Fixing The 500 Internal Server Error In WordPress. How to ?

Fixing The 500 Internal Server Error In WordPress. How to ?

The 500 Internal Server Error message might be seen in any number of ways because each website is allowed to customize the message. The 500 internal server error runs on every page of your site when there’s a problem with the server or file system that’s powering your site. The cause most likely occurs in the root directory, where your WordPress files are, but it can also be caused by a problem on your host’s server.

500 Internal Server Error In WordPress
500 Internal Server Error In WordPress

This is one of the most frustrating errors that can occur in WordPress. It never has a straightforward solution, requiring a lot of troubleshooting that can eat up your time and patience. But we’re going to try to help make some of that stress by suggesting several solutions to this problem and walking you through each.

Here are several common ways that you might see the HTTP 500 error:

How You Might See a 500 Error

500 Internal Server Error
HTTP 500 - Internal Server Error
Temporary Error (500)
Internal Server Error
HTTP 500 Internal Error
500 Error
HTTP Error 500
500. That's an error

Since a 500 Internal Server Error is generated by the website you’re visiting, you could see one in any browser in any operating system, even on your smartphone.

Most of the time, a 500 Internal Server Error displays inside the internet browser window, just as web pages do.

Cause of HTTP 500 Errors

As mentioned above, Internal Server Error messages indicate that something, in general, is wrong.

Most of the time, “wrong” means an issue with the page or site’s programming, but there’s certainly a chance the problem is on your end, something we’ll investigate below.

Note: More specific information about the cause of a particular HTTP 500 error is often provided when it occurs on a server using Microsoft IIS software. Look for numbers after 500 as in HTTP Error 500.19 – Internal Server Error which means Configuration data is invalid.

Fixing 500 Internal Server Error Problems on Your Own Site

A 500 Internal Server Error on your own website requires a completely different course of action. As I mentioned above, most 500 errors are server-side errors, meaning it’s likely your problem to fix if it’s your website.

There are lots of reasons why your site might be serving a 500 Error to your users, but two are most common:

  • A Permissions Error. In most cases, a 500 Internal Server Error is due to an incorrect permission on one or more files or folders. In most of those cases, an incorrect permission on a PHP and CGI script is to blame. These should usually be set at 0775 (-rwxr-xr-x).
  • A PHP Timeout. If your script connects to external resources and those resources timeout, an HTTP 500 error can occur. Timeout rules, or better error handling in your script, should help if this is the cause of the 500 error.
  • A Coding Error in .htaccess. While not as common, be sure to check that your site’s .htaccess file is properly structured.

If you’re running WordPress, Joomla, or another content management or CMS system, be sure to search their support centers for more specific help troubleshooting a 500 Internal Server Error.

Broken Plugins

500 internal server error may appear on your screen due to an incompatible plugin. Maybe, you have activated a plugin not compatible with PHP and/or WordPress version. It is easy to fix if you have activated only one plugin before the appearance of this error message. There might be a case in which you have activated more than one plugin. In that case, you have to identify the troubling plugin/plugins. Here is how you can identify the broken plugin and fix this error.

How to Fix

If you are getting this error after activation of one plugin then deactivate that plugin and reload your website. If you have activated more than one plugin then deactivate all plugins. Now, this can be done using the WordPress dashboard. There might be a case in which you cannot access the dashboard. Here you can use FTP or cPanel to navigate to the ‘plugins’ folder in the wp-content folder. Now rename the ‘plugins’ folder (say plugins_old). This will deactivate all plugins all together. Now change the name of the folder back to ‘plugins’. Reload your website after activating all plugins one by one. The activation of the culprit plugin will cause the return of the error. Now, rename the folder containing all files of that plugin to deactivate it. Reload your website and check if the error is gone or not. If not, there is some other cause of this error.

Broken Theme

If this error message is still there on the screen, the activated theme can be the troublemaker. The theme might be outdated or its back end code might have been changed.

How to Fix

In case the admin area is accessible, switch to the default theme. If the admin area is not accessible then make use of an FTP client or cPanel. Now, open the ‘themes’ folder and rename the folder containing all files associated with the activated theme. This will deactivate the current theme and the default theme will be automatically activated. Reload the website. If you still see that error message, nothing is wrong with the theme.

Corrupted .htaccess File

.htaccess file is a file configured at the directory level. Apache based servers use this file to control the directory in which it resides and also other files and subdirectories in that directory. A corrupted .htaccess file is also one of the causes of 500 internal server error.

How to Fix

If the error is because of .htaccess file, rename it to .htaccess_xyz. This file can be found in the directory containing wp-content, wp-admin and wp-includes folders. After you rename this file, reload your website and check if the error is resolved or not. If resolved, then you have to generate a new .htaccess file otherwise your website will return 404 error. For generating a new .htaccess file, go to Setting, select Permalinks and click on Save Changes button.

Exhausted PHP Memory Limits

WordPress requires a certain amount of memory to work which if it does not get, it might return 500 internal server error. Plugins, scripts and themes often occupy too much memory.

How to Fix

In case this error is coming because of PHP memory limits, then you have to increase the memory limits. Increasing PHP memory limits is not a difficult job. All you need to do is to add following line of code in the wp-config.php file:
However, first of all, for this you need to access the wp-config.php file. This file can be accessed either via FTP or cPanel. Save changes and reload your website.

Corrupted Core Files

You have to deal with this error if one of the core files of the WordPress is corrupted. Many times, we need to add some code snippets in these core files. The user may commit a syntax error while adding the code snippet.

How to Fix

If you are getting this error due to corrupted core files then you need to re-upload a fresh version of wp-admin and wp-includes folders from a new WordPress installation. As the wp-content folder remains untouched, you are not going to lose your data.



There are many other software and systems employed in the server side. Any issue in these software and systems can cause the 500 internal server error. Information in this post can help you in troubleshooting this error if caused due to WordPress. After trying everything, if you are still getting this error then immediately get in touch with your service provider. Share this post and feel free to write your reviews. If you have encountered this error and fixed it in some other way then share it with us. It will be helpful for us and our readers.

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