How To Fix HTTP Error 524 & 522
So one day you’re visiting your own website as part of your weekly maintenance, only to be greeted by this unsightly image below.
You see, I recently came across both HTTP Error 524 & HTTP Error 522 on my personal website. In my case, they resolved themselves within a few minutes of appearing (I’ll explain why momentarily), however you may still be wondering what causes this error and how you can fix them if the errors have persisted for more than a few minutes.
HTTP Error 524
HTTP Error 524, not to be confused with HTTP Error 522 below, is an error code displayed on websites that utilise Cloudflare, which is a content delivery network used by some website owners such as myself. This error simply means that Cloudflare was able to connect to the server (unlike error 522 where Cloudflare cannot connect to the server), but the server did not respond in a reasonable amount of time, causing the connection to timeout. In layman’s terms, the site took to long to load and presented this error code. Common causes of HTTP error 524 include, but are not limited to:
- A background task that uses up a ton of resources (e.g., certain WordPress plugins)
- A DDoS attack.
- Server or network glitches.
- Database maintenance during a WordPress update or backing up your database
- A sudden surge in traffic that the servers can’t handle.
What Can Site Owners Do About HTTP Error 524?
Based on the causes above, you have a few ways of going about this.
- If you suspect your WordPress plugins as being the cause of the error, then disable all of your plugins and see if the error goes away. If you can’t access your site’s dashboard, then you can disable your plugins through your file manager by following the instructions here.
- If you suspect you’re under a DDOS attack, the enable Cloudflare’s DDOS protection.
- In the event that there’s an issue with the server that’s outside of your control, contact your web host immediately.
- If you think your database being updated is the issue, wait for the update to finish.
- In the case of a sudden surge in traffic, you’ll either have to upgrade your hosting plan or move to a web host that can handle the traffic you’re receiving.
Now, when I received HTTP Error 524 on my site featured in the image above, I had actually received the error between error 522 and my site going back up. If you suspect that this is the case for you, try waiting a few minutes and refreshing the page to see if it corrects itself.
What Can Visitors Do About HTTP Error 524?
Because this is an issue that only the site owner or their hosting company can fix, there is nothing a site visitor can do except wait for the error to be resolved or contact the webmaster if possible. However, what you can do in the meantime to view the contents of the website is enter the URL into the Wayback Machine or Cached View to see if they have an archived version of the page. Google can also display cached pages by clicking the drop-down arrow next to the URL, so that’s another option.
HTTP Error 522 simply means that Cloudflar, could not connect to the website’s server, which is where the website’s files are hosted. This usually isn’t a fatal error considering it’s happened to me a few times before whenever one of my websites’ servers went down (usually for maintenance), and the site URL in the image above is still up and running with no issues. Other causes of HTTP error 522 include:
- Server maintenance performed by the web host.
- Server maintenance performed by you (if you own the servers).
- The servers are down.
- The servers have been destroyed.
- The servers are limiting Cloudflare connections.
What Can Site Owners Do About HTTP Error 522?
Since HTTP error 522 means that Cloudflare couldn’t connect to your servers, this means that you have the following options to resolve the issue.
- Contact your web host or search your e-mails to find out if any server maintenance was being performed.
- Finish your own server maintenance.
- Use IsItDown.com to find out if your site is down for everyone or just you.
- Contact your web host to find out if something happened to the server your site was on.
- Whitelist Cloudflare’s IP ranges by following their instructions here.
If the issue doesn’t resolve itself in at least 30 minutes, you should contact your web host about the issue as they would be more likely to have information about any extended server maintenance or the condition of the servers than anyone else. However, every time I’ve had this error appear, the issue resolved itself pretty quickly.
What Can Site Visitors Do About HTTP Error 522?
Just like with Error 524, there is unfortunately nothing you can do about it until the issue is resolved except for entering the URL into the Wayback Machine or Cached View to see if they have an archived version of the page.
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