Troubleshooting guide

Product: FlippingBook Online

The article describes common problems you may encounter using FlippingBook Online. You may try the offered solutions. Otherwise, feel free to contact the Customer Support team in chat or via the contact form and by phone

Problems with error messages

Solutions

 

Size limit exceeded. The flipbook couldn’t be created, because the size of the PDF exceeds <x> MB.

The available size of your PDF depends on the plan you use. We have a limit of 250MB for uploads made with Trial and Starter plans, and 500MB for the Optimal plan. All the other packages (Advanced, Team, and Enterprise) have this limit equal to 1 GB. If you exceed this limit, then you may try to optimize the PDF. This will compress heavy images and remove unnecessary items from the file. There are a few ways to optimize a PDF: 

  1. Smallpdf is our favorite. Smallpdf is an online service. It often achieves spectacular results with a hardly visible loss of quality. They offer a limited free version, but there is a free trial of the paid version as well which can handle very big PDFs. The steps are simple:

      • upload your file
      • select Basic or Strong compression
      • click on Choose option
      • download a compressed version.

  2. If you have the paid version of Adobe Acrobat Pro/DC, then you can also use it to optimize your PDF and reduce its size. It allows much more control over what to compress and how much than online tools. A full description of all the options is available in Adobe’s article. But if you are after quick results, then please try to:

    1. Open your PDF in Adobe Acrobat Pro/DC
    2. Go to File -> Save as other -> Optimized PDF...
    3. Tick the checkboxes Images, Fonts, and Transparency and clear the others.
    4. Press OK and save your new PDF.
 

Page limit exceeded. The flipbook couldn’t be created, because the PDF has over <x> pages. Please try again with a different PDF.

There is a limit on the number of pages allowed in a single PDF. It is 500 pages for the Trial and Starter plans, 1000 for the Optimal plan, and 2000 for higher plans. You could of course consider upgrading to a higher plan. But keep in mind that such large documents are very hard to handle: not for us, but also for your end-users. The best solution may be to split your PDF into separate files - parts or chapters. There are several online tools available that you can use to split a single PDF into several parts. For instance, iLovePDF does a great job here.   

 

Wrong format. The flipbook couldn’t be created. You may have used a file in the wrong format. 

Our service only accepts PDF files. It can happen that you selected a non-PDF file or someone changed the extension from a non-PDF file to .pdf. To test if you are using a proper PDF, you can open the file in any PDF reader. If it does not open there, convert it to a proper PDF file. Check out our article about converting your content to PDF for more details. If the PDF opens fine, then contact our support team.

 

Oops, Something bad has happened. Please try reloading the page.

If you see this, try reloading the page. Did not help? Then either something is wrong on our end or there is a problem with your browser. We would suggest you to:

  1. Reload the page by pressing ctrl + F5 (on Windows) or Apple + R / command + R (on Mac/Apple). This reloads the page from the server, bypassing any cached data in your browser.

  2. The first step did not help? Log in to your account in a different browser or in an Incognito window

    • If you still see an error message, then most likely something is wrong on our end. Please contact our support staff by clicking on the Support link in the error message itself. This will open our contacts form, with the Error EventID as the subject. Please don't change the subject, so we could quickly find the problem. 
      .
    • If it works fine in the other browser or the Incognito window but you still get an error message in your default browser:
 

"We couldn’t create your flipbook. See the error details below..." OR "We couldn’t save the latest changes for your flipbook."

These errors show a problem during the conversion of your PDF.

The error message “We couldn’t create your flipbook.” appears when you try to create a new flipbook.

The error “We couldn’t save the latest changes for your flipbook” appears when you try to update the PDF in an existing flipbook. In that case, we keep the previous version of your flipbook active. 

To see what the exact reason was, you can unfold the small arrow.

The following error messages state a problem that you may be able to resolve yourself:

  • UnsupportedPdf  
    Some PDFs include forms that you can fill out. Unfortunately, we only support plain PDFs. This type of PDFs is called XFA. If you have Adobe Acrobat Pro/DC, then you can distill the PDF to turn it back into an ordinary PDF. Follow these steps to distill your PDF. Then you should import it without any problem. 

  • BadPdfFormat
    If you see this error message, then you uploaded a corrupted PDF. You can try to open it in a PDF reader like Adobe Acrobat but in 99% of the cases that will not work there either. There is just something wrong with the file. Try to generate a new PDF from the program that you created your content in or ask your designer to do that. You could try to repair your PDF with a repair tool like iLovePDF. But even if it works, then chances are that some pages will be removed or appear blank. So check the result carefully!

  • Timeout:
    We added time limits on how long it can take to convert a page. This prevents broken PDFs from hanging up our service completely. If conversion exceeds this limit, we assume that something is wrong and cancel it. What can you do in this case?

    1. Try again in 15-30 minutes. Some of your pages may be complex AND our servers may be very busy. If you try again later, then our server load may decrease and the complex pages may convert inside the limit.

    2. Check your PDF: sometimes we see pictures in PDFs that consist of thousands of objects. These PDFs can be engineering schemes, floorplans, blueprints, or similar diagrams created in AutoCAD, Illustrator, Visio, and similar tools. This level of detail can be very important when you use it to build things. But it gets massive overkill when it comes to creating a flipbook. On the left below you can see a tiny part of the picture in the flipbook. On the right, there is the same part zoomed in by 12 times in Adobe Acrobat Pro/DC. Look at the massive amount of objects here!  


      All the blue boxes are individual objects, and this is only the tiny part of the image in the red box. The converter has to process all these thousands of objects. This can lead to exceeding the time limit. Ask the designer of the PDF to not use a native export from AutoCAD (or whatever software they use) but create a high-quality PNG image. This image will contain all the detail you need and will convert in seconds.
 

No error messages but the flipbook differs from your original PDF

PDF is a very complex format in itself. To convert it into something else is even more difficult. Sometimes we can’t apply some internal coding in your PDF correctly. This can cause the output to look different from the original. Often you can resolve the issue in Adobe Acrobat Pro/DC by "distilling". This is the process of simplifying the internal structure of a PDF. Here is how to do that:

  1. Open the PDF in Adobe Acrobat Pro/DC.
  2. Click File > Save As > Other > PostScript OR File > Export to > PostScript.
  3. Choose a new name for your output file.
  4. Double click on the generated PostScript .ps file. That should open the Acrobat Distiller window
  5. In the window, make sure to choose High Quality Print in the Default Settings field.
  6. If distilling has not started, close the window and click on the .ps file again. An extra window may appear asking to confirm the conversion. Click Yes and the conversion should start.
  7. Wait until the progress bar shows that conversion is complete.

An unfortunate side effect of Adobe Distiller is that it removes links and bookmarks from your PDF. To reinstate links and bookmarks follow these steps:

  1. Open the original PDF file in Acrobat.
  2. Select the Organize Pages tool.
  3. Select all pages by pressing Ctrl+A
  4. Right-click and select the option Replace pages...
  5. Choose the distilled version of the PDF file as a source.
  6. Wait until the process is complete and save the file.
  7. Upload the new PDF to FlippingBook Online.

If distilling did not resolve the issue, send the troublesome PDF to support@flippingbook.com or via chat. If the PDF is larger than 20 MB, use any cloud sharing service‚Äč like WeTransfer to generate the download link. Share the link with us. 

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