Common TVTropes Bugs and How to Fix Them:

Total posts: [82]
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1 Deboss20th Sep 2011 10:11:58 PM from Awesomeville Texas
I see the Awesomeness.
Trying to compile a list of common things that have been known to go wrong, how to fix them, and where to report them. This post should be all you need to read unless you find another one and want it added.

General fixes.

  • Check, to see if the server is down. If it is, it's entirely on the wiki's end.
  • Clear your cache: be aware, this will delete any files you have stored on your computer from flash and browser games and whatnot. On Firefox and Chrome (and perhaps some other browsers), pressing Shift-Control-R will reload the page while clearing the cache just for that page and the things embedded in the page. Much easier, and it doesn't disturb any of the other pages.
  • Clear your cookies: be aware, this will log you out of all sites if you select a "delete all" order. Search for the TV Tropes cookie if your problem is only on TV Tropes.
  • Try a different browser: Firefox, Opera, Chrome all of which are free. If the problem only occurs in one, there's something wrong with the browser, not the wiki or your internet.
  • Restart your browser, then the computer if that doesn't work.

What's gone wrong?

Folders are screwed up.

There are several reasons for a screwed up folder system on the page.

  • Coding screw up: somebody might have forgotten to close a folder somewhere, search for a [[folder]] without a matching [[/folder]], add whichever is missing.
  • Folders are too large: there's a hard limit to how much text can be in each folder, split them into smaller folders.
  • Javascript isn't enabled: If you have a script blocker like No Script, it needs to allow for folders to open and close.

Search Isn't Working for Me.

  • If no results are displaying, make sure Javascript is enabled for,, and
  • If all the results are blank wiki pages, you'll just have to scroll past since they're indexed by Google.

Images are messed up.

First question: is it just one page image, all the page images, or every graphic on the site?

  • If it's just the one image, it's likely somebody messed up the coding. Find an image that works and use the working one as a guide on how to fix the broken one. Alternatively, check Text Formatting Rules.
  • If the image is "floating" off the edge or sticks out past the edge of the screen, somebody likely screwed up the pixel width in the coding note , if the text code says the image is larger than the code says, the image will float, which can be fixed by editing the numbers between the colons on the image coding to match.
  • If the image is not loading on the page, the image may have been deleted or, if the name is really long, run afoul of the auto-hyphenator. This can generally be solved by reuploading the image with a shortened name (twenty characters is more than enough).
  • If it's all the images, the static image hosting server may be down. Check the Tech Wishlist to see if there's an active thread (if not, you can make one).
  • If all the graphics are messed up on the site, you should clear your cache. If this doesn't work, it might be the static image hosting server getting drunk again.
  • If text on the forum looks like this, the server is in the middle of a sneezing fit. Give it some time, and it should be back up. If it lasts more than five minutes, check on Tech Wishlist forum to see if it's been noted.

Page won't save/edit.

  • The page may be locked. The symbol for this is a gold padlock. Clicking it should take you to the Locked Pages page. If something that used to be there was cut, it will be automagically locked. See the Locked Pages for information on editing them. If you attempt to use the edit URL directly to modify a redirect, and get redirected instead, that's also caused by a lock.
  • The page may be checked out by another troper. Checkouts last until (a) an edit is saved; (b) a different page is opened for editing; (c) 20 minutes have elapsed. If a page is checked out repeatedly by the same handle, report it on Ask The Tropers.
  • You might be or have stumbled onto an IP address associated with a known Troll or spammer. Check this thread if you think this might be the case.
  • The page may be too large. Hard split the examples off of the page.
  • Servers may be down. Check Tech Wishlist.

The subpage icons aren't showing up.

  • If the subpage icons aren't showing up, it's probably because the page doesn't exist. Go the appropriate Namespace and make the page. Note: YMMV pages have to be fully capitalized to work properly.
  • If the subpage icons still aren't showing up, check the page type, and make sure it is set to the correct one.

The page isn't indexing right.

  • See How Indexing Works.
  • If indexes show up multiple times at the bottom of a page: Do a null edit (edit with no changes) on the index page in quextion.

Can't log on.

The custom title is messed up.

  • Is it spitting out random gibberish? That's somebody submitting the custom title with a text screwup. Try to resubmit it.
  • A custom title is propagating to the wrong page? Ask for an Wiki Word title.

The PM banner won't go away.

  • Deleting the pm will take care of it. Copy and paste it and keep it somewhere else like your hard drive, or copy the pm and send it to yourself.

My link isn't working properly.

  • External links: If your account is new, you can't post links to external sites. This is something put in place to fight spammers.
  • External images: TV Tropes does not allow hotlinking of other sites images, you have to upload the image to the TV Tropes server using the "upload image" option under the "tools" menu.
  • Wiki Word/blue links: If the Pot Hole isn't working, check on Text Formatting Rules to see if you mis-typed the commands. Apostrophes and other non alphanumeric symbols do not work for links, use the plain text version of the title and ensure that you add a custom title.
  • Single word links: single word pages need a pair of to work properly.
  • Page won't link (begins with numeric): due to coding restrictions, wiki words cannot begin with a numeric or other non letter based beginning. If it is part of the official title, use the written version of the numeric or symbol and custom title the numeric or symbol in.

Reporting bugs.

Do so on the Tech Wishlist. Be sure to include the following information: IP address with issue, Browser w/ version number, OS (operating system), as well as any addons or other software you think might be causing a problem. Screen shots are also a plus.

edited 1st Apr '15 11:23:30 AM by SeptimusHeap

Looks like a useful page to have. I can't think of anything to add, so I'll just give this my stamp of approval.

