If you encounter a WordPress error message “white screen of death WordPress” and it bothers you, don’t panic. Someone else has also encountered the same error and it can easily be solved by following some steps.
It is one of the common and most frustrating errors of WordPress faced by many users. It mostly occurs in the content management system(CMS). This error bothers many users because this error shows just a white screen without any error message.
Another problem with this error is that sometimes it does not harm your whole WordPress website, it only affects some parts of your site. For example, it shows a white screen of death error inside your WordPress admin area and everything else goes fine.
Let’s see what are the main causes of that error and how to fix it quickly.
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What are the causes of the white screen of death in WordPress?
Most of the time when you see this white screen of death error in your WordPress website, It means that a code or script on your website depleted the memory limit. Simply said that both database error or PHP error can evident white screen or a blank screen with no information.
It is commonly known as the WordPress white screen of Death(WSOD) in the WordPress community.
Sometimes you may also see a critical error message instead of a white screen or blank screen. It’s the same error without any proper information.
WordPress calls out mostly the three reasons which are discussed below.
- WordPress Plugin causes compatibility issues: A WordPress plugin or update to a plugin is considered as incompatible on your website.
- Your WordPress Theme may cause problems: A WordPress theme of yours can clash with something already installed on your website (something like a plugin that calls on the same script).
- Theme file missing: It may be the server-side error that the theme file is missing from the WordPress admin area.
Your main goal is to resolve this error on your website as early as possible. In the following steps, we will help you how to cover and fix this error easily and also prevent it from ever being seen again.
How to fix the white screen of Death WordPress?
If you follow the following five common techniques, you can easily resolve white screen or blank screen errors quickly.
The five techniques are:
Check your plugins:
Plugins are one of the most common reasons behind the white screen of death error (WSOD). What was the last thing you did on your website when it took you on a blank or white screen? Mostly it is because you recently activated, updated or modified a WordPress plugin. So recently if you made changes or updated it, you must deactivate it first.
If you reload your website and everything is back to normal, you’ve already found the root of your main problem. You should then contact the plugin’s developer and check your plugin’s further assistance.
And sometimes it is not too easy and simple to find the exact error. If recently you have added the new plugin or activated it to your website. It is still that one of your existing plugins is causing compatibility issues. You simply just disable all the plugins to find the error.
If a plugin is not to blame then you definitely know as soon as you reload your website. You can then activate them again and move on to the next step to find the actual reason behind that white screen death.
You can easily deactivate all your WordPress plugins at the same time by going to the Plugins screen in your WordPress dashboard and choosing the Deactivate option in the Bulk Actions drop-down menu.
Go to your admin area and you can do it from your host’s file manager. You need to connect to your website via your SFTP credentials and locate the folder known as wp-content/plugins.
If you rename this folder to anything else (any name that you want) you will automatically disable all your plugins.
If your website is not working well once again after deactivating all your plugins. You can be sure that one of the plugins is at fault. Now you have to again activate your plugins one at a time, to check which plugin is doing well and which is not working well. Check your site every time you activate any plugin. Activating and Checking all the plugins one by one, by doing this you can easily check which plugin is broken and not working well.
By detecting the problematic and faulty plugin, you should then contact the developer for further support.
Check your themes:
Just like a plugin can carry wrong code and scripts, a theme can also contain outdated, wrong script and code. Some of the themes are inappropriately coded and can cause problems in your website and not functioning well. Wrong coded themes may also cause conflict with one or more of your plugins. Incomplete installing and updating of a theme can also cause problems and the website will not work properly.
WordPress has a feature to not accept buggy code and changes. It depends on well-defined objects of code and scripts. And if you have made some improper changes to the theme’s functions.php file then it may also cause problems.
Checking the above faults and facing White Screen Of Death. All You need is to do that, to disable all the activated themes in your site and set the default theme instead. If you have access to the WordPress Admin Dashboard then you can simply do it by going to Appearance and then themes. Go to the default theme such as Twenty Twenty Two and activate it.
If the admin dashboard is not accessible or available, you can also do it by simply using SFTP. you can just go to the wp/content/themes folder select it to rename the folder that you want or use the name of the current theme activated on your site.
This will automatically deactivate all the themes and activate only the default one. After that, you can be able to easily check if the theme is working well or causing some problems. You can now check your website is doing well and there is no White Screen OD.
Check your memory limits:
If you are facing WSOD continuously after applying the above solutions and techniques. Or even get some type of problems or errors related to memory limit or also complaining about memory exhausting issues. You will need to assign more memory size or limit to your applications.
It can be easily done by going to the file named as “wp-config.php” on many WordPress installs. Open your file and add up the code that is written below.
If it can’t work you have a few more options. You can also use the .htaccess file of your’s to check and increase your memory limit.
php_value memory_limit 64M;
By using an FTP connection to your server, find the php.ini file in your root directory. Once you find it, write or add up the following line anywhere in that file.
memory_limit = 64M;
If you are still facing the same issue like out of memory or exhausted memory limit, there is a problem in your application.
Simply at that point you may need a Developer to look into that issue.
Use the WordPress debug mode:
If there is a white screen and nothing is displayed on the screen of your site, you may need to turn on the debugging mode. For resolving that you have to go to your root directory and edit your configuration file “wp-config.php”.
When you open your configuration file, find the line of code that is written below.
define (‘WP_DEBUG’, false);
You have to change the line of code and on the debug mode by replacing false with true. If the line of code does not already exist in the file, you can add it to your file.
define (‘WP_DEBUG’, true);
Save your changes in the file and reload your website. If there is a problem with your website’s PHP code, the debugging mode will definitely reveal them.
If it cannot make it error-free then you must have to change the value of true into false again. And find the main problem with other solutions.
Check uncommon errors:
If you are still facing the same error and cannot fix it with the above solutions, you have our sympathies. But also don’t lose hope.
Here we are checking some common errors of WordPress to resolve the WSOD.
- See if your server is down completely or a problem in server maintenance, you can check all these issues by going to the host’s service status.
- Website performance can be improved by caching. The cache saves all the old versions of files of your website, these files and content may be outdated and cause problems on your site. So clear your cache.
- The problem may be caused by corrupted files. You should check your WordPress files because an error can occur due to a new version of WordPress being installed, one or two files remain outdated and incomplete which causes problems.
You should then contact your hosting company to get help from them to resolve your problems.