On some occasions we try to visit a website and we find the annoying internal server error 500, which means that something went wrong with the website. It is not a problem with our computer, nor with our browser or the internet connection. The problem comes from the very website we are trying to visit.

What is a 500 internal server error?

The error can appear in several different ways, although they all have the same meaning. We can find the message: internal server error 500, error 500, HTTP error 500, temporary error (500) or simply error code 500.

Leaving aside the way we see this error, it is an error with the HTTP status code 500. The error code 500 is a generic message that we will see when visiting a website and something unexpected happens on the server, when it cannot provide specific information.

So, instead of seeing the webpage we were looking for, we’re getting this error because the server hosting the site has a problem.

How to fix this error

As you might be guessing, this problem is with the website, so we can’t really fix it ourselves. The person who should fix it is the one who manages the website.

However, sometimes there are some ways to partially solve it. This message is usually temporary and it is possible that the web can be corrected quickly. For example, the visit of many people at the same time can saturate the shared hosting and cause the error. In these cases we can wait a few minutes or seconds and go back in, pressing F5 on the keyboard every so often for it to update.

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Something that we must warn is that, if we are sending a payment online or initiating some kind of transaction, we do not recommend reloading the website for anything in the world. This could lead to another problem: that we send the payment twice. Most websites would have to prevent this from happening, but unfortunately it’s not possible, so it’s up to us.

In case this does not work, then we may have to wait a bit and come back later to visit the website. As we mentioned before, if the problem is more serious, we will have to wait for the site managers to solve it.

If we are concerned that the website administrators are not aware of the problem, we can contact them to let them know what is happening, this is something we can do from social networks.

For example, if this problem appears on a company’s website, we can call the company to notify them. If the company has an email for clients, we can also write a message to send it.

See a previous copy of the web

There is also the possibility of entering a previous version of the web saved in a kind of cache, something that Google offers us. Although keep in mind that this works for displaying static content. If we are in a dynamic web, where we will have to log in and that kind of thing, it will not be useful.

For this we are going to use Google and access a cached copy of the web from Google Cache. We locate the web in the list of search results, then we will click on the three points that are on the right and we will click on “Cached” to see a previous copy.

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We may need to click the Text Only Version link on the cache page for the website to load correctly. We can also visit the website Wayback Machine which is used to see previous copies, even from many years ago, even from websites that no longer exist.

In case the problem occurs on a website that belongs to us, the problem can be generated anywhere. it is most likely due to some problem related to the .htaccess file, wrong permissions, software packages, etc. Ideally, contact hosting support for further assistance on this.

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