Known issues – add-ons for Google Sheets

Below you can find a list of possible issues that can occur when working with Google Sheets 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 spreadsheet 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 Sheets add-ons.

Blank sidebar when you start the add-on

This issue is known for all add-ons for Google Sheets. Most often it occurs in Safari browser. Some technical peculiarities of the way Google Sheets 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 Sheets 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 spreadsheet 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 Sheets add-ons.

I can't make the add-on run automatically

Unfortunately, at the moment it's impossible to run our add-ons automatically.

Current solution: Our Remove Duplicate Rows and Merge Sheets now support scenarios — the sets of options that you choose often. This lets you automate repetitive tasks and process data in a click.

All you need to do is click one button to save these settings, name this scenario, and run it from the menu later. You will find all the details concerning scenarios on the add-ons' help pages.

Issue-prone add-ons: All Google Sheets 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.

Note. Please contact your Admin first to make sure the add-on is not installed to your entire domain. If it is, please ask your Admin to remove the tool for you or simply change its settings.

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 Sheets add-ons.

Common issues related to data processing

The add-on doesn't work (the Next button is disabled, "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 Sheets add-ons.

All records starting with a single quote (') are processed as numbers.

Unfortunately, this limitation occurs for all add-ons in Google Sheets and we cannot bypass it. Thus, if you enter '12 in your cell, the record will be turned into 12 and processesed accordingly.

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

Dates cannot be processed

When the add-ons process dates, they don't get them in the same way you see them. When the add-on script gets an array of data to process, it receives the date as a combination of numeric characters that differs from the date format displayed to you in the sheet, e.g. the script sees "Mon May 05 2014 00:00:00 GMT" instead of "5/5/2014". This is the reason why neither search, nor replacement will return correct results. Most our add-ons do not process dates to avoid data corruption.

Issue-prone add-ons: Advanced Find and Replace, Merge Values, Power Tools.

Error when processing filtered data

Due to an issue on the Google Sheets side, some pieces of the code of the add-ons don't work with filtered rows.

Current solution: Turn off the filter before running the add-on.

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

It is not possible to work with non-adjacent ranges

Google Spreadsheet Service doesn't provide a way for the scripts to access multiple selected ranges at the moment, that's why you will always see the results for the last selected range. We are looking forward to adding this functionality to many add-ons.

Issue-prone add-ons: All add-ons; Merge Values, Random Generator, Power Tools among them.

No results with merged cells in the range

There is no technical possibility for the add-on to find out if the selection contains merged data, which prevents us from showing you a message with an explanation. When the script processes your data by row or column and it encounters merged cells in the selection, it can't correctly fulfill the task and returns no results.

Possible solution: Select the option to Unmerge under Format > Merge cells prior to running the add-on.

Issue-prone add-ons: Power Tools.

The add-on gives a Server error

This is a very general error. It may be caused by exceeding the limit of 5 million cells in Google Sheets. If you have a large spreadsheet, you can check this by trying to duplicate the sheet with your data, you will see the error right away.

Current solution: Avoid the options that add cells and skip the option to create a backup copy of the sheet.

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

The add-on returns no results

When you work with a large range of various data and if you have a very slow Internet connection, the add-on may hit Google's 360-second time limit for 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: Advanced Find and Replace, Table Styles.

Specific issues with some add-ons

Change case doesn't work

Capitalize and Sentence case. don't work if your data already contains any words in capitals.

Current solution: Please apply lowercase first. This was made intentionally in order not to corrupt any acronyms you may have. Though it does take one extra click to first turn text to lowercase, we believe it is easier than restoring words that were supposed to be in uppercase.

Issue-prone add-ons: Power Tools.

The Clear tool doesn't remove comments

When you run the option Clear all, it removes everything but comments from cells since Google Spreadsheet Service doesn't allow to access and manage comments at the moment.

Issue-prone add-ons: Power Tools.

Custom functions are not updated automatically

Caused by a known bug in Google Sheets, unless you change a value in one of the cells, we can't automatically update the formulas we insert.

Current solution: Function by Color introduced the Refresh option to update all custom formulas it inserts into your sheet in one go.

