WordPress Error in Establishing a Database Connection Troubleshooting to Fix

What is database connection Errors?

The world is moving fast. Technology is progressing quickly providing easy ways to connect through our devices. A database connection is one such facility. Computer science provides us with this amazing technology that aids communication between client software and database server. No matter it is on the same device or different devices. However, an internet connection is a basic requirement for sending commands and receiving replies. Replies are in the shape of the result set.

The most terrible situation for a website developer is when the website link gets down or gives an error. This causes hindrance to the traffic to the site thus may also cause great loss to the website owner. Also, database connection errors affect the website negatively and may bring down website ranking. With a database connection error, access to the website becomes impossible. In this condition, nothing displays the error page after entering the URL of the website. Database connection error occurs when the required website page does not display due to the failure of PHP and MySQL connection. This is the reason why a blank page is displayed on entering the website URL.

Database connection error can be due to a few major reasons. First, you may be entering the wrong password or username. This happens when the website admin makes changes in the username or password. So be sure about these credentials as putting in the wrong ones will not give you access to the website. The second reason for the errors it could be a corrupt database. There may be a fault in the installed plugin. Another reason that leads to database connection error is that the hosting server may be down temporarily.

How it impacts at WordPress website

WordPress websites are those developed on WordPress. WordPress is a web hosting site. It helps to manage and develop web content. Also, web developers use WordPress to develop the backend and frontend side of the website. The database helps to manage, organize, and store data to other Software’s. With the help of a database WordPress store the website data and important content. When a visitor comes to a website it immediately connects to the database. To connect with a database WordPress requires database credentials like database name, username, password, and database server. Any wrong input could lead to a database connection error in WordPress websites. The connection of WordPress to the database fails. Moreover, if the database server is down the page with an error is shown.

Incorrect input of database credentials causes database connection errors. This could happen when the site is handover to a new host. All the credentials of the WordPress website including database information are saved in the wp-config PHP file. So, make sure the username and password settings are correct. Moreover, if you are confident about putting incorrect username, database name, and password then the problem may lie in database host information. Most of the hosting companies work with local database host. Others have separate servers for hosting the database. For this, you must first contact your web hosting company for database host information.

Sometimes unavailability of database tables leads to database connection errors. This could be repaired by repairing the database of your site. So that the flow of information remains smooth and the website run without any hindrance. However, heavy traffic towards the website can also cause a database connection error. This will down the server and disconnect the communication between MySQL and PHP. Your website will become slow or even show an error page.  

How to troubleshoot these errors 

Before going to troubleshoot methods we must review why database connection error occurs. PHP and MySQL are two technologies used by WordPress to run a website successfully. The whole data is written in the PHP language. This is also called a programming language. MySQL stores all the content, information, and files regarding the website. Web developers use PHP commands to connect with MySQL for fetching needed information. Due to this, we can see the desired website page. When the connection between these two technologies is disturbed or the PHP command doesn’t reach MySQL. The screen shows a database connection error despite the website page.

The incorrect entry of database credentials like username, password, or database name causes a database connection error. This is because WordPress fails to grab information from the database. Moreover, corrupted files, corrupted databases, too much traffic on the website, and server link down can cause database connection errors.

These errors can troubleshoot with little fixation. Start from the quickest solution then go deep into the system if the previous step doesn’t work.

Step 1: Contact the provider of the web host of your website

When your website is not working you need to fix the problem immediately. The first step that we receommend you need to take is to contact your web host provider. Now getting in touch with the web host provider is easy. You can contact through live chat. They will respond immediately to help you get things to fix. The error may occur due to the web host provider. Discuss the problem with them. Ask them a few questions like whether the database server is up or down? Is it running smoothly or have problems? Ask about a load of traffic on the website. Your web host provider will understand the problem and help to fix it by themselves for you. But if there is no such issue which they could solve then move towards the next step for troubleshooting database connection errors.

Step 2: look out for your plugin and theme files

Sometimes you may put in the wrong plugin or the theme files are corrupt. WordPress files may get corrupt due to a few accidental mishandlings of files. For example, when we update a theme, the update is interrupted before finishing successfully. Such unfortunate activities can corrupt the files. Similarly, hand-editing files and attaching the site to some other external service can cause these corruption issues. In case you have not done anything with the files and still have the problem then follow these instructions:

  • With the help of FileZilla, which is a free tool connect with your host. This could be done through FTP. For this, you require your FTP account’s login and password. Some people may be stuck in this situation from where to find a login and password. So, to get your FTP credentials to go through your previous emails from the web host. Web host sends you a login and password when you sign in for the first time. If that doesn’t work you can contact the web host provider through live chat to get details. Once you get the login and password connect to the server and get into the WordPress root folder for further problem-solving.
  • Rename the folder with name plugins to some other name by getting into wp-content.
  • After doing all these settings go back to the website to see whether it still shows an error page or not. If the page does not show an error and the website page displayed instead then the problem is caught. This is due to the plugin.

