Fix WordPress Internal Server Error (500 Error): A Step-by-Step Guide with Examples

The Internal Server Error (500 error) is one of the most common and frustrating errors that can occur on a WordPress website. It can be caused by a number of issues, including incorrect file permissions, plugin conflicts, or even a corrupted .htaccess file. In this tutorial, we will provide step-by-step instructions and code examples to help you diagnose and fix this issue.

Step 1: Check the Error Logs

The first step in fixing the Internal Server Error is to check the error logs. You can find the error logs in your cPanel, or by using a plugin like WP Debug. Checking the error logs can help you determine the root cause of the error and fix it more easily.

Step 2: Deactivate All Plugins

Plugins can often cause the Internal Server Error. To determine if a plugin is causing the issue, you can deactivate all of your plugins. To do this, log in to your WordPress dashboard, go to the Plugins section, and deactivate each plugin one by one. If deactivating a plugin fixes the issue, then you’ve found the culprit. If not, move on to step 3.

Step 3: Increase the PHP Memory Limit

Another common cause of the Internal Server Error is a lack of PHP memory. To increase the PHP memory limit, you can add the following code to your wp-config.php file:

define('WP_MEMORY_LIMIT', '256M');
Code language: PHP (php)

Step 4: Check the .htaccess File

A corrupted .htaccess file can also cause the Internal Server Error. To fix this issue, you can simply rename the .htaccess file to something like .htaccess_old. If renaming the file fixes the issue, you can then regenerate a new .htaccess file by going to the Settings section in your WordPress dashboard and clicking on Permalinks.

Step 5: Contact Your Hosting Provider

If none of these steps have resolved the Internal Server Error, it may be an issue with your hosting provider. Contact your hosting provider and provide them with the details of the error. They will be able to assist you in resolving the issue.

That’s it! The Internal Server Error (500 error) can be a frustrating and overwhelming issue, but it can often be fixed with a few simple steps. By checking the error logs, deactivating plugins, increasing the PHP memory limit, checking the .htaccess file, and contacting your hosting provider, you can diagnose and resolve this issue and get your WordPress website back up and running.

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