I'm working with Wordpress for the first time and, as per the security guidelines in this guide, I'm chmodding wp-config.php to 600 (user can read/write, no one else can do anything). However, this gives me the white screen of death when I try to access the admin console. Why is this?
My bet is that you just need to set that file's owner as the same user that your webserver is running as.
If your webserver is running as, say,
The reason you see the white page is because WordPress is not getting the information out of the wp-config.php. This is because your http server does not have permissions to read that file.
To correct this you need to change the permissions to allow your http server to read the file. How to do this is going to depend on how your server is setup. If it is running under the www-data group (or similar group) the preferred method would be to
If your http service is running under something like the nobody group then you might need to chmod your file to 644. 640 is the better option as 644 will allow any user on the system to read the file and 640 will only allow the owner and group to read the file.
Considering this file contains passwords for your database, I suggest the chgrp method.