After the issue is fixed successfully go to FTP and rename the plugin folder with the name plugin again. Get into the folder and the just change the name of the plugins individually. It is preferable to add an underscore at the end of each folder name. While naming the side of the folder by side visit the website to see the errors gone or still there. When you catch the plugin that’s causing a problem either delete it or find the possible solution to sort it out from the solution available online. The database connection error may remain intact even after renaming plugins. When such a situation occurs repeat the same renaming process with the themes folder. However, if the error still prevails rename the folders back to the theme and plugins because then the issue is something else.

Step 3: Check your database 

Database corruption is another issue that may cause a database connection error. WordPress database is a bit complicated. Various little parts work together to keep away any problem. When any of these parts get out of order you will see a database connection error.

  • Firstly, go to the WordPress dashboard to see if any problem arises from there. If the error page is still seen then skip this step.
  • Secondly, there might appear a solution to the problem. The new version of WordPress has many solutions to such problems. Just follow what it asks you to get the issue fix. It will tell you various possibilities for database connection error and some advice to overcome it.
  • Thirdly, you may see a message on the screen regarding the unavailability of database tables. In such a situation you have to make necessary repairs to the database. The procedure is carried out in a few simple steps. Open your site through FTP then go to WordPress root for downloading the wp-config.php file on your system. For editing the file open it in notepad. Upload this new file on the site through FTP replacing the old one. Click the database repair button and wait till the process finish. Then go back to your site to look for the error that it is still there or not. If the error vanishes your working is successful but if it’s still there then gone back to the wp-config.php file and restore the changes you made. Afterwards, move to the next step because this is not the cause of the database connection error.

Step 4: Make sure your database connection credentials are correct

As discussed earlier the database connection credentials include database name, username, password, etc. when these credentials are wrongly entered the site will not open. Instead, you will see the database connection error page. However, once set these credentials don’t change by themselves. When we make changes in the site files or in any other setting these credentials may change sometime. You have to download the wp-config.php file for fixing the issue. It has the whole information that helps to connect with the database for running the site smoothly. If any information or data is wrong the connection will be lost.

When you will open the wp-config.php four lines appear. Copy those lines and paste on the clipboard then contact your web host. Send them those lines in live chat and ask whether these details are correct for connecting to your database or not. The web host providers will find out the problem and will guide you over it. If any changes have been made already they will let you know. For new changes, you need to update the old wp-config.php file. Put in new credential details in the file to sort out the database connection error. Now it’s time to re-upload the file and this can be done through FTP. Then go back to the website to see whether the error is finished or not. If it’s not finished then go-ahead to try the last step.

Step 5: Restoration of WordPress files

The WordPress files can get corrupt due to the Hacking attempt on the website. Also, you may accidentally do some changes to the files or a plugin may do some modification that corrupts the files. However, you can easily restore WordPress default files. Download the fresh version of WordPress, copy over the existing one. Make new WordPress files and save them over the old files by connecting to the site through FTP. Go to the website and see whether the error has finished or not. This step is the last solution to the database connection error. If this doesn’t work contact web host providers for help and explain all the possible ways you tried to fix the error.

Take preventive measures to avoid database connection error in future

Not any site is fully saved from database connection errors. But you can take some preventive measures in order to make your site safe up to 90%. go for a high-quality web hosting company. The company who specifically organize, host, and manage websites through WordPress. This way you can get quick support and help. Install plugins like UpdraftPlus as a backup. Always keep a working WordPress backup so you can restore files if other ways of solving database connection error fail.

The problem you may face in troubleshooting these errors

However, there are so many solutions and methods to fix the database connection error. But while troubleshooting these errors some problems may arise. Never test the methods on your active website. Try it on another website to prevent any other issue from arising. Because while troubleshooting you are working directly on a database of the website which contains all the necessary data and information on the website. Accidental loss of any data may cause serious damage to the database settings.

To correct the database credentials there are manual ways as well. But this way is very complicated and needs to follow a lot of steps which may confuse the person. So, it is better to contact web host providers for help. Moreover, many pieces of information like traffic load to the website, database credential changes are unknown to us. We have to contact host providers to get this information. Website host providers sometimes answer immediately and sometimes take a lot of time. This thing causes great damage to the reputation of the website due to a delay in troubleshooting database connection errors.

There are so many methods to troubleshoot database connection errors. We have to try all the methods one by one to see whether the error diminished or not. For fixing errors, we need to enter the database of the website. Handling database is a tough job. It’s the sensitive area holding the whole information on the website. It sometimes happens that while troubleshooting the error we unknowingly add some other error to the database which instead of vanishing error keep it intact. Moreover, to check whether the error diminished or not we have to visit the website page again and again which sometimes causes panic.

What knowledge or skills required to handle this type of problem by own self or anyone?

Although some of us are not experts at getting database connection error fixed. But this can be done on our own by following instructions provided online. To understand these instructions, you must have basic knowledge of the terms and software used to build a website. Here are mentioned few important skills you must have and knowledge you must possess to handle this type of problem by own self.

You should know the use of WordPress

Knowing what WordPress is important if you are solving database connection errors on your own. WordPress is a web hosting site that helps to build and host a website. it contains various themes and plugins to run your website successfully without interruption. Moreover, the latest version of WordPress provides a possible solution to database connection errors if any arise.

Must understand what PHP and MySQL is

PHP and MySQL are components of the WordPress website.