Questions tagged [error-message]

information displayed when an unexpected condition occurs, usually on a computer or other device

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156 votes
19 answers
64k views

What is best practice for designing form error messages?

I've seen quite a lot of research on form design, but so far, I haven't come across any studies on error message design best practices. The only piece of advice seems to be that each error should ...
533 votes
16 answers
78k views

Should error messages apologize?

We are having a discussion on our team about an error message that says "Sorry, you do not have permission to access this feature. Please contact your administrator for assistance." Is it ...
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27 votes
13 answers
4k views

Is it better to prevent a forbidden action or display an error/explanation message?

There are multiple examples, so I'll pick a specific one to focus the question. Let's say a user can have specific characteristics (or permissions): Admin, Virtual, External, Financial, etc. To ...
  • 7,732
14 votes
5 answers
13k views

Disabling submit-button until the user has completed the form

How do you think about disabling the submit-button until the user has completed the form or the required fields? I find similar questions here on ux.se and somebody answered that the user will think ...
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15 votes
3 answers
7k views

Form validation - When should error messages be triggered?

I'm working on a registration form with real-time inline validation. I'm wondering when we should trigger error messages: before, when the field is in focus and until the user has entered a valid ...
  • 1,697
42 votes
6 answers
17k views

Periods at the end of a sentence in alert message

How to classify what type of messages should've a fullstop/period and what should not? Because there are certain error/warning/success/info messages (be it a dialog, banner, contextual or ones in a ...
38 votes
4 answers
14k views

Is the color red really appropriate for form validation errors?

It seems to be taken for granted that the color red is appropriate to highlight errors. In the case of serious system errors, I agree. However, I'm having doubts that it's the right choice for user ...
  • 2,625
16 votes
6 answers
3k views

Should we avoid negative words when writing error messages?

Does the use of words such as 'fail', 'wrong', 'incorrect' and 'invalid' have a sufficiently negative impact on a users frame of mind to warrant the prohibition of their inclusion in the error ...
  • 7,818
56 votes
14 answers
4k views

How do I get users to read error messages?

If your intended audience is nontechnical you find yourself at a severe risk that your users will plain ignore the carefully worded error messages, either staring in shock at them, calling and yelling ...
47 votes
11 answers
12k views

Using funny error messages in Finance

Currently I'm working on a branch banking application which is going to be used for all banking transactions such as Money deposit, EFT but also Campaign Management etc. (Some user roles are directly ...
  • 1,342
46 votes
6 answers
6k views

How can I highlight errors when bright red is the main color of the brand?

I'm working on a mobile website for a client whose main brand color is red. The website header and headings are all red. CTA buttons are red too. How can I effectively separate errors (mostly in form ...
  • 1,071
21 votes
10 answers
2k views

Necessity of writing the number "404" on a 404 page?

I've been working on a 404 page recently and have been confronted with the issue of whether we need to explicitly write the numbers '404' on the 404 page. My team's opinion on this issue is split. I ...
  • 341
21 votes
6 answers
5k views

Should we be optimistic or pessimistic with UI updates on AJAX requests?

We are discussing in our team how best to handle UI updates after a user does something to cause an AJAX request to the server. Here are options we are considering: Instantly update the UI and add/...
  • 311
17 votes
5 answers
7k views

Should I make space for error messages in forms?

I'm designing an mobile app for both iOS and Android, which includes a form. The form has several required input fields that the user needs to complete before continuing. If the user clicks Continue ...
  • 201
13 votes
12 answers
4k views

Bulk actions: what to do when not all items support an action

Picture the following scenario: user selects a bunch of items, and the 'bulk actions' box appears; user selects an action that not all items support (for one reason or another). What do you do in ...
  • 231
4 votes
2 answers
890 views

How to notify the user of a system error (out of their control)?

What's an easy-to-understand error message for situations where the error is a system error (out of the control of the user and cannot be fixed by the user)? Here's a few that I came up with, but it'...
  • 5,818
67 votes
7 answers
13k views

Should I show the troll that I know he's trolling?

I'm building an online store that has many features and functions. Whenever a user interacts with the site a notification is shown. These notifications should give the user a response to his action ...
  • 779
62 votes
10 answers
88k views

What is the recommended wording for a generic error message

What would be the best wording for a generic error message? With generic error message I mean a message for an error that has occured but there are no details on what the error is or how to recover ...
59 votes
13 answers
2k views

Personal information in messages

Is it good to add some personal information (name, username or other) in success or error messages?
57 votes
9 answers
28k views

What color for error messages for a form with a red background?

I have a big website with some forms. There are four background-colours for the form components. One of them is pink/red. Here the image and the error message: I can't change the form background-...
56 votes
4 answers
98k views

How to create a useful 500 internal server error page

I'm trying to create a useful HTTP Error 500 Internal server error page and the recommendations I have found and the live examples I have stumpled upon use a very simple layout. They basically include:...
  • 7,222
44 votes
10 answers
8k views

Is it OK to autocorrect users when they have mistyped parts of their email address?

