Using "Preview" causes error message which is misleading and causes further problems

All comments and questions related to the functionality of the OpenVPN web pages and forum should go here.
Post Reply
OpenVpn Newbie
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2018 12:28 pm

Using "Preview" causes error message which is misleading and causes further problems

Post by Nik777 » Fri Oct 12, 2018 4:31 pm

Hi All,

Although I am not new to OpenVPN or the old email-based message boards, I am new to this web-based BB forum.

Whilst writing my first post on this board, I tripped over one of the hidden anti-features of the board.
And unfortunately, the error message is so misleading that it told me to do the exact opposite of what I needed to do to correct the problem.

My sin was to click "Preview" too often.
If clicking "preview" often is not allowed, then this fact should be advertised to new users.

There are "Forum Rules" shown at the top of the forum index - could someone please add:
"Do NOT click the Preview button frequently. Doing so will trigger the ant-robot code, and you will be blocked from further activity - and be declared a perverted robot that persecutes other people's bunny-rabbits."
(or similar)

I read all the "Instructions for first-time users", and saw no warnings in there about clicking the "Preview" button too often.

The error message I get is:
Forbidden. You submitted too quickly. You may try again in a few seconds. Contains contacts.
Every part of this message is incorrect, and as a result, extremely misleading.
  • Firstly, it says I "submitted" too often. This is wrong - I did not click "Submit" - I clicked "Preview".
    This is important, because I understood that clicking "Preview" again in "a few seconds" would be ok - as per the message.
    Can the message please be changed to: "You Submitted or Previewed too often - you may retry in 5 minutes" - or whatever is actually accurate (it most certainly is not a few seconds).
  • Secondly, it says "You may try again again in a few seconds". This is wrong. If you try again in a few seconds, you will get the same error message again, and apparently cause the anti-robot code to go into a frenzy, and block your IP address for a period of time which is definitely longer than "a few seconds".
    I found it was still blocking me after 5 minutes, and I ended up waiting 30 minutes before I was finally allowed a successful post.
  • Thirdly, it says "Contains contacts". This is wrong. The text contains nothing like contact details - it doesn't even contain a single '@' char.
    This part of the error message is apparently just a random selection. Someone else got "Message seems to be spam".
    However, because the error message said my text contained contacts, I wasted half an hour of my life removing various pieces of text; waiting a few seconds; and then clicking "Preview" again.
For a product of the caliber of OpenVPN which provides robust and secure communication in an easily understood way, this anti-feature of the forum BB is the antithesis of the product.

I find it frustratingly ironic that when I tried to report a problem with one of the OpenVPN options not performing as per the documentation, the Forum BB blocked me from posting, due to an anti-feature that does not perform as per documentation or its own error message.

OpenVpn Newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Sun Oct 21, 2018 5:46 pm

Re: Usong "Preview" causes error message which is misleading and causes further problems

Post by dropsonic » Mon Oct 22, 2018 1:15 pm

I'm experiencing the same issue for several days in a row.

User avatar
OpenVPN Protagonist
Posts: 7177
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 1:17 pm

Re: Usong "Preview" causes error message which is misleading and causes further problems

Post by TinCanTech » Mon Oct 22, 2018 2:11 pm

OpenVPN apologises for the inconvenience you have experienced.

Generally, the advice I can offer is this:
  • Do not use the preview button too often.

    Q. What is too often ? -- A. I do not know, I have never seen this problem myself.
    Although I often get "You cannot make another post so soon after your last post".
    So please be patient .. I will ask the Forum Administrator to look into it.
  • If You are satisfied that your post is clean then Submit it.

    If your post gets sent to moderation then it will be reviewed by a moderator.
    This Forum is very liberal when choosing to allow or block what we consider to be SPAM.
    The automated systems are a lot more picky about SPAM .. that is their job.
  • The point is this: If your post is not SPAM then it will eventually be accepted.

Post Reply