Known issues – add-ons for Google Docs

Below you can find a list of possible issues that can occur when working with Google Docs add-ons. They are caused by current technical limitations on Google end. We are looking for ways to go around them, though in some cases the only thing we can do is wait for bug fixes or new possibilities for third-party developers. We appreciate your patience and understanding.

If the problem you are having is not described here, please use the contact form at the bottom of the page to write to us or email straight to support@ablebits.com

Installation issues

The add-on doesn't install at the first attempt

This is a known Google problem that affects all add-ons in a new G Suite Marketplace. You click Install, allow permissions, see the spinning arrows working, then they disappear but the page still says Install. There's no confirmation of the succesfull installation whatsoever.

Current solution: Since we can't control the problem, we have to ask you to try and install the add-on a few more times.

Before you do so, make sure to sign out and log back into only one Google account – it often helps.

Also, please try to install from both the Add-ons > Get add-ons menu in your doc and from a G Suite Marketplace page in a new browser tab.

If the installation still doesn't go through, please report the problem to Google – this will help them in debugging. Just click the icon with a question mark at the upper-right corner of the installation page/window and select Send Feedback:
Send feedback in G Suite Marketplace.

Issue-prone add-ons: All Google Docs add-ons.

Blank sidebar when you start the add-on

This issue is known for all add-ons for Google Docs. Most often it occurs in Safari browser. Some technical peculiarities of the way Google Docs add-ons are made are causing this.

Possible solution: Try to update your browser or change it to Google Chrome.

Issue-prone add-ons: All Google Docs add-ons.

The only option in the add-on menu is Help

Sometimes when you're trying to run the add-on, the only option you can see in the drop-down menu is Help. This is usually caused by Google internal problems.

Current solution: Reload the file a few times and see if other options appear. If this doesn't help, email us to support@ablebits.com

Issue-prone add-ons: All Google Docs add-ons.

I removed the add-on but it's still in the list of my tools

The problem has appeared recently on the Google side and is most likely connected to migrating to G Suite Marketplace from Chrome Web Store.

Current solution: Go to G Suite Marketplace and install the tool from there.

Tip. No worries, G Suite doesn't have to be paid for.

After that, click the gear wheel icon at the upper-right corner of the page (next to your account picture) and pick Manage Apps:
Manage apps in G Suite Marketplace.

If the tool is in the list, click the icon with three dots on its image and choose Uninstall.

Then return to your spreadsheet and remove the add-on once again the standard way.
If this doesn't help, email us to support@ablebits.com

Issue-prone add-ons: All Google Docs add-ons.

Common issues related to data processing

The add-on doesn't work ("working" arrows are spinning all the time or there is no result)

This issue occurs if you are logged in under more than one Google account. It happens due to an issue with multiple Google accounts on Google side.

Possible solution: Please sign out and log back in with an account under which you want to work with your spreadsheet.

Issue-prone add-ons: All Google Docs add-ons.

Search & Navigate issues

Search & Navigate is very slow

It takes a long time to load information from the document into the add-on sidebar and to find that information in a document due to a known bug in Google Docs. Currently it slows down the add-ons that work with headings or display other document content in the sidebar.

Issue-prone add-ons: Search & Navigate

I can't remove a bookmark from an image or table

The add-on can't remove a bookmark that refers to an image or table because of a bug in Google Docs.

Possible solution: Try removing the bookmark manually.

Issue-prone add-ons: Search & Navigate

The add-on returns no results

When you work with large documents and if you have a very slow Internet connection, the add-on may hit Google's 360-second time limit for an operation. Our developers work hard to avoid such issues, please let us know if you encounter it with any Ablebits tools.

Issue-prone add-ons: Search & Navigate

Styles issues

Uppercase style is not applied correctly for headings with bookmarks

When you add a bookmark to the heading, we may lose it after applying a style that changes the text to uppercase. We keep your original case in order to save the bookmark you have.

Possible solution: Try typing text in upper case manually.

Issue-prone add-ons: Styles

Styles add-on doesn't let me add new styles

An issue in Google Docs doesn't let the add-ons "see" the font of the text you select. Once this issue is fixed, we'll add the possibility to save your document styles as a template.

Issue-prone add-ons: Styles

Styles add-on can't update built-in styles in Google Docs

Due to an issue in Google Docs, add-ons can't automatically update built-in styles to match. We can only recommend using styles provided with the add-on to change the way your document looks.

Issue-prone add-ons: Styles

Styles add-on can't keep number and indentation formatting

Due to an issue in Google Docs, add-ons can't apply any formatting to numbers or see and keep your current indentation.

