NOTICE: The GOES Geostationary Satellite Server Web Site is in the process of being redesigned. Every effort is being made to keep existing page names and content. However, a small number of pages may be renamed or removed in the future as part of the redesign process, in which case the user will be redirected as appropriate.
Experiencing problems getting the latest images from the GOES website?
The first thing you need to know is that we update the images on the GOES website every 30 minutes. The updated pages are then sent out to the main server and the mirrors. Barring major network catastrophes and server meltdowns, everything should be in synch at all times.
So then why does it seem as thought the images are stuck and won't update? What's going on here?
Here's a brief summary. Your web browser saves (caches) a copy of every page you display so that when you return to the page (without explicitly reloading) the browser can load its copy of the page and save having to pull another copy of the page across the Internet. This means faster browsing and less time waiting for a page to load. However, sometimes browsers hang onto their local copies longer than they should, and you can end up viewing an out-of-date page. With slow-changing websites this is usually not a problem. But, with the GOES website, the images are updated every 30 minutes.
Some users set their browser preferences to check every single time they visit a web site, effectively eliminating this problem, but that slows down your session with the extra chatter necessary between your browser and the Internet, reducing the speed savings of the (normally well-behaved) cache files. Most folks just set their browser cache check to "Automatic" or "First Time Each Session" (depending on browser type and version). Savvy users reload everything anyway having learned to never trust their computers. Top-notch users periodically flush out their browser caches as a general maintenance and preventative procedure.
Then there is the misbehaving firewall/proxy server problem, which is outside of both our hands and yours, generally requiring the intervention of your ISP's technicians or your system administrators to correct the problem.
If reloading or refreshing doesn't update the homepage and you think it should, then see the following section "The Stuck Browser Cache Fix" for ways to fix that problem.