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Solving HTTP errors when uploading images in WordPress

Now and then we received support requests about HTTP errors when uploading images in WordPress. These HTTP errors are actually a quite common WordPress issue and usually not related to the WordPress theme you’re running. In fact, if anything, they usually are related to your server environment and more specifically to file permissions or memory limits on your server. In this article we’ll talk about why HTTP errors might occur when uploading images to your WordPress website, how to troubleshoot issues and how to easily solve your issues with only a few clicks.

HTTP errors suddenly occur when uploading images in WordPress

WordPress Media Upload

Often HTTP errors related to image uploads seem to happen unexpectedly after updating to the latest version of WordPress or other updates. However, most of the time there are other reasons for these HTTP errors in WordPress, for example if your hosting provider made an update / upgrade or in case you are running plugins or scripts that affect the WordPress media upload. Infiltrated malware or poorly configured shared hosting environments can also cause unexpected HTTP errors in WordPress, for example in case of incorrect file permissions, insufficient memory limits or else.

How to fix image upload errors in WordPress

Errors can occur for many reasons (Image: stevepb – Pixabay.com – CC0 Public Domain)

Incompatible plugins or scripts

To find out the culprit of HTTP errors when uploading images in WordPress, you can start troubleshooting within your own WordPress environment. That means you could disable your plugins, especially those of unreliable providers or plugins that haven’t been updated for a long time (e.g. 12 months). The same applies to WordPress themes (even if not in use), especially those which have not been updated for a long time and which might contain malware or incompatible code.

In general it’s recommended to always use plugins and themes from reliable sources. These can usually be found in the official WordPress plugin and themes directory. Reliable free and premium WordPress themes and plugins can also be found at most recognized and popular theme shops. If disabling or removing suspicious scripts and plugins doesn’t help, then please see read the next sections for further ways of solving HTTP errors related to image uploads in WordPress.

Incorrect file permissions on web hosting server

When uploading images in WordPress, HTTP errors often occur because of incorrect file permissions for the WordPress uploads folder on your server. That means WordPress doesn’t have permission anymore to access the particular directory, where your uploaded images are being stored and saved for further usage. These incorrect permissions prevent WordPress from uploading images to your server and this results in the HTTP error notice. File permissions for example could have been changed by accident per your hosting company when they run updates / upgrades on your server.

Permissions FileZilla
Changing permissions with the FileZilla FTP-client

If you are familiar with FTP clients like FileZilla or else, you can easily check and correct the file permissions for the WordPress uploads directory by yourself. To do so, there are some comprehensive WordPress tutorials online as well as helpful support threads on the official WordPress support forums. As an alternative, you could contact your hosting company directly as they usually will be able to assist you as well regarding the change of file permissions on your server. In case you’re not happy with your current hosting company, you can have a look at our overview of recommended WordPress hosting companies.

Insufficient server memory limits

Another reason for HTTP errors when uploading images in WordPress could be insufficient memory limits on your server. There are several threads from people with this issue that can be found online. A thread about limited memory allocated to Apache/PHP server for example can be found here.

For a comprehensive tutorial on how to increase the memory and upload limits on your server, please see the following support article: How to Increase the Memory & Upload Limit in WordPress. However, it is usually recommended to contact your hosting company and let them check the server configuration to provide you with enough memory allocated to your server space. In case you’re running your websites on low-priced shared hosting environments, it’s possible that you need to upgrade your hosting plan in order to increase memory and/or upload limits on your server.

The recommendations and tips in this article hopefully shed some light on HTTP errors when uploading images in WordPress. To sum up, these HTTP errors can occur because of many reasons related to your server environment, file permissions, malware or limited memory on your server.

In addition to what has been covered in this article, there might be other reasons as well which could lead to HTTP errors. If you can’t find the culprit after following the mentioned recommendations, you could contact your hsoting company for further analysis. Information about HTTP errors and HTTP in general you can also have look at this source: List of HTTP status codes.

This article also helped users with the following questions:

  • Uploading image results in HTTP error
  • HTTP error when uploading images via the WordPress media uploader
  • HTTP error when uploading images to gallery
  • Solve image upload problems in WordPress
  • Image upload HTTP error fix
  • Image upload not working in WordPress
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  • How to resolve HTTP error while uploading images on WordPress
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