Fixing 500 Internal Server Error with WordPress and hosting

We interrupt these postings with some really geeky stuff…

********UPDATED Below*********

I have several blogs hosted by I have been adding some plugins and kept coming across 500 Internal Server Error. I went back and forth, activating plugins, deactivating plugins and deleting them off of the FTP server. I was also coming across the WordPress blank screen on my admin dashboard. It was getting very frustrating. Then I came across something about one of the plugins generating the 500 Internal Server Error when the hosting company was not using PHP5. So I did some research into with WordPress and found a solution.

Find your .HTACCESS file on your server. It is a hidden file so make sure your FTP client (I use filezilla) can view hidden files. Open up the file in your text editor and add the following line after the line # END WORDPRESS.

AddType x-mapp-php5 .php

That’s it. Since I added this line I have not had an error 500 and all of my screens in WordPress have not been blank. Note: I did have one time when a plugin rewrote the .HTACCESS file. So keep a copy of the file handy. If you come across the error 500, just copy your backup of this file onto your FTP server.

*******UPDATE****** Since writing this post had made it easier to make this change. Simply login to your customer account. Look for the Web Space area and click on Global PHP Version.  Select PHP5 from the pull down menu and click Save. That’s it. For those of you who are not on the original posting above should work as well.

…we now return to our regularly scheduled postings.

103 thoughts on “Fixing 500 Internal Server Error with WordPress and hosting”

  1. I’ve just upgraded a WordPress site on hosting to WordPress 3.0. The front facing part of the site was working ok but the admin panel generated an internal server error.

    I could have spent hours trying to solve this.

    Thank god you’ve gone to the trouble to document this.

    Many thanks

  2. I can’t tell you how much a appreciate your hint! This solved all my problems! I spend two days on finding the solution…

    Thanks Kevin, keep the great work 🙂

  3. I have found some other benefits of this fix. For example, on plugins, the automated updates were a hit and miss for actually doing the update. Now they work every time. Also, the Admin. dashboard would pick and choose what sections to show. Now it shows everthing.

  4. I already have this entry and I still get the 500 error. Never had it before I installed drupal into a completely different folder on the server. Even if I remove all the changes I made when installing drupal, the 500 error still persists.

  5. Make sure that the edit is after the # END WORDPRESS, otherwise each time you upate a plugin, it could remove or change the line added. The other thing to try is deactivate all of your plugins and then reactivate one-by-one to see if there is a corupt plugin.

    If you continue to have the errors, you may need to do a clean install of WordPress.

  6. I get this recurring problem with my wordpress blogs. You find a couple of ‘ss’ at the end of the code or the code is repeated ad infinitum.

    I’m hosted at Hostgator and they told me it was a bug in the wordpress that keeps doing this. Up till now I have done as you have said and just pasted the htaccess with the correct code. I’ll try this extra line.

    Thanks for the info.

  7. Thank you very much! I was going crazy trying to find out why my plugins were blowing up wordpress. I thought I was going to have to completely change my theme, but you saved the day with this solution.

    I’m also using 1 and 1 hosting.

    Great Job!

  8. Yes, yes, yes finally after trying everything this worked. Had to de/re-activate the plugin but then it worked perfectly. Thank you so much!

  9. Just add this?

    AddType x-mapp-php5 .php

    I’m running the latest version of WP and my host is 1and1. Didn’t work for me. Made my other cats and pages go away. I took it out and everything is fine.



  10. Thanks! This saved me a lot of frustration! I kept getting that message when I tried to activate a new plugin…I was wondering what to do and googled the question and this came up.

    I did exactly what you said and it worked perfectly.


  11. You are, quite frankly, an answer to prayer. I spent hours checking if I had all the right updated versions of everything, then loading and reloading my ftp, and trying to activate plugins in different orders. Always that dreaded 500 error. Now it works!!! I never would’ve thought of contacting 1and1 on this, sure that it was probably my user error. Thank you!

  12. Well, in fact it worked one time lol.
    With another website, I got the same problem and it didn’t solve it so the only thing to do then is to suppress your wordpress folder and re-install.
    It worked for me 😉

  13. I recommend contacting 1&1 and asking them to upgrade you hosting to php 5. Once they did this, IMMEDIATELY fixed this problem. 😉

  14. What FTP client do you recommend I use on my Mac? I tried to use 1&’s WebspaceExplorer, but could not find the .htaccess file anywhere but in the /logs folder.

  15. Please help me i have the same problem of 500 internal error in .I find htaccess file but i didnt find # END WORDPRESS to add the AddType x-mapp-php5 .php

    Please help as soon as possible

  16. This solution is specifically for WordPress blogs on I am not familiar with However, you could try adding the text and see what happens, but only if you are running on As for using notepad, you can use that as long as the file is saved in with the same name and no extension. I use FileZilla as my FTP client and notepad++ as the editor.

  17. I am looking to use this fix. I use 1&1 and FileZilla. My .htaccess looks like this is Notepad.

    Options +Indexes
    Satisfy any
    Order Deny,Allow
    Allow from 172.##.#.0/16
    Allow from 212.###.##.64/27
    Allow from 212.###.34.151
    Allow from 212.227.##.###
    Deny from all
    RemoveType .html .gif
    AuthType Basic
    AuthName “Access for /logs”
    AuthUserFile /kunden/homepages/20/d354710383/htpasswd
    require user u61######

    (I blocked out some numbers for security.)

    Where would I place the ‘AddType x-mapp-php5 .php’ ?

    I am installing Simple Press; Forum.


  18. I would add after AuthType Basic. Keep in mind that the command line simply turns on HTML5 with If it doesn’t work there, try it at the beginning of the file.

  19. As much as I want this to work, I believe this solution only fixes the
    problem coincidentally. I can’t prove it, but I think both the solution
    of upping memory limit in php.ini and the solution of adding a handler
    for PHP5 in .htaccess are non-starters. I do know that I have BOTH solutions
    in place and my sites still get the 500 error quite often.

  20. THANK YOU!

    I spent 4 hours trying to upgrade a client’s site from wordpress 2.9.2 to wordpress 3.05 and half of his plugins were causing internal server errors on activation, or blank admin pages. As soon as I added this to .htaccess it solved the problem.

    Why does 1and1 have to make things so difficult as usual.

  21. Thanks a ton man! Just finished moving a few WP installs over to 1&1 and was getting the 500 error on the admin panel. This fixed it. 🙂

  22. Beauty – That worked a treat. It’s solved a very frustrating problem and 1&1 dont seem to reply to support too well.

    WordPress now updates. Plugins instal… Sweet x

  23. Thank you for this solution. I already had that line of code in my .htaccess file that apparently got deleted by a plugin. Very much appreciated as 1&1 support is less than quick with the responses.

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