When logging in, users might mistype parts of their email address. For example, name@company.con instead of .com, Yaho instead of yahoo, etc. The main rationale is that by autocorrecting user input ...
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40 votes
3 answers
2k views

Humor on the deathbed

Here is a rather accurate description of an extremely rare situation, displayed by a program right before seppuku: cannot handle the fatal error due to a fatal error in the fatal error handler! ...
  • 577
20 votes
2 answers
13k views

Recommendations for good resources on writing good error messages [closed]

Writing good error messages which help users understand how to use the system is difficult. Often we get bug reports stating "Error message x is confusing" which usually sparks a long debate in the ...
  • 401
16 votes
2 answers
12k views

How to display a "Log in" error in Material Design?

Problem I am trying to create a log in page that follows the material design guidelines, but I don't know how to handle when the user inputs the wrong email or password. In the material design ...
14 votes
5 answers
4k views

What will be the Best notifications and error messages?

As a UI architect, I am always wondering about the best format to display errors and notifications to users. Which of the following examples is the best format? Name is required Name cannot be ...
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11 votes
3 answers
16k views

Reset password, appropriate response if email doesn't exist?

It is common on login forms to see "Email or password is incorrect" when the user types in their account details incorrectly instead of just "password is incorrect". This is, for among other reasons, ...
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9 votes
1 answer
934 views

Message Fade Timing

Sometimes one wishes to display a message for some time before removing it in some way (in my case fading). When implementing this idea, a problem arises: how long should the message remain fully ...
9 votes
1 answer
5k views

Standardized (web) application error messages? [closed]

I'm in the middle of coding a bespoke CMS for a company and if there is one thing I hate it's coming up with good copy for "flash" messages (short messages that provide user feedback.) I know how ...
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6 votes
2 answers
321 views

When should the message informing the user that the password they entered is wrong go away?

This is a follow up to this question since it got closed. In a log in form, after the user enters the wrong password, when should the message saying "wrong password or user name" go away? For example ...
  • 1,365
6 votes
2 answers
2k views

What image and message use in the "Not found" page (404 error page) [closed]

I've seen the robot of Google, the creature that has Github. I think that is question of imagination and what kind of data manages your web app to design a custom image and the message to show to the ...
  • 253
6 votes
2 answers
3k views

Why do error and success messages have a close button?

It seems really weird as they usually do nothing, only hide themselves. Is it a "turn a blind eye to problem in hope it goes away"? I'm talking about inline status message like this one from Twitter'...
  • 135
5 votes
3 answers
1k views

Where should a 404 page link back to?

This might be a no-brainer but I can't decide whether the 404 error page should link back to the page, from which the user has come, or should it direct to the main page where the user can navigate to ...
  • 43.6k
4 votes
2 answers
500 views

Generic or dedicated error pages

The most common errorpage is the 404 error. Right now we are working on a website for a big client with several country websites. My idea for http errors is: One generic page which appologies for ...
  • 472
4 votes
1 answer
333 views

What are the most common mistakes people make when entering their e-mails in a form?

I want to write some quite specific error messages for an e-mail form field in order for people to find out what they did wrong more quickly. – What are the most common mistakes people make when ...
  • 7,222
4 votes
2 answers
2k views

Error Message Advice (for asynchronous/background tasks)

We have a web application which currently performs a number of intensive, time-consuming tasks. The initial design didn't really cope with the levels of information we're now dealing with and we're ...
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3 votes
3 answers
419 views

Is displaying search bar in Search Result/Error 404 page redundant (when it's already on sidebar/header)?

Is it redundant to display the search bar on Search Result or Error 404 page again when the website already has it on the sidebar/side navigation or on header? I've always felt it's kind of redundant ...
  • 143
3 votes
1 answer
513 views

Kiosk: If a function is not available, should there be a notification screen?

So if my kiosk cannot print or access account info—which are important features—should I introduce a screen to inform the user about that error after sign in (2nd screen in the example below), or ...
  • 363
2 votes
3 answers
2k views

Multiple Page Forms: Validate on every page or only on the last page?

We have a form that spans 3 pages (has steps 1 to 3). Currently, we allow them to skip required data because they may want to do Step 2 first before they feel like filling out Step 1 form. Our forms ...
  • 4,198
1 vote
2 answers
1k views

What's the best way to alert someone to an error on their form?

When someone submits a form on a Website or mobile app that has an error, what's the best place to show them the error? Should it be by the submit button or by the errant field? If it's by the errant ...
1 vote
2 answers
63 views

Positioning and using a prompt / instruction / error line?

I'm working on a complex GUI where new users are common and so there is a line that either gives instructions, prompts you with information after you select a button that causes a reaction, or prompts ...
0 votes
4 answers
8k views

Error message for "Invalid Username"

As per "UX guidelines" what should be the error message for a dimmpley Login for having 2 basic fields "Username" & Password. So if a User Enter a username with "Space or special characters[,/<...
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