Seriously Annoying

Okay, WordPress users, a question for you: Can you think of any reason why WP would suddenly and randomly make the most recent posts disappear from the front page? The post isn’t deleted and is directly accessible, it just doesn’t show up on the front page, even if it was there before. It seems to be happening to me quite a lot over the last couple of days, and I know I didn’t press any “make most recent posts randomly disappear” button on the back end of this thing.

If anyone knows the secret to making this stop, I would be obliged. Thanks.

29 thoughts on “Seriously Annoying

  1. This has been happening to me as well.

    I don’t know how to make it stop, but I know when I click EDIT, then UPDATE, the post will, once more, show up. A bit of a pain, but at least it puts it where it belongs.

  2. This happened to my blog a couple of weeks ago. WP’s tech support’s suggestion was to clear the browser cache and cookies. I’m not convinced either of those things actually do anything, given that my browser cache is set to 0 by default and I didn’t do anything with the cookies. But when I went back to my site after receiving their email, it was fixed. I suspect they did something secret on their end. Possibly voodoo. I hope your issue is remedied soon.

  3. Yeah, I’ve been doing that too. If it’s happening to more people than me, then it suggests it’s a problem with WordPress.com, rather than just me (Whatever is hosted on the WordPress VIP section).

    Jim:

    No, I don’t cache because I’m hosted by WordPress and they’ve generally got bandwidth for me (if they can handle CNN’s blogs, they can typically handle mine).

  4. Not to state the obvious, but wouldn’t that VIP service you pay for include tech support for such things? Unless you think it’s something you’re doing wrong, it would seem to be a WP issue.

    That said, I’d make sure the publishing dates/times are correct. I believe *you* could see an unpublished post if you went to the page, but others might not have access. Just a thought…

  5. Since it’s part of the VIP setup, it’s hard to say for certain. However, check to see if you have any ‘sticky’ posts hogging up the top listing. Also, make sure to clear out the trash of any deleted posts. Those tend to muck up queries.

  6. It could an issue with the theme itself. I haven’t run across this issue, but my entire front page is all widgetized. The only solution I can think of (aside from the first commenter) is to sticky your posts. However, you’d have to remember to unsticky 1 post for every post you sticky.

  7. If it helps, I’ve been seeing the same thing here on the Whatever for the past few days. My memory is hazy, but if pressed I’d say it started sometime late last week. Though it has gotten more frequent the past day or two. It’s happened at least twice today. Like you said, John, the posts are directly accessible, just not there on the front page. Weird.

    Being a tech nerd (though not specifically in the sub-stratum of blog software), my money’s on this being a caching issue with WP itself, either in the software or the hosting site.

    FYI: I’m using Chrome (8.0.552.224) on a Windows Vista box.

  8. what,? what? an end-user wants to troubleshoot something before calling tech support?

    You make me weep with joy.

  9. Yo. Scalzi. You may not be CNN, but you’re big enough to browbeat Google into sending you a several-hundred-dollar piece of kit, and you’re PAYING for VIP support. Make’em work for it. (Not that I have anything against Automattic; I run WP.org myself, by choice – I’m just saying “don’t sell yourself short.”)

  10. John;

    I had a similar problem with WordPress once upon a time. The issue was weird. Essentially, it was looking for one “Category” to be present in my posts to show them as “Featured” posts on the front page. Never mind that I wasn’t looking to feature things and don’t have a front page.

    This is why, if one were to visit my blog, every single post is categorized (in addition to the actual categories I’m using) as “Blather”.

    It could be you’ve fun afoul of the same issue without realizing it. Or, we’ve found something new WordPress does wrong.

  11. John,

    Caching was my first thought too. I’ve seen the behavior and then seen it disappear minutes later. What I’d suspect is that when you publish a new post it’s not invalidating the cache of your blog across the VIP caches and so, when we come to the home page, we see inconsistent results… some have been invalidated and are then updated with the new home page, some haven’t been invalidated and thus still serve the prior version since it is, as far as that particular cache is concerned, current.

  12. I have a (free) WordPress.com blog but no issues like this. I will say that I used to have a problem with the font on your blog being a bit grainy (only on Linux!) but recently that went away, Maybe I added extra fonts that fixed it.
    I’m a real novice at this blogging thing myself.

  13. I haven’t experienced the issue myself.

    Does your ISP cache content or have they started? I’d suspect this if you experienced the issue when logged out (Meaning you see the post fine when logged in and then, when logged out, the post disappears.)

    Also, if the WordPress servers are under heavy load it may be the problem, but since you’re a VIP user I doubt that would be the case.

  14. Shoot, it isn’t Mercury… it was the recent lunar eclipse.

    The first thing that came to my mind was caching and WP looking for certain categories to place on the front page.

  15. I have a custom installation of WordPress as opposed to one hosted through WordPress.com and I have *not* had this problem, so tI think the problem is likely on the hosting side. Couldn’t say what it would be beyond that, sorry.

  16. clearly something from “them”, as both I and a friend experienced something similar yesterday. probably just a glitch, because it lasted less than an hour.

  17. HI John, I’ve noticed this issue occur twice last night. I get emailed when a new post appears on the site. I could read the post in the email but when I came to the site the post wasn’t here. It happened with “An Interview with the Christmas Bunny”. Hope this helps.

  18. It is quite possible that table in your database is causing this wonky behavior. Like Jamie, I am running a privately hosted version of WordPress on a paid web server so I can’t say for certain whether things look the same on the back end of the WordPress hosted site. That said, you might want to try going to the bottom left hand side of your Dashboard and find the Database link then run the following in this order; “Backup DB” > “Repair DB” > “Optimize DB.”

    I’ll also echo the others on this thread who have encouraged tech support as I found this thread (http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic/posts-disappeared) in the WP forums about some similar sounding behavior and it ends with a WordPress employee saying that the problem was on their end with a flaky database server.

  19. I run a few WordPress blogs hosted on a rented web server using the downloaded WordPress.org version not the WordPress.com one and I had a similar problem with the WP Super Cache Plugin though that may have just been me not using it right. If you’re not administering the blog then I’d say it’s time to ask for help.

  20. Yes, I have experienced this problem several times, and I have grown accustomed to solving via “Edit/Update.” My theory: WP has several “mirror site servers” all over the planet that aren’t backed-up and/or synched as quickly as they should be? Sorry for the dumb-ass terminology, but I be stupid about such things. In other news, Happy Birthday Athena, and Merry Christmas, Scalzi Planet.

  21. For whatever it may be worth:
        The first “article(s) missing from front page” event observed here, on multiple browsers/systems, occurred ≤ 2 days after observing that articles were now displaying ‘Posted at …’ timestamps with date-plus-time resolution, instead of only showing the date. Perhaps the FP generator was not informed of a [required] schema change?

    Incidentally, the increased timestamp specificity is muchly appreciated hereabouts – especially should you decide in future to announce one of your famously rapid contests and/or giveaways. :-)

        Best (belated) wishes to Athena, and to everyone at chez Scalzi… here’s hoping that the birthday was awesome and that your holidays will be festastic!

    Chris

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