Autosave only adds to confusion

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    Autosaves drive me mad. For some time now when we log in at WP this red message appears above a post/page: “There is an autosave of this post that is more recent than the version below.” Yet it usually is not.

    I have just wasted half an hour trying to decipher the differences and still can’t be certain which one to select as being the most recent edit.

    Beneath the published version it says “Last edited by OTL on June 5, 2012”. The latest autosave is now dated “12 mins ago 10 May 2013” – but I haven’t touched the text on this visit, so how can it be called a “revision”? This only increases confusion when I visit this page in six months’ time and worry whether I made some changes last time and they haven’t been published. As far as I can tell, they have been, and the autosave is a generation BEHIND what is visible on the published page.

    The most useless device is to accept the invitation to view both versions side by side – “Compare Revisions of PAGE X” – because you now see two columns of text, the left column in red and at right a colmun in green. But on this screenview there is NO INDICATION which one is the “current” or which is the “autosave” because neither is dated. An invitation says “restore this revision” but WHICH ONE IS “THIS” REVISION??

    You must check virtually every line in each column to discover that the green right-hand version *seems* to be the one currently visible to the public, so why is an “autosave” being offered for consideration bearing a later date than the published version and with the message that it is a “later” version so must contain further edits? (In fact, I *think* it actually contains an earlier version of the text.)

    All this wastes so much time whenever you revisit a post/page, worrying that your last edit didn’t update successfully. Total confusion!

    My blog:

    The blog I need help with is



    There is a none issue that arose recently with the changes going on as WordPress 3.6 is tested and rolled out across The autosave issue has been reported. Thank you for adding to the report information.

    If you “know” that the version you are looking at is the “right” version, ignore the warning.

    Better yet, do as many pro bloggers and publishers do and write and edit your article in a quality text editor before copying and pasting it into WordPress. I’ve found fewer edits are required within the WordPress editors over 10 years of using WordPress daily.

    If there is an issue such as a computer crash or accidental closing of the browser or page you are editing in WordPress, the new revision compare will help you to see the changes between versions, but remember that WordPress is not a word processor. You will have to do a little work to get it right across versions.

    Sorry for the confusion. They are working on this. Thanks!



    See here for offline blog editors you can use to create your posts and pages in and publish from to your blog. The added bonus is you will have a backup of everything on your own computer if you use one.



    I think I’m missing some basic point here. It’s not about writing an article. It’s about arriving cold at WP and opening an existing post to find a “more recent” version of the text being offered by Autosave. And I cannot understand how it can be *more recent* if this is my first visit back to a page which was published months ago!


    I’m new to WordPress, but add me to the list of users who find this feature totally confusing. I like the fact that WordPress is automatically saving my work every few minutes, but it’s not clear/intuitive how to proceed when you get to the page in which you compare the two different revisions. If I want to choose to save the version in green on the right side of the screen, what do I do? It would be simpler if there was a button above each of the two revisions being compared that said “Select this revision” or something.


    Moderator Emeritus


    And I cannot understand how it can be *more recent* if this is my first visit back to a page which was published months ago!

    It’s possible that the post or page “autosaved” after you updated but left the editor open for a while.

    Or perhaps you had two windows or tabs open, each with the same post or page while editing. My daughter critisizes me for having too many tabs open at once because I like having instant access to everything I’m working on. Sometimes I forget that an editor is already open. It’s the empty desk vs cluttered desk situation…


    I am not a new blogger, but I also find the new revisions page confusing. I liked directly selecting which date I wanted to see; the little arrows up on top force you to click multiple times, and it ‘s unclear which version is which. It would be more elegant to have a “restore this version” button above each column.

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