3 Common Error Messages (and What They Actually Mean)

Your guide to decoding tech jargon.

1

“This Accessory May Not Be Supported.”

tangled-computer-cables
Photo by James Wojcik

This is a message that appears on an Apple device when you use a cord or another accessory not licensed by Apple or its partners. “The lightning-port cable [a small connector you plug in to the bottom of a device] is proprietary Apple technology,” says Rich. “If you’re seeing this, it’s likely the company that made your cord is using Apple’s technology without paying a licensing fee. The cord may still charge your device, but it could be over- or underpowering it, which can damage the phone.” It’s not always essential to use an Apple product, though: If an accessory’s packaging reads, “Certified by Apple,” it should work as well as an Apple product.

2

“There’s a Problem With This Website’s Security Certificate.”

“Every site offering commerce or storing private information has a security certificate that confirms its legitimacy. ”If you see this message on a site you want to use, check back in 24 hours and it may be fixed. Companies occasionally forget to renew them,“ says Harris. If the problem is still not resolved, it’s best not to use the site. A security-certificate problem means that the site could be fake and your ID, password, and personal information could be compromised.

3

“Not Enough Storage”

“All phones and tablets come with a preset amount of storage that ranges from 16 giga-bytes to more than 256 gigabytes,” says Harris. ”The more apps, photos, and videos on your device, the more storage it uses.” If you exceed your device’s storage capacity (plus the capacity of any free cloud-based storage, like the five gigabytes of storage Apple users get on iCloud), this is the message that you’ll see when you try to take a photo or a video, or download an app, music, or files. Fix it by clicking on Settings to delete any large unused app, photo, and video files. If you’re seeing this message regularly, consider increasing your cloud storage with a service like iCloud or Dropbox. Prices range from $1 a month for 50 gigabytes to $20 for two terabytes.