Five quick fixes for Friday 13th

Five quick fixes for Friday 13th

It’s Friday 13th! Which of course means that you’re going to get stuck in terrible traffic, find a fly in your cup of coffee and yes; your website is going to go haywire. Whether you’re superstitious, or find the whole Friday 13th thing hokum, it might be worth bookmarking this post for future reference, as we’re going to be looking at 5 common WordPress / Divi issues and their easy-to-follow fixes.

Internal Server Error

Argh!!! I’ve been hacked, the world has ended, my host has been blown up, Trump is President! All very serious possibilities but not likely to be the cause of this particular error.


More often than not it’s a corrupted .htaccess file. The first thing you’ll want to do is ftp in to your site root and rename your current .htaccess file to something like .htaccess_broke. When you reload your site, WordPress will search for a .htaccess file and when it doesn’t find one it’ll create one. This will most likely fix the error. Take a huge sigh of relief and update your permalinks. You’re saved.

Plugins & Themes

If you get this error after installing a plugin or theme then go in via ftp and delete the culprit to get access to your site back. If you installed a bunch of plugins at the same time and want to check if it is a conflict before you start deleting everything then rename the plugin folder in the wp-content folder and see if it fixes your site.

Freshen Up

If you’re still in Server Error turmoil then try replacing your wp-includes & wp-admin folders with a freshly downloaded copy (actually download the new copy, don’t use ones laying around on your computer because these could be the issue).

IF you are still having no luck and you’re doing your best not to introduce your computer to your fist, CALL YOUR HOST! Nine times out of ten they’ll fix this in seconds and coax you back off the ledge for good measure.

Headers already sent. Meh

Warning: Cannot modify header information – headers already sent (output started at

Boo! WT actual F?! Its annoying but no biggy if its the most common culprit. Check your wp-config.php file and remove any spaces before the opening <?php and after the closing ?> – That fix it? Oh good 🙂 If not it’s an issue with premature output. That’s a different ball game but there’s an ace article on stackoverflow about it.

The wheel of death

So you’re trying to do, well, anything in a divi enabled site and you get a cute little wheel just spinning there. A minute later it isn’t cute any more. It’s mega annoying. Try not to get mad at Divi though because the fault probably doesn’t lie there.

Cache Issues

Yep, the most likely culprit is your cache. Clear the cache in your browser and also any caching plugins you’re using. Remember that security plugins like WordFence also have caching features so make sure you get ’em all.

No, no. No, no no no. No, no no no. No, no there’s no limit! Oh wait.. Yes there is.

If it’s not the cache then its probably your php memory limit. Open up the old wp-config file again and look for something like …

define( 'WP_MEMORY_LIMIT', '64M' );

Change the 64 or whatever else is there to something more workable like 128. Also you can define a different php limit for the admin area only by adding …

define( 'WP_MAX_MEMORY_LIMIT', '256M' );

This will not always work. Your host may be overriding these settings so its worth giving them a call and calmly asking “what gives?!”

Password reset not working. How screwed am I?

Not very, as long as you’ve got access to cpanel / FTP.  Add the following to the very top of your functions.php after the opening <?php tag.

$user_id = 1;
$password = 'Pa55word!';
wp_set_password( $password, $user_id );

The user ID refers to the number associated with the account in the WP database. You can check this number by going into the database using phpMyAdmin in your cPanel, finding Databases > Your_Database > wp_users > Browse.

The ID will be listed right there next to the username. Once you’re in, be sure to remove the code from the functions.php file.

Missing icons after a migration

It was an icon before you migrated or restored a backup and now it looks like you’re trying to invite aliens to stay. That can’t be right.

Cache… again.

Clear it, purge it, kill it with fire. Do whatever you need to do to make sure it isn’t the issue.

Bad Migrations

Some migration tools, particularly the free ones, tend to miss the url change in one or two places which causes havoc. Head to /wp-admin/options.php and do a search for the old URL and update as necessary. DONT change any of the serialized data and do a full back-up before editing anything.

You can also install the velvet blues plugin and search for old url issues.

Stephen James

SJ is a web developer living in the coastal town of Southsea, England. He is a Divi and WordPress advocate and the founder of Divi Space.