WordPress on Mac OS X — Server Error 500

I ran into this problem with WordPress running on a Mac OS X server.  I suppose that this may happen on other servers running Apache as well.  Attempting to access the WordPress site threw this error at you:

Server error!
The server encountered an internal error and was unable to complete your request. Either the server is overloaded or there was an error in a CGI script.
If you think this is a server error, please contact the webmaster.
Error 500

Turned out that the .htaccess file in the root of the WordPress install had some gibberish in it.  It looks like this gibberish replaced some of the actual contents of the file.  I don’t know how it got there, but fixing the .htaccess file solved the problem.  So, that’s something to check if you are having this problem as well!

Update, June 6, 2014: This post seems to generate more spam than normal so I am disabling comments.

3 thoughts on “WordPress on Mac OS X — Server Error 500”

  1. Hi Aaron
    I just got a Mac mini Server and want to run WordPress on it.
    However, I can not seem to find any tutorials on how to install and configure it WITHOUT using MAMP.
    How did you get your WordPress up and running?
    A link or a short description would be very much appreciated!
    Thank you in andvance.
    Kind regards Henrik Rasmussen, Dubai, UAE.

  2. This installation of WordPress actually runs on Linux, but the OS X installation I am referring to here actually runs on Mac OS X server, which includes PHP and MySQL out-of-the-box. Just had to plop the WordPress files in the right place and run through its automatic install.

    On a Mac OS X (non-server), you could turn on Apache by enabling “Web Sharing” (I believe that’s what they call the feature), manually install PHP and MySQL (from their respective sites), and then you should be able to run WordPress similarly by extracting the WordPress files to your web root and running through the automatic install in your web browser. Unfortunately, I do not have a tutorial to link to.

  3. I would love to know how you set up your wordPress site on your Mac server. I am trying to do one right now and can’t get it to work.

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