I am implementing a 're-try' feature on a P2P utility for the situation where the connection is broken, but I don't know what message is appropriate.

The problem is, the re-try can only be initiated from a peer (let's called it the sender), the other peer (the receiver) has nothing to do but wait.

How can I tell the receiver that he should wait for the sender to click on the retry button? The use scenario is that both sender and receiver are in the same room and they know each other, and probably the two devices are used by the same user (for example, a user transfer files from his smartphone to his desktop PC).

I think of something like -

"You can try to resume transfer by clicking on the 'Try again' button on the other device."

It needs to be manually triggered rather than automatically triggered because the time needed to resume the connection is unbelievably long- partially due to unstable hardwares. I think a hanging progressbar is worse, user will become impatient. I prefer to let user to retry manually so he can see something is in progress (by showing an indeterminate progress bar).

  • Why is it important to "retry" manually? What does it mean to a user? From a pure UX point of view - user is not willing to do that manually. Commented Sep 17, 2012 at 11:41

2 Answers 2


I would suggest that first tell the user that there has been an error and that the error is not due to them. This adds a lot of faith of the user towards the application. I prefer not to write that the user has made a mistake or the user is at fault.

Secondly, give a proper solution. So the message should be:

"Oops! It seems something went wrong and the transfer has stopped. Just click on TRY AGAIN from the sender machine to resolve the issue and the download will resume automatically."


"Something went wrong with the sender. Please, click TRY AGAIN on the sender screen."

  • A longer answer that added some explanation would be a good answer.
    – ChrisF
    Commented Oct 1, 2012 at 21:51

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