Website broken on WP / Cornerstone update

When I update Wordpress and Cornerstone I get the “your website has a critical error” message when I try to access the admin dashboard. When I disable all plugins it works but the content is all Shortcode on the page. Then when I activate Cornerstone only with no other plugins active it says there is a critical error and won’t activate. I’ve needed to restore from a backup from about a year ago because all versions of WP and Cornerstone between then and now seem to cause cornerstone to break, even with no other plugins active. The current version of cornerstone doesn’t work, but because I used a backup I was able to access an older version of Cornerstone which seems to work for now.
The website is

Hi @mattardisson,

Thanks for reaching out!

I suspect what happened is that there’s a version incompatibility with the cornerstone plugin and X theme. I was thinking that you update the cornerstone to the latest version while you are having an old X theme version and that’s one of the reasons why your website crashed.

That being said, if you want to update your X theme and cornerstone to the latest version, please do the following steps:

  • Uninstall and delete cornerstone plugin ( this will avoid any potential error when updating the X theme)
  • Update the X theme to the latest version
  • Install again the cornerstone plugin to the latest version

Hope that helps.

Hey Marc, thank you for your reply, at the time of the issue (a week or two ago) Both the theme and the plugin had been updated to the most recent versions, so that can’t be the issue.
In the older version I have now one of the X theme plugins also breaks the site if activated, I think it’s the shortcode one.

I am currently having the same issue. If you go to my site looks as thought it works but when I log into wordpress it says “your website has a critical error”. Please help.

Hi @mattardisson,

It could be best if you could create a staging area where you can do the test upgrade on your website to the latest version. Once the staging area is up, please give us the following information in a Secure Note.

  • Staging WordPress Login URL
  • Staging Admin level username and password

You can find the Secure Note button at the bottom of your posts.


I suggest that you create a new thread so that we can better assist you with your issue. In the meantime, I would like you to enable the debug mode by using file manager or FTP, and in the root directory locate the wp_config.php file, then do as follow on this page.

Hope that helps.

@marc_a I’d like to set up a staging area, but now even the backed up version is broken, and I can’t login or even visit the Wordpress login page at the moment. I think it may be from the theme again but I can’t even get in the admin panel to deactivate it. It wasn’t accepting the password or sending a reset email, and now the login page just redirects to my home page.

Hi @mattardisson,

I would suggest you rename or delete the X theme folder under the wp-content/themes and Cornerstone folder under the wp-content/plugins using the FTP/CPanel and check if you are able to login into your Admin Dashboard. If you can, please download the latest version of X from your Themeco Account and reinstall it by following the below steps.

  1. Install the X theme to the latest version by manually
  2. After the X theme is updated, use the link in the dashboard to automatically install the Cornerstone. It will be at the latest version.

Hope it helps.


If you look at my live site now with the Version: 8.3.3 that’s the way it supposed to look. The staged version is with Version: 9.0.7 The new cornerstone update doesn’t work on either version.

EDited: I just did the 9.0.8 update and now I have just a header and footer for my home page.

Hi @Ralanda14,

I suggest that you create a new thread so that we can address your issue properly. Please note that I also remove your secure credentials on this thread because it is visible to the one who posts the ticket and we also don’t provide support over DM’s.

Thank you.

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