Issue-prone add-ons: Power Tools.

Function by Color doesn't work

A lack of locale in your spreadsheet may prevent the function from calculating the results as it doesn't know what delimiter should be used.

Possible solution: Set the locale in File > Spreadsheet settings.

Issue-prone add-ons: Power Tools.

Function by Color cannot process large data sets (over 200K cells) with one formula

Due to some Google Sheets limits for custom functions, our Function by Color tool cannot process large data sets (over 200K cells) with one formula.

Current solution: Process your data in smaller parts with a few Function by Color formulas. You can sum their results afterwards if needed.

Issue-prone add-ons: Power Tools.

Function by Color doesn't support Theme colors

Theme colors is a relatively new formatting tool in Google Sheets. Unfortunately, at the moment its algorithm doesn't allow our add-on to get all colors in the selected range.

Current solution: Use the standard Fill colors rather than Theme colors.

Issue-prone add-ons: Power Tools.

Multiple VLOOKUP Matches returns incorrect results

When looking for matches in a column with both dates and time, the add-on pulls incorrect/not all matches.

Current solution: Apply the same number format to the entire column with your records: Format > Number > Date time in the Google Sheets menu.

Otherwise, with values formatted differently within the column, for instance, pure dates (9/27/2019) and date and time (9/27/2019 9:00 AM), the add-on won't be able to process data correctly.

Issue-prone add-ons: Multiple VLOOKUP Matches.

Table Styles can't pick some of your formatting

Access to some formatting options is limited in the API that Google provides. This is why Table Styles add-on can't "see" the borders you have; it can't set any color but black for the added borders for the same reason. Similar limitations do not let it recognize text alignment in the selected range. There is also no technical way to see whether the text is wrapped when the add-on tries to pick the selected style.

Though there are no possibilities for us to identify the above, we can still let you add, save and apply these options when creating table styles.

Issue-prone add-ons: Table Styles.

Responses

Alejandro Sanchez says:
February 19, 2019 at 6:59 pm

When using the find and replace tool in the power tools product, it has been telling me for all queries no matter how small or large, that there is no matching data found. But there is data. Do you know what might be goign on? Thanks

Reply

Hello Alejandro,

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

If this doesn’t solve the problem, would it be possible for you to share a sample sheet with a couple of lines of your data with support@4-bits.com for testing?

We'll do our best to help you.

Reply

I installed two addons in my spreadsheet and now I can not delete them. The addons are "Find Fuzzy Matches" and "Flookup", thanks for your time.

Reply

Hi José,
Thank you for your question.

To uninstall add-ons from your Google Sheets, open any spreadsheet, go to Add-ons > Manage add-on, find the tool in the list and choose to Manage > Remove it.

If you need any further assistance, please email us to support@ablebits.com.
Thank you.

Reply
Alexander Ledig says:
February 25, 2019 at 1:11 pm

there is no place to insert license key: Select Add-ons > Power Tools > Enter license key in the Google Sheets menu.
this just doesnt exist

Reply

Hello Alexander,
Thank you for contacting us.

If you don't see the Enter license key option in the menu, most likely the add-on is already unlocked. Please run the tool and click the key icon at its bottom - you should see your license information there.
Otherwise, please email us to support@ablebits.com with the screenshots of the issue.
We'll do our best to help you activate.

Reply
Digamber Singh says:
March 13, 2019 at 9:17 am

Add Reminders Google Sheets add-on encountered a problem in your setting, but

Reply

Hello Digamber,

I'm sorry but Add Reminders is not our add-on. Please contact the tool's support team regarding the issue: support@add-reminders.com
Thank you.

Reply
mark van den bergen says:
April 16, 2019 at 9:16 am

I was hoping power tools could convert this formula to values
=VLOOKUP(A8,N:AR,4,false)
Converted to values should return an image thumbnail something like this:
=IMAGE("https://drive.google.com/uc?id=1blakDlwDEkxVq99cO9-lPbHMublabla")
But unfortunately powertools returns a blank cell.

Reply

Thank you for contacting us, Mark.
Could you please share a small sample spreadsheet with us (support@4-bits.com) with your source data and the result you expect to get? I kindly ask you to shorten the table(s) to 10-20 rows. We'll look into your task and see if there are ways to solve it with our tools.
Thank you.

