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Review common WordPress Multisite troubleshooting scenarios.

This section provides information on common WordPress Multisite troubleshooting scenarios.

WP-CLI Tips and Tricks

Manage Multisites

The wp site * class of WP-CLI commands (full documentation) for managing the sites on your Multisite installation. Here are some helpful ones:

  • wp site create - Create a new site on the Multisite.
  • wp site list - See all available sites on the Multisite.
  • wp site empty - Clear a site of its posts and comments, while retaining options, users and other configuration details.

Update the Database

WordPress sometimes includes database schema changes in releases. When you update WordPress to the latest version, you might see a notification in the WordPress dashboard to run the database update process. Use wp core update-db --network (full documentation) to run the database upgrade procedure across all sites on your Multisite.

Add and Remove Super Admins

“Super admin” is a special designation for select users on a WordPress Multisite. While a user's role may vary between sites, any user can be a super admin which gives them unrestricted access to every site on the WordPress Multisite install.

Use wp super-admin list to list current super admins, and wp super-admin add or wp super-admin remove to add or remove them, respectively.


Error: Cookies are blocked or not supported by your browser

Solution 1: Follow the steps in the Basic Troubleshooting cookies section.

Solution 2: Your WPMS installation might be serving cookies from a single domain. Try serving individually:

define('ADMIN_COOKIE_PATH', '/');
define('COOKIE_DOMAIN', '');
define('COOKIEPATH', '');
define('SITECOOKIEPATH', '');

Error: "Error establishing a database connection"

You may see this error when moving a WordPress Multisite database between environments. The most common cause is either using wp search-replace incorrectly (or having forgotten to use it at all).

Because it's a confusing error, it's helpful to understand how it's caused. This error can be reproduced by following the steps below:

  1. Create a new WordPress multisite instance with one site.
  2. Set the domain value in the wp_blogs table to manually.
  3. Edit the DOMAIN_CURRENT_SITE constant to manually.

When you visit in your browser, you'll see the “Error establishing database connection” message. Essentially, WordPress displays an error message because it couldn't find the requested site in the wp_blogs table.

Check out the open Trac ticket where this message is being discussed, and will hopefully be improved in the future.

Potential WordPress Multisite with Composer Subdirectory Solution

We support WordPress Multisites with subdirectories. However, if you are working with a Composer-based Multisite ​setup, your sub sites might produce redirect errors. Your reference URLs might be incorrect if your WordPress core file path looks like this: /code/web/wp.


While the solution outlined below has worked for select customers, it might not work for your specific configuration / environment.

Move your WordPress core files from /code/web/wp to the /code/web root by using the example WordPress Composer script.

Note that this script is only intended as an example to help you get started. You will most likely need to make changes to match your current configuration.

More Resources