I originally posted this on Stack Overflow, then remembered that SO isn't for server-based questions.

Hey guys,

When I try to upload a file to my site, I'm getting the Nginx "413 Request Entity Too Large" error, however in my nginx.conf file I've already explicitly stated the max size to be about 250MB at the moment, and changed the max file size in php.ini as well (and yes, I restarted the processes). The error log gives me this:

2010/12/06 04:15:06 [error] 20124#0: *11975 client intended to send too large body: 1144149 bytes, client:, server: www.x.com, request: "POST /upload HTTP/1.1", host: "x.com", referrer: "http://x.com/"

As far as I know, 1144149 bytes isn't 250MB... Is there something I'm missing here?

Here's the base Nginx config:

user  nginx;
worker_processes  8;
worker_rlimit_nofile 100000;

error_log   /var/log/nginx/error.log;
#error_log  /var/log/nginx/error.log  notice;
#error_log  /var/log/nginx/error.log  info;

pid        /var/run/nginx.pid;

events {
    worker_connections  1024;
    use epoll;

http {
    include       /etc/nginx/mime.types;
    default_type  application/octet-stream;

    log_format  main  '$remote_addr - $remote_user [$time_local] "$request" '
                      '$status $body_bytes_sent "$http_referer" '
                      '"$http_user_agent" "$http_x_forwarded_for"';

    access_log  /var/log/nginx/access.log  main;

    sendfile        on;
    client_max_body_size 300M;
    tcp_nopush      on;
    tcp_nodelay     on;
    server_tokens   off;
    gzip            on;
    gzip_static     on;
    gzip_comp_level 5;
    gzip_min_length 1024;
    keepalive_timeout  300;
    limit_zone   myzone  $binary_remote_addr  10m;

    # Load config files from the /etc/nginx/conf.d directory
    include /etc/nginx/sites/*;

And the vhost for the site:

server {
 listen  80;
 server_name www.x.com x.com;

 access_log /var/log/nginx/x.com-access.log;

 location / {
  index index.html index.htm index.php;
  root /var/www/x.com;

  if (!-e $request_filename) {
   rewrite ^/([a-z,0-9]+)$ /$1.php last;
   rewrite ^/file/(.*)$ /file.php?file=$1;

  location ~ /engine/.*\.php$ {
   return 404;

  location ~ ^/([a-z,0-9]+)\.php$ {
   fastcgi_index index.php;
   fastcgi_param SCRIPT_FILENAME $document_root$fastcgi_script_name;
   include  fastcgi_params;

Am I missing something here?

  • 2
    Did you find a solution? – danorton Sep 5 '11 at 17:27

Try moving client_max_body_size to inside the server block.

  • Sorry I took so long to get back to you. I tried that originally, and it didn't seem to work either. – Elliot Dec 6 '10 at 23:58

If you are experiencing this issue, where client_max_body_size does not seem like it is being respected, make sure that all of your servers that web traffic passes through have this configuration setting correctly configured. In my case, I configured the application servers but had forgotten to configure the load balancer with the setting.


You might be setting client_max_body_size in multiple locations or files. For example, the last line of your config includes any config files from the sites directory: include /etc/nginx/sites/*

Find all occurrences of client_max_body_size by running this command in your nginx directory:

sudo grep -R 'client_max_body_size' ./*

If you remove or update all those occurrences, you should be in good shape. I had the same issue and was racking my mind as to what it could be.


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