Reply

Hi,
I am just following your example above to calculate the coloured boxes.
However, it kept showing 1 for COUNTA and 0 for COUNT.
I used this
=COUNT(valuesByCellColor("red", A8, M4:M7))
=COUNT(valuesByColor("#00ff00", "#000000", M4:M7))
Both does not work

Reply

Hi Bloom,

What example are you referring to?
Our tool creates valuesByColor function, not valuesByCellColor. Also, COUNT checks for cells with numeric records only. To make the formula consider textual and other cells as well, please use COUNTA.

If you're still unable to get it to work, for us to be able to help you, please share a sample spreadsheet with us (support@4-bits.com) with your source data and the result you expect to get. Please shorten the table to 10-20 rows.
Note. We keep support@4-bits.com for file sharing only and don't monitor its Inbox. Please do not email there.

We'll look into your task. Thank you.

Reply
Peter Schmidt says:
May 27, 2019 at 4:42 am

Hi,

I have installed the powertools addon and wanted to remove empty columns and rows from all pages, but it does not do the job, just for the current page. Can it be done in bulk, so if I have 100 sheets in google sheets then it removes all empty columns and sheets for all sheets?

Than you.
Petr

Reply

Hi Peter,

You are correct, the current version removes empty columns and rows only from the currently active sheet.

I will forward your request to our developers to check if it's technically possible to implement the feature.
Though I can't give you any timing, if you'd like, I can let you know when there's any news.

Reply
Bart Stuart Mortensen says:
July 12, 2019 at 3:47 pm

In the merge sheet add on, I am able to save the scenario. When I upgraded to power tools I am no longer able. Is there a fix planned for this?

Reply

Hello Bart,

At the moment, scenarios are available for single Merge Sheets only. We're working on transferring them to Power Tools, but I can't give you exact timing. I can email you back once scenarios are added there.

Please accept my sincere apologies for any inconvenience.

Reply

I just purchased the add on as my trial expired but it's not working.
It "works" but in the second column, it just duplicates the same exact first and last name in the second column. Please help!

Reply

Hello Erica,

Thank you for contacting us. Sorry to hear you've encountered difficulties with our add-on.

Our customer service assistant will reply to you by email.
Thank you for understanding.

Reply

Hey There,

Just bought the 'remove duplicates' add on, and my scenario stopped working. Now I'm unable to save scenarios at all. A bit frustrating to have functionality change after purchase.

Thanks

Reply

Hello Richard,
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

Any name with the letter "I" for the middle initial Split names does not Split the name to First middle and last name. It only fills the last name column with the persons first name.

First Name Middle Name Last Name
GERTRUDE I CHERRY GERTRUDE
KIP I PERGANDE KIP
LEE I VINES LEE
JOSE I MONTES JOSE

Reply
Ekaterina Pechyonkina says:
December 29, 2019 at 9:35 am

Hello Olaf,

Thank you for reporting the issue. Our developer team will investigate it thoroughly and respond to you. Thank you.

Reply

Hi there!

I am trying to use Combine Sheets inside a Shared Drive (formerly Team Drives), but it won't let me navigate to anything outside of "My Drive" in order to select files. Using the search feature, I can find a few of the files I need, but not all of them. Any idea why the search would return a few files that are in the Shared Drive but not others? And is there a way for me to access all of the Shared Drive files through the file-picker interface so that I can combine the sheets I need?

Thanks!
Abigail

Reply

Hello Abigail,

Thank you for contacting us. For us to be able to understand the problem better, please specify what Shared Drive you mean. Any screenshot illustrating the way you search for the necessary files will help a lot. Thank you.

Reply

Hi,
I have a paid version of Remove Duplicates. When I navigate to Add-ons in a G Sheet, the tool is greyed out and I am unable to access. I tried uninstalling and reinstalling, logging out and back in and nothing works.

Reply
Ekaterina Pechyonkina says:
January 21, 2020 at 8:30 am

Hi Kyle,

Thank you for contacting us. Sorry to hear you having issues with our add-on. I kindly ask you to take a screenshot of the tool greyed out and send it to support@ablebits.com.

