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Best Way To Delete W3 Total Cache

Posted by on May 3, 2010

I wanted to get smooth and try fancy schmancy cache plugins. I tried to use the W3 Total Cache plugin. I opted today to delete the darn thing because I found out why one of my sites did not show any updates since April 17th. Turns out the Cache plugin is crazy and screwed up.

If you have been busting your head wondering why your RSS Feeds, updates, and theme changes aren’t working then look into your plugins for any cache programs.

I read most of the time you can reinstall them, if you still have issues then just stop slamming your face into the wall and press delete.

Here is the best way to delete your cache plugin: I received some of the information from this helpful forum post at

  • In WordPress: Plugins > Installed > Delete the plugin w3-total-cache

    Use An FTP Program For Rest

  • Open wp-config.php (Need A Program That Reads PHP) Remove the following line in wp-config.php` file: define(‘WP_CACHE’, true);
  • FTP > WP-Content > delete the following: advanced-cache.php, db.php, w3tc/ (delete entire folder) and w3-total-cache-config.php

Don’t freak out if you are deleting your plugin and it causes your backend to go down. Simply delete dp.php. That will get the back-end working beautifully again.

If you have any more knowledge or tips please comment. I am really fresh with this php stuff and could use better tips.

I was just doing an search and stumbled across another great article on how to remove W3 Total Cache. They give you 10 steps on the proper way to remove the plugin. Heres the post:

Thanks to Triple Clic for the Spanish shout out! (la mejor forma de borrar W3 Total Cache)

Hope this saves you from a headache.
Jesus Loves You,
Scott McNew

[update 5/11/2011: spelling fix and fellow blog shout out]
[update 12/28/2011: added site content]

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46 Responses to Best Way To Delete W3 Total Cache

  1. Den

    Thanks it worked…problem with page caches, reinstall plugin, clear caches and followed your steps…all problem gone including the W3TC plugin… :-)

  2. Barnabas

    Thanks for the tip! Worked perfectly.

  3. waimalao

    Thanks a lot!
    This plugin rocks but, unistalling is like a nightmare!
    Best solution ever!

  4. Philip

    Thanks, and yes I did freak out a little when I saw the site go down!!

  5. MIL

    Thanks! Your advice helped me getting my site back.

  6. Marty Martin

    Saved my life man, thanks. There are some more files now under wp-content/ that have to be deleted. I’ve already deleted them so I don’t remember what they are now but they all had the word “cache” in them.

  7. Fatih

    I’ve got the exact same problem. W3 total cache just ruin my RSS Feed (and adsense for feed as well).

    I remove it, and back to wp super-cache.

  8. Harsh Agrwal

    Thanks this one really saved my time… I installed W3 total cache but had to uninstall it coz my server was gng insane with W3 total cache….. Now back to super cache..!!

  9. Scott

    I’m so glad this has helped you. What a nightmare it almost was. Thank you for sharing. Glad your site is working again.

  10. iranfull

    Very Nice tnx

  11. Felipe

    You also need to delete all lines of W3 Total Cache in .htaccess.

  12. zoglun

    well! It won’t work.

    I can’t view my post now.

    but any way THANK YOU!

  13. Binh

    Thanks, it helped me to remove this W3-total-cache plugin files completely. Is there any way to remove the options in the DB too?

  14. Yalan

    Thks alot!
    I really wanted to cry after I installed this fancy plugin…
    Opps! Finally can relax …

  15. raybak

    thanks man for the info, I was getting nervous deleting this one…

  16. Prashant

    all of the above people have solved their problem with w3 plugin…

    i am also having the same problem.. i did all the steps (deleted files, changes config file, .htaccess file) but its not happening…

    what to do pls help…………
    my site:

  17. da house

    don’t forget to delete w3tc file in htaccess (make sure to scroll down, because sometimes, the file “hidden”)

  18. Scott

    Prashant, da house is correct. Try that, if it doesn’t work let me know.

  19. tara

    that was a great help – also (I don’t know if this is since the wp upgrade or w3 but you have to remove object-cache.php for the wp-content folder)

  20. tara


  21. Scott

    This was before the current wp upgrade. Ill see what I was running then. Thank you for the added tip. That’s awesome.

