Wordpress Droplet: Brand new, "not currently compatible with Application Password"

Hi folks - brand new clean install of Wordpress but when looking at the Application password feature (required for this particular build), I see the message:

“Your website appears to use Basic Authentication, which is not currently compatible with Application Passwords.”

I’ve not basic auth turned on, site is open and as I said above, it’s a vanilla install of WP.

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

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Site Moderator
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September 30, 2023


This message often appears when there is some form of Basic Authentication configured at the server level, which might be interfering with the Application Passwords feature in WordPress.

Debugging Steps:

  1. Check Web Server Configuration: Inspect your web server’s configuration files (e.g., .htaccess for Apache, nginx.conf for Nginx) to make sure there is no Basic Authentication being applied to the WordPress directories or elsewhere.

  2. Check Plugins: Even though it’s a new install, check if any plugin might be enabling Basic Authentication inadvertently. Deactivate all plugins to see if the problem persists.

  3. Check Theme Functions: Inspect your theme’s functions.php file for any custom code that might be enabling Basic Authentication.

  4. Check Droplet Configuration: Since you are on a Droplet (presumably from DigitalOcean), also check any configurations or settings provided by DigitalOcean which might have set up Basic Authentication on the server.

Specific Solutions

  1. Disable Basic Authentication: If you find any Basic Authentication configuration, try to comment it out or remove it, then restart your web server and see if it solves the problem.

    For Apache you may find lines like these in your .htaccess file or httpd.conf file:

<FilesMatch “.php$”>
AuthType Basic
AuthName “Protected”
AuthUserFile /path/to/.htpasswd
Require valid-user

Modify REST API Prefix: If you are unable to disable Basic Authentication for some reason, you might try changing the REST API prefix in WordPress. By default, the REST API prefix is wp-json, and some security configurations may block access to URLs with this prefix. Try changing it to something else in your wp-config.php file:

define('REST_API_SLUG', 'new-prefix');

This will change the API URLs to something like

  1. Review Application Passwords Compatibility: Additionally, ensure you are using a version of WordPress and PHP that is compatible with the Application Passwords feature. Check the WordPress and PHP documentation for any updates or changes regarding compatibility.

Check the Server Logs

Don’t forget to check your web server’s error logs for any messages or hints related to the issue. They might contain useful information that can help you troubleshoot the problem.

Site Moderator
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July 31, 2023

Hello @digitalocean304971

The Application Passwords feature in WordPress communicates via the WordPress REST API, and it seems like the error message you are seeing indicates an issue with that functionality. I suggest checking your .htaccess file, as certain rules may conflict with the REST API. In case this problem persists, try disabling all plugins and switch to a default WordPress theme to isolate the issue.

Additionally, depending on your Droplet’s setup, there might be some server-level configurations affecting this. However, without specific details, it’s difficult to provide a more concrete solution.

You might find this DigitalOcean tutorial, How To Install WordPress with LAMP on Ubuntu 22.04, particularly useful. It provides a step-by-step guide on setting up WordPress, and while it’s focused on Ubuntu 18.04, the principles should be broadly applicable.

Hope that this helps!

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