Ever since updating WP to the latest version, the admin panel stopped working. Now, every time attempting to access wp admin just shows this error: There has been a critical error on this website. Please check your site admin email inbox for instructions.

There is no email from them. There is no backup (the hosts, on this occasion, don't have one)


  1. Renamed plugin folder - didn’t do anything
  2. Activated debug mode by editing wp-config file (“WP_DEBUG” true) - didn’t do anything, still showing the same error message

Any advice for fixing this would be much appreciated.


  • Add define('WP_DEBUG', true); define('WP_DEBUG_LOG', true); in wp-config.php, try to open admin panel and then check if there are any messages in the wp-content/debug.log file.
    – nmr
    Mar 18, 2021 at 8:04
  • Already tried (see my OP).
    – Zayne
    Mar 19, 2021 at 5:23
  • nmr’s point was that a more detailed error will be written to a log file somewhere, either in wp-content or your server or PHP error logs. You need to find that.
    – Rup
    Mar 19, 2021 at 9:05

1 Answer 1

  • Log in to your hosting.
  • Into phpmyadmin
  • Select a website database
  • Navigate to the wp_options table and open it up.
  • Press Ctrl F then find the keyword: active_plugins
  • In the options value field of the line active_plugins change to:
  • a:0:{}
  • Then F5 wp-admin and login.
  • Activate each plugin one by one to determine which plugin is causing the error
  • 1
    That's good advice in general but OP said they've already tried renaming the plugin folder (which would achieve the same thing) and it didn't fix it.
    – Rup
    Mar 18, 2021 at 9:40
  • Exactly. Plugins are not the issue here.
    – Zayne
    Mar 19, 2021 at 5:24
  • I am very sorry that the plugin is not your problem. If the problem is not caused by a plugin you can exclude the theme and php version you are using You activate the default theme and if the website is still working properly proving your theme has a problem, you need to contact the theme's author to get the upgrade. If the theme is not your problem then upgrade your php version to 7.4 Mar 19, 2021 at 16:12

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.