Briefly Unavailable for Scheduled Maintenance Error
By default, when WordPress updates WordPress core files, plugins, and themes, it adds a
.maintenance file to the root directory of the website. While these updates usually take just a few seconds, if the update isn’t successful or WordPress is otherwise unable to remove the file, the website may be left with a message that reads:
Briefly unavailable for scheduled maintenance. Check back in a minute.
Remove .maintenance with SFTP
- Connect to the website using SFTP
- In the document root of the website, there will be a file named
- Right-click or CTRL-click the
.maintenancefile in the list
- Select to delete or remove the file
- The SFTP client may then prompt to confirm the change–be sure to select Yes to ensure the change is applied to the website.
After applying the change, the website should no longer show the maintenance page. If at first the change is not reflected, try clearing cache.
Remove .maintenance with SSH
- Connect to the website using SSH Gateway
- Run the following to go to the root of the website and list all files (be sure to replace environment with the WP Engine environment name):
cd sites/environment && ls
- A file should be listed called
- Run the following to remove the file:
After applying the change, the website should no longer show the maintenance page. If at first the change isn’t reflected, try clearing cache.