WordPress is Stuck In Maintenance Mode

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About this Article

When the WordPress core, themes and plugins are updated, there are occasions where something goes wrong. When updates occur, WordPress puts your site in maintenance mode during the update. If something does go wrong, your site may get stuck in maintenance mode and shows the message:

Briefly unavailable for scheduled maintenance. Check back in a minute.

Why Does this Happen?

There are various reasons why WordPress gets stuck in maintenance mode. Some of the more common ones are:

  • You close your browser during the update process
  • You’re updating lots of things at the same time and you are reaching your resource limits
  • There’s a fault in the update
  • There’s an incompatibility issue between your update and what you currently have installed

How to Get Out of Maintenance Mode

There’s a simple fix. When WordPress goes into maintenance mode it creates a file in the root of your WordPress installation called ‘.maintenance’. You fix, we just need to remove this file. Here’s how

  1. Access file manager via cPanel or by connecting via FTP
  2. Head to the public_html folder and locate your WordPress root. If you are only hosting 1 domain you’ll be her already. If you have more than one domain or WordPress is installed as a subdomain then locate this folder.
  3. Locate the .maintenance file
  4. Hover, right click and delete

This will bring you our of maintenance mode. You can now head back to WordPress and see what progress the update made (if any) and continue.

If you are accessing via cPanel, you may need to click the settings icon in the top right and check show hidden files (dotfiles) to see this file.

How To Prevent this From Happening

  • Always make sure that themes and plugins are compatible with each other and your setup (for example your PHP version
  • Avoid using the bulk update function in the WordPress update screen. Instead, use the plugin screen. Select the ones you want to update and select update from the dropdown menu. This way you get a more visual representation of what is happening
  • If you have lots to update, only do a few at a time

Need More Help?

Then just get in touch.

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