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Fix WordPress Plugin Issues With Memory

Posted on May 22nd, 2007
Written by Lee Odden
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    Every have odd things happening with your WordPress blog? Plugins work one minute but then not the next? It could be that you need more PHP memory.

    I first noticed this issue when I moved a blog from one host to the next. I had three main issues:

    1. The WordPress Dashboard showed only the right had menu. No news in the main column.
    2. My Google Sitemap plugin was now prompting me to download the options-general.php file when I tried to re-create it.
    3. Spam Karma worked, but when I tried to manage items, it wouldn’t load anything but the main menu.

    Knowing there was something wrong, I tried to contact the host of the blog. They kept telling me that they didn’t give support for third party scripts or plugins. I understood them, but didn’t feel that they were really listening to me. After a bit of searching, I found a possible fix; increase the PHP memory.

    PHP is what is used to run WordPress. It’s usually allowed a certain amount of memory to run scripts and do its thing. If your blog is big enough, or if your scripts are complex enough, it may reach it’s memory limit and quit the script. That’s what was happening in my case.

    So how do you fix it? Well just email the host and ask them to increase the PHP memory. You can run the phpinfo function and find out how much memory your site has. The server that was having the issue had 8Mb of PHP memory. I asked the host to increase it to 20Mb and then everything worked great.

    If your blog seems to have issues working correctly, always check a variety of items to see what the issue is. It took me a while, but the issues were not with the plugins at all, but rather with the server and the PHP memory. Some are to quick to judge an issue and may never find the real answer unless they take the time to do the research.