I can access the frontend of a new Wordpress setup without issue. I can also log in with a user account without issue. However, if I try to log in with an admin account I get a 500 error about 70-80% of the time.

If I do manage to get through to the WP dashboard, any page within the admin panel will cause the error only /sometimes/ - I can't find a set way to reproduce the error.

Apache's error log shows a segmentation fault for each of these 500 errors.

I started my investigation with Wordpress:

  • Disabled all WP plugins
  • Reset the theme to default
  • Removed .htaccess and hit the php pages directly

The error sill intermittently occured.

I figured my next step should be to get a core dump of the Apache thread that died to see if there are any clues, but I can't get it to dump.

I'm running Debian 6.0.4 and have followed the instructions in /usr/share/doc/apache2.2-common/README.backtrace, which state:

1) Install the packages apache2-dbg libapr1-dbg libaprutil1-dbg gdb.

2) Add "CoreDumpDirectory /var/cache/apache2" to your apache configuration.

3) Execute as root: /etc/init.d/apache2 stop ulimit -c unlimited /etc/init.d/apache2 start

4) Do whatever it takes to reproduce the crash. There should now be the file /var/cache/apache2/core .

Still, the core files aren't being dumped, and Apache's error log doesn't have (core dumped) in the segmentation fault lines.

Any ideas?


I had a similar issue and I fixed it by upgrading the ssh php module with sudo pecl install ssh2-0.13 on Ubuntu.


Try to chmod 777 that directory. If you put the dump into /tmp you may have more success as tmp is writable by everyone on the system. I had the same problem and doing this and running the commands in step 3 in sequence instead of all at once got me what I needed.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.