We'll do our best to help.

Reply

The 'SUM(valuesByColor...' functionality has always been very good but seems to have stopped working over the last few days.
Now all cells with the formula in are giving the error message:
Error
Unknown function: 'valuesByColor'.

Has anyone else experienced this or knows how to fix?

Reply
Katerina Bespalaya says:
February 14, 2020 at 1:13 pm

Hi Giles,

Sorry to hear that you are having difficulties with our add-on. Please first make sure that you are logged in only under the account you used to grant permissions to the add-on. Please sign out of all other Google accounts due to an issue on the side of Google, log back in only under the subscribed account and try to reproduce the issue. If the problem persists, then please contact support@ablebits.com for further assistance. Thank you.

Reply

A few days ago when trying to use the add-on "remove duplicates" gives me a "connection refused" error, only works in a incognito mode. (i have purchased the plugin)

Reply

Hello Emmanuel,

Thank you for contacting us. This issue might occur due to the problems on the Google server where our add-ons are located. Please try to reinstall the tool by following these steps:

1. Sign out of all Google accounts and log back in only under the account you used to grant permissions to the add-on.
2. Open your spreadsheet and remove the add-on from your Google Sheets (Add-ons > Manage add-ons).
3. Reload the spreadsheet, go to Add-ons > Get add-ons, and install Remove Duplicates back.

Hope this will work for you. If you still have difficulties, please contact us at support@ablebits.com for further assistance.

Reply
Jordan Bober says:
May 27, 2020 at 7:15 pm

Hi, I have a license for Merge Sheets, but "Save Scenarios" doesn't seem to work for me, and the options to run scenarios don't show up in the add-on menu either. Do I need to do something to enable these features?

Reply

Thank you for contacting us. We have just replied to you by email. If you do not see our message in your Inbox, please check your Spam/Junk/Trash email folders.

Reply
Kourosh Parsapour says:
June 11, 2020 at 9:12 pm

Hi. I've paid for and received my lifetime activation key on 4/21/20 but was deployed soon after in order to provide support as a physician during the COVID-19 pandemic. I've recently returned and wanted to install the activation key but I'm unable to see or find the field for entering my key code. Please help.
Thanks in advance for your time in this matter.
Dr P

Reply

Hello,

Thank you for your comment. I am sorry, since your message contained some personal details, i.e. your phone number, we had to edit it and removed the personal information.

As for the activation of the add-on, please follow the steps described on this help page:
https://www.ablebits.com/docs/activate-google-sheets-add-ons/

If you need any further assistance, feel free to contact us again.

Reply
Scott Raffensparger says:
June 15, 2020 at 5:43 pm

Google sheet problem?
> Add-ons will no install/Uninstall correctly on shared sheets.
> Many of the things already mentioned.

Compare two sheets:
I have two sheets "Year 2020" and "Year 2021" is a copy of "Year 2020", The data expected to be different. The formulas should match. I made formula changes in "Year 2020" I would like to copy the changes to "Year 2021".

> how do I compare cell formulas? this may be a google sheets limitation.
> setup for a cell to cell comparison is difficult. if I can select all columns in table one, I need to set up table 2 columns to match table 1.

Reply

Hello Scott,

Thank you for contacting us. We have just replied to you via email, please check your Inbox. Thank you.

Reply

Hi ,
Did my renewal nearly 3 weeks ago and i haven't received new licence key , no response email as well , can i get help here .Thanks

Reply

Hi Ken,

Thank you for contacting us again. I'm really sorry you didn't receive our responses, thought we replied to your email a couple of times. When it comes to renewals, the activation key remains the same. It has just been resent to you from the Ablebits support team. If you don’t see it in your Inbox, please check your Spam/Junk/Trash email folders. Thank you.

Reply

Hello,

I'm getting an error that "drive.google.com refused to connect" - I hope you can help!

Reply

Hello Conor,

Thank you for contacting us. There is currently an issue on the side of Google that occurs when you are logged in under more than one account. Please sign out and log back in only under the account you used to grant permissions to the add-on and try to reproduce the issue.

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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