Issue-prone add-ons: Styles

Responses

Styles add-on won't put the table in alphabetical order. It allows me to click on the ascending order, then the screen pops up to start it, but then nothing happens.

Reply

It will sort, kind of. But it won't allow alphabetical sorting for a column. The choice is not clickable.

Reply

Hello Jane,

Our Styles add-on doesn't sort user data. If I understand you correctly, you're speaking of Doc Tools.

There's currently an issue on the Google side that occurs when you are logged in under more than one account. Please sign out and log back in only under the account you use to work with the add-on, and try again.

If this doesn't help, please email us to support@ablebits.com with the screenshot of the disabled option.
Also, when the issue occurs, please press F12 on your keyboard (Cmd+alt+J or Cmd+opt+J if you have a Mac), go to the Console tab, copy the last 15-20 lines and send them to us.

All this info will help us pin down the cause of the problem.
Thank you.

I am trying to re-sort my table, but it's not working. When I click on sort ascending, I don't get the option box to pick the column(s) to sort on. It only came up the very first time I sorted.

Reply

Hello Kim,
Thank you for contacting us.

Please note that there is currently an issue on the side of Google that occurs when you are logged in under more than one account. We kindly ask you to sign out and log in only under the account you used to grant permissions to the add-on and try to reproduce the issue.

If this doesn't help, please press F12 on your keyboard (Cmd+alt+J or Cmd+opt+J if you have a Mac), go to the Console tab, copy the last 15-20 lines and send them to support@ablebits.com. We'll do our best to help you.

Reply

I am having a problem with my bookmarks in a google doc disappearing. I had most of them disappear, except for maybe 3, which I renamed. I did not change all the names of the bookmarks, the three remaining do appear to be ones I changed. All the rest are gone!

I do see them in the revision history.

Have you seen your extension cause this? I was linking internally to bookmarks because I thought in the past (before using your extension), they were more stable than linking to headings. But now this.

Reply

Also, I did have the issue of mixed google accounts making it not work, (spinning wheel, not populating). Perhaps that was related. I did find the particular revision that the mass exodus of bookmarks occurred but I don't if I have time to run this down and send them to you for investigation.

So unless you guys know of this problem, I may have to go to LibreOffice to finish this project, it will have LOTS of bookmarks, and I can't risk losing them again. Unless you know of the cause, whether it is your extension or Google, I might have to bail. This has to get finished quickly.

Thanks

Reply

Hello Dyrell,

Thank you for reporting this problem to us.

We've never received any complaints regarding our tool deleting bookmarks. However, Google Docs constantly updates and it's difficult for us to tell right away what may cause the issue.
If it's not a problem for you, we'd appreciate if you could share both revisions: the one with all bookmarks prior to their disappearing and the one right after - with us (support@4-bits.com).
Our developer will investigate the issue.

Thank you.

Cherie Salazar says:
February 21, 2020 at 6:36 pm

Added the add-on and it's not even clickable on my dropbox. It's grey. Doesn't work. I logged in and out of my email to see if that could help and it didn't change.

Reply

Hello Cherie,

Thank you for contacting us. We have just replied to you via email. Please provide us with the requested information and we’ll do our best to help. Thank you.

Reply

Hi, Using styles, when I apply styles it collapses bullet lists, so

* this
- Second thing
- Third thing
* That
- Forth Thing

Becomes

* this
- Second thing
- Third thing
* That
- Forth Thing

Reply

Hi Nicholas,

Thank you for contacting us.

At the moment there is no opportunity for the Styles add-on to keep your current indentation because of an issue in Google Docs. Please check the list of all current limitations for the Styles add-on here.

Reply

I love the add-on and appreciate you making it. A couple things: if text is already in ALL CAPS, choosing the "capitalize each word" option does not work. A workaround is to "toggle case," making it all lower case, and THEN choosing "capitalize each word." Something I have not been able to find a workaround for, however, is if there is only one letter, "capitalize each word" will not capitalize it. I get a list of people in all caps in this format: PERSON, TEST A, where "A" is the middle initial. When I do the above process, I get it to "Person, Test a" instead of the expected "Person, Test A." I wasn't sure if you might be able to fix that behavior. As a side, note, the built in tool in MS Word handles single characters as a new word. Thanks again for making the tool!

Reply

Hello Brendan,

Thank you for your feedback and for reporting this issue to us. We have reproduced it on our side and will email you when there is any news from our developers.

Reply

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If you have any questions or issues with this add-in, please feel free to post your concerns in the comments area. As soon as we answer, a notification message will be sent to your e-mail. If you do not want to share your thoughts in public, please contact us at support@ablebits.com.
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