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As you can see in the screenshot, the edit question seems totally broken on StackOverflow (not on Meta). This also happens when I click Ask Question.

Notice the empty preview, the missing buttons, the non-working shortcuts (i.e., Ctrl-L for a link and Ctrl-I for italics don't work anymore). I'm using FF 3.6.6

This is not a double of this one, because of its age and the current situation is just new.

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Apparently it happened only for a short while. It seems to have gone now. Maybe I was just editing between two server updates? – Abel Jul 31 '10 at 23:21
Just you. Works fine for me. – Amir Rachum Jul 31 '10 at 23:22
@Abel There haven't been any updates to SO today – Michael Mrozek Jul 31 '10 at 23:33
@Amir, thanks for testing. @Michael, thanks for checking. \\\ Mmm, odd. Just like in the referring question, where it was mentioned that it's cache issues causing this. Maybe my cache was partially invalidated, which caused (parts of) the javascript to not be loaded, and other parts to work? Like I said, odd... – Abel Jul 31 '10 at 23:38
@Abel, you can always tell when the last update was by looking at the footer. – Arjan Aug 1 '10 at 9:30
@Arjan: great tip! So there was an update, but a day before. – Abel Aug 1 '10 at 10:02
up vote 0 down vote accepted

As it appears, the browser caches the javascript, regardless whether the javascript url has a random-token appended (or the random token was not so random after all — 42) to prevent caching. According to this related question, this can happen regularly and result in outdated javascript to be loaded.

Not sure whether this could be solved by code (i.e., it should be trivial to check for the objects to be there and to issue a warning to the user to flush his cache, it will be less trivial to solve the caching issue), but when it happens, it sure looks rather scary.

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it is our consensus that you are behind a broken proxy when this happens. If the URL changes, and the proxy continues to cache it.. – Jeff Atwood Aug 1 '10 at 8:50
Unless you meanwhile cleared the cache, you might see multiple versions in about:cache?device=disk. – Arjan Aug 1 '10 at 9:41
@Jeff Atwood: I can be positive that I'm not behind any proxy (unless browsers nowadays proxy themselves), not even from my ISP. \\\ @Arjan: I can't find multiple versions, but I did a Ctrl-R which may have taken care of that already. – Abel Aug 1 '10 at 10:00
A Ctrl-R shouldn't clear the existing cache. It will ask the server if known caches for specific URLs are still valid (most likely by using If-Modified-Since). But it won't clear caches of URLs that are not even used in the page for which you hit Ctrl-R. Request both and, reload about:cache?device=disk to validate both are cached, then hit Ctrl-R for the last URL, and reload the cache results again. The ?v=v1 is still there (and you'll see updates in the details for ?v=v2). – Arjan Aug 1 '10 at 15:52
@Arjan: I understand that it will not clear all cache, that's why I use it in the first place. But it forces a refresh with conditional HTTP requests of all resources (or, I though, it just requests them again unconditionally, you can notice this with the slow loading of images after Ctrl-R). Most importantly: in this scenario, it works. If you needed to clear your whole cache for just viewing a site correctly, then there's something seriously wrong. – Abel Aug 5 '10 at 9:45
My point is: Ctrl-R should not clear the cache of anything that's not on the page. If the current page does not include ?x=y then the cache for ?x=y should not be cleared (assuming it has not otherwise expired). Odd that your cache does not show the old question.js versions. – Arjan Aug 7 '10 at 8:38

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