Fixing an Internal Server Error

This error is commonly known as 500 Internal Server Error or Internal Server Error. This is a generic  http status code error message, given when an unexpected condition was encountered and no more specific message is suitable. 

Given the fact that this is a generic message, it does not show us what type of error or the location of the error.

Possible causes

  1. Corrupted .htaccess file.
  2. Exceeding PHP memory limit, resulting in PHP memory exhaust.
  3. Plugin conflict.
  4. Corrupted WordPress core files.

Troubleshooting

  1. Contact your Web Hosting Company
    • Ask your web hosting company to help you identify the cause of this 500 internal server error. 
    • Ask them to provide any error message or error that points to any file within your WordPress installation. 
    • If the error points to a file within WordPress core, you can try re-installing WordPress. 
    • If it points to a plugin file, you can use FTP program to access your server and delete it.
    • If it points to a function or file within Customizr or Customizr Pro Theme. Carry out the following steps if you have an activated Child Theme. If you do not have an activated Child Theme, you can contact us for help.
      • You can use your FTP program to access your Child Theme folder on your server.
      • Download a copy of your Child Theme as a backup on your computer.
      • Proceed to delete your Child Theme from your web server after you have finished backup.
      • Re-visit your web site and see if you are able to access it.
  2. .htaccess file
    • You can determine if there is an error within .htaccess file by carrying out the following steps.
      • Use your FTP program to access your WordPress installation root.
      • Look for the file .htaccess, and download a copy for backup.
      • Rename your .htaccess file to .htaccess_old
      • Visit your site to see if this solved the problem.
      • If it's solved, Login to your WordPress admin -> Settings -> Permalinks and click the save button. This will generate a new .htaccess file for you with proper rewrite rules.
  3. Exceeding PHP memory limit or PHP memory exhaust
  4. Plugin Conflict
    • To determine if it's a plugin conflict. You will have to login your server using FTP program.
    • Go to wp-content/ and rename the plugins folder to any name. You may rename it to plugins_deactivated. Doing so will deactivate all your plugins.
    • Visit your website to see if the problem is fixed.
    • If it's fixed, you can find out which plugin is causing conflict, by re-installing back one at a time.
  5. Corrupted WordPress core files
    • To eliminate this possibility. You can try re-installing WordPress
    • Login to your WordPress Dashboard.
    • Go to Updates and click on Re-install Now Button.

External Resources

  1. Common WordPress Errors
  2. List of HTTP status codes