  22. jessi

    oh thanx….advanced-cache.php, db.php were showing in plugin dropins..i was wandering where are these….found in wp-content after reading this post ….thanx..

  23. Scott

    So you found everything alright? I’m glad it help. Thanks for letting me know.
    You’re awesome,

  24. Nurul Imam

    Please Help Me !!!
    I Found define(‘WP_CACHE’, false); To wp-config.php

  25. Scott

    If you are trying to remove the plugin completely I would go ahead and save a copy of wp-config.php. After saving a copy delete the line with define(‘WP_CACHE’, false);. Then follow the last step I stated. You should be good. Let me know if this helps.
    Thank you,

  26. Tony Alves

    Followed these instruction, but now I get a “500 Internal Server Error” when trying to login to admin or even just open the site.

    These are the steps that I followed:
    – In WordPress: Plugins > Installed > Deleted the plugin w3-total-cache.
    – Logged into FTP and deleted the following:
    – Advanced-cache.php
    – db.php
    – w3tc
    – w3-total-cache-config.php
    – Deleted all lines of “W3 Total Cache” inside .htaccess
    – Also deleted “w3tc” line inside .htaccess (This line was not there)
    – Remove “object-cache.php from the “wp-content” folder. (Was not there already)
    – Save “wp-config.php” and after saving, delete the line “define(‘WP_CACHE’, false); (Was not there)

    Did I miss anything? Is there anything I can do to fix it?

    Tony Alves

  27. Chris

    For all those who couldn’t find their posts after deleting the W3 Total Cache lines in the .htaccess file. Login to WP-ADMIN and update the PERMALINKS in the SETTINGS.

    I did it and it worked perfectly :)

    Thanks for the tutorial. It helped me a lot!

  28. Christian

    Thanks a lot! i forgot to delete the wp-config ‘define’. Everything is fine now.

  29. Jonecir

    This is the beauty of the Internet. Nice post Scott.

  30. Pat

    After 2 hours of frustration, you saved me! I never would have found that define(‘WP_CACHE’, true); setting.

  31. Scott

    Christian, Jonecir, and Pat! This is crazy, glad it worked so well and stopped the headaches. Thanks for sharing this with me. Awesome!

  32. Nurul Imam

    How to backup all configuration setting on W3 Total Cache ?

  33. Scott

    Nurul Imam, I’m not actually sure. I haven’t messed with this plugin since I deleted it. I did find this article with loads of info and it appears they are currently updating the blog:
    I hope this help, if not feel free to ask, I’ll help in anyway i can.

  34. diondeville

    Hello Scott, just popping by to say thank you for linking to JournalXtra. It’s much appreciated :)

    Nice site, by-the-way.

  35. Scott

    You’re most welcome. Thanks for saying hi!

  36. Lyndon Merling

    First time I’ve visited your website. I love it. Thanks for everything you do.

  37. Teddy Kuhnle

    It’s nice to see that we’re still reading each other. Thanks for listing me! Cheers

  38. DG

    Very nice tutorial… When I want to try it at the first steps, actually w3 total cache (latest version) make the uninstall feature easily. Just at the first steps, all it’s done… :)

  39. Achmad Zacky Rachmatullah

    Mine is still not working >_ general, after that…I have lost it all T_T

  40. Jonathon

    Despite following the outlined procedure, the CSS on my page still refuses to load and it looks like a late nineties HTML project all plain and disjointed. The CSS files are there but for some reason are not loading. Additionally, though my theme tool in the Admin panel states the theme I am using there is no preview which I am guessing has to do with the CSS files as well. Is there possibly a line of code missing somewhere or what? Honestly I am bit lost and not an expert by any means so any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks so much!


  41. Spencer Mohrman

    I began studying it I could not necessarily put it lower till My partner and i completed it.

  42. Keva Lowcks

    Far much more freelance writers ought to study from you.

  43. Scott

    Thank you so much. Glad it helped solve that irritation. God bless you!

  44. Scott


  45. Rob

    Thanks for this post. You helped me out!
    FYI the above 3 comments are SEO spam; they are not real comments.

  46. vineet


    I have devete w3 total cache by mistake but now I have lost my wp-admin(it show blank).
    I try your trick but no help.. it still show blank…

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