Monday, September 16, 2013

Another Blogger Bug: In order to select an item from your on-line storage, please sign in

In a comment on my previous Blogger-mess-related post, Blogger Error "You have logged out from another location...", Blogger user Miyaka reported another "curious behavior" of the world's most popular blogging platform operated by the world's largest Internet company. Less than two days later, I was experiencing the same problem myself.

I must say that these Blogger glitches are getting really annoying.

Here is what happens. When you try to insert an image into a blog post, instead of showing you the image picker, it shows a dialog box with the message "In order to select an item from your on-line storage, please sign in." and a "Sign in" button (see Screenshot 1 below) even though you are logged in.

Screenshot 1

If you click the red "Sign in" button, it displays the Google account sign in page (in a pop-up), but after you sign in, you get a "There was an error! Details: The feature you requested is currently unavailable. Please try again later." message (see Screenshot 2 below).

Screenshot 2

Extremely informative!


My gut feeling immediately told me that this bug had to be related to the one I wrote about before. It is. And, just like the other one, this has something to do with cookies (specifically, third-party cookies).


So, until I figure out a more elegant solution, here is ugly workaround #1:
  1. Log on to your Google account (it doesn't matter how: you can log on to GMail and then open Blogger or you can log on to Blogger directly). Remember to access Blogger via https - not http (see my earlier post).
  2. Before uploading and/or inserting images into your blog post go to your browser settings and allow third-party cookies.
  3. Continue working normally. You need to keep that setting enabled until you finish using Blogger (or at least until you finish uploading/inserting images).
  4. When done using Blogger (or, at least, working with images), go back to your browser settings and disallow third-party cookies (this is optional, of course, but bear in mind that by allowing third-party cookies you may COMPROMISE your PRIVACY). Next time you create/edit a blog post with images, you will have to repeat the above all over again.

Workaround #2 (not extremely elegant either, but EASIER and SAFER):
    In your browser settings, keep third-party cookies blocked, but make an exception only for docs.google.com and set it to "Allow".


I don't really like either of these much, but Workaround #2 seems easy and harmless enough to be considered an acceptable "fix".


P.S.
I have found reports of this bug as old as October 2012. The best reply a Google employee by the name Brett could come up with was that they did not see "system-wide issues", suggested cleaning browser cache and cookies (it seems to be their remedy for everything) and closed the topic.

21 comments:

Indera Saifullah said...

Thanx. Your solution does work! Well done!

♥ 蕃茄 ♥ said...

i have only encountered this problem 3 days ago. to think that Google / Blogger users experienced this problem years ago and it still caused issues today, just shows how efficient Google engineers are.
But thank you for the help!

Ira Portman said...

♥ 蕃茄 ♥ and Indera Saifullah, you are welcome.

Sheena Sreekeessoon said...

Thank you soooo much! I tried solution 2 and it works brilliantly!

Ira Portman said...

You are quite welcome, Sheena.

tontonmarc said...

thanks for a very helpful post, you should get paid by Google for doing their tech-support & QA job!!
FYI as of 11-Jan problem remains almost the same, difference being that after screenshot 1 i don't even get screenshot 2, just a forever-bank popup.
Now, is it really unsafe to leave docs.google.com as a unblocked cookie exception?

Ira Portman said...

I wouldn't mind getting paid, but...
I have seen the "forever-blank popup" as well. I couldn't reproduce it consistently. Honestly, I didn't try very hard because it was clear that it was just a slightly different manifestation of the same issue.
Every time you log in to your GMail, Google sets about a dozen cookies for all other Google services (e.g., YouTube, Blogger, etc.). Google Docs (or Google Drive as it is now called) is just another one of those, and it is unlikely that it is any more "evil" than those other ones :-)

Mz Mind-Full Jordan said...

Thank You !! Used number 2 work around..works like new.

Peter Lehoczký said...

oh yes, thanks a lot, your solution worked for me wery well!!

Ira Portman said...

You are very welcome, Mz Mind-Full Jordan and Peter Lehoczký.

Monica said...

I tried your fix number 2, but alas, it doesn't work. Kind of getting frustrating.

Ira Portman said...

Monica, I am sorry to hear that. It has worked for everybody else (those who let me know) so far. Try some other browser and see if it happens consistently.

Sophie L'Ange said...

I'm having the same problem with YouTube.

It's 2015 and #1 works but #2 doesn't.

~sigh

Wish they'd get their act together.

Ira Portman said...

Sophie,
You mean you get the same error uploading videos to YouTube? That's something new.

Sophie L'Ange said...

Not when I'm uploading a video, but if I try to do things that reach back to my Google account like change my channel picture.

Also, I've not been able to comment on Blogger either.

I've been fighting this for like a year. If I open third party cookies up all the way like you suggest, then it works.

I haven't found an exception that works, including *.google.com. :/

But I have a work around. Thanks. :)

Sophie L'Ange said...

I spent some time this afternoon with my Firefox. I cleared all the cookies, turned off the security, uploaded a new profile picture, turn security back on, and looked at the sites that added cookies.

Then I went through the sites one by one. I'm having success with only "google.com" in the exceptions list.

Hopefully this is helpful information.

Ira Portman said...

Thank you, Sophie!
I have not seen this problem on YouTube, but then again I don't even remember if I have ever changed my picture on YouTube (probably not). Others, I am sure, will find your information useful. Thanks again!

John Crosse said...

I want to upload images from my computer files but I keep getting the Google on-line storage sign-in window.

Ira Portman said...

John, are you saying that none of the above work-arounds works for you?

Anonymous said...

Thanks Bro it's great way and working fine

Ira Portman said...

You are welcome.