Computer Learning Zone CLZ Access Excel Word Windows

Education makes a people easy to lead but difficult to drive: easy to govern, but impossible to enslave.

-Peter Brougham
Home   Courses   Seminars   Templates   Help   TechHelp   Forums   Contact   Join   Order   Logon  
Figured out the Theater problem
By Richard Rost   Richard Rost on Twitter Richard Rost on LinkedIn Email Richard Rost   9 years ago

OK, I figured out why the new Theater page isn't working for some people. After an hour of tinkering, I discovered that Internet Explorer has a security "feature" to block "third-party cookies" from saving any information about you. Unfortunately, the new Theater page RIGHT NOW uses a "third-party cookie" to store your login information (username, email, password, etc.)

What is a third-party cookie? Well, to explain that, first you have to know what a first-party cookie is. When you visit a web site, it can track information about you, IP address, what time you visited, what pages you've read, etc. It can also track information that you voluntarily give up, like your name, email address, and so on. This information is stored on your system as a COOKIE, which is just a little text file that your web browser keeps track of. When the server wants to store a bit of data about you, it sends your browser a cookie with information like, "this guy's name is Joe, and his password is XYZ." This way, the next time you visit this site, it knows that you're Joe and can automatically log you in because your browser cookie gives back the password.

This is how most major sites track you. When you visit Facebook or Google or Amazon and the site automatically knows who you are, that's because they're tracking you with cookie'd information. There's generally no problem with this. Some people who are OVERLY concerned about privacy and security don't like it, but it's how the modern web works. Most sites, including mine, are designed to work with cookies.

Now... one server cannot grab the cookies that another server has given your browser. So I can't program to read cookies stored by That's a fundamental security design feature in all web browsers. You just can't do it. So your information is safe and is only readable by the web server that you allowed to have it.

However... you will often see one web page that loads data from ANOTHER web site within it. One perfect example of this are the Google Ads that you see popping up EVERYWHERE on the web. That advertisement banner that you see on the top of the web page, or the text ads you see on the sidebar... those aren't stored on the site you're visiting. They're coming direct from Google, they're just implanted (or embedded) in the site you're on. This is called a THIRD-PARTY site.

Now, to prevent these third-party sites from tracking you, Internet Explorer by default doesn't allow THEM to send you cookies unless you EXPLICITLY allow them to by changing your privacy settings (I'll explain how to do that in a minute). Apparently Firefox and Chrome don't have a problem with them, however. Perosnally, I don't have a problem with it either, because if I'm visiting Amazon and I see a Google ad, the Google server can't get any information on me that I allow Amazon to have, so it's no big deal.

"Why are third-party cookies a problem for my Theater?" You ask. "Why is this a problem NOW?" You ask. Well, my Theater is set up on a different web server ( This is to take the load of serving up all of those videos off of my main server ( Before, when you went to the Theater, it was just a direct link that took you straight to and plopped you in the Theater. Well with the new upgrades I've made to the web site, I decided to get fancy and load the Theater in a nice pretty frame (and IFRAME) inside of the site. So TECHNICALLY when the Theater tries saving your login information cookie, since's it's loaded inside a frame inside of 599cd, Internet Explorer sees it as a third-party cookie and disallows it. Ugh.

I personally use Google Chrome as my web browser, and both Chrome and Firefox don't have a problem with third-party cookies... because they really aren't a big deal. IE does. So, I was getting complaints from a few people saying they couldn't log on AT ALL using the new Theater frame. I placed a direct link to the old theater page BELOW the new Theater frame, and that works fine.

So what do you do... well I'm going to hook up a warning message to tell you if your browser is blocking third-party cookies, so you should see that by the time you read this. If that's the case, you'll either have to use the Direct Theater Link provided OR change your browser settings to allow third-party cookies. Just go to Tools > Internet Options > Privacy Tab > Advanced > click on Override Automatic Cookie Handling > Accept third-party cookies. It's also a good idea to "always allow session cookies."

Now, I am planning a complete redesign of the Theater in the coming weeks. Right now ALL of the code for the Theater also runs on the amicron1 server. I'm going to be building a completely new Theater module for 599CD. The VIDEOS will still load off the other server, but that shouldn't cause cookie problems.

There... whew... see, if you put enough time and effort into figuring out a problem, there's ALWAYS a solution. :)

Figured out the Theater problem Upload Images   Link  
Albert T 
8 years ago
Richard, they just stopped coming for about 10 days, but they are back again now, thanks .. Bert

Reply from Richard Rost:

OK, good. :)
Add a Reply
Figured out the Theater problem Upload Images   Link  
Albert T 
8 years ago
Richard I don't get the Forum any more. I have tried everything but no luck. I miss that programme... Cheers .. Bert

Reply from Richard Rost:

Bert, what do you mean? The Forums haven't changed in years. Read More...
Add a Reply
Figured out the Theater problem Upload Images   Link  
Gonzalo Martínez 
9 years ago
I'm going to follow your instructions to solve the yhird-party cookies issue.
Regards, Gonzalo Martínez
Add a Reply

Show Older Comments...
View in Table Format

Start a NEW Conversation
Only students may post right now. Click here for more information on how you can set up an account. If you are a student, please LOG ON first.

Access - index
Excel - index
Word - index
Windows - index
PowerPoint - index
Photoshop - index
Visual Basic - index
ASP - index
Account Login
Online Theater
Lost Password
Student Databases
Change Email
Latest News
New Releases
User Forums
Topic Glossary
Tips & Tricks
Search The Site
Code Vault
Collapse Menus
Customer Support
Web Site Tour
Consulting Services
Affiliate Program
Richard Rost
Free Lessons
Mailing List
Video Tutorials
Learning Connection
Idiot's Guide to Excel
Volume Discounts
Payment Info
Terms of Sale
Contact Info
Support Policy
Email Richard
Mailing Address
Phone Number
Fax Number
Course Survey
Blog RSS Feed    Twitter

YouTube Channel    LinkedIn