Crashed Database Table? Never Fear, PHPMyAdmin is Here!

No matter whether you’re a veteran at using databases or a novice to the world of MySQL, there is one thing you NEVER want to encounter: a vanished database. (Especially when you’ve put a lot of work into loading that database full of content!) But if you’re facing this right now, never fear! The following article, compiled from my personal experience (and some frantic Googling) will help you attempt to restore that which seems lost.

The Situation: WP_Posts for Crooked Glasses Was GONE

Early on the morning of July 22nd, I was busily editing some WordPress pages after I had uploaded one of my weekly posts. The pages, however, would not save correctly–it seemed they “forgot” all the edits I made, no matter how many times I pressed the “Update” button.

About an hour later (I was working over dialup, so things were VERY slow), I tried again to update the page, only to be told “This page does not exist.” I tried navigating to the other pages I was working on–same message. Then I tried to view my blog…and was absolutely flabbergasted at what I saw.


A big fat 650-pixel-wide space of NOTHING, where all my posts should be. I logged into my WordPress site, and both the Posts and Pages counts read 0.

You can probably imagine what happened next. Over 2 years of work (work I had only limited backups of), GONE? Just like THAT?! Furious weeping, gnashing of teeth (and, admittedly, some throwing of small items across the room) ensued. I scanned through all of WordPress’ help files hosted in my dashboard, but to no avail. I had no idea what had happened, and had no idea how to fix it.

…Well, I had no idea how to fix it, until I thought of something a little outside the box.

PHPMyAdmin: The Unexpected Savior

I remembered, in between gasping for panicked breaths, that my blog was hosted on my domain, and that the databases and tables for my blog should be housed within the PHPMyAdmin bit of my host’s control panel. After all, that’s how I’d worked with databases back in the days of fanlistings and such.

Working as quickly as dialup would allow, I opened PHPMyAdmin, clicked my WordPress blog’s database name, and pulled up the “wp_posts” table from within the huge list of tables it gave me.

Immediately, I was greeted with the message that answered my question and gave me another: “This table is marked as crashed and should be repaired.”

Okay, great, it’s crashed but it can be repaired, I thought. So how do you go about DOING that?

I Googled for help (thank God for Google!), and came across a number of articles, such as this one from SiteGround, telling me to “look for a drop-down menu below the list of tables, check the one that needs repairing, and choose ‘Repair Table.'”

Because of my dialup connection, when I tried to look at the wp_posts table, it did not load the table list, nor did it load any options at the bottom of the screen.

I thought perhaps that the option to “Repair Table” lay at the bottom of the sidebar, but all I saw at the very bottom of the sidebar menu was “Create Table.”

In desperation, I clicked the “Home” button on the sidebar…

…then clicked the “Databases” button (the very top left button in the big window).

From there, I selected my WordPress blog’s database name (all of these have been obscured for security reasons).

Selecting the database FINALLY brought up a list of the contained tables in the larger window. And there, at the bottom of the page, lay the long-sought drop-down box. HALLELUJAH! I quickly clicked the check-mark box next to “wp_posts,” then used the drop-down menu to select “Repair Table.”

And, a few minutes later–presto! The table was fixed!

One Small Caveat

The “Repair Table” solution usually works for most crashed database tables…but notice I said usually. Sometimes, a table crashes and you can’t get it repaired no matter what. :C I recommend doing backups of your work as often as possible, just in case.

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