One small edit: "Banning" is now called "suspending" to reflect the usually-temporary nature of them.
¿uʍop ǝpısdn buıop noʎ ǝɹɐ ʇɐɥʍ
3 blackcat20th Sep 2011 10:45:38 PM , Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Sometimes the pm banner won't go away. Deleting the pm will take care of it. If you want to keep the pm, um, I don't know. Copy and paste it and keep it somewhere else?

We never go any where without our swords and boas.
Cure Candy
Copy and paste it and then PM it to yourself. (yes that works)
5 Willbyr21st Sep 2011 04:19:41 AM from North Little Rock, AR , Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
Nice work, Deboss.
6 SilentReverence21st Sep 2011 10:37:44 AM from 3 tiles right 1 tile up
adopting kitteh
w/r/t "Clear your Cookies", may I compile instructions on how to clear TV Tropes-only cookies on Firefox and Opera? It'd be better for some people than the "will clear ALL your cookies" option. Also, might try to do the same with caché.

7 Madrugada21st Sep 2011 11:52:00 AM , Relationship Status: In season
I'd say that for those, we should simply say something like "Read the Help file for your particular browser if you don't know how to clear the cookies or cache for only one site on the list."
...if you don’t love you’re dead, and if you do, they’ll kill you for it.
8 SilentReverence21st Sep 2011 12:33:40 PM from 3 tiles right 1 tile up
adopting kitteh
Browsers and many programs these days tend to have online help only for some reason, an not very good one at that IMHO (lack of pics, step by step, or Stop Helping Me! assistants). Anyway, just in case...


Netscape Navigator 4.x


edited 21st Sep '11 1:28:03 PM by SilentReverence

This one seems to cover everybody:

edited 21st Sep '11 1:15:49 PM by FastEddie

Goal: Clear, Concise and Witty

10 Deboss21st Sep 2011 01:34:42 PM from Awesomeville Texas
I see the Awesomeness.
Go ahead if you like. I like to be able to point people areas where they can find stuff like that out. That's why Wiki Word is such an awesome tool. Then again, I've never seen a browser that didn't let you delete specific cookies.

Updated, also added a link to "screwed up custom titles" on there. Once we've got a good list going, I'll copy it over to Common TV Tropes Bugs And How To Fix Them and stick it on Administrivia.

Eddie, what's the site you send people to when you want them to get their IP address.

edited 21st Sep '11 1:41:49 PM by Deboss is the first that comes to mind.
Yeah, unwritten rule number one: follow all the unwritten procedures. - Camacan
12 Deboss21st Sep 2011 04:31:53 PM from Awesomeville Texas
I see the Awesomeness.
Added as link. Did I cover all the things you want to see when a bug is reported?
13 Deboss21st Sep 2011 04:38:17 PM from Awesomeville Texas
I see the Awesomeness.
Tweaked some more.
As long as you're tweaking...

"Search for the TV Tropes cookie if you the problem is here only."

Looks like you were halfway between a "your" and a "the". wink
¿uʍop ǝpısdn buıop noʎ ǝɹɐ ʇɐɥʍ
15 Deboss21st Sep 2011 05:46:25 PM from Awesomeville Texas
I see the Awesomeness.
I do that because I think faster than I type and I rethink how I want to phrase things on the fly.
16 Deboss22nd Sep 2011 12:26:19 AM from Awesomeville Texas
I see the Awesomeness.
Rejoice! The server reset/hiccup/drunkening allowed me to capture screen shots. BEHOLD!
17 TuefelHundenIV22nd Sep 2011 05:29:28 PM from Wandering , Relationship Status: [TOP SECRET]
Watchman of the Apocalypse
Once this is done being fleshed out could we sticky it?
"Who watches the watchmen?"
18 Willbyr22nd Sep 2011 05:55:54 PM from North Little Rock, AR , Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
[up] It also could stand to be added to Administrivia.
19 TuefelHundenIV22nd Sep 2011 08:11:06 PM from Wandering , Relationship Status: [TOP SECRET]
Watchman of the Apocalypse
How about both? It is easier to find the sticky then adminstrivia in the wiki. Especially when people stalk the fora section of wikitalk for solutions.
"Who watches the watchmen?"
20 Deboss22nd Sep 2011 10:57:09 PM from Awesomeville Texas
I see the Awesomeness.
Yeah, we can cross post at will. I was going to copypasta it onto a page as well, I do that with most of my how-to's. Only one I didn't was the "Welcome to Image Pickin'" thread, and I tried something new with that one.

Should I upload those screen shots, or simply post the imageshack link?

edited 22nd Sep '11 10:57:40 PM by Deboss

21 Deboss23rd Sep 2011 12:16:36 AM from Awesomeville Texas
I see the Awesomeness.
Added a list of common "my link isn't working right" issues, with links to other pages.
22 robster200123rd Sep 2011 04:29:13 PM from Richmond, VA , Relationship Status: Yes, I'm alone, but I'm alone and free
Very Occasional Editor
Under "My link isn't working properly", it's 'mistyped', not 'miss typed'.

I think Miss Typed was a beauty pageant sponsored by Remington back in the day... :)
I am not a mod, and I don't play one on TV.
23 lebrel23rd Sep 2011 05:14:03 PM from Basement, Ivory Tower
Tsundere pet.
Formatting issue: The red-on-black text is extremely hard to read. Red-on-white would be better, or black-on-yellow maybe.
Calling someone a pedant is an automatic Insult Backfire. Real pedants will be flattered.
Note: uploading NSFW or illegal content to the site will result in a ban.

Yeah. I agree.

edited 23rd Sep '11 5:17:01 PM by Unknownlight

¿uʍop ǝpısdn buıop noʎ ǝɹɐ ʇɐɥʍ
25 Deboss23rd Sep 2011 07:27:19 PM from Awesomeville Texas
I see the Awesomeness.
What's the coding?

Total posts: 82
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