‘The following module is missing..’ Drupal Error Messages After Update To 7.50

After updating your Drupal site from 7.44 to 7.50 you might see this message when you check your status report.

This happened to me. Below image explains that the admin should install the ‘webform’ module.

1

On another site, I also received the same message, this time looking for the ‘bestreply’ module. But since the error messages are set to ‘NONE’, it only displayed in the logs.

2

This also shows up when you use Drush:

3

Why is this happening?

According to the supporting page for this issue, there are three possible reasons:

  1. You removed a module from the file system without disabling and uninstalling it.
  2. You moved the module inside your Drupal installation.
  3. There is a bug in a module installed on your site.

Like most developers I do a lot of experimentation with modules I am not familiar with and in my case no. 1 definitely applied (you removed a module from the file system …). Sometimes I get confused with the number of attempts I do and I may delete a module without disabling it.

Why is this Necessary?

Removing a module without disabling it leaves a lot of ‘garbage’, eg. code that the module installed but is not necessary anymore. This may become a security risk. Third party modules are maintained independently from the core Drupal files and if the creators / people in charge of that module stop working on it, which occasionally happens, the code eventually becomes outdated and may allow malicious hackers access to other files or even the database.

It’s therefore appropriate to remove modules correctly by disabling it first. To learn more, read the part on the Changelog under ‘Improved performance (and new PHP warnings) when Drupal is trying to find a file that does not exist’

What to do?

The solution is very simple. Merely google the missing module and download it into the /sites/all/modules directory. In my case I didn’t even have to activate it and after checking the status page again the error message went away.

Conclusion

Always properly remove modules. And always read the Changelogs and Blogposts if any, to understand why things are happening the way they are. Version 7.44 to 7.50 represents a major jump as indicated by skipping over .45, .46, etc.. You should be at least even a little curious why that is so reading the Blogpost is extra important to keep updated and avoid surprises.

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