[RESOLVED] WordPress Bulk Edit Leads to HTTP ERROR 414

Something odd came up in WordPress and no amount of searching presented a real solution. When I Bulk Edited over 800+ posts and clicked “Update”, I would get a 414 error from the server. The exact error in Google Chrome was:

This page isn’t working
If the problem continues, contact the site owner.
HTTP ERROR 414

414 usually means the server is rejecting the command. The band-aid solution was to decrease the number of posts I was bulk editing at a time. Yes, bulk editing a handful of posts does work but knowing that this was a decently powerful server, I had to get to the bottom of this issue. Sometimes, ModSecurity settings could be the culprit as they are meant to be a protective layer to prevent the server from being overloaded and taken offline. So I opened up a chat session with a data center tech and had them monitor modsec logs. Nothing out of the ordinary.

The server rejecting the command is a resource using issue so after some testing, the tech added these lines to the pre_virtualhost_global.conf. If you are on a WHM server, just go to WHM >> Service Configuration >> Apache Configuration >. Include Editor and click on the drop-down menu under “Pre VirtualHost Include” and select “All Versions”. Add these lines:

LimitRequestLine 15000
LimitRequestFieldSize 15000

If your server is capable of running with this limit, this should solve your problem. After the addition of these lines, bulk editing 800+ posts worked perfectly. 

Note: One oddity was that these lines did not work at first. I had to add them, disable all plugins, then run bulk edit to kick start things. After that, even with all the plugins re-enabled, bulk editing 800+ posts worked again.

Why was I editing so many posts at once? I was making sure all articles had Pings disabled. Getting tired of all the spam pingbacks coming in!

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Ian Lee

Ian Lee

Work from home dad, marketer and photographer. Fallen in love with basketball all over again as I coach my daughter's team.

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