or whatever reason, my Firefox browser on this computer is displaying stackoverflow.com in basic HTML format (text and links). No images, no formatting, nothing.

This used to be fine. Its been like this a few days now.


  • Deleted cookies - no luck.
  • Deleted all of firefox's cache, history, cookies, site preference settings etc - no luck.
  • Restarted firefox, rebooted - no luck.

All other sites I usually use are working fine, I don't think its an issue with firefox.

I've also:

  • Checked the site it on IE - its working fine.
  • Checked other stackexchange sites on firefox - they're working fine.
  • Opened cdn.sstatic.net/stackoverflow/all.css in my browser with no problems.. its a wall of ugly css text but its there. [SOLVED: I should have done this in firefox instead of IE - would have noticed the cause of the problem sooner]

What gives?

  • I periodically have been getting the same thing on IE10. I tried clearing browser cache, closing all open iexplore.exe instances and it intermittently fails to load all but basic html as well – jordanhill123 Jul 12 '13 at 1:12
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    As additional information, this started occurring around the time that this occurred for me as well: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/187075/… Is there still fallout from move to SSL? – jordanhill123 Jul 12 '13 at 1:20
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    What happens if you hit cdn.sstatic.net/stackoverflow/all.css directly? Does it timeout? Can you run a traceroute and post the results? – Adam Lear Jul 12 '13 at 1:41
  • Thanks for the comments, I updated the question. - No luck on clearing cache etc. - Tracert of that address is not very informative, might by my company's firewall settings, but I can browse to that css file no probs. – TheIronChef Jul 12 '13 at 1:53
  • @user2574749 is your firefox traffic going through a proxy? – Nick Craver Jul 12 '13 at 1:58
  • @Nick Craver Yes, I believe so. – TheIronChef Jul 12 '13 at 2:00
  • @TheIronChef who owns the proxy? That's almost certainly the issue, can you speak to them? – Nick Craver Jul 12 '13 at 2:54
  • @Nick Craver It was related to the proxy. I had to add an exception to firefox as described below and unfortunately I have no means of getting in touch with the proxy people. I'll just have to make do for now.. I've notice the same issue on wikipedia. At least I know what to do now, thanks. – TheIronChef Jul 12 '13 at 5:10
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    @TheIronChef that means said proxy is watching all your traffic, including https (rather than forwarding it through...hence the invalid cert), so be aware. – Nick Craver Jul 12 '13 at 10:10

Anna Lear gave a good hint.

I had browsed to cdn.sstatic.net/stackoverflow/all.css on IE. I needed to do it on firefox to see where it took me. I ended up in a 'certificate exception' page and needed to add a security exception for that site.

Once I did that, it solved the problem and now stackoverflow.com loads properly on firefox.

I also found good help in: CSS for Stack Overflow didn't load

Everyone's hints helped solve this, thanks all.

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Had a customer with a similar issue on a different site. Just wanted to add that this worked for us as well. Stylesheet was on a different certificate than the page, and an exception had to be created for that. Since I got here from a Google search, I'll ad the steps I took in case anyone else ends up here.

Simplified instructions:

  • right-click anywhere on the page and choose "inspect element"
  • look between the tags for tags. The one we are looking for will have: type="text/css" rel="stylesheet"
  • it will also have a URL ending in .css after the 'href' like: href="www.someURL.com/stylesheet.css"
  • Copy the address after the href and paste them into the address bar on a new tab
  • You will get a security certificate warning. Click Add Exception.
  • Reload the original page and everything should be working now
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