Is My WordPress Site Blocked in China?

I can’t answer this question for you, but I can help you figure that out. Because of the complexity of the Great Firewall of China, it may not be immediately apparent if your site is blocked. However, if your site is hosted at WordPress.com, though, I can assure you that it is blocked.

If you haven’t already seen my post on the overview of WordPress and China, I recommend you check it out first.

With that being said, there are a variety of tools that can help you figure out if your site is blocked or not:

  • http://www.websitepulse.com/help/testtools.china-test.html – Tests if sites are blocked and allows you to compare results with other cities around the world.
  • http://viewdns.info/chinesefirewall/ – Tests servers in four Chinese provinces for HTTP response codes.
  • http://www.blockedinchina.net/ – Probably the simplest tool in figuring out if your site is blocked China or not.
  • http://greatfire.org – This is probably the most complete tool to check if your site is blocked in China. Great Fire is a non-profit organization that specifically focuses on Internet freedom in China and has even been the victim of DDOS originating from China as well. The site offers widgets that you can put on your site to test its status behind the GFW, a several year history of major sites behind the GFW, and allows you to begin tracking specific pages from behind the GFW. The curators also maintain a blog relating to Web security and performance in China as their work has been getting more attention by each passing day. Greatfire.org also lists which sites of Alexa’s Top 1000 are blocked within China, making it easier to understand which APIs and services are blocked within the country.

After testing your site using the aforementioned tools, you can get a better idea of whether or not your site is outrightly blocked, or intentionally slowed within China. It should be noted that these tools don’t offer insight on SSL man-in-the-middle attacks, DNS poisoning, packet filtering or DNS filtering. They do not acknowledge connection issues for APIs or plugins that may be blocked if your site otherwise isn’t.

For more information about this topic, check out my other posts about WordPress and the Great Firewall of China.

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