Chrome displays websites with no styles until cache is cleared manually

Craig Kehler
Craig Kehler used Ask the Experts™
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I keep running into a very annoying problem with Google Chrome. Every week or two it seems the cache gets corrupted and when I go to view sites they display with no styles applied. My work around is to clear cached images. I'm looking for a more permanent fix, so I don't have to keep working around it. I haven't found anything useful on Google's forums.

I have tried manually removing the cache files in AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Cache thinking there may be something corrupted in them, but the problem still recurs.

Chrome is up to date. Version 65.0.3325.181 (Official Build) (64-bit)

Has anyone figured out how to stop this annoying bug?
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IT Professional | Freelance Journalist | Looking for Opportunities
Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
Hi Craig,

I've had this exact same issue with Chrome (earlier version three months or so ago) and eventually nutted it out. In my case, I was using a Plugin called Privacy Badger. Changing settings on the extension resolved the problem immediately, without needing to clear cache, then for no apparent reason, it would crop up again. In the end, I tired of striking the problem and just removed the extension.

If you have Privacy Badger installed, (or a similar extension that does the same thing) I can say with almost certainty that its removal will cure the problem for good, though it should also be possible to have it installed and train it when and when not to interfere with certain domains.

Another thing to check is your Privacy settings in Chrome itself - have you changed anything in there of late? Check Version History of Chrome to see what may have recently changed in that respect.

Finally, check and experiment with disabling other extensions you may have installed.Ones like Disconnect, Ghostery, AddBlock Plus, etc. Sometimes having two extensions that do similar things can also cause this I found when I was searching for possible causes.

I hope that's helpful.

Regards, Andrew
Dave BaldwinFixer of Problems
Most Valuable Expert 2014

Commented:
Is it all sites or just some particular ones?
Andrew LeniartIT Professional | Freelance Journalist | Looking for Opportunities
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
@Dave
Just further to my comment above, In my case, it was just "some" sites, not all of them - what made the problem difficult to troubleshoot is that disabling the Privacy Badger extension on a problematic website would immediately relieve the symptoms, but they would return again at a later time just as Craig has described. It was frustrating as hell until I figured out what was causing it. (for me anyway)
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Andrew LeniartIT Professional | Freelance Journalist | Looking for Opportunities
Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
@Craig
To eliminate an extension as the cause completely, don't clear your cache, but disable "all" extensions and then do an F5 refresh on a problematic page. If the problem disappears and the page displays correctly, then you'll know a rogue extension is the problem.

Re-enable one by one and keep re-testing until the problem returns and you should have your answer. That's how I finally tracked the cause down to Privacy Badger.
Shaun VermaakSenior Consultant
Awarded 2017
Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
To add to the above, you can start Chrome without extensions with this command
chrome --disable-extensions

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Craig KehlerDirector of Customer Relations

Author

Commented:
Running without extensions now. I will let you know. Kind of smacking myself for not thinking of that. :)
Craig KehlerDirector of Customer Relations

Author

Commented:
I removed extensions and then had to flush the cache (hopefully only one last time) before pages would load correctly. For others that experience this it will be sites you visit often and thus are cached.

Interesting thing is that after I disabled the extensions almost every tab showed up without styles. My suspicion is that it's the Google Publisher Toolbar I use to gather information on ads I want to report. The problem is that it needs to be loaded when the ad displays to gather any useful info.
Craig KehlerDirector of Customer Relations

Author

Commented:
Well it's been a week and it hasn't recurred. Thanks Andrew!
I don't know exactly which extension was causing it. I'm going to re-enable ad blocking and just put all the other extensions needed for development in a different profile.
Andrew LeniartIT Professional | Freelance Journalist | Looking for Opportunities
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
Great to hear you got it solved Craig. I know it frustrated me no end and I was on the verge of raising a question about it myself towards the end of my experience.

I'm going to re-enable ad blocking
I can say from personal experience that the free Adblock Plus has never (to date) caused me any grief. The link is to the Chrome version, but it's available for most browsers.

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