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Thursday, August 28, 2014

Problems With "Create a new blog", Caused By Limits

We've recently been seeing a number of reports, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, from blog owners having problems with the "Create a new blog" wizard.
When some of my students try to create a new blog, they get an error message
The page you requested is invalid.
These blog owners appear to be running up against new blog creation limits, possibly caused by Blogger prevention of abusive blog creation.

Blogger has apparently added new ways of preventing abusive blog creation, by use of new activity limits.

Blogger has a number of limits, which together guard against abusive new blog creation.

  • A limit of 100 blogs created, in total, under one Blogger account.
  • A limit of (unstated) blogs created daily, under one Blogger account.
  • A limit of (unstated) blogs created daily, from one network address.
  • A limit of (unstated) blogs created daily, from one logical network.


This is what you see, when attempting to create a blog, with a limit tripped.
A per account total limit.
We have long known about the limit of 100 blogs being created, under one Blogger account. This limit is easy enough to bypass. There is no limit against blogs owned under one account - so you can setup a second (third, ...) Blogger account, create additional blogs, and transfer control of the blogs created, to the account that's convenient for you to use.

A per account per day limit.

The recently added daily limit of blog creations, under one Blogger account, is thought to be rather low (under half a dozen blogs, daily). Here, too, it may be possible to create more blogs under another Blogger account, then transfer control of the blogs created. Or, just wait 24 - 48 hours (see below), and try again.

A per network limit.

We have been advised, in passing, that Blogger is now limiting total daily blog creation, by network address. This is currently seen to affect use of multiple computers connected to private LANs, where all computers share a single public network address. This policy appears to interfere with legitimate creation of multiple blogs, in high school and college classroom environments.

A per network range limit.

Besides the recently added limit against activity on one network address, it appears that there is a limit against activity in network address ranges, much as "suspicious" / "unusual" activity is aggregated in "403 Forbidden" lockouts - which are frequently a result of detected botnet new blog setup activity.

Network address range based limits may prevent both faculty and students from creating their blogs, using their own computers, on their own networks at home. Note that network address ranges can include computers significantly distant from each other. Your Internet service may include network "neighbours" in the next county, or province / state - or possibly, an adjoining country.

Confusion about when the new "day" may start.

We may also be seeing some confusion about the start / end of the "day", for limits. Since the time zone is not a part of the Blogger account profile (only each individual blog), it's likely that daily limits are reset for all Blogger activity, simultaneously.

Similar to the well known daily Stats reset, daily blog creation limits are probably reset worldwide, according to the GMT clock. For some Blogger account owners not in the GMT time zone (at least 23 / 24 of the world), some portion of (yesterday's) evening activity, and (today's) morning activity, may be counted in the same "day".

The display could be more relevant - but it is an improvement.

All of these limit issues, together leading to the error display in question, the base concern is that Blogger should consider displaying a more descriptive error message. Something like
We're sorry, you (and your neighbours) can not create so many blogs, today!
would be more user friendly than
The page you requested is invalid.

All that said, the "Invalid page" display is a slightly more focused solution, than simply issuing a "403 Forbidden", for all "suspicious" / "unusual" network activity. At least other people, who are not interested in creating a new blog, may continue to access Blogger.

Dude, hit me with a comment!

Mrs. Karabinas said...

Thank you so much for this informative post! I indeed had this trouble with my college classes this week.

If they try it at a later time will it work? Or do they need to be on a different network all together?

Thank you

Mrs. Karabinas said...

Thank you so much for this informative post! I indeed had this trouble with my college classes this week.

If they try it at a later time will it work? Or do they need to be on a different network all together?

Thank you

Chuck Croll said...

Mrs. Karabinas,

Right now, the only possible solution is to try another day - or to try using a different network.

Roger Connor said...

This was helpful. I teach at a high school in California and have used Blogger for many years. This was first time I had ever had a problem and you're the first site with a credible answer to the problem. thanks

Kibale Forest National Park Uganda said...

a nice one. Saved a lot of time man

Don Gosney said...

While I appreciate the explanation, what I would really like to see is a work-around. Like many of your readers I work in education and want to set up six blog sites. I was able to set up two on Saturday and another two today (Monday) using different computers and different Internet providers.

I will try again tomorrow and hope I can set up the last two.

Being able to create a new account, setting up the sites and then transferring control might be an option but how do I transfer control?

Annisa Latifa said...

I recently experienced this

All what you said is true, the solution is to wait and try another day

First Baptist Church of Gillette said...

use iPad or iPhone as a hot spot


new ip address bingo

Book of Guide said...

Hi,

I have an unusual problems here.

When I created a new blog with blogger,
I'm not sure it created 2 blog with the same
sub domain name,... and both of them are live.

Please, see the screenshot below:
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-DZyiV8PcU7o/VonNjT4UdZI/AAAAAAAAAD0/0VYVfzB7EiU/s1600/blogger-problems.png

and the site is http://bookofguide.blogspot.com

Please,... I need your feedback solution.

I'm looking forward to hearing from you.


regards,
Richard Daris

Chuck Croll said...

Hi Richard,

Thanks for the report - and the screen print.

Please make 2 more screen prints, one each after clicking each "View blog" button, so we can see each blog.

Please post in Blogger Help Forum: Get Help with an Issue, so we can diagnose this with more ease.

Fancy Chef said...

My account won't even let me create a blog. It seems impossible.

NCAT English said...

Thank you for the response. I am also an educator who is trying to use Google blogger for my college English classes and ran headfirst into this issue. Unfortunately, none of that applies to us. I could see how that might be the case in a computer bank at a university, library, or office, but I am trying to set all of this up from my home computer. I need to have all of my class blogs set up by Tuesday and if I have to wait 48 hours to do each one, that's going to be a problem. This is very frustrating.