WordPress 3.3 Upgrade Problem: Toolbar Disappears in Page/Post Editor

People are losing the toolbar in the post and page editor after upgrading to WordPress 3.3.  It could happen because of a problem with your computer, or a problem with your WordPress files.

edit: There was also a report of a malfunctioning toolbar that #3 and #4 solved.

Although this doesn’t officially solve the problem, using compatibility mode in Internet Explorer 9 did rectify the problem for at least one person.  If that can carry you through until the official fix comes through, I’d recommending only trying the first two solutions and stopping there.

edit: I changed the order of the last 2 steps below – what you see is the updated advice.  Step 2 is only a 50/50 proposition, but you can’t go doing things like 3 and 4 without clearing your cache first.  It’s just good WordPress (and computer) policy!

(1) First, check to see if you have an ad blocker extension installed in your browser.  Disable it and see if that works.  If that works, then just add your WordPress site as an exception.

(2) Second is to deal with the cache: some people refreshing the screen a few times got the toolbar to eventually appear.  Holding down SHIFT while you click reload/refresh is supposed to force a full refresh of the page.  You’d want to do that a few times.  If there’s no relief there, try clearing the cache.  The cache in Chrome is persistent, so at this point you’ve got to confirm the exact same problem in another browser.

(3) Try the 0.8 hotfix from WordPress, it’s the link labeled “Development Version”.

(Not sure what to do with hotfixes after WP gets upgraded later, I’ll follow up.)

edit: if (3) didn’t solve your problem, I’d be surprised.

(4) Install the plugin Use Google Libraries. It seems to solve the problem without clearing the cache, but if it doesn’t immediately clear your problem, then you’d want to clear the cache just to be sure.  (I’ll follow up to see if we’re expected to keep this permanently, I would think we can uninstall it after a fix for this problem comes through.)

If the Google Libraries plugin solves your problem, then it was recommended to manually copy the files from a manual download to the /wp-includes/ directory .

Since this problem was fixed with solutions that were based both on one’s computer and from the web, I would take the concepts involved in these solutions that worked for other people and apply them elsewhere.  For sample, if you have some kind of safe browsing plugin, maybe disabling that could help.  The toolbar runs javascript and computer systems generally have very detailed javascript security settings.


More than one person has reported that downgrading didn’t solve their problem.


  1. Parneix says

    Thanks for those links and suggestions. The hotfix fixed it for me, but I’ll be interested to learn what to do with it when a new official update is available.


  2. says

    I had this problem and found the problem was that the PHP on my hosting server did not have the JSON extension enabled. This meant that much the JQuery/javascript in the Admin did not work – no visual editor toolbar, no flyout menus, etc.

    If you have access to the php.ini file, find and uncomment this text:


    If you don’t know what I am talking about you could contact your hosting server and ask them to change it.

    I just thought I would add this as a possible solution. The same thing happened when I upgraded to 3.2 and so I am happy to have found a solution that is hopefully long-term.

    • wp g says

      I thoroughly appreciate that because I’m starting to resell good serious (but basic) WordPress hosting, and this is because I began to realize how WordPress is too tough to run well in a shared hosting environment.

      I’ll blog about this too – but I figured this out when I was running WordPress on my MAMP installation and I was crashing because I only had the default 32mb of RAM available in my PHP.ini file… Well to my shock and dismay and a lot of grandiose looks at my computer, I couldn’t believe it: I was crashing just activating a plugin. Then another plugin. They were both reasonable plugins… I have no idea how PHP programming goes but it wasn’t like I was crashing activating Akismet or something.

      When I realized just how bad this was, I realized that this is why so many of my clients in shared hosting eventually have a user experience where the next page hangs, sooner or later, with WordPress. This came after I realized that recent versions of MultiSite – this year, anyway, were chronically pausing and regularly slowed down, all while I was in the Admin.

      So now I have a server, and I’m giving everyone more RAM by default, and divvying up the resources reasonably and not overselling the resources. Thank goodness I have access to the PHP.ini.

      Your point about asking their host’s technical support is a good one though – people can ask their host to adjust this, absolutely.


  1. […] On my end, I scoured the forum, followed the official word, cleared my cache, tried Hotfix 0.7, re-upgraded,    killed all my themes and plugins, re-upgraded manually, read post after post telling people to just read the FAQ and rejoice. There was no joy in any of that for me. Glory be for the good fellow over at the WordPress Genius Bar, for the divine led me to his post: WordPress 3.3 Upgrade Problem: Toolbar Disappears in Page/Post Editor. […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>