I uploaded a brand-new wp install to my host. I am able to access the admin, and all its settings just fine, but I get a 500 internal error on the front-end.

I have tried solving this issue by:

  • checking .htaccess
  • checking wp-config.php
  • checking for missing core files
  • doing a permalink reset
  • checking file permissions
  • switching themes
  • disabling all plugins
  • using a default theme
  • server config (i have a vps with other sites working just fine under the same config).

What else can I check for? Could setting up wordpress under one php version and then moving it to another server under another php version cause this issue?

My .htaccess file has what you would expect.

# BEGIN WordPress
<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /
RewriteRule ^index\.php$ - [L]
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule . /index.php [L]

# END WordPress
  • Have you tried downloading a fresh copy of WP? If this is a brand new installation nothing will be lost and probably will take less time. – lmseo Jun 4 '15 at 19:19
  • Can you show us the content of your .htaccess? Or do you use a nginx server? If so, check this question. – user40422 Jun 4 '15 at 19:53
  • I use apache. The .htaccess has the basic wordpress rewrite on. Nothing else. I can update the answer with it, but it's what you get when you choose a permalink structure. – gdaniel Jun 4 '15 at 20:04

My problem had to do with file permissions. Even though it looked like the permissions were correct, the index.php in the root had the permission set to 644, instead of 664. Once I changed the permission the front-end loaded. It's a bit odd that of all files in the root, the index is the only one with the wrong permission.

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  • Do you know what the root cause was of the permissions change please? :) – Phil Hudson Feb 15 '16 at 17:14
  • 1
    Never found out. But if you have permissions issues with wp and your host. See if you can change the permission handler from apache to suphp, or Fast CGI. SUPHP doesn't have owner/group issues. It's good to note that suphp is a bit slower than apache, but you will only notice issues on really big sites. – gdaniel Feb 15 '16 at 17:32

It can be simple mistakes in your code too.In my case I had forgotten the php closing tag and started another opening tag in the header file

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