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Posted by in Annotate PRO - General Questions, FAQ: Annotate for Word (2016+)

What does the message “Unable to save data locally…” mean?

If you get a message like this using Annotate PRO (AP) then you’ll need to adjust your browser settings to allow local storage.

Generally this only happens to users of our Word Add-in who are on Windows computers…but others may see it too. If you’re using Firefox, Edge, Chrome or Safari and see this message scroll to the bottom of this page for instructions.

Annotate PRO, like many modern web apps, stores data locally – for speed of access and to power features.

Some browsers may have the ability to store data locally turned off. Annotate PRO will detect this situation and flag you…

What data are we storing?  The Comment Library you’re using, your preferences and similar data.

To use AP you’ll have to give your browser permission to store data locally.

AP Microsoft Word users running Windows:

  1. Open Internet Explorer 11.
    1. “What,” you exclaim? I don’t use that browser!!! Oh, but you do – Microsoft Word uses it to present Add-ins like Annotate PRO, Wikipedia, and any other app running inside Office.
    2. If you can’t find IE11 check this Microsoft help article.
  2. Go to Settings and then Internet options.
  3. Click on the Advanced tab and scroll all the way to the bottom of the resulting list.
  4. Find Enable DOM Storage (it’s 10 or 15 items from the bottom) and make sure it is checked.
  5. Click OK and go back to Microsoft Word.
  6. Close the AP taskpane by clicking the ‘x’ in the top right corner (same row as Annotate PRO) in the screenshot showing the original message above).
  7. Reopen Annotate PRO. The message should be gone and you should be able to proceed.

If you’re still blocked from using Annotate PRO please make sure both Internet Explorer 11 and Microsoft Word are updated to their latest versions (which you may or may not be able to do, given institutional policies and controls), then contact us for help. We’ll jump on a screenshare and sort it out.

Other browsers (if you’re using our web app to edit your Libraries and run into the same message):


Firefox treats cookies and local storage as the same thing, so these steps work for both.

  1. Click on the menu icon in the top-right corner of your browser.
  2. Select “Options” or “Preferences”.
  3. Click on “Privacy and Security” from the list on the left.
  4. From the drop-down menu, choose “Remember history”.
  5. Close the window.

Google Chrome

Chrome treats cookies and local storage as the same thing, so these steps work for both.

  1. Click on the menu button in the top-right corner of your Chrome window.
  2. Select “Settings” from that menu.
  3. Click “Advanced” at the bottom of the page.
  4. Click on the “Site Settings” button under the Privacy and Security section.
  5. Click on “Cookies”.
  6. Toggle on the setting for “Allow sites to save and read cookie data (recommended)”.
  7. Toggle off the setting for “Block third-party cookies”.

Microsoft Edge

  1. Click on the three-dot More Actions button in the top-right corner of your window.
  2. Select “Settings” from the menu.
  3. Click “View advanced settings”.
  4. Under the “Cookies” section, use the drop menu to select “Don’t block cookies”.
  5. Restart your browser.


Safari treats cookies and local storage as the same thing, so these steps work for both.

  1. Click the “Safari” menu and choose “Preferences”.
  2. Click the icon labeled “Privacy”.
  3. Set the option labeled “Block Cookies:” to “Never”.
  4. Close the window.