Upgrade to WP 4.0 causes site crash

We have a multi-site network at VYPE.com that is currently running on WP 3.9. This site has a good deal of custom code done as it is a custom theme.

The original theme developer is no longer working with us on the site and has kind of left us to fend for ourselves.

Last Saturday I tried to update to WP 4.0 and the entire site crashed and we got that "Are you sure you want to do this?" error.

In order to get the site back up I had to go to Linode and restore to backup from earlier in the day, which put us back to 3.9.

We also have a number of plugins that are hooked to custom code and, if updated, they also break some of our jScript, etc.

But first, I want to get our site up on WP 4.0 and then begin to work in upgrading some of the plugins.

Any advice, suggestions or offers of help (even paid) will be gladly accepted.

Thanks
David Kravetz
vype.com

  • Andre Foisy

    Hello @David,

    Welcome again and I hope you're still very well today.

    I hate to say that but what you're being left with is kind of a sad classical.

    It is indeed very cool to have a theme customized to that level, as long as the original developer can keep up with the main application, WordPress, core files as well as the plugins. Unfortunately enough though when the dev leaves the boat you're left facing what you experiencing now.

    As the cores files and plugins are constantly updated, but not your custom theme anymore, it is natural that comes a point where it breaks. For a chance you had a good backup. For sure all is not lost, you already realize that you will need help of a good developer to help make the transition, and there's nothing less that I would recommend that you do.

    For a chance we've our own Jobs & Pros board on which you can find very competent developer who can offer their services only if admitted by us. You can post a request for your case on that board here:
    https://premium.wpmudev.org/wordpress-development/

    You will certainly find the help you need there, but make sure to keep me updated about how it is going for you, and do not hesitate to ask at any time if you need more help.

    Best regards,
    Andre

  • Andre Foisy

    Hey there @David,

    I hope you are going well today| :slight_smile:

    Afterthought, I feel I may have not been helpful enough, maybe there's a couple of things I could guided you through in order to discover what the source of the problem might be.

    If you don't mind checking a few things with me, it could reveal to be very useful in a way or another. :slight_smile:

    1) When you say the "entire site crashed", can you explain exactly what this means for you and what is happening?
    -Do you get a totally white screen when you try loading the site?
    -Is the site loading but has no formatting i.e. CSS don't load?
    -Are you able to login to your dashboard?
    -Such situation likely creates a error_log file in the WordPress installation root directory, can you check that file (using a text editor) and see what's causing the issue? Maybe right from there we could see what can be fixed.
    -Besides the custom development can you tell me if any core files have been edited?

    There may be a few other things to check even deeper if needed. But let's start with this and see what comes out of these initial questions.

    Have a very nice day.

    Looking forward to your answers.

    Andre

  • David

    Andre: As noted in my first email, our site has a lot of custom code and I am assuming that some of the core files were edited on the theme. Since the theme developer no longer assists us nor provides updates, we are kind of stuck.

    In the past, WP updates have been good (though with 3.0 the developer, who was still with us, had to make some core file adjustments).

    When we updated to 4.0, we got the "Are you sure you want to do this" error and the only way to get the site back up was to go to Linode and run a revert to a backup to get us to 3.9.

    I fear that there is something in the core code that is causing this site outage when updating. Maybe it is something to do with the wp-configure.php?

  • David

    Andre: Here are the answers to your questions below:

    1) When you say the "entire site crashed", can you explain exactly what this means for you and what is happening?
    -Do you get a totally white screen when you try loading the site?

    No...I go to wp-admin and get a "Are You Sure You Want to Do This?" screen. I hit yes and the screen reappears.

    -Is the site loading but has no formatting i.e. CSS don't load?

    No, the site wouldn't load at all.

    -Are you able to login to your dashboard?

    No, after installing WP 4.0 I tried to log in and would only get a recurring "Are You Sure You Want to Do This?" screen

    -Such situation likely creates a error_log file in the WordPress installation root directory, can you check that file (using a text editor) and see what's causing the issue? Maybe right from there we could see what can be fixed.

    There is not an error_log file in my root or content directories. It could be that it is not longer there since I am running a backup of a reverted version back to 3.9.

    -Besides the custom development can you tell me if any core files have been edited?

    I personally have not edited any of the core files (other than the style.css, functions.php, header.php, single.php and footer.php. And these were done before the upgrade to 4.0 and things seemed to work fine.

    There may be a few other things to check even deeper if needed. But let's start with this and see what comes out of these initial questions.

  • Ash

    Hello @David

    The core files means the files in wp-admin and wp-includes folder. If some of those files are edited, it is quite impossible to update the wordpess. So, please confirm this first :slight_smile:

    About the "Are You Sure You Want to Do This?" error, would you please go through this article?
    http://www.wpbeginner.com/wp-tutorials/how-to-fix-are-you-sure-you-want-to-do-this-error-in-wordpress/

    Please let us know if that helps.

    Cheers
    Ash

  • David

    Ash:

    I spoke with the developer and he tells me there were no modifications made to the core files in Wp-admin and WP-includes. However, he did not keep good documentation, so I am not sure which files have major differences in them in the wp-content folder. Not sure if the update impacted the wp-config.php file either since I backed it back to the 3.9 version on Linode.

    I appreciate the link to the How To Fix article. I had already read that. Not sure if the upgrade caused a Nonce change in the wp-config.php. I will say that I even went into the FTP database, deactivated all of the plugins and still was not able to even get into the dashboard after the 4.0 upgrade.

    Per your teams' recommendation, I have posted a job request on the jobs board in hopes that there is someone there that may be able to do file comparisons and track the custom modifications so we can get them all documented.

  • Sumit Kumar

    Hi @David,
    I hope you don't me jumping in middle of it, here :slight_smile:

    Since there's not any modifications to "wp-admin" and "wp-includes" folder, then you are definitely good to go with your "wp core" update. But, you already mentioned, it crashed your website, in earlier attempt :slight_frown:

    Now, In regards to your concern,

    Not sure if the update impacted the wp-config.php file either

    Well, wordpress update has nothing to do with that. It doesn't modify anything from wp-config.php. Now, I think, it's almost certain that it may be because of nounce changes that there has been issue like you mentioned.

    Also, I read you mentioning, that wp-admin is not working, even after deactivating all plugins via FTP. It therefore means, we can't even get support access to resolve for the issue there :wink:

    Having said that, It seems there's some fatal error preventing wordpress to load. Let's see how you go through your solution from job posted on our job board. Keep us posting with any progress there.

    Let us know, if we can assist you with any queries, you have :slight_smile:

    Warm Regards,
    Sumit

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