IT Employment

Flip through these memorable error messages

Some error messages can make you laugh, and some can make you scratch your head in confusion. Here are some of the most memorable and goofy error messages TechRebublic members have seen over the years.

A couple weeks ago I asked TechRepublic members to contribute some of the most memorable error messages they've seen over the years. I had a blast compiling the contributions because of the error messages themselves but also because of the commentary supplied by those who contributed.

You can click here to see the gallery of goofy error messages to get a chuckle or just to reminisce about some of these error messages.

About

Toni Bowers is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and is the award-winning blogger of the Career Management blog. She has edited newsletters, books, and web sites pertaining to software, IT career, and IT management issues.

60 comments
saberrattler
saberrattler

I got one of these today. "The following plug-in was unresponsive: Unknown. Would you like to stop it?"

flotsam70
flotsam70

To the comments that dis TR galleries. Not going to waste my time. I also agree with the sentiment that a lot of these error messages only exist in certain wild imaginations. That said, I've seen my share of bizarre error messages, like the permissions-related error message I saw a few minutes ago. I was trying to copy a file to a network share, to a folder where (in addition to read/execute) I have create files/write data and create folders/append data permissions, but nothing else. Windows Explorer appeared to copy the file, then prompted me with something like: "Failed to copy the file, _filename_. Operation completed successfully." Well, I guess if you aim to fail, then indeed, the operation was a success. ;-)

bimmerite
bimmerite

Ever since they changed the format the galleries have become unusable and way too time consuming. Total FAIL. If you want people to look through these then they need to load faster and be way more user friendly. Otherwise your website will die a slow death as technology professionals like myself move away to other websites.

einar3
einar3

Quite frankly I'm surprised at the lay-out! Clicking through 53 'slides' turned out to be impossible for me: I abandoned after 10 or 12. I guess the choice for this type of layout is to increase 'clicks' and 'page views' and cash in with the advertising. However, in my case, I will avoid similar things in the future, even though they could be interesting. Just wasting one minute to go through 4 or 5 slides, would make me waste more than 10 minutes on this. No way. Sorry guys, but next time, just list similar items on one page for a quick browse-through.

sam9999
sam9999

To sum up in one word - Ridiculous. We visit Techrepublic for information. If I need entertainment, I've got youtube.

muadzir
muadzir

syntax error at line 258. I am at line 258. there's no syntax error. maybe the line after that...

muadzir
muadzir

Windows error: "Unable to detect monitor. Please check the power cable and monitor cable. Or please consult your administrator" Monitor is blank!!

mattypoole
mattypoole

Little more needs to be said. Note to self, delete future techrepublic emails.

anhxang
anhxang

and they are almost readable, alas.

tinkerman
tinkerman

I was most interested in the history behind each of these messages but waiting for the page to load and then all the adverts to complete before I could click to read the notes got old. I think this could have been presented in a much more reader-friendly format. But alas, I must agree with some of the other posters; TR "fun" galleries are just no longer worth the time. It's too bad that the only way for TR to remain free is to make every single inch of real estate (and some of the words!) an advert.

mmmmpsi
mmmmpsi

What an absolute piece of garbage.. I've seen some bad articles here over the past few months but this actually makes me want to delete my account as I get enough spam already throughout the day.. I can't believe people actually get paid to come up with this crap.

jwhitmor
jwhitmor

Missed the original request for error messages. My favorite: "You are not authorized to shutdown this PC." My comment: "I'll show YOU "Authorization"! (as I yanked the power cord out of the outlet).

willjamr
willjamr

Probable user error. Correct and resubmit.

mattouellette
mattouellette

These are all text. Toni may be an award winning blogger but she may be CBS Interactive award winning waster of time. Someone actually had to take a screen shot or make an image file of each of these error messages (which are all text). Then slap them into a terrible "Gallery" with each message refreshing a page. Look at it this way. I wouldn't go to an art gallery where every painting is behind an individual door you had to open. I'm disappointed TechRepublic. Did we use frontpage to run this blog or what?

