Busted: A WordPress Plugin to Force Cache Busting


“Have you emptied your cache?” If you’re a developer, you’ve probably asked your clients this question hundreds of times. It’s not easy to determine if your client has actually cleared his cache. Trying to troubleshoot this issue can eat up a lot of time, especially if you’re going back and forth via email.

Busted is a new free WordPress plugin that aims to solve this problem. When activated, it forces browsers to load the most recent file if the file has been modified.

WordPress developer Paul Clark created the plugin to work automatically without any configuration. The only case that it doesn’t account for is when URLs are hard-coded, which is generally a bad practice anyway.

In order for Busted to work on scripts, it requires them to use any of the following to load:

  • wp_enqueue_style
  • wp_enqueue_script
  • get_stylesheet_uri

These are the fairly standard, so most WordPress themes and plugins should have no problem with this plugin.

Busted is safe to leave running on live sites, because it only refreshes browser cache for files that have been modified. It even works to resolve caching issues with Content Delivery Networks (CDNs), which means that you don’t have to navigate all over the place to purge CDN cache in addition to your browser’s cache.

There’s nothing to worry about as far as performance goes, because files will stay cached for your client if they have not been newly changed. If you’re having trouble getting on the same page with your client because of browser caching issues, then Busted might be a nice, easy solution for you. Download it for free from the WordPress.org plugin repository.

photo credit: Brent Schneemancc

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