What do I do when I encounter an Adobe Reader error message?

This page outlines and defines common error messages encountered by applicants while completing an Adobe Reader application package. The Grants.gov system is currently returning the error messages detailed in this document, to applicants upon submission. We are working to identify the root cause of these issues.

We are asking applicants to contact the Grants.gov Contact Center 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at: 1-800-518-4726 or via email: support@grants.gov to create a customer service record identifying any errors they may receive.


1. An Error Occurred During File Transmission
This error message means that you are experiencing network connectivity issues or the network is slow. The file that you are attempting to upload is not being fully transmitted to Grants.gov. It is recommended that you check your internet connection or contact your IT support staff to check on your network connectivity and then try again.

2. COS Parsing Exception at Postion #######
If you receive this error message, the application package you submitted is corrupt and you will have to resubmit a new application. If the deadline has already passed, you will have to contact the agency point of contact (agency POC) for more information. Contact information for the grantor is listed on the synopsis for the grant opportunity and the coversheet of the application package.

3. Error: org.xml.sax.SAXParseException:
In most cases this error indicates the form was opened with an unsupported software such as:

  • An incompatible version of Adobe Acrobat Professional
  • An incompatible version of Adobe Reader (other than the *Grants.gov compatible
  • Other software
In order to submit an Adobe Reader application package, you must have a compatible version of Adobe Reader. If you have received this error message it is recommended to download a NEW version of the application package then open, complete and submit it with the compatible version of Adobe Reader. (If you collaborate on the application package with your peers, please ensure they have the compatible version of Adobe Reader.)

4. Failure To Retrieve Opportunity
This error message means that the grantor agency has deleted the application package.

For more information on the deleted application package please contact the agency point of contact (agency POC). Contact information for the grantor is listed on the synopsis for the grant opportunity and on the coversheet of the application package.

5. File Damaged and Cannot Be Repaired
This error message means that your application package is corrupt. In order to successfully submit an application package you will need to download a new application and resubmit. To avoid corruption you must use a compatible version of Adobe Reader
to view and complete a grant application package.

6. Incompatible Version of Adobe
You received this error message because your application package was opened with an incompatible version of Adobe Reader. Any and all edits made to an Adobe Reader application package must be made with a compatible version of Adobe Reader. Grants.gov does not guarantee the compatibility of older versions of Adobe Reader.

Please note that Adobe Acrobat is compatible for use with Grants.gov; however, we recommend using the most recent version of Adobe Reader. Grants.gov supports Adobe Reader version 9.0.0 and later. Visit the Adobe Reader Compatibility page to download the latest version of the software.

For more information about software compatible with Grants.gov, visit the Recommended Software page.

To verify that your Adobe Reader version is compatible with Grants.gov, visit the Verifying Adobe Reader page.

7. Schema Validation Error
In most cases, this error message indicates the application package was opened at an earlier time with an unsupported version of one or more of the following software applications:

  • Adobe Reader
  • Adobe Professional
  • Other software
To resolve this error, you should download a new application package and complete the package manually, using a supported version of Adobe Reader.  You cannot use an existing corrupted package or data from the package to export and populate a new package because it will cause submission errors.

8. VIRUSDETECT - Check Attachment Name
If you are receiving an error message for an Adobe Reader package that states VIRUSDETECT, please check the following:

In some cases if these guidelines are not followed, your application may be rejected.

  • Use a virus protect program to run a virus scan on your entire application package. This will ensure that your package is completely free of viruses before resubmission.
  • Check the length of your file attachment names. File attachment names longer than approximately 50 characters can cause problems
    processing packages.
  • Avoid using any special characters (example: -,&,*,%,/,#) or spacing in the file names. If you need spaces in the name of your files, use the underscore (example: my_Attached_File.pdf) in naming the attachments.

9. "Intake Servlet Is Unable To Save The Data. Broken Pipe"
If you receive the "Broken Pipe" message, this means that there were intermittent interruptions during submission. As a result, the submission confirmation page did not display properly after your submitted your application package (application package sent for validation by the Grants.gov system).

Although you may receive this error message ("Broken Pipe"), your submission may have been properly received by the Grants.gov system. If the "Broken Pipe" error message displays, you will not automatically receive a Grants.gov tracking number for your application package.

To ensure that your application package was received properly by Grants.gov you have three options:

  1. . Visit the "Track Your Package" section to login into the Grants.gov system and view your submitted applications. If you do not see your submitted application listed, follow the instructions in Option 2 below.
  2. Open an internet browser window (ex: Internet Explorer) and resubmit your application package as normal. If you still do not receive the confirmation page after you resubmit your application package, contact the Grants.gov Contact Center (see Option 3 below).
  3. Call or email the Grants.gov Contact Center at 1-800-518-4726 or support@grants.gov to verify that your submission was received by the Grants.gov system and to receive a tracking number for your application package.

10. Failed to Update GrantApplication XML's LOB::Failed to Update GrantApplication XML's LOB
Grants.gov does not automatically reprocess these applications. Applicants are advised to contact the Grants.gov Contact Center (1-800-518-4726 or email: support@grants.gov), in order to have the application package manually reprocessed.

11. Could Not Invoke Service..Nested Exception
When receiving this error message, the grant application submission will be automatically reprocessed by the system. Your application package will either be successfully validated or it will be rejected with valid errors. You can periodically check the status of your submission by using the Check Application Status option under the Applicant Login: http://www.grants.gov/web/grants/applicants/track-my-application.html . Reprocessed applications retain their original receipt times.

