HTTP Error 500
WordPress:

What does it mean and what’s the solution for it?

5 min. read

Do you see an HTTP Error 500 in WordPress? This translates into “something has gone wrong on the web site's server.” Here are some steps you can take to resolve the error.


One of the most frustrating errors that can occur in WordPress is HTTP error 500. It never has a simple solution, and it requires a lot of troubleshooting that take a lot of your time and patience. We’re going to try to help you overcome this frustrating situation by suggesting several solutions to this issue and guiding you through each. 

What is WordPress HTTP 500 Error?

WordPress HTTP 500 Error is one of the most common WordPress errors. It occurs when there’s an issue with the server or file system that’s powering your site. The WordPress Internal Server Error is a "server-side" issue. This means that the problem is not with your PC or Internet connection but instead is a problem with the web site's server.


In the majority of cases, the issue happens in the root directory. This is where your WordPress files are located. In other cases, the problem might occur on your host’s server.


The WordPress HTTP Error can happen with any website running on a web server. The tricky part is that, due to its generic nature, the error doesn’t tell the developer anything. There’s never a straightforward solution, and it might take the developer hours to fix.

What are the best solutions to fix it?

There are several things you can try to fix the WordPress HTTP 500 Error. Here’s what you should do:

Try updating your .htaccess file

As mentioned above, the .htaccess file is in many cases a primary cause of the error, and by updating it, you essentially ‘reset’ your website’s configuration. 


Make a backup of the .htaccess file and then delete the whole file. If the internal server error was caused by a mistake within the file, this will let you know. If the error is now resolved, it was with the .htaccess file. 

How does it affect your business and website?

As we’ve previously mentioned, a WordPress HTTP 500 Error is a status code that alerts users to a server-side issue but does not pinpoint the exact problem. For this reason, developers don’t know exactly what seems to be the problem and can spend hours, even days fixing it. 


As your developer can spend hours or days trying to solve the issue, clients won’t be able to access your website. This can be a website owner’s worst nightmare. You’ll have people typing in your domain, and instead of seeing your website, they’re greeted with a 500 Error message. 


If this happens once in a blue moon, there’s probably nothing to worry about. However, WordPress HTTP 500 Errors usually happen more than once every two years. It can happen several times in one year. 


When your clients have a bad user experience for more than once, they'll be less likely to return to your website ever again in the future and will probably go to your competitor’s website that’s up-and-running. You’ll end up with a poor website and major loss of revenue.  


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Try solving the PHP memory limit

If updating your .htaccess file doesn’t solve the problem, there may be a PHP memory issue. This means that you should increase your memory limit. 


To increase your memory limit, try opening your wp-config.php file in the WordPress root directory. Search for WP_MEMORY_LIMIT. If it’s there, change the value to “64M”. 

Check your plugins and theme

If the white screen still appears on your website, you should deactivate all your plugins. If your website loads without the WordPress HTTP 500 Error, the issue was with one of your plugins. It’s always a smart idea to switch them on one-by-one to figure out which one caused the issues. 


You should also switch your theme to a default one. A theme like Twenty Fifteen or Twenty Sixteen is a good idea. If the site loads without the error, the issue was within your theme. 

Reinstall WordPress

In some cases, a reinstall of WordPress could fix the error. The reinstallation may even resolve file permission problems along the way. 


For a successful reinstallation, it’s always a smart idea to follow the manual WordPress Update instructions in the WordPress Codex or ThemeIsle’s own safe way of updating WordPress. 


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Get in touch with your host

Sometimes, an HTTP Error 500 might be due to something the host is doing on their end. You should always ask your host to take a look and try to resolve the error. This will rule out the server being the issue so you can continue troubleshooting on your end. 

Protect Your Website From Downtime With Exai

Exai is one of the leading websites building solutions for small businesses on the market today. Why? Because it’s an all-in-one tool for building, hosting and maintaining your website. 


The company is an excellent option if you have a small business and are looking for an affordable yet reliable small business web hosting services. 


If you opt to work with Exai, you’ll get top-end reliability, top-notch security, and great customer service. When working with Exai, the chances of dealing with an HTTP 500 Error are low to none. Thanks to our sophisticated technology, your website is protected from downtime and your clients can have a great user experience.  

To Conclude

We hope we helped you isolate the cause of your WordPress 500 internal server error. If you have any further questions, please leave your comment below. 


To wrap up:

 

     ● HTTP error 500 is one of the most frustrating errors that can occur in WordPress. It never has a simple solution, and it requires a lot of troubleshooting that take a lot of your time and patience. 

     ● It occurs when there’s an issue with the server or file system that’s powering your site. 

     ● Some of the most common causes for the WordPress HTTP 500 Error are a corrupted or improperly named .htaccess file, a PHP memory limit, WordPress plugins and themes, or an issue with your host. 

     ● If you choose to work with Exai, the chances of dealing with an HTTP 500 Error will be low to none. Thanks to our sophisticated technology, your website will be protected from downtime and your clients will have a great user experience.  

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