There are several threads on Wordpress.org about this problem, but none with solutions. I just went from localhost (MAMP) to a live server (Dreamhost) and I'm getting constant 404s when submitting actions (such as changing a title) or trying to load pages in the admin (such as post/page/cpt lists).

The problem is WP is running up against memory limits (see support message below). What is the best systematic way to evaluate/troubleshoot memory use in the WP admin? Plugins tend to be implicated in this sort of problem; are there any other usual suspects?

`I've checked into why you've
been receiving these 404 errors, and it seems your scripts have been
getting automatically killed by our Process Watcher script due to your
site(s) going over Memory limits on the shared server.

2011-07-08 08:53:59 procwatch2 INFO: Process(pid=12921, name='php5.cgi',
uid=_, tty=None, cpu=17.5, rss=155764.0, vsize=264456.0): kill
for total RAM
2011-07-08 08:54:19 procwatch2 INFO: Process(pid=13248, name='php5.cgi',
uid=_, tty=None, cpu=29.8, rss=197348.0, vsize=305212.0): kill
for total RAM
2011-07-08 08:54:40 procwatch2 INFO: Process(pid=13253, name='php5.cgi',
uid=_, tty=None, cpu=39.9, rss=197376.0, vsize=305188.0): kill
for total RAM`
  • 1
    First of all, this isn't a support forum. But if it were, I'd complain that you haven't given us enough information. What are you getting 404s on? Give us a concrete example. How is your site configured (what are the site URL and WordPress URL settings)? What is your site address so we can see the 404s for ourselves?
    – EAMann
    Jul 8 '11 at 16:04
  • I've edited to add details.
    – supertrue
    Jul 8 '11 at 18:53
  • @EAMann - the frustrating thing with this issue is it isn't regularly reproducable. I too am a Dreamhost customer on a shared server and experience this from time to time. It's an annoyance, but nothing F5 can't fix Jul 8 '11 at 19:03
  • @Ray Mitchell - what do you mean by F5?
    – supertrue
    Jul 9 '11 at 22:22
  • Because I know that the pages definitely exist, I hit the F5 key to refresh the page. Normally it loads again without a problem. I've never encountered an issue using the site, only when I'm in the backend. Quirks like these are the reasons I've slowed down recommending DH to clients. Jul 10 '11 at 1:10

404 is failure to communicate with the server. So either your configuration is not complete for the new server (for ex: permalinks), or your server needs optimization. You could try checking the server error log or php error log first.

  • Thanks for your reply. It's a memory issue, as I've edited the question to reflect.
    – supertrue
    Jul 8 '11 at 18:53

Here's a systematic way to troubleshoot this, from user asbjornu in How to eliminate weird 404 errors in wp-admin?

The only way to debug this is to disable one plugin at a time, each time trying to reproduce the problem before you disable another plugin. Start with the plugins that have anything to do with the administration of WP, then move down to regular theme plugins, widgets and such.

Inspect the "Not Found" page that you are served better (browse with Opera and open the Info panel which will show you the headers, alternatively browse with Firefox and have Firebug with the "Net" panel enabled) and do a search through all of your plugins to see if they might be serving it directly. If not, take a look at the log of the web server to find out what exact resource it's unable to serve; a plugin might be doing some fancy redirecting or rewriting so it's not necessarily the URL you see in your browser that's causing the 404.

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