I have the following problem: when a user logs in and navigates through pages that he visited when was an anonymous user, he "sees" the cached page instead seeing the page version for logged users. I'm using Varnish and I have tried the following code without result:

  if (req.http.Cookie) {
    set req.http.Cookie = ";" + req.http.Cookie;
    set req.http.Cookie = regsuball(req.http.Cookie, "; +", ";");
    set req.http.Cookie = regsuball(req.http.Cookie, ";(SESS[a-z0-9]+|NO_CACHE)=", "; \1=");
    set req.http.Cookie = regsuball(req.http.Cookie, ";[^ ][^;]*", "");
    set req.http.Cookie = regsuball(req.http.Cookie, "^[; ]+|[; ]+$", "");

    if (req.http.Cookie == "") {
      # If there are no remaining cookies, remove the cookie header. If there
      # aren't any cookie headers, Varnish's default behavior will be to cache
      # the page.
      unset req.http.Cookie;
    else {
      # If there are any cookies left (a session or NO_CACHE cookie), do not
      # cache the page. Pass it on to Apache directly.
      return (pass);

How can avoid this issue?


  • 1
    Sounds like it might be a browser cache issue.
    – mikeytown2
    Commented Sep 18, 2014 at 0:34

1 Answer 1


In your settings.php are you using $conf['omit_vary_cookie'] = TRUE; ?

If so, logged in users who have previous viewed a page when logged out will be served the varnish cached version of their page until they manually refresh their browser.

The solution is to simply comment out $conf['omit_vary_cookie'] = TRUE; in your settings.php.

This is explained in default.settings.php (drupal 7.34):

 * Page caching:
 * By default, Drupal sends a "Vary: Cookie" HTTP header for anonymous page
 * views. This tells a HTTP proxy that it may return a page from its local
 * cache without contacting the web server, if the user sends the same Cookie
 * header as the user who originally requested the cached page. Without "Vary:
 * Cookie", authenticated users would also be served the anonymous page from
 * the cache. If the site has mostly anonymous users except a few known
 * editors/administrators, the Vary header can be omitted. This allows for
 * better caching in HTTP proxies (including reverse proxies), i.e. even if
 * clients send different cookies, they still get content served from the cache.
 * However, authenticated users should access the site directly (i.e. not use an
 * HTTP proxy, and bypass the reverse proxy if one is used) in order to avoid
 * getting cached pages from the proxy.
# $conf['omit_vary_cookie'] = TRUE;

This DA question answers this issue too: What does the "Vary: Cookie" header actually do for serving pages from Varnish?

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