Upgrading to WordPress 4.7 with W3 Total Cache Installed
Yesterday was one of those days. You know, the kind of day when something routine that should take a couple of minutes, (or less), ends up taking hours out of your day. What did I do? I hit the button to upgrade my WordPress Website to WordPress 4.7. 90 seconds later I was looking at the white screen of death. My website was fine to the outside world, but I could not access the admin panel.
Not one to panic, I figured a Google search would soon have me up and running again. There's no way I could be the only one with this problem. Wrong! After a good long time searching for a solution I decided nothing really fit my particular scenario and that I should call my hosting company and ask if this was a known problem. The Customer Service Person at A2Hosting was most helpful. In fact, if you're looking for a Hosting Company that offers top of the line customer service, check out A2Hosting.
It turns out that it was the W3 Total Cache Plugin that was the problem. It needed to be removed and re-installed before the site was up and running again. He said he'd had lots of practice doing this yesterday and I was definitely not his first call!
Sooo... The moral of this story is, if you have W3 Total Cache installed, uninstall it and reinstall it before upgrading to WordPress 4.7. Deactivating may also work, but since I'm the one who spent way too long dealing with the fall out of this failed upgrade, I'm going for not cutting corners on this one!
This particular solution worked for me for the particular scenario of having W3TC installed. The white screen of death is not exactly unheard of in the upgrading process on WP websites. The following article gives some pointers on what to do before upgrading to WordPress 4.7. Hindsight being what it is, I might have known what to look for sooner if I'd read this first!