Turning off autosave on WordPress (since it hangs)

This post was written by eli on January 29, 2017
Posted Under: Internet,Server admin

After upgrading to WordPress 4.7.2, and thought it would be smashing fun, I found my “Publish” button disabled due to a draft being saved forever. There have been many complaints about this all over the web. I didn’t manage to find a solution to this problem, just a workaround: Disable autosaving altogether.

This is a reasonable measure in my case, since I press the “Update” button frequently enough anyhow. The autosaving is more of an annoyance to me. I tried to think about a single time I used an autosaved revision. My answer was never.

Some have attempted to increase the autosave interval (a.k.a. AUTOSAVE_INTERVAL) to 24 hours or so, but reported that it didn’t help.

And I should mention that I didn’t upgrade the themes or anything else but WordPress itself. Maybe more upgrading (and trouble)?

I went for the solution presented on this page, and it actually works.

Essentially, the idea is to add the following piece of code at the end of the functions.php file of the active theme, just before the closing “?>” of the file.

function disable_autosave() {

(in my case, the file was wp-content/themes/cognoblue/functions.php, as I’m using the Cognoblue theme).

That’s it. I cleared my browser’s cache after this change, just to be safe. No more autosave, and no more problems with the Update/Publish button.

Note that this doesn’t disable revisions (which I actually like). And don’t ask me why and how this works. I have no idea.

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