The White Screen of Death (WSoD) in WordPress is a common issue where users see nothing but a blank, white screen. It can be incredibly frustrating, as it doesn’t provide any error messages to give you clues about what’s going wrong. Here’s how you can troubleshoot and fix the WSoD in WordPress.
Step 1: Increase Memory Limit
Often the WSoD is a result of a script exhausting the memory limit. To increase the PHP memory limit:
- Connect to your website using an FTP client or through the file manager in cPanel.
- Find the ‘wp-config.php’ file and edit it.
- Just before the line that says ‘That’s all, stop editing! Happy blogging.’, add the following line:
- Save your changes and upload the ‘wp-config.php’ file back to your server.
Step 2: Deactivate All Plugins and Themes
A problematic plugin or theme could cause the WSoD. To check:
- Access your server via FTP or your host’s cPanel.
- Navigate to ‘wp-content’ directory.
- Rename the ‘plugins’ directory to ‘plugins_old’. This deactivates all plugins.
- Check your site. If it’s working, the issue was with one of the plugins. Reactivate them one by one until you find the problematic one.
- If deactivating the plugins didn’t solve the issue, do the same process with the ‘themes’ directory.
Step 3: Enable Debug Mode
Enabling Debug mode in WordPress can give you clues about what’s causing the issue. To do this:
- Connect to your server and open the ‘wp-config.php’ file.
- Look for
define('WP_DEBUG', false);and change it to
- Save your changes. Now when you visit your site, instead of a white screen, you’ll see a list of errors, notices, and warnings which can help you pinpoint the issue.
Step 4: Reinstall WordPress
If none of the above steps worked, try reinstalling WordPress without losing your content:
- Download a fresh copy of WordPress from WordPress.org.
- Unzip the file. Inside, you’ll see a ‘wordpress’ folder.
- Delete the ‘wp-content’ folder from the freshly unzipped WordPress file.
- Upload the rest of the files to your WordPress server using FTP.
The White Screen of Death can be caused by a variety of issues, so troubleshooting it can be tricky. These steps cover the most common solutions, but if all else fails, you may need to seek help from a professional or your hosting provider. Always make sure to back up your site regularly to avoid loss of data when troubleshooting issues like the WSoD.