This error can be annoying but the fix is pretty easy.  This usually occurs when you kick off an update of a plugin or theme and navigate away from the update progress page before the update completes.

To fix this and get your site working again navigate to the root directory of your website and look for a .maintenance file… then delete it.

I’ll briefly walk through doing this via an FTP client or over SSH if you have access.

Using an FTP client:

  • Open your FTP client and enter your username and password for your FTP account
  • This should bring you to the root of your website, if not, navigate to the root of the site
  • Locate the .maintenance file and delete it

Connect to your server over SSH

  • SSH to your server
  • change directory to the root of your website
  • locate the .maintenance file and delete it

Your website should be back up and running.