500 Internal Server Error HTTP Status Code


HTTP status code 500 is an Internal Server Error response code. It indicates that the server encountered an unexpected condition that prevented it from fulfilling the request made by the client. This error is a generic "catch-all" response for situations when the server cannot give more specific information about the problem. Essentially, it means that something has gone wrong on the website's server, but the server could not be more specific on what the exact problem is.

Since the issue is with the server itself and not something that the client or the browser did wrong, there's not much that a user can do to resolve this error directly. The resolution usually involves web server administrators diagnosing and fixing the problem on the server side, which might involve looking at server logs, server software, or scripts to identify and correct the issue causing the error.


500 Internal Server Error

Common Causes

Several common causes can trigger a 500 Internal Server Error:

  1. Server-Side Scripts Error: If there’s a mistake in the server-side code, it might cause an error that the server can't identify specifically. This includes programming errors like infinite loops, exceptions that were not caught, or misuse of server resources.

  2. Database Issues: Problems connecting to the database or errors in executing database queries can result in a 500 error. This could be due to incorrect credentials, corrupted data, or the database server being unreachable.

  3. Configuration Errors: Misconfiguration of the server software (like Apache or Nginx) can cause internal server errors. This includes incorrect directives in .htaccess or nginx.conf files, such as rewrite rules or permission settings.

  4. Failed Server Scripts: This can occur when a requested resource relies on a script that does not execute correctly, possibly due to programming errors, resource exhaustion, or permissions issues.

  5. Resource Limitations: If the server is running out of resources (e.g., memory, CPU) due to excessive load or inefficient scripts, it might return a 500 error as it becomes unable to handle more requests effectively.

  6. Third-party Plugin or Module Failures: In environments that utilize plugins or modules to extend functionality, such as CMS systems like WordPress, a malfunctioning plugin or module can cause a 500 error.

  7. File Permissions: Incorrect file permissions on the server can prevent scripts from executing properly, leading to a 500 error.

  8. Timeouts: Server scripts that take too long to complete can trigger timeouts, resulting in a 500 error. This could be due to inefficient code or external resources that are slow to respond.

It's important to note that since a 500 Internal Server Error is often vague and indicates only that something went wrong on the server, diagnosing the specific cause often requires server logs and debugging tools. Server administrators typically investigate the server logs to find the exact reason for the error and then apply the appropriate fix.

Browser Support

The following table will show you the current browser support for the 500 Internal Server Error HTTP status code.

Edge Chrome Firefox Opera Safari
Tablets / Mobile
Chrome Firefox Opera Safari Samsung Webview

Last updated by CSSPortal on: 1st April 2024