When you browse through the Internet, you might have come across several error messages. Each error message contains a specific number code and a message that indicates a particular issue.
In the case of 508 errors, the error message implied is that the website you try to access has reached the resource limit allocated to it by the server. So, any subsequent requests will not be served, and the user will see a blank page with just the message ‘508 resource limit is reached‘.
Unlike error 502, dealing with 508 can be a little tricky. The root cause could be due to varied reasons starting from the usual server resource usage restrictions to any possible denial of service attack. Here is a brief guide on how to understand and deal with the 508 errors encountered by your WordPress website.
What Is A HTTP Error 508?
As mentioned earlier, a 508 error is a class of server-side errors that appears when your WordPress site has exceeded the resource allocation given for its use by the hosting server. Here, resources could mean any software and hardware capabilities, including the CPU usage, RAM usage, memory, and the concurrent processes running under your website’s account.
While it is normal to get this error during occasional resource spikes, you may still need to investigate the resource usage, so that you don’t encounter it more as your website grows.
Causes And Troubleshooting: How To Fix Resource Limit Is Reached
Generally, when your website is gaining more visitors and getting high traffic for which it is not scaled for, a 508 error can be expected. This is because hosting servers use a shared resource usage model and allocate CPU usage and memory space depending upon the plans you have opted.
If you have opted for low limitations in the resource usage, it is quite common to encounter a 508 error as your website’s demands for more server time.
But moving to a higher plan could cost you more. Hence, it is necessary first to investigate if you can do any optimizations to your applications to avoid the error.
Besides a healthy increase in web traffic, the following reasons could cause a resource usage spike.
A common culprit behind a resource-heavy web application is its bad coding.
Check your scripts for any performance issues and look for ways to optimize them. For instance, instead of querying for huge amounts of data with each request, you can optimize them to fetch a narrowed down set of data.
Plugins could be part of the bad coding problem as some of them could have a messy logic that puts a lot of stress on your server resources.
Try checking the third-party plugins you use one by one to see which one causes the resource spike. Login to your WordPress account and deactivate all the plugins and monitor their resource usage by reactivating each one of them separately.
Once you find the plugins that are causing the issue, you can either uninstall them or choose lighter alternatives.
If you cannot find any other replacement plugins for a necessary function, try contacting the plugin developer and express your concern. They might help you optimize it.
If none of the above seems feasible and the plugin is indispensable for your website, you may have to consider other options like using a dedicated server or choosing a better plan with your hosting partner.
Website Traffic Spikes
If your site has become more popular and is attracting many visitors, it is natural to experience a spike in be traffic. This is what happened with this website as well.
This can lead to heavy resource usage. As your website grows, you will have to look at options to make it more scalable. The cost of site maintenance could go up, but it will be a necessary cost to manage the incoming traffic.
Resource intensive operations, like huge database queries, data imports, and exports, can cause resource limits to exceed.
You can try to optimize the backend coding and data structures to enable better server performance and optimization.
Sometimes a traffic spike can happen due to web crawlers making a high number of requests per second to your website.
You can modify the request of web crawlers by accessing the relevant tools and options. For instance, for the Google search engine, this limit can be altered by changing the settings on Google Webmaster tools
If your site falls prey to any of the denial of service, users may keep experiencing the 508 error. Hackers may also leave certain malware on your website that generates a huge amount of false requests that could drive up the resource usage.
Check for any attacks and secure your website with the proper preventive measures to protect from cyber-attacks. You can set up ReCaptcha and similar anti-spam plugins to help give access only to legitimated users and prevent bots from accessing your site.
Place strict measures on who can register to sites and setup proper authorization levels. WordPress, by default, allows anyone to register to a site. You can tweak these settings for better protection. You can also remove the registration feature if your site does not rely on any member specific functions to operate properly.
Fixing a 508 error is probably not as simple as reloading a page, but it is of utmost importance for your website to ensure continued service. In most cases, the solution is to opt for a better hosting plan or a dedicated server for better resource allocation.
But do remember to check for any other issues that can be optimized before committing to a more expensive plan. Do consult your hosting provider if you can’t find a solution by yourself.