What is 401 error and How to fix it in WordPress

Sep 14, 2019 | Errors and Troubleshooting, WordPress website

If your WordPress website shows the 401 error to the visitors, it is important to solve the problem so that the visitors can enjoy the website. If you encounter 401 unauthorized error when you visit some other website, you must know what the problem is. Even some common errors can make you worried about your website. So, you must know about the common errors in the WordPress website.

What is 401 error in WordPress?

401 error is an HTTP status code which means the server received an unauthorized request from the user. If you log in to the website and you see a 401 unauthorized error, it means that the credentials you entered are invalid. You need to enter the valid login credentials to enter the website.

Variations of 401 error code

The different messages you see that indicates 401 error code vary due to different servers.  Here are some variations you see on the web.

  • HTTP Error 401 – Unauthorized
  • Authorization Required
  • 401 Unauthorized
  • Access Denied

What are the causes of 401 unauthorized error

Following the causes of 401 unauthorized error.

  1. Invalid login credentials this means the credentials you enter to log in are incorrect.
  2. Enter incorrect URL, and you see the 401 error because of it.
  3. Wrong Login request which means the website doesn’t require a login but still show you a login page.
  4. Firewall or security issues can also cause 401 error.
  5. WordPress plugin conflict on the website might cause this HTTP error.
  6. DNS failure may also trigger the 401 unauthorized error.

How to fix error 401 in WordPress

Following are some methods to fix 401 unauthorized error in WordPress.

Wait and Refresh the web page

First thing you can try is refreshing the web page. Sometimes 401 error appears due to temporary server downtime and can be fixed by simply refreshing the page. And if you are seeing this error on others website this means the website could be going through some maintenance process, all you can do in this situation is wait for few minutes and try reloading to get to the website.

Check for errors in URL

An unauthorized 401 error may have occurred because the URL was incorrect or the selected link points to an invalid URL. If the page no longer exists, the server can display 401 code. Check the spelling error in URL. You can also use the search engine to find the right URL for the web page you want to access.

Clear Browser Cache

In your browser, invalid links may be stored that interrupt the login process and cause error 401. Clearing the cache solves all problems in these files and allows the page to download new files directly from the server. The cache is the saved data that stores static files of the site on the server or web browser.

Deactivate WordPress Plugins

A poorly configured or poorly configured WordPress plugin can also cause a 401 error. This is sometimes the intention of WordPress security plugins. For example, some plugins will block your login page if the plugin suspects you are being attacked. This can lead to error code 401 when you try to open the login page or the firewall in the WordPress plugin can cause problems. You must temporarily disable all WordPress plugins to see if one of them is causing trouble.

Remove Password Protection Temporarily

If you use htaccess to protect some sections of your WordPress website with an additional username and password, you can try disabling this additional password protection. You may have forgotten the administrator password or the server configuration has changed. Go to your WordPress hosting control panel and find the password protected directories. Now open this protection link and remove the user to deactivate password protection.