12. ERROR 404 ("Page Not Found")
Error 404 is a general HTTP status code which means the web browser was unable to communicate with the server, either the server could not find the requested page, or the server configuration was set not to reveal the reason for the error. To resolve this issue you may contact your network provider to disable your web caching for the Grants.gov domain or you may use the steps below to update your network settings:

  1. Using Internet Explorer, select tools and internet options
  2. Click the Advanced Tab
  3. This gives you the option to click default settings
  4. Select HTTP 1.1 through proxy connections (make sure that this box is not
  5. The Box for HTTP 1.1 should be checked
  6. Go back to www.Grants.gov and see if you can access the site

13. ERROR 500 ("500: Internal Server Error" / "HTTP Error 500 - Internal Server Error" / "500 Error" )
Error 500 is a very general HTTP status code which means there was an issue with the website's server. Most of the time the error is temporary so you may try refreshing the website or if the issue occurs during login, close your browser window and login into the Grants.gov user interface again.

14. Code 10 Error (S2S Submission)
The Code 10 error deals mainly with hardware issues and to compatibility issues between hardware and software. Check your S2S configuration and the configuration of your device drivers.

  • If you believe the issue is due to a device driver being outdated, check with its manufacturer to obtain an updated version.
  • If the issue is due to a compatibility issue between your hardware and S2S configuration, you may need to update your S2S configuration and or software or further investigate the issue.

15. ERROR 16 (Adobe & S2S Submission)
All applicants MUST follow the guidance on file naming conventions. To avoid submission issues, please follow the guidance provided in the FAQ:

Are there restrictions on file names for any attachment I include with my application package?

File attachment names longer than approximately 50 characters can cause problems processing packages. Please limit file attachment names. Also, do not use any special characters (example: &,¿,*,%,/,#', - ) or spacing followed by a dash in the file and for word separation, use underscore (example: my _Attached_File.pdf) in naming the attachments. Please note that if these guidelines are not followed, your application may be rejected.

We are seeing issues (i.e. "java.lang.Exception: 16 errors") when submissions are not following the filename restrictions. Below are two examples where the system returned "error 16" when an applicant used an incorrect filename:


[2009-02-11 11:17:46,610][FATAL][GrantS2SFacade.submitApplication()1377]-Couldn't completely receive Submission due to unknown Exception. Throwing Exception to WS Implementation

org.dom4j.InvalidXPathException: Invalid XPath expression:
Expected: ]

java.lang.Exception: 16



16. Failed to Save Attachment
If you are receiving this error message:

"[Attachment href="SF424_P2.optionalFile3"] to database!::Failed to Save Attachment [Attachment href="SF424_P2"

Check that you have properly saved all of your application package's supporting documents. Failure to do so will result in the package not being properly transmitted to Grants.gov.

17. Closing Date of the Grant Opportunity Passed
The deadline has passed for the opportunity for which you have applied and the grantor agency is no longer accepting applications.

18. Mandatory Forms Not Found
If you receive an error message similar to the following error message:

"the following mandatory forms were not found in the submitted forms: Attachments-V1.1"

You may not have completed all mandatory forms associated with your specific application package. Double check that all mandatory fomrs and fields are complete in your application package and resubmit.

19. Authorized Organization Representatives Only
If you have received an error message concerning your AOR status, check your registration status by logging into Grants.gov:
http://www.grants.gov/applicants/applicant_profile.jsp or contacting your E-Business Point of Contact (person in charge of grants in your organization).

You may not have been properly registered if your receive a message such as the following:

  • The grant opportunity for which you have applied is designated for Authorized Organization Representatives (AOR) only.
  • You are not designated by your organization to be an Authorized Organizational Representative and your application cannot be validated.

20. Rejected With Errors
Grants.gov has received notice that some applicants have received conflicting e-mail notifications after a submission. The following scenario has manifested itself more than once:

  • Applicant receives the Grants.gov Submission Receipt e-mail
  • The applicant then receives a Grants.gov Rejection Notice for application with a list of
  • This is followed by a Grants.gov Submission Validation Receipt for application e-mail

Applicants are receiving the third validation e-mail without correcting any errors listed in the second Rejection Notice e-mail. Because the Grants.gov system is automatically reprocessing the applications, those without errors are being successfully validated, hence the applicant receiving the third Validation Receipt e-mail.

The applications that are re-processed and successfully received into the Grants.gov system are being forwarded to the agencies for retrieval. If the above occurs with your application, we are asking that you engage the Grants.gov Contact Center (1-800-518-
4726 or email: support@grants.gov ) secure a case number, follow-up to ensure your application has been received.

21. Special Characters & File Attachment Length
If you are receiving the following error message after attempting to submit your application package:

"This application contains an attachment(s) with a filename that does not meet Grants.gov requirements. To ensure that your application package will be successfully submitted to the grantor agency please adhere to the following guidelines: avoid using special characters (example: &,¿,*,%,/,#) in attachment file names (including periods (.)), attaching documents with the same file name and limit the file name to 50 characters or less."

Check your attachment file names. Attachments must follow the proper naming convention: 50 characters or less, no spaces, no special characters (-, &, *, %, /, #, \) to include periods and accent marks. Once you have saved your attachments following the proper naming conventions, check the package for errors, save and resubmit the application package.

Grant.gov is now capable of accepting special characters (UTF-8 character set) within form fields; however, please refer to the specific agency instructions for guidance regarding the use of special characters.

22. Blank Spaces in Application File Fields
If you are receiving the following error message after attempting to submit your application package:"

DefaultValidationHandler found problems cvcminLength.valid: Value length "with=
"0" is not facet.valid with..."

Open your application attachments and verify that no empty spaces are left within the form fields use the backspace key on your keyboard to remove any spaces and resubmit as usual.

Grants.gov compatible versions of Adobe Reader are listed on the Recommended Software page. You can download a Grants.gov compatible version of Adobe Reader on the Adobe Reader Compatibility page.