How to Fix the WordPress Updating Failed and Publishing Failed Errors

Home Tutorial How to Fix the WordPress Updating Failed and Publishing Failed Errors

It’s been quite a while since Gutenberg was shoved down our throats. And I know how everyone’s having a love-hate relationship with it.

While working on a project some time back, I sucked in all the information I could find about Gutenberg – the official documentation and high-level articles about what it’s gonna be like in the future. And reading about it, I was totally high on it.

But when I got down to work and started penning down my posts, it proved to be a total buzzkill and a huge pain in the neck. And that’s when I developed some empathy for all the haters out there.

While it’s tricky to maneuver around the Block editor and create your post or page – something that was dead simple before – what really puts you off is when you hit that blue Publish button after all the hard work and get a red error message in return: “Publishing Failed” or “Updating Failed.”

Updating Failed


You double-check your internet connection, run around the house checking if your internet is working fine on other devices, and guess what, everything seems fine except for the red error message.

If this situation hits home and you’re having some weird WordPress Updating Failed or Publishing Failed errors, just know that we feel for you from the virtual galaxy’s depths.

But here’s the good news: we’ve got a simple fix for you that will help you get rid of the problem and get your awesome content out where it belongs – out of the boring, black-and-white world of Gutenberg and into the buzzing world of social media.  

What’s Causing This Error Message Anyway?

If you’re like one of those people who say, “I want to treat the cause of the problem, not just the symptoms,” I’ll give you some scoop on what’s going on under the hood.

The sole culprit is GUTENBERG. Makes you feel any better?

The thing is Gutenberg depends on the REST API. Speaking in layman terms, REST API is the middle man between the Block Editor and WordPress. So, if something’s screwing up the REST API and breaking the communication between the editor and WordPress, your WordPress site will fail to update.

That’s why you get the frustrating publishing failed error messages.

To fix the problem, you need to get the REST API working again and make sure nothing on your site is making it go astray.

Solution 1: Check Your URLs

The first thing you need to check for is the URLs. If you’ve any experience with coding, you’d know how small and trivial things cause havoc and tear everything up.

Hop on to the General Settings of your WordPress site and check the site URLs and make sure they’re what they should be. A common problem that makes people lose their minds is when they mess up with the ‘S’ in the https.

So, if you have an SSL certificate, it should be HTTPS in your URL, and if you don’t have an SSL, it should be HTTP in site URL fields.

Simply take a peek at the address bar and see what’s reflected there and make sure the same is reflected in the General settings.

Simple, right? Did it fix it? No? Hop on to the next solution.

Solution 2: Update all Themes and Plugins

If your themes and plugins are outdated, I don’t know why you still haven’t updated yet. When WordPress shows you a message about available updates, you need to act on it right away.

Sometimes all WordPress pains can be killed by hitting the update button. JUST DO IT.

Still, no luck? Check the next solution.

Solution 3: Check if a Plugin is to Blame

WordPress plugins are great and add incredible functionality to your site. But you know what happens when they conflict with each other: all hell breaks loose!

So, what you need to do is catch the plugin that’s causing it. How do you do it? 

Disable all your plugins and see if the error vanishes or not. In most cases, it will because it’s mostly some plugin that disrupts the REST API.

Then, activate them one by one and keep an eye on the editor. If the error reappears, you’ll know which plugin is to blame.

But what do you do when you detect the plugin that was making you lose your sanity?


Seriously, you can’t put it behind the bars because it does something important on your site.

There are two things you can do. Go into the plugin settings and see if there is any setting that causes the REST API to go nuts. If there is, change the settings, and that’d solve the problem.

If you can’t figure out what to do, get an expert WordPress developer to fix the darned plugin for you. Seriously, this is what these WordPress whizz-kids live for.

Looking for a good WordPress developer? Oh, c’mon! You need the BEST.

Check out: WordPress hosting offers

Step 4: Get Rid of The Gutenberg Editor

By the way, have you noticed how Gutenberg sounds like a man in a pin-striped suit, wearing a tie and looking out of the window of his grey and white office?

I know, so boring!

The simple and easy way to bring your life back to normal is to get the old Classic editor back. How do you do it?

Go to WordPress => Plugins and click on Add New. On the plugins screen, search for Classic Editor. Just look at the number of downloads there and feel empathy for all those people.

Go to WordPress

Anyway, install the plugin, and you’ll magically get the pre-Gutenberg days back.

Breathe a sigh of relief and publish your amazing content.

But keep in mind, this is only a temporary solution of the updating failed WordPress error, and you’ll need someone to roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty with code and solve the problem for good.

Someone like Codup? Yes, we’ve been doing stuff like this for the past 7 years.

Just hit this button and type “Please help me publish my content!” And we’ll know what to do.

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Tooba Nadeem

Tooba Nadeem is an experienced technical writer with 5 years of expertise in technical writing. Her extensive research and knowledge enable her to provide comprehensive insights into various interesting topics. She excels at presenting complex information in simplified language, ensuring clarity for the audience.

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