6 Ways to Fix the Unable to Load File Error in Google Docs

Get rid of Google Docs' file loading issue by disabling extensions

by Milan Stanojevic
Milan Stanojevic
Milan Stanojevic
Windows & Software Expert
Milan has been enthusiastic about PCs ever since his childhood days, and this led him to take interest in all PC-related technologies. Before joining WindowsReport, he worked as... read more
Reviewed by Vlad Turiceanu
Vlad Turiceanu
Vlad Turiceanu
Passionate about technology, Windows, and everything that has a power button, he spent most of his time developing new skills and learning more about the tech world. Coming... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • If you are unable to load a Google Docs file, it's possible that you have problems with extensions.
  • Clearing the cache and updating the application to the latest version can help.
  • Reset your Google Chrome settings to the default if you're encountering this issue on your PC.
Unable to load file on Google Docs
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Have you been experiencing unable to load file in Google Docs or a similar problem? If yes, you can follow the instructions featured in this article.

Google Docs is a great web app, and it’s used by many that don’t have an office suite installed on their PC. The main benefit is that it’s completely free, so it’s a go-to word processor for students and home users.

Using it, you can create new documents or edit existing files and share and collaborate on the same document. However, some of our users have reported that they are unable to load a file on Google Sheets, Docs, etc.

When this type of problem appears, users may see the following messages:

Unable to load the file. Try to load it again or send an error report.

The file is unavailable. Sorry, there’s a problem with this file. please reload.

The file could not be opened. Try refreshing the page.

When you report it to google, it will return a message like this one:

This error has been reported to google, and we’ll look into it as soon as possible. please reload this page to continue.

If you’re experiencing problems such as this one, you’re in luck because, in today’s guide, we’re going to show you a couple of solutions that will surely fix this problem for you.

Quick Tip:

You might want to try using a different browser, such as Opera. It’s built on the same Chromium engine and it can also work offline with Google Docs. When getting errors in Chrome, switch to Opera.

The extension in Chrome for offline mode is available in Opera if you make the switch and import the extension. Furthermore, the organized workspaces in Opera will be useful anytime.


Use Google Docs in Opera online and offline.

Why does Google Docs keep saying unable to load files?

Google Docs cannot load files due to the following reasons:

  • You have a problematic internet connection
  • A third-party extension is causing a problem
  • Corrupted browser cache and cookies

This word processor is available in the cloud as part of Google Drive. The web app is simple to use, and it’s a great alternative to Microsoft Word.

It’s important to mention that this tool comes with other office tools, so if you want to use a Microsoft Office alternative, this might be a good choice for you.

Why am I unable to load files in Google Drive?

There are numerous reasons for this, and your network connection is the most likely one. It’s also possible that your extensions or cache are interfering with the service.

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Account problems can also prevent you from using this service. Whatever the reason might be, there are ways to fix this problem, and in today’s guide, we’re going to show you how to fix this once and for all.

How do I fix unable to load file error in Google Docs?

  1. Use the Incognito mode
  2. Disable extensions
  3. Clear browser cache
  4. Toggle offline access
  5. Sign out and sign back into your account
  6. Reset Chrome settings

1. Use the Incognito mode

  1. Open Chrome.
  2. Click the menu button in the top right corner and select the New Incognito window.
  3. A new window will now appear.
  4. Visit Google Docs and sign in with your account and check if the problem is still there.

If the problem doesn’t appear in Incognito mode, it means that your cache or extensions are causing the issue, so you’ll have to check them.

2. Disable extensions

  1. Open Chrome (non-incognito).
  2. In the address bar, type: chrome://extensions
  3. Disable all extensions by clicking the switch icon next to them.
  4. Now try to open Docs again and check if the problem is still there.

If the issue is gone, enable extensions one by one until you find the cause of the problem. Sometimes extensions can cause issues, and we suggest reading our guide on what to do if Chrome extensions slow down your PC.

3. Clear browser cache

  1. Click the Menu icon and select More tools and choose Clear browsing data.
  2. Make sure that the Time range is set to All time, and then click on Clear data.
  3. Wait for the process to finish.

4. Toggle offline access

  1. Go to the Google Drive page.
  2. Click the gear icon and select Settings.
  3. Locate the Offline setting and disable it.
  4. Restart your browser.
  5. Now repeat the same steps, but this time enables the Offline option.
Note icon
This option is only available in Google Chrome with the Google Docs Offline Chrome extension installed.

5. Sign out and sign back into your account

  1. Go to your Google Drive account.
  2. Click your account profile in the top right.
  3. Choose the Sign out option.
  4. Now go back to your Google Drive page and sign in.

6. Reset Chrome settings

  1. Open Google Chrome.
  2. Click the menu icon and choose Settings.
  3. Click on Advanced and choose Reset and clean up.
  4. Next, click on Restore settings to their original defaults.
  5. Click Reset settings to confirm.

What do I do if Google Docs is unable to load files on Windows 11?

Reinstall your browser

  1. Click the Start button and select Settings.
  2. Navigate to Apps and select Installed apps.
  3. Select your browser and then click on the three dots next to it. Choose Uninstall.
  4. Follow the instructions on the screen to remove it.

Now you just need to reinstall your browser, or maybe use one of these great web browsers for Windows 11.

It’s worth mentioning that the latest version works a bit differently, so be sure to read our guide on how to change the default browser on Windows 11.

Is Google Docs better than Word?

Word is one of the best word processors in the world, and it’s one of the most used applications in the world. In our experience, it offers more features, so it’s better for advanced users.

However, Docs has its fair share of advantages, and since it’s a web app, it can easily work on any computer and any browser without problems.

Is Google Docs compatible with Word files?

Yes, Google Docs fully works with the Docx format, and to use it, you just need to upload your file to Google Drive, and you’ll be able to edit it online.

However, if your file is corrupted, that might not work, but you can fix it by reading our guide on how to fix corrupted docx files.

Being unable to load files in Google Docs can be an issue, but hopefully, our solutions helped you fix this problem on your PC.

In case the problem is still there, you should visit our guide on what to do if Google Docs won’t open on your PC.

Did we miss a solution that worked for you? Let us know in the comments below.

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