Fix: PayPal Fatal Failure

Matthew Adams
by Matthew Adams
Windows & Software Expert
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Some websites include PayPal Donate buttons that you can press to donate to the site. However, some have found that those buttons don’t always work and return a Fatal Failure error when pressed. Does your website or blog include a PayPal Donate button with that error? Or perhaps a PayPal Donate button on a website you’re trying to donate to isn’t working? Either way, these are a few potential fixes for the error.

Don’t Open the PayPal Button’s Page in Internet Explorer

Note that this Fatal Failure error occurs most often in Internet Explorer. So are you pressing the Donate button on a page open in Internet Explorer? If so, open the same page in Google Chrome or Firefox instead. Then press the PayPal Donate button again. This isn’t going to help website developers fix the error on their sites, but if you just need to make a PayPal donation it might do the trick.

Disable Your Browser Extensions

A few browser extensions might be blocking the PayPal Donate button. That’s especially the case if they’re ad blockers. The quickest way to fix this is to disable all your browser extensions with CCleaner as follows.

  • Open the CCleaner utility in the snapshot below.

  • Click Tools > Browser Plugins to open the browser extension lists shown below. There you can select four tabs that list your Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Firefox and Opera extensions.

  • You can select all the enabled extensions by holding the holding the Ctrl button.
  • Press the Disable button to switch the extensions off.
  • Now close CCleaner, open the browser you disabled the extensions on and press the Donate button again.

Double-check the PayPal Donation Button’s HTML

If you need to fix the Donate button on your website, double-check its HTML. Check that you’ve entered the HTML right and that it doesn’t include any typos. Also check that your editing tool isn’t modifying any of the characters from the original pasted source code. You can check the button’s HTML with the sample code below and the code shown on this page.

<form name=”_xclick” action=”” method=”post”>
<input type=”hidden” name=”cmd” value=”_xclick”>
<input type=”hidden” name=”business” value=””>
<input type=”hidden” name=”item_name” value=”Team In Training”>
<input type=”hidden” name=”currency_code” value=”GBP”>
<input type=”hidden” name=”amount” value=”25.00″>
<input type=”image” src=”” border=”0″ name=”submit” alt=”Make payments with PayPal – it’s fast, free and secure!”>

If the Donate button’s page or site includes frames, a more specific thing to check in the HTML is the <form action> tag. Frames can’t display PayPal payment pages. As such, you should modify the HTML to prevent frames displaying PayPal payment pages.

Editing the HTML will require that you add target=“paypal” to the tag. Then the HTML should look like: <form method=”post” action=”” target=”paypal”>. Alternatively, you could also alter the design of the button’s page so that it doesn’t include any frames; but if that requires a drastic redesign it’s better to modify the Donate button’s HTML. Or adjust the HTML so that the button opens in new window without frames.

So the PayPal Fatal Failure error can either be due to page frames or browser extensions more than anything else. Note that if you have a WordPress site or blog, you can also add a PayPal Donate button to it with this plug-in instead.