Scott.Geiger
Scott.Geiger

This should not have been a "slide show" - it was just text slides. If it had been actual screen shots of the error messages then that would be reasonable, but to just have black and white text as slides? Toni, just because you can do something doesn't mean you should. I got to 8 and stopped.

DFO_REXX
DFO_REXX

"Index record points outside the dataset. Its broke." What I like about the message is its clarity and "personal feel" (this is what someone might actually say). On the other hand, shouldn't an error message be grammatically correct?

gradkiss
gradkiss

There's an advertisement on the right hand side of the page that reads tr-dojo-must-know-windows-7-troubleshooting-commands Video 1 of 17... and that sure gets a few error messages all prepared even for windows 8 even. It's just hard to sit here and take careful notes unless i achieved it the political way...and left taking no credit away... Sad thing though ... I am not in Debt ... but according to the governor of California I owe someone millions of dollars and talk about an error message that gets women all in panic syndrome...I'll have a good day anyway...and everyone here has had some of Toni's training...to get through all the bad stuff...and thanks again Toni...at least I did just wake up and found something pleasant in my own mail box.

jbmv
jbmv

It took to long to get to screen #2. so I gave up.

grouchomarx#2
grouchomarx#2

Dear TR, Very funny I don't know what is funnier the repeat clicking or the comments of the clicker people!!! This will keep us on our toes! Mike Viscome (non-geek)

cbeckers
cbeckers

NOT FUNNY...especially on my Android.

Jimbo Jones
Jimbo Jones

Fail. I am going to abort now, as I have work to do. I hope you consider retrying this article next week, in a more readable format.

vttimwhite
vttimwhite

These are fluff stories to begin with. This one sounded like it might be kind of humorous, but instead it seems like nothing more than a click-fest designed to attract advertisers. Hey, advertisers- it'll be at least a week before I do anything other than delete Tech Republic emails!

gchutrau
gchutrau

this is the kind of thing that keeps me off some blogs....

german_nieto
german_nieto

Dears: Speaking about errors... Here in that link we have another.

andy
andy

The link to the goofy messages just brings up this same page. Never got to see any.

jimbritttn
jimbritttn

There isn't a gallery; just a continuous loop!

dlluce
dlluce

In yesterday's Dilbert cartoon, the (rhetorical) question was posed, "What is the difference between trust and stupidity?"; today's headline asked for the most memorable error messages. PAY ATTENTION! This column is a geek's idea of a clever joke.

spage
spage

ERROR: Unable to get back the time you squandered on this TechRepublic article. OR.... ERROR: TechRepublic has stopped trying

emerson2545
emerson2545

maybe this is just another way to generate clicks...for money?

a.kenter
a.kenter

...but at least, there's no goofy error message...

jay.okane
jay.okane

I can read the intro telling me about the article, but following the link takes me.... right back here. :-(

Qazme
Qazme

Same as everyone else. Just reloads this page.

techrepublic
techrepublic

I wonder what the awards were for... Nothing here works.

emerson2545
emerson2545

it is annoying for you dave... I cannot see any of them. when I click on the link for the gallery, I just get the same page.

Subs0nic
Subs0nic

Ironic that the story on error messages is an error. Just an endless loop back to the start page....

wolsonjr
wolsonjr

looks like you need your own message for a link that just loads the same page

dcolbert
dcolbert

Hey - Spage, you asked a question on my FreeNAS article in 2011. Yes. DeltaCopy was what I used. There was a single paragraph in the body of the text that mentioned it. "" For anyone interested in Syncing from FreeNAS to a Windows-based server or appliance, “DeltaCopy” is the Rysnc Server/Client application that I use on my production replication environment." So, yeah, DeltaCopy was the Windows side. Sorry it took me two years to notice your question and respond. I tried to PM you, but couldn't get it to work for your address.

mrpekarik
mrpekarik

I get the same thing. Is this one of the "errors", a looping link?