Solutions to Fix the WordPress White Screen of Death

wordpress white screen of death

Just like Window’s blue screen of death, WordPress has its own White Screen of Death (WSoD). If you have been using wordpress for some time, you may have already experienced it, for e.g. error establishing a database connection, headers already sent etc. These issues can give you headaches and make difficult for you to fix them as they mostly block the WP admin panel also. Many a times no error is shown, just the white screen making it harder to find the cause of error. This error is mostly experienced when you are upgrading your wordpress, modifying some files or installing or editing some plugins. Sometimes you will see white screen only on a part of your website while everything else will be working fine. Following are few solutions that may help you in dealing with WSoD:

Note: Backup everything before you make any changes to your wordpress setup.

Check your other sites: Before we start fixing your wordpress white screen of death, you should try and see if the problem is with one of your sites, or all your sites hosted on the server. If the problem is with all of your sites, then it is possible that your hosting provider may be performing maintenance or updates on the server and therefore it can be a downtime and not a problem with your website(s). However if your other sites are working fine and the problem is specific to one site, please proceed with fixing the error.

1: Disable All Plugins

In majority of the cases the main culprit will be some plugin or theme, you should try deactivating all the plugins first

  • If you have access to wordpress admin panel, go to your plugins menu and deactivate all the plugins.
  • If you do not have access to wordpress admin panel, you should try logging into your hosting control panel and using “File manager” rename the wordpress plugins directory to¬† “plugins.deact” then login into your WP admin panel and rename “plugins.deact” back to “plugins”, this way the status of all your plugins will be reset.

2. Change back to default theme

If disabling the plugins does not solve your problem, then you try switching back to your default wordpress theme.

  • If you have access to admin panel, go to Appearance > Themes and switch to any of the default theme.
  • If you do not have access to WP admin, you can go to your hosting File manager and rename the current theme directory that you are using, so that wordpress will automatically switch back to default theme.

3. Simple Coding Errors

If you have been modifying the files, it is possible that some simple error in coding may trigger the white screen of death

  • Blank space in Functions.php may cause the error, if you have modified this file. Best solution is to replace this file with the default one and see if the site works.
  • Blank line and spaces in wp-config.php can also cause this error. Check for blank line at the start or end of the wp-config file. Replace it with original and edit it with your database details.

4. Other causes of WordPress white screen of death

  • File Permissions: Make sure all the folders are 755 and files are 644, though they are the default values but it never hurts to check.
  • Plugins Compatibility Issue: Sometimes 2 plugins are not compatible with each other and thus cause problem when both are activated. if the compatibility issue is not well known, you will need to try trial and error method for finding the incompatible plugins.
  • Incomplete Upgrade: This error can also be triggered if the upgrade was interrupted and not completed successfully, to fix this try to do a manual upgrade of wordpress setup.
  • Corrupt Core Files: It is possible that for some reason the core files have been corrupted, you can try manually reinstalling the wordpress again.

Though we have tried to list many possible solutions to wordpress white screen of death and hope that these helps you solve the error, but we have not been able to collect them all. However we would try to make this resource as useful as possible and for this purpose we need your help, let us know what helped you in solving wordpress white screen of death error.

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