[Modules] External URL to page that doesn't allow iFraming causes sad face

If you add an External URL as an item in a Module, and the site/page you are attempting to add does not allow iFraming, users will get a message with a sad face and a "refused to connect" message.   If they click on the link at the top of the screen, the webpage will open in a new Tab.     So, one may as well Edit the External URL item to "Load in new tab" since either way, it requires two clicks.      It would be nice if the "refused to connect" message would say, "click the link above" since not everyone will notice that link and work around.



Interestingly, Canvas Guides are such pages that don't allow iFraming.


Can this be made easier for the person designing the course and users?


(I did contact Canvas Help and was told to submit as feature idea)

Community Contributor

I would love for the big gray box that appears for pages that can't display in Canvas to be replaced with some useful text as you describe. For example, what currently appears for URLs that are marked to open in a new tab "This site needs to be opened in a new browser window. <button>Open URL in a new window.</button>" should appear for these URLs that return an error when they try to load within Canvas.

And since fewer websites are loading within Canvas requiring the 'open in a new tab' option, I would really love it if the original module link would immediately open the URL in a new tab - and get rid of the secondary page that says "This site needs to be opened in a new browser window. <button>Open URL in a new window.</button>". We already know this needs to be opened in a new tab - so just open it already.


Agreed....it is an extra click.

Community Participant

I just chatted with Canvas Help about this. I think a temporary fix could be to make "Open in New Tab" checked by default. Seems that the majority of web pages (including Canvas Guides, as Hildi noted above) do not permit being displayed in iFrames.  I've had to train all my faculty to check off that box as a best practice, but as more and more pages don't even allow it for one reason or another, (Canvas included) it seems silly if we *always* have to click that box every time we create a link.  It makes Canvas look bad undeservingly, as everyone thinks Canvas is broken, and not the other site that's being linked.

Community Novice

Is there any way to edit the url or delete it from the module? I can't find the external url listed anywhere in the module and I can't edit the page either so it looks terrible.

Community Explorer

I am surprised few others find this to be an issue.

We are in the midst of moving to Canvas from our own LMS, and instructors are already finding it to be a problem before semester begins.

Community Team
Community Team
Status changed to: Added to Theme