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How to fix the WordPress white screen of death
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|How to fix the WordPress white screen of death by GitHubNg.Com: 1:43 pm On December 4, 2017|
If you’re staring at a white screen wondering where your WordPress website went, you’re not alone. Nearly every avid WordPress user has experienced the fabled “white screen of death” at one time or another. It’s a pain when it happens, but it’s usually easy to fix.
We’re about to explore several common causes of the white screen of death – from plugins to PHP and beyond. If you need to get rid of a white screen and recover your website right now, you’ll learn how. And if you’ve tangled with the white screen of death previously, don’t click away yet! We’re going to discuss various white screen scenarios, some of which you may not have encountered.
What is the WordPress white screen of death?
First, let’s clarify what we’re talking about when we refer to the white screen of death. When WordPress isn’t working properly, it sometimes displays a blank screen instead of your content whenever someone visits your site. You want this screen to go away.
“Isn’t working properly” can refer to a variety of coding or database errors. If WordPress is a bicycle and your code is the chain, the white screen of death is what happens when your chain comes off the ring. You can’t ride your bike again (i.e. display your content) until you put the chain back on. That is, you can’t make WordPress work again until you get rid of the white screen.
There are lots of reasons the chain might come off your bike. Maybe you weren’t pedaling when you shifted gears, or maybe the tension on your chain is too loose. It’s the same with the white screen of death. The causes are numerous, and the solutions depend on what went wrong.
If you’re an advanced user and you’re comfortable using an FTP client (don’t worry if you aren’t; we’ll explain how to use one shortly) you should turn on
That said, not everyone is comfortable using
Scenario 1: Plugins
If there’s anything good about the white screen of death, it’s that the “death” part is only hyperbole. Nobody actually dies because of the white screen of death; however, you may have to kill off a plugin – that is, deactivate it – to make the white screen go away.
When the white screen of death appears, always ask yourself: What was I doing just before my site stopped working? There’s a good chance you were doing one of the following:
If you were doing any of those things, all you have to do is navigate to the Plugins page in WordPress and deactivate the plugin you were modifying. Problem solved! After deactivating the plugin, you should see your content restored to its former glory. If you were modifying a plugin’s backend code when the white screen appeared and would like to use that plugin again, you will need to delete it from WordPress and upload an original, unmodified version of the same plugin from the WordPress Plugin Directory.
However, there are cases when you can’t deactivate the offending plugin because the white screen of death also appears in place of your WordPress Dashboard. Not only can your audience not access your content, but you can’t make changes in WordPress either.
When this happens, you will have to use an FTP (file transfer protocol) client to access your WordPress files and delete or deactivate the plugin you were modifying. If you’ve never used an FTP client to make changes to your WordPress installation, don’t worry! It’s easy to do, and several FTP clients are free. The video below covers the basics of FTP and will get you up and running with a free FTP client.
Got your FTP client? Logged into your server using the credentials provided by your web host? Well done. Now just follow these steps to delete the plugin in question and say goodbye to the white screen of death:
Plugins are frequent offenders in white screen scenarios. Either of the solutions above – deactivating the problem plugin through WordPress or using FTP to delete or deactivate it – will help many users restore their websites to working order.
Always remember to use plugins that are actively supported by the developer and compatible with the latest version of WordPress. Out-of-date plugins are more likely to cause problems resulting in the white screen of death.
Scenario 2: Code
So, you weren’t working on a plugin when the white screen of death reared its head, but you were modifying your theme’s
This means there’s a flaw in your code. WordPress can’t work if your code is broken, so you’ll have to revisit the file you were modifying and change it back to how it was before the white screen appeared.
The problem, of course, is that you may not be able to be able to access the file because a white screen stands between you and the WordPress Theme Editor. This is very likely to be true if you were modifying
After logging in to your server, the process should unfold as follows:
A good way to avoid this scenario is to use a child theme instead of modifying the parent
In the event you do opt to modify the original PHP file that came with your theme, always save a copy of the live, working version somewhere on your hard drive before making changes. Doing so ensures that you can perform the above operation if you encounter the white screen of death.
Scenario 3: Cause unknown
Sometimes, the white screen of death appears for mysterious reasons. You weren’t modifying any plugins, nor were you rewriting your theme’s code. You were just minding your own business when all of a sudden… WHAM! White screen of death! How can you troubleshoot the issue when there’s no obvious cause for it?
It’s situations like this when
Due to the complexity and general finickiness of WordPress plugins, there’s a good chance a plugin is the source of the problem. Maybe a plugin is out of date or a plugin update didn’t mesh with something else on the WordPress backend. In any case, you will have to deactivate all of your plugins and reactivate them one by one until you identify which one is causing the problem.
Using your FTP client, log in to your website’s server. Then follow these steps to find the plugin causing the white screen of death:
If you get to Step 5 above and your site is still white screening, the issue could be related to one of your themes. The solution is to perform an identical process for your
Other possible causes
At The Theme Foundry, plugin and child theme coding mishaps are the most common white screen scenarios we encounter in our support forums. The solutions discussed above will help most WordPress users wrest their websites from the white screen’s death grip and restore their content to its rightful place on the web.
That being said, there some other reasons your site might be white screening. If you’ve determined that neither plugins, themes, nor code are the source of your problem, here are a few other possibilities:
One way or another, you will eliminate the white screen of death. Even if you have to restore your site from a backup, which is a last resort option, the white screen will go away. You will come out on top.
Half the battle is knowing how to troubleshoot. Now that you know how, your site should be back in action in minutes.
|Re: How to fix the WordPress white screen of death by blazegist: 10:22 pm On December 4, 2017|
|Re: How to fix the WordPress white screen of death by MasterKhoded: 10:02 pm On December 8, 2017|
|Re: How to fix the WordPress white screen of death by nayd: 4:19 pm On March 1, 2018|
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