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Having technical problems?

MathsNet imageThis site has been tested on a number of Operating Systems such as Windows, Mac OS X (only 10.4 onwards is supported) and Linux (Ubuntu), and web browsers such as IE (Internet Explorer), FireFox, Opera, Safari and Chrome. The site also uses a wide range of methods of interactivity. Your browser will need to be enabled for Java and Javascript and it MUST be set to accept cookies. Clicking the Check Computer button below will display some information that should help you confirm if any of these are not enabled or installed:

Your computer

Web Browser 
Operating System 
Screen Resolution 
Java Installed 
Java Enabled 
IP Address 

The following links may be helpful in resolving any Java, JavaScript and Cookie problems indicated above:

Java Problems

Because Java is not supported on iOS (Apple iPhones and iPads) or Android (e.g. Galaxy/Nexus phones and tablets) we are slowly phasing out the use of Java on this site and replacing it with JavaScript equivalents. Until this is complete there will be certain pages that will not run on these devices.

For other Java problems please see the Java Technical Help page.

Internet Explorer Users Please Note:

MathsNet imageIE9-IE11: Whilst these browsers render this site nearly as well as the other main makes of browser there are still occasional problems (particularly in the display of some of the mathematical symbols). However, the problems described below for IE8 are far reduced in IE9 and later so that particular browser is not forced into compatibility view mode by default. If you do encounter problems then please try the Compatibility View button (IE9/10) which is to be found within the address bar on the right (the circled icon on the image right). If you are using IE11 then click the settings icon on the right, select Compatibility View settings and then click the Add button on the pop-up screen. Please bring to our attention any pages that don't display properly in either mode. If you have problems getting video to work then a solution to try is listed on this Microsoft help page.

MathsNet imageIE8: This site uses Compatibility View for certain pages. This is switched in automatically for the pages affected - you can tell when this is switched on as the button (see image right) that allows this to be turned on manually will not be available - it is normally next to the address bar. If you experience problems with other pages then the button will be available - please use it to see if this improves the situation for you. Compatibility View switches in IE7 compatibility though it is not always successful. Alternatively, please use another much more Web Standards compliant web browser such as FireFox, Opera or Chrome or, if available for your computer, upgrade to IE9.

IE6 and earlier: This site is primarily optimised for web standards and only a few concessions are made to very old browsers. For this reason IE6 and earlier may not display the pages as well as later browsers and certain features will be disabled. If you are still using an older version of IE (prior to IE8 or any browser based upon it) then please use the links above to upgrade to a newer version or to a different browser. Note that IE8 can only be used be used on Windows XP and later whilst IE9 can only be used on Windows Vista and later. If you are using Windows 2000 then versions of Firefox and other browsers are still available for that platform.

Apple Mac Issues

We have had reports of pages not rendering properly from a user who was using T-Mobile's broadband via a plug-in dongle on their Apple Mac computer. The problem was resolved when they stopped using the dongle. If you experience this problem then please try to use your computer on another type of broadband access to see if it resolves the issue.

It has also been noticed that the GeoGebra third-party applet used on some pages does not work under Mac OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.8 (and possibly earlier versions of 10.6). It has been tested under Tiger (10.4.x) and Lion (10.7.x) and works fine in those environments. We are currently looking into this but there may not be a solution.

Tablet Computer Issues

We are updating the site to work with tablet computers such as the iPad and those running Android. The DragNDrop applet used on some questions has been updated to work with the iPad as of 10th October 2011. The iPad does not support Java so cannot use questions on the site that use this - we are slowly replacing Java usage on the site with JavaScript. The site doesn't use Flash so this does not cause any iPad issues.

We are not currently testing on Android devices but please tell us if you encounter any problems using the site on that platform and we will investigate.

Log In Issues

If you are on a school network and are having problems logging in (or remaining logged in) then the first thing to try is logging in from outside of that network. If that is successful then this indicates a problem on the network itself and, obviously, this is beyond our capability to resolve.

We have encountered problems in the past with networks being locked down in ways that prevent aspects of the site from working properly. If you experience this yourself you will need to speak to your IT/network technicians in order to try to resolve the issue. Unfortunately, even though we hear that these problems are resolved on the rare occasions they do arise no one has actually told us what the fix actually is. So if you do experience this, and it is resolved, please contact us via the feedback form and tell us so that we can note the solution on these pages!

Syllabus Switching Issues

A problem has been reported to us a few times where switching to a different syllabus (e.g. Higher to Foundation or vice versa) returns to previous syllabus when clicking any other link. In all cases, this has been reported by users accessing the site from within a school network.

The first thing to check is whether or not the computer you are using is allowing cookies to be stored. This site uses a cookie to set and retain the selected syllabus so, if your computer isn't allowing this to happen, then this would explain this problem. To find out use the Check Computer Settings option at the top of this page. If cookies are not enabled then use the Cookies link above to see how to change your settings.

A common theme for all of those reporting the problem was that they were all on a school IT network. We suspect that some setting on the network is stripping certain cookies out of the network before they reach the computer. One way to test this is to access the site from a computer outside the school (i.e. your home computer) to see if that works without problem. If you find that to be the case you need to speak to your School IT/network department to see if they can alter the settings. The cookie that records the syllabus has the name mathsnetg_ck.

"Do Not Track"

This web site uses Google Analytics. The main use of this is to keep track of:
  • what operating systems are being used to access the site;
  • what screen size if being used;
  • what browsers are being used.
The above help us to determine the best manner in which to display the site content. We do not collect other personal information using Google Analytics (for the purposes of providing analysis for teachers and tutors, we do collect information about accesses and o-test scores, but these are done using code within the site, such information is not passed onto any third party organisation).

For those that do not want to disclose the information listed above the site now detects the use of the "Do Not Track" setting within certain web browsers (at the time of writing this is IE9 and above, Firefox 4 and above, and Safari 5.1.x running under Mac OS X 10.7 only). Other browser manufacturers have announced that they will also be supporting "Do Not Track" and, provided they implement this in the same manner as already implemented on the browsers listed, then this site will start respecting that setting as soon as it is added to those browsers. For more information on "Do Not Track" see this Wikipedia article.

Other Issues

If you are experiencing other problems not documented above then please contact the creators of the site here.