PSA for other bloggers: Internal server error due to potential Jetpack 3.8.0 incompatibility with theme
After attending ATA56, the annual conference of the American Translators Association, I came back all energized and wanted to update my WordPress-based website and publish a few blog posts. Except when I tried to log into my dashboard, I got the dreaded “Internal Server Error” with no way to access the dashboard. It turns out that the auto-update updated Jetpack to the latest version 3.8.0, which seems to be incompatible with my theme or one of my other plug-ins. I could not disable the plug-ins or try another theme, since I could not even get into the dashboard.
Do not despair!
Here’s the solution:
- Connect via FTP (SSH or a similar command line option will work, too) to the server, on which the site is hosted.
- Locate the folder /wp-content/plugins/jetpack.
- Rename the folder to something else, e.g. “jetpackold.”
- Log into your dashboard, which should work now and not throw an “Internal Server Error.” Then go to “Plugins,” which should automatically disable the plugin Jetpack, since it cannot find it.
- If you still cannot log into your dashboard, clear all caches, the one in your browser and the one on the server, if you have caching enabled. You can usually do this via your hosting console that any reputable hosting company provides. If not, look for folders labelled “cache” in your FTP window and remove the contents.
- Download the last version of Jetpack that worked with your theme/plugins here: https://wordpress.org/plugins/jetpack/developers/. In my case that was 3.7.2.
- Make a new folder /wp-content/plugins/jetpack and copy everything that you just downloaded into this folder.
- Log into your dashboard, which should work now. Do not upgrade to Jetpack 3.8.