The search provider could not be installed… You might want to try again.

So setting up a new machine, I tried adding the Google search provider plugin for IE11; I wanted to add Google as my default provider rather than Bing. However, the Add-On kept failing to install:

The search provider could not be installed.
This might have happened because:

  • A required file could not be downloaded
  • The website is unavailable
  • You are not connected to the internet

You might want to try again later.

Great. The problem was repeatable, and continued after reboot, and reset of IE’s settings. In desperation, I tried change the country that I was in (in the top right)…


I changed from United States to Turkey and back – and when I tried to add the extension, it installed without problem.

Hardly conclusive, but an interesting result nonetheless. Let me know if it works for anyone else!

The search provider could not be installed… You might want to try again.

How well does SharePoint work with Chrome?

Well, Google has launched the next broadside in the battle between Redmond and the Googleplex – their own ‘Chrome‘ Browser. Creating a browser makes a lot of sense for Google, really – IE7 had ‘Windows Live’ as the default search provider for the Search box, so Microsoft were clearly starting to try and leverage their ownership of the desktop, and the browser on it (which, of course, is leveraging their ownership of the operating system – though having a web browser integral to the OS seems bloody stupid to me!) And yes, you can add Google as a provider, and set it as the default (I always do) – but it’s effort, and a bit scary for my granny, you know?

Anyway, I found myself wondering – how does SharePoint work with Chrome? We know Chrome is based on Firefox and Safari and other bits – but how well would it perform. The short answer – not bad…

Continue reading “How well does SharePoint work with Chrome?”

How well does SharePoint work with Chrome?

PowerPoint Slideshows (.pps) open as PowerPoint Files

Hmm. One of our salesmen called up today with an interesting problem. We’d published some PowerPoint presentations as slide shows (.pps files). If you open one of these, it should just launch PowerPoint into the presentation. However, he was opening them from our website and they were opening as a normal PowerPoint (.ppt) file. That is they were opening ready for editing, not in presentation mode. Weird.

I remembered having seen this before, but a bit of poking around showed that my fix was still in place. Curious. When I clicked on the link to the presentation I got the ‘Download or Open’ dialog thingy:

Vista's File Open or Save Dialog in Internet Explorer

First off I noticed that the file extension was .pps – good. I tried opening the file – and it opened it as if it were a .ppt file. Weird. So then I tried the other option – I saved it to my local machine and opened it locally. This time it opened correctly – it opened as a slideshow.

Hmm. So, they’re the same file, but something different is happening when they open. I wondered if it was to do with the HTTP headers, but the same difference occurs when the file is being served with the application/ or just text/html (we run MCMS 2002 on a IIS webserver but publish as static content to an Apache server. They serve the file as different mime types, but have the same result – Open opens the file for editing and Save and open shows the slideshow).

Next up, I tried the same experiment using Firefox. If you choose to Open the file rather than save it, it opens the slideshow – correctly! And if you save it, well, it saves the .pps file which, again, opens correctly.

text/html mime-type application/ mimetype
“Open” “Save” and open “Open” “Save” and open
Firefox OK OK OK OK

So it looks like Internet Explorer will not open a .pps file as a slideshow irrespective of the mime type sent by the server and the .pps extension (and it’s file association in windows). However, if you save the file locally, it will. Weird.

The only thing that I can think is that this is some sort of security feature, but it’s a bit odd – after all, shouldn’t Firefox do this then?

PowerPoint Slideshows (.pps) open as PowerPoint Files