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I've updated a plugin on my Wordpress site and my site is now showing a blank page, what can I do?

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A blank white page is usually indicative of a 500 Internal Server Error meaning the scripts on your site are encountering an error as they interact with the server, this can be due to a number of reasons including using too much memory, calling modules that are not installed on the server or syntax errors in the script with version changes. Latest versions of PHP are set not to output errors to the browser so a blank page will be the result of any errors with the scripts.

When updating a plugin it is always a good idea to take a backup of the site so that you can roll this back should an error occur. However, if you have updated without doing so and your site now loads a blank page you should still be able to get this back online with the following steps.

In simple terms, you're looking to disable the plugin(s) that have caused the issue. You would usually do this from the wp-admin backend but if the site is showing a blank page it is highly likely this section will be as well. There is a way around this that be taken either when connecting via FTP or through the File Manager in your hosting control panel.

Once connected you will need to go into the public_html folder and from there the wp-content folder and then the plugins folder where you will find folders for all of the installed plugins. To disable the plugins from here is a simple case of renaming the folder. In the below screenshot of the File Manager, if you wanted to disable the akismet plugin you would right-click and then use the Rename option to change the name, any change of name would have the effect you want so changing to akismet-bak would be sufficient.

Once renamed this will stop the script being able to use the plugin and will bring the site back online if this was the plugin causing the issue. If you have a number of plugins you may need to go through and systematically rename until you find the one causing the issue.


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