Information Technology

What HTTP 500 Internal Server Error Means & How to Fix It

Let’s discuss what the dreaded HTTP 500 internal server error means, as well as its most frequent causes and solutions, to help you navigate the hassle of troubleshooting.

What is an HTTP 500 internal server error code?

HTTP 500 internal server error code addresses unforeseen problems that don’t fit into current error codes. Due to the wide variety of server-side problems that can cause HTTP 500 errors, they are challenging to troubleshoot.

Possibilities for 500 Internal Server Error Causes:

As the name suggests, a 500 internal server error refers to a general issue with the server that hosts the website. This most likely indicates that there is a problem or brief glitch with the website’s programming.

Corrupted or broken are a couple of the possible causes of a 500 internal server error.

Htaccess Document

Important server instructions can be found in .htaccess files, which are text files. These commands instruct your software to enable or disable particular features. They could assist you in limiting user access or safeguarding passwords in a directory.

An.htaccess file can become corrupt in a variety of ways. It might occur while you’re configuring files, installing plugins, or working on your server.

An Access Denied error

File protection comes with permission errors. Bugs, user errors, or networking issues can all result in permission errors. This error typically indicates that the user is not authorized to carry out the action they are attempting.

Poorly coded third-party plugins or themes

You might add a third-party theme or plugin to your website to increase user features and functionality. These plugins may be excellent for your website, but they may also affect its performance, security, and bug count.

The PHP memory limit was exceeded

HTML includes PHP, a server-side scripting language. PHP is used to manage content, databases, track sessions, and more. Your hosting account has a limit on how much memory can be used by each PHP process.

An HTTP 500 error might appear if a website requires more memory than this.

A 500 Internal Server Error: Solutions

A http error 503 the service is unavailable differs from other server-side errors like a 502 code in that it doesn’t immediately identify the issue or instruct you on how to resolve it. On your website, the error could even have a detrimental effect on your SEO if it lasts too long.

Let’s look at some solutions now so you can try to resolve the problem.

  1. Refresh the page

Although it may seem obvious, refreshing the page may help if there is a brief loading problem. Reload the page and observe the results before attempting anything else on this list.

  1. Come back later.

Since the problem is on the server, I’m willing to wager that the website’s owners are attempting to fix it as soon as possible. Reload the URL to see if the development team has addressed the problem after a few minutes or up to an hour.

  1. Uninstall the cookies from your browser.

You might try erasing your browser’s cookies if clearing the history doesn’t work. Reloading the page may be aided by clearing the cookies if they are connected to a website that frequently experiences errors.

  1. Insert your website address into the “Down for Everyone or Just Me” website.

Enter the URL where you are seeing the internal server error at Either you’ll be informed that the website is down just for you or that it is down for everyone. This should alleviate any worries that the issue is with your computer if it is a server-related problem.

If your website is displaying a 500 Internal Server Error:

  1. Switch a plugin or theme off.

Recently activated software, add-ons, or third-party scripts may be incompatible with how your server is currently set up. To find out what is causing the internal server error, try (carefully) deactivating or uninstalling each software add-on separately.

It’s simple to accomplish this using plugin if you manage a WordPress website. Deactivate the first plugin by selecting Plugins > Installed Plugins from your dashboard. If the issue is fixed, you know this plugin is a contributing factor. Reactivate the first plugin, then carry out this deactivate-reactivate procedure one at a time for each plugin to identify the one that is resulting in your error.

  1. To find the issue, use a plugin like WP Debugging.

If you’re familiar with WordPress debugging procedures and your website is powered by WordPress, you might want to install a plugin to help you find the server problem.

For example, the debugging plugin WP Debugging aids in pinpointing the precise issue with your site, allowing for a quicker fix.

  1. Confirm that your PHP configuration is correct.

Consider adding timeout controls or error handling to your script if the problem is caused by a PHP timeout. Incorrect permissions on a file or folder that contains a script, such as a PHP or CGI script, prevent the script from running.

  1. Verify the .htaccess file’s code on your website.

Your .htaccess file’s incorrect coding or improper structure could be the cause of the 500 internal errors you’re experiencing. You can control how long resources should be kept in a browser’s cache by using the .htaccess file. If you encounter a 500 internal server error, try editing the file.

Access your website’s files using FTP/SFTP or a file manager like cPanel to find your .htaccess file. Most likely, the file will be found in your public HTML directory. Your server will likely by default conceal this file from view, so you’ll need to turn on hidden files to access it. An HTTP 500 internal server error can also result from .htaccess and custom script coding errors.

  1. Verify that your new software has been installed properly.

Last but not least, verify that the recently upgraded or installed software was unsuccessful in installing or upgrading. For instructions on how to update your software, visit the vendor’s website.


500 internal server errors are always annoying, but hopefully now you know a few more ways to fix them so you can quickly get your website back up and running. Remember that third-party plugins, fatal PHP errors, database connection issues, issues with your.htaccess file or PHP memory limits, and occasionally PHP timeouts are typically to blame for these kinds of errors.

Do you think we missed anything? Maybe you can offer another piece of advice for fixing 500 internal server errors. If so, tell us in the comments section below.


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