into underscores so that you have valid Python identifiers to reference after you call parse_args().

      As before, argparse automatically creates a --help option and documents your command-line interface (including the --upper-case option you just added).

      Try invoking aquarium.py with the --help option again to receive the updated help text:

      • python3 aquarium.py --help

      Your output will be similar to:

      Output

      usage: aquarium.py [-h] [--upper-case] tank List fish in aquarium. positional arguments: tank optional arguments: -h, --help show this help message and exit --upper-case

      argparse automatically documented the positional tank argument, the optional --upper-case option, and the built-in --help option as well.

      This help text is useful, but you can improve it with additional information to help users better understand how they can invoke your program. You’ll explore how to enhance the help text in the next section.

      Exposing Additional Help Text to Your Users

      Developers use the help text provided by your command-line interfaces to understand what your program is capable of and how they should use it. Let’s revise aquarium.py again so it includes better help text. You can specify argument-level information by specifying help strings in the add_argument calls:

      aquarium.py

      import argparse
      
      tank_to_fish = {
          "tank_a": "shark, tuna, herring",
          "tank_b": "cod, flounder",
      }
      
      parser = argparse.ArgumentParser(description="List fish in aquarium.")
      parser.add_argument("tank", type=str, help="Tank to print fish from.")
      parser.add_argument(
          "--upper-case",
          default=False,
          action="store_true",
          help="Upper case the outputted fish.",
      )
      args = parser.parse_args()
      
      fish = tank_to_fish[args.tank]
      
      if args.upper_case:
          fish = fish.upper()
      
      print(fish)
      

      Try invoking aquarium.py with the --help option again to receive the updated help text:

      • python3 aquarium.py --help

      Your output will be the following:

      Output

      usage: aquarium.py [-h] [--upper-case] tank List fish in aquarium. positional arguments: tank Tank to print fish from. optional arguments: -h, --help show this help message and exit --upper-case Upper case the outputted fish.

      In this latest output, notice that the tank positional argument and the --upper-case optional argument both include custom help text. You provided this extra help text by supplying strings to the help part of add_argument. (For example, parser.add_argument("tank", type=str, help="Tank to print fish from.").) argparse takes these strings and renders them for you in the help text output.

      You can improve your help text further by having argparse print out any default values you have defined.

      Displaying Default Values in Help Text

      If you use a custom formatter_class when you instantiate your ArgumentParser instance, argparse will include default values in the help text output. Try adding argparse.ArgumentDefaultsHelpFormatter as your ArgumentParser formatter class:

      aquarium.py

      import argparse
      
      tank_to_fish = {
          "tank_a": "shark, tuna, herring",
          "tank_b": "cod, flounder",
      }
      
      parser = argparse.ArgumentParser(
          description="List fish in aquarium.",
          formatter_class=argparse.ArgumentDefaultsHelpFormatter,
      )
      parser.add_argument("tank", type=str, help="Tank to print fish from.")
      parser.add_argument(
          "--upper-case",
          default=False,
          action="store_true",
          help="Upper case the outputted fish.",
      )
      args = parser.parse_args()
      
      fish = tank_to_fish[args.tank]
      
      if args.upper_case:
          fish = fish.upper()
      
      print(fish)
      

      Now, try invoking aquarium.py with the --help option again to check the updated help text:

      • python3 aquarium.py --help

      After running this command, you’ll receive output like this:

      Output

      usage: aquarium.py [-h] [--upper-case] tank List fish in aquarium. positional arguments: tank Tank to print fish from. optional arguments: -h, --help show this help message and exit --upper-case Upper case the outputted fish. (default: False)

      In this latest output, notice that the documentation for --upper-case ends with an indication of the default value for the --upper-case option (default: False). By including argparse.ArgumentDefaultsHelpFormatter as the formatter_class of your ArgumentParser, argparse automatically started rendering default value information in its help text.

      Conclusion

      The argparse module is a powerful part of the Python standard library that allows you to write command-line interfaces for your code. This tutorial introduced you to the foundations of argparse: you wrote a command-line interface that accepted positional and optional arguments, and exposed help text to the user.

      argparse supports many more feautures that you can use to write command-line programs with sophisticated sets of inputs and validations. From here, you can use the argparse module’s documentation to learn more about other available classes and utilities.



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