A WordPress plugin update broke my site

I ran some WordPress updates this afternoon and wouldn’t you know it, my site got an error and went offline.

Fatal error: Class ‘W3_Config’ not found in /wp-content/plugins/wptouch/core/class-cache-smash.php on line 96

“No big deal” I thought, “I use WPEngine, this is not an active site, I will just restore from last night’s backup and then troubleshoot from there.”

Uh oh, this is an old site running on Media Temple Grid Service. I do not have automatic nightly backups. Well, I do use ManageWP so I know I have a backup there. So I log into ManageWP and notice that with the new Orion interface, I only have monthly backups. It is still not the end of the world because there has not been an update on the site since the last backup. So still no problem.

I click the restore button. ….   Error  ….

At this point, I decide to find the culprit with a little research and learn that W3 Total Cache plugin is causing the error with WPTouch Mobile plugin. So I decide to delete W3 Total Cache plugin directory and alas my site is back online.

At this point I have spent about 40 minutes messing with this problem. But I would like to know why the backup does not work. So I submit a support request with ManageWP and they say that I need to provide them with FTP credentials and MySQL credentials. Since it is a shared account, I have a global FTP and need to create a new one just for this one particular site. Easy enough, I login to MT access center and create a new user. Set proper permission and passwords and I am good to go….

Nope… FTP user times out trying to retrieve directory listing. So now I have to get to tech support with Media Temple. I have an option to request a phone call. So I do that and wait. Doing some research for the next 20 minutes. Finally the call comes in. Now I have a tech support agent on the phone and he tells me to login to my user account through Filezilla, which I do but I see an empty directory. I then go into my FTP user creation and set the path of the website, like I did originally, and try again. Still no files in the directory. I go back into my user and see that it did not save. So the Tech agent notices the problem and says he will have to look into it. In the meantime, I had another issue with the database not connecting either.

For the database, he said I will have to whitelist the IP addresses. He showed me where to do this in the MediaTemple control panel. And I found the 45 IP addresses that ManageWP uses. I am told I have to enter them all in one by one. So as he trouble shoots my FTP user account. I go and begin to manually enter in one by one the IP addresses. Of course when I get to number 10 I get an error because Media Temple only allows 10 IP addresses to be whitelisted on their Grid Service.

At this point, I just give up and wait for the the Tech Assistant to come back on the phone. He has resolved the FTP issue and my account is now working properly. But there is no solution to the Database issue and I cannot connect. So I am not sure if the techs at ManageWP will even be able to try and resolve the error with the backup.

Now over two and a half hours into this problem, at least my site is up and running (although it is running without any caching) but I have no backups in place and do not know if it will be fixed.

I am throwing in the towel at this point. Eventually, I will have to migrate to WPengine and that will solve my problems with caching and backups, but too late tonight to get started on that project.

Until my next rant… Happy Pressing.

A final note, a fix was posted quite quickly for this issue, I did not try it myself but you can either google the error or try this: https://wordpress.org/support/topic/fix-for-fatal-error-class-w3_config/