A few days back, we got the new version of WordPress – 5.3. My hosting settings are configured to automatically update WordPress to all the latest versions, so when I logged into my admin screen a few days later, it was already up to date. As I was composing a new post in my MS Word document, I tried editing an older post with some updated information and was met with a blank screen.
I thought it was a temporary glitch, and tried a bit later, with the same results. I was getting a blank page whenever I tried editing or creating a new page or post in the Gutenberg editor. At this point, I was mildly worried. I figured it must have something to do with the new update, so I rolled it back to the previous version. But this didn’t solve the problem!
This was very strange. I had no idea what was going on, or how to fix it. I disabled all my plugins one by one, cleared my browser cache, and my hosting server cache as well. Nothing. Then I tried with different browsers – Firefox, Edge, Brave, and of course, Chrome. Still not working.
At this point, I was getting seriously worried and contacted my web hosting provider for help. I created a test login account for them, and asked them to see what was wrong.
To my surprise, they were able to use Gutenberg just fine! It was just me. Something specific to my system. But what? I’d already accessed the site via an Incognito browser, so it wasn’t a cookie problem. Neither was it a server caching problem, since I’d cleared it repeatedly.
Site is Working Over a VPN!
Since my web hosting customer service rep was able to access the editor, I thought I’d try editing a post from a VPN service. And lo and behold, it worked! Here’s the console report from the working VPN:
By now I was completely flabbergasted. What error would make a site work on a VPN and not on my regular ISP connection? Was my ISP filtering content? That would be absurd – my site loads nothing but vanilla WordPress. Nothing dangerous sounding that my ISP would want to filter. And besides, the thought of my ISP messing with my Internet connection was a bit too creepy to contemplate just yet!
Finally Found the Solution – Cloudflare Caches
After much hand-wringing and hours of testing, I finally figured out the answer – my Cloudflare caches were out of date! Actually it’s my fault that I didn’t figure this out earlier. I actually had emptied my Cloudflare cache, but then forgot to empty my browser cache. If I had done both at the same time, everything would have worked out.
Once I purged my Cloudflare caches and my browser caches, everything worked out fine. It’s a good reminder of how simple it is to get tripped up when you have a bunch of systems working together. In my case, I have the server cache, Cloudflare, and the browser cache. A mismatch in any of these systems will cause the entire site to malfunction.
So moral of the story: After every WordPress update, make sure to empty all your caches – server cache, Cloudflare (or CDN) cache, and your browser cache. Otherwise you might think your site is broken and waste several hours beating your head against the wall!
I’m a NameHero team member, and an expert on WordPress and web hosting. I’ve been in this industry since 2008. I’ve also developed apps on Android and have written extensive tutorials on managing Linux servers. You can contact me on my website WP-Tweaks.com!