April 20 2015

WordPress showing garbage characters on front page

After installing the W3 Total Cache plugin for WordPress, I noticed that my front page wasn’t rendering properly in some browsers including Internet Explorer (Chrome seemed fine).  For example:

More garbage than usual....
More garbage than usual….

There were many forum posts on this but none of the answered seems to help.  There is even a section in the plugin FAQ however this wasn’t the solution for me:

I see garbage characters instead of the normal web site, what’s going on here?

If a theme or it’s files use the call php_flush or function flush that will interfere with the plugins normal operation; making the plugin send cached files before essential operations have finished. The flush call is no longer necessary and should be removed.

For me, the issue was HTTP (gzip) compression.  I needed to disable this.  In the  W3 Total Cache plugin, under Browser Cache, I deselected the Enable HTTP (gzip) compression option and the website started working properly again.


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