Support » Fixing WordPress » IE Problems with modified default theme

  • Resolved Freshman


    I’ve searched around the forums and several people have had several problems with making their blogs play nice with internet explorer. (ie so that people searching can find this)

    In most cases the issues are mistakes made while modifying, and are applicable to their specific blog.

    I’ve dug into the css a bit and can’t figure it out, so I’m going to resort to asking for your insight.

    Problem: Sidebar is not fitting properly in IE. NextGen Gallery images don’t display. (Look fine in Safari, Firefox, etc.)

    My site is:

    you’d find the css at

    I’m sure my amateur eyes just don’t see something.

    I would really appreciate any feedback… thank you!

Viewing 7 replies - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)
  • The first step in fixing display issues is to correct any code errors. Different browsers react differently to them. You have quite a few code errors, including a body tag in a text widget and misplaced Analytics code. Since many of your other errors are due to using HTML 4 code instead of XHTML, see:

    Which version of IE is causing trouble? IE 6 is notorious for layout spacing problems.


    Your widget(s) aren’t formatting correctly in IE. That is the problem. The question is “why”.

    Unfortunately you have 173 errors on your homepage when I run your page through the page validator.

    Many of these are trivial but someare structural.
    For example, in Firefox your Peace Valley logo and the list under it are contained within the sidebar div, and thus are behaving as they are supposed to.

    IE is seeing that same logo Div starting after the sidebar is already closed, so it is spacing it with the full width of the whole site, not the width of the sidebar. That is why you are having problems.

    The usual reason this happens is mismatched closing tags. In other words, DIV’s closed out of order, or not closed, same with LI’s.

    The most important errors you want to look at on the validator are the ones near the bottom, the XHTML mismatched tags.

    If you can get those things cleaned up in your templates, more than likely your site will start to work as intended in IE. Firefox is just a lot better at interpreting misformed code than IE is.

    Yes, I humbly accept that I have created many errors. Tis true…

    IE 5 is causing me problems, ie 6 on the pc I tested on this morning. I will attack my widgets, we are using an amazing amount of text widgets and there is a good chance that the problem lies there.

    I am just starting to the hang of css and php via wordpress, so I expect many errors… but I will work to fix them, and in doing so hopefully understand it more.

    One problem I have with simple points that stvwlf makes (thanks so much for your feedback and commentary!) is that in fixing my divs, I am kind of stupid and don’t even know which actual file to edit, as in, do I open sidebar.php? do I open header.php? I know this sounds amazingly rudimentary but that’s how I currently roll.

    Thanks iridiax and thanks stvwlf for your help, I think it gets me one step closer.


    While writing this response I discovered you have MS Word formatting code in some of your posts. That is one big NO NO NO – can’t paste directly from Word into the WP editor. That in itself breaks many page displays in IE. The first thing you can do is search through your posts for Word code – it leaves styles called ‘mso’ – that is one way to find it.

    Here is an article about a way to get from Word to WP that doesn’t break page displays

    I find the most productive way to work with the page validator is to check the box that says Show Source, and refresh. Then the lines of code that the validator sees are displayed after the errors, with line numbers. That lets you correlate the line #’s in validator errors with the section of code that is causing the problem.

    A very good idea is, at the top and bottom of your theme’s template file is to add comments like these.. If you are working with
    /wp-content/themes/{themename}/index.php, at the top you typically see
    something like

    <?php get_header(); ?>
    <div id="content">

    add this

    <?php get_header(); ?>
    <!-- index.php -->
    <div id="content">

    and do the same at the bottom – <!– end index.php –>
    That way when you View Source to see your page, those comments appear in the code and you know what template file WordPress is using to display that part of your page. You can do this on all the major template files

    As you make corrections, refresh the validator to revalidate so you see if your changes fixed anything. Errors generally cascade – when you find the core errors, one fix and correct 25 errors at once.

    Another real timesaver is using a programmer’s editor that highlights opening and closing HTML tags – when you point at an opening HTML tag, it becomes highlighted, and also the matching closing tag is highlighted with the same color. This makes it very easy to find mismatched tags. An open source editor that can do this is Notepad++ (Windows only). Copy and paste your code from View Source into the editor, and save the file as an HTML file to activate the tag matching.

    @stvwlf = Thank You! I really appreciate you taking the time to give me this really really useful wisdom.

    I have applied some of this knowledge and begun to fix the problem. Your methods helped me uncover some simple coding issues in my sidebar text widgets that were indeed the culprit.

    If you are having problems with ie, and you are a beginner like me who uses a lot of text widgets, that’s a good place to start.

    I highly recommend using stvwlf’s advice for (beginners) labeling the major template files with comments, it helped me learn about what is happening with the page load.

    Iridiax was right to assume it would be a more or less basic coding error: I had my


    • tags mixed up and not closing properly, it made ie go berserk (and rightfully so)

    Thanks, main problem solved, coding errors being worked on… go the smackdown on that one 😉

    i have some problems but only in earlier versions of windows xp.
    Some of my pages do not show up on the front into page

    Sort of similar issue.

    My problem is won’t show as nicely on Windows XP, any browser, as it shows up on Ubuntu, again any browser.

    All the text content, looks awfully ugly on Windows XP. Too thin, font not right. On Ubuntu, it looks great, the way I want it.

    Any idea? Suggestions. I have also posted it as separate thread under Themes.

Viewing 7 replies - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)
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