bbPress forum plugin, login, registration 401 authentication error workaround

Last Update: April 02, 2016

I've seen a few posts showing that some people are having issues with users getting registered and/or logged in when they are using the bbPress forum plugin on their WA hosted sites. It seems quite a few are getting the annoying error:

"401 Authentication Required - This server could not verify that you are authorized to access the document requested. Either you supplied the wrong credentials (e.g., bad password), or your browser doesn't understand how to supply the credentials required."

From what I've read, this isn't something limited to just WA hosted sites and has to do with some type of security setting that hosts have implemented.

I was going to submit a trouble ticket and then decided to tinker around a little bit instead. :)

It seems, at least in my case, that this error was only happening when I was using the bbPress widget for registration and login.

So I decided to try adding the Meta widget to the sidebar and see if that would let a new user register, login, and post. It did.

But I don't like that Meta widget, lol, so I decided to find a simple sidebar login widget and things seem to be working fine.

New users can now register, login, and post without issue.

If you're having this issue with bbPress and decide to try this, let me know if it works for you.

Also, if you had support take care of the issue, please share what the issue is if you know.

Good luck and have a great day.

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asoltys58 Premium
Hey man, I used this work around. It took a minute to figure out, but I got it. I miss my website brand of "/register-account/" and "/lost-password/" but I can deal with it.

I also don't know how to style the new form. I don't know how to choose the right "prefix" or whatever they call it for the CSS. I know what properties to use, but I don't know where to start like:

sidebar-login { font-family:

Hey thanks brother. I had told some people to go check me out at and I am glad they will be able to register now. Thanks to you!
chrisbailey Premium
Glad it worked out for you Alan.

I've never been much of a coder, so I won't be any help with the CSS stuff. A little tinkering with HTML and php is about all I have the courage to do. :)

Best wishes to you.
marklk Premium
Only problems I have is no email is ever sent to user registering and the login page is th WA login and that is not acceptable. I have login pages and no way for this plugin to open them .
I was using bbpress but it would only give access error when registering. seems to me that wordpress is a sub par platform. It has many problems. thinking of dumping it for a new one. I spend too much time trying to figure out why plugins do not work .
chrisbailey Premium
Didn't have the issues you are Mark.

Having used WP for about a decade, I'll disagree about it being subpar. I've rarely had issues I couldn't work through.

Using 3rd party plugins and extensions in conjunction with any open source platform can lead to issues. That's one reason I try to limit the amount of plugins I use. There's always a chance that updates will screw things up down the road. I try to stick with ones that have been around a while have been routinely updated.

In the end, I decided to dump bbpress for the same reasons I've dumped past forum software. I simply don't have the time or inclination to battle spammers.
WBurton Premium
Chris, how did you get around:

Due to AJAX not working across different domains (see same_origin_policy), AJAX logins will be disabled if your site it non-SSL, but the FORCE_SSL_ADMIN constant is set to true. Instead it will fallback to a traditional POST."
Is WA hosting SSL?
chrisbailey Premium
Sorry for the slow reply William.

I'm not an extremely technical person, so I didn't give that note a second thought and don't seem to have any issues.

WA does use ssl for their site where we are now(notice the https in the address bar), but most of our sites are not. You would know if you were using SSL as there is some setup to be done when doing so.
WBurton Premium
Thanks Chris, I should have known that, LOL. I used your work around and it's working for me. I'm now looking for the method to edit the wordpress login screen to customize it for my site. Thanks again William :)
stephhill Premium
There are so many plugins that do not live up to their reputation or advertising. Thanks for letting us know about the bbpress plugin!
chrisbailey Premium
Thanks for the comment Steph.

True, although I don't really put this issue on bbPress. Relying on an open source platform like WP can lead to so many little issues along the way that will need resolved.