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My Lesson Files Produce an Error Message. How Do I Correct This for My Users?
My Lesson Files Produce an Error Message. How Do I Correct This for My Users?
Erin Kelly avatar
Written by Erin Kelly
Updated over a week ago

On rare occasions, your users may not be able to access a file that you've uploaded to your lesson and instead, receive an error message in their web browser.

Here's an example of the error message that your users will receive when your file is not able to be accessed:

When this happens, there are typically a couple of reasons why - all of which are pretty easy to resolve.

Below, we'll share those common reasons and solutions with you but there's one important detail to cover first...

All of the following solutions will require that you re-upload your file to your Lesson Files area.

To ensure this process works as best as possible we recommend that you first delete the original file from your Lesson Files area.

We also recommend that you rename your file before re-uploading it to your Lesson.

The reason being is that it can take up to 1hr for our server to fully purge the original file record. If you upload the same file again without changing the file name, it's very likely that your file will continue to produce an error.

Here are the common reasons why Lesson Files provided an error and cannot by accessed by your users:

Reason #1 - Your File Name Includes Special Characters

Some special characters (such as #, @, *, etc.) cannot be read by web browsers and the use of them in your file name will cause your file's URL to be inaccessible.

To avoid this, please only use alpha and numeric characters in the name of the file you intend to upload to your lesson.

Reason #2 - Your File is Corrupt or Has Been Saved Improperly

Despite our best efforts, issues can happen at the time of saving a file on our own devices. For example, a file can be saved under the wrong file type or the file could have an issue causing it to become corrupt and inaccessible.

Make sure that you can access your file on your own device successfully before re-uploading it to your lesson. If you cannot access the original file yourself, you will need to create or source a new copy of the file.

Reason #3 - You've Set an Uncommon File Type to 'Open in A New Window' Instead of Setting it to 'Automatically Download'

Browsers are limited in the file types that they can automatically display for viewing. If you upload a file that isn't supported for viewing in a browser (such as a .zip file) and select the 'open in a new window' action for that file in MV, the file link will not be able to be opened by the browser and will result in an error.

For these types of files that are not supported for browser viewing, you must select the 'automatically download' option instead so that the file is directly downloaded to the user's device rather than having the browser try to display it.

Here is a list of the most common files that can be displayed/viewed in a browser:

Reason #4 - Your File Upload was Interrupted and Your File Was Not Fully Uploaded

Although very rare, it is possible that a communication error can happen at the time of uploading which will cause your file to not be fully uploaded as intended.

While your file will show as if it was properly uploaded, it essentially ends up being incomplete causing it to be inaccessible. If you believe this is the cause of your concern, we recommend re-uploading the file and ensuring you are doing so from a very stable internet connection that offers a strong and consistent upload bandwidth.

Reason #5 - Your Firewall Software prevented MV from delivering the File to your Users

This can happen if you have your MV running through a service like CloudFlare, for example, which can have a filter that prevents direct file transfers. In this case your File might be renamed by the Firewall service, or re-packaged into a portable archive file (.zip, .gz) which then generates the error seen above.

To help mitigate your users experiencing issues when trying to access any files you've uploaded to your Lessons, we highly recommend that you test each file after uploading it to your Lesson Files area. If the file can be accessed by you, then your users shouldn't experience any issues themselves when trying to access the file.

You can test your file's link by simply clicking on the file URL right from within your lesson after uploading it.

โ€‹Questions? Reach out to us at, via chat support within your Admin account (available to paid users) or within our FB Group, The MV Collaborative.

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