5 reasons for error “Your PHP installation appears to be missing the MySQL extension” and how to fix it

5 reasons for error “Your PHP installation appears to be missing the MySQL extension” and how to fix it

Newly migrated WordPress sites often face a lot of compatibility errors. One common one is:

Your PHP installation appears to be missing the MySQL extension which is required by WordPress.

Bobcares helps website owners and web hosting providers fix application errors, and this error is often reported at our Website Administration Services.

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Today we’ll take a look at the top 5 reasons for this error, and how to fix them.

1. PHP’s MySQL extension not installed

PHP’s ability to send SQL commands to MySQL comes from an additional module called MySQL extension. In some default operating system setup, this extension might not be present.

To check if your PHP has MySQL support, put the following code into a file called info.php in your site, and access it from a browser.

<?
phpinfo();
?>

It should show a MySQL section like this:

If not, you may have to install MySQL extensions.

In Ubuntu servers, use the command:

# apt-get install php5-mysqlnd

In RedHat compatible servers, use the command:

# yum install php-mysql

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2. PHP extension directory mis-configured

In some websites, especially those that were recently migrated, or in a newly setup VPS, the “extension_dir” is sometimes misconfigured.

This directory stores all the PHP libraries, and if not set correctly, PHP cannot execute those functions.

To fix this, first locate which PHP.ini file is being loaded by your website. For this, put the following code into a file called info.php, and access it from a browser.

<?
phpinfo();
?>

Look for the line called “Loaded Configuration File”. The file path noted there is the actual location to the PHP configuration file.

Now, look for the entry called “extension_dir“. It should either be commented, or it should have the correct path to PHP extensions. It should never be left blank.

If you are not sure, just comment the line, and restart the web server.


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10 Comments

  1. Thanks for the help!

    /* in my setup, your code

    doesn’t work. I had to write

    instead.
    */

    Reply
  2. Got this error. It wound up being the Hosting company at fault.
    My PHP version was switched to Version 7. I put it back to V5.6 (I think) and my website came back to life.

    (time to upgrade my wordpress as have not done the last few)

    Reply
    • Thank you Jim for sharing. 🙂

      Reply
    • Thank you, this helped me too.

      Reply
      • Jimako,

        Good to hear from you 🙂

        Reply
  3. Thanks a lot! In my case, the 5º (of course :D) solved the problem!

    Reply
    • Juliano,

      Good to know that 🙂

      Reply
  4. I was simply reading an article that was written on WordPress. I didn’t finish it and went back a couple of times to keep reading. After turning my computer off for an evening, when I turned it back on this error was written in place of the article. I don’t have WordPress, I was simply reading the article which was there for several days before I received this error message. What’s going on. I don’t have a clue what PHP or MySQL are nor am I trying to write on WordPress. Just a reader of an article. Thanks.

    Reply
    • WordPress sites store the content in a database. When the site is unable to connect to the database to retrieve the content, this error is shown.

      Unless it is your site, you don’t have anything to worry about. The site owners will get it fixed through their web hosting providers.

      If this is indeed your site, it looks like the PHP installation in the server must have been recently upgraded or changed. It may need to be reconfigured. Please contact us by clicking here if you need assistance with your website.

      Reply

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