WordPress: Manual Uninstall of W3 Total Cache

   Posted January 3, 2013 by David Kirk in WordPress

The W3 Total Cache plugin is the gold standard caching plugin for WordPress. To do its job it is highly integrated into WordPress. Unfortunately, because of these issues, typical methods to disable and uninstall occasionally fail. When this occurs, the site often crashes hard. Often the only way to get the site up and running again is to manually uninstall the plugin.

Most WordPress users have a love-hate relationship with the W3TC plugin. When it is running correctly, the performance improvements are almost magic. However, installation and uninstallation issues continue to plague each version.

Often when trying to update or disable the plugin, WordPress will either crash or errors will bring the server down to a crawl. The only way to regain control of the situation is through manual uninstallation of the plugin.

You will need either FTP or SSH access to accomplish these steps.

1. Edit wp-config.php and remove the line:

define('WP_CACHE', true);

2. Navigate to wp-content/plugins and delete the w3-total-cache directory.
3. Back out to the main wp-content directory.
4. Delete object-cache.php.
5. Delete advanced-cache.php.
6. Delete db.php.
7. Backup your .htaccess file from the root directory of your website and then delete the original .htaccess file.
8. Build a fresh .htaccess file through the wp admin through the Permalink option in Settings. When you click the Save Changes button under Permalinks, the rewrite rules needed by WordPress will be recreated in a fresh .htaccess file.
9. You can remove the cached files by deleting all the files and directories in the w3tc directory under wp-content.

 

About David Kirk

David Kirk is one of the original founders of tech-recipes and is currently serving as editor-in-chief. Not only has he been crafting tutorials for over ten years, but in his other life he also enjoys taking care of critically ill patients as an ICU physician.
View more articles by David Kirk

The Conversation

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  • mahadzira

    Tq bro, my site was down today because of this bloody hell plugin. many time have to delete. tq for the list..

  • Wamiq Ali

    Wuhu! Perfect solution was going to do the same but thanks for confirmation!

  • Farzana Neha

    Thanks, I was having difficulties uninstalling W3 Cache. Now, I have successfully uninstalled the plugin 🙂

  • Barb27

    Great post. I have found that when w3 starts acting up, a full removal and starting from scratch is necessary to getting it to behave again. Simply removing it from the plugins area is not enough.

  • David

    Worked like a charm, thanks for sharing.

  • http://www.presenza.co Andres

    This line doesnt exist in config.php

    define(‘WP_CACHE’, true);

    The next files where are located?

    4. Delete object-cache.php.
    5. Delete advanced-cache.php.
    6. Delete db.php.

    Thanks

  • xhen

    Thank you so much, the w3 cache corrupted my wordpress instalation with lots of memory errors and i was unable to access to admin for disable it, with your help I have removed and now my site is online again…

    Thank you so much!!!