Vanishing Art

Hi, all. I’ve made several successful projects with my GF so far, using PF and non-standard materials. I started having trouble today.

I uploaded a simple svg file, and opened it in the app. I adjusted all the engrave settings, and hit print. I got the “scanning” message, then it dumped me back to the app screen (whether I could see the print bed), as if nothing had happened. The artwork had disappeared, though the step list was still visible, and I could select the art if I selected a rectangle around where I knew it was. The Print button was still available, but when I tried again, same result.

The issue has persisted. I’ve tried opening custom and catalog designs – the design appears in the app, I adjust it, but then it won’t print. Now, when I try to open a design, I get nothing at all – it says “Rendering”, then the print bed appears with no design.

This feels like a connection issue. But I’ve tried rebooting both my computer and the GF. With no success. Sometimes, I can get a design to show up, but the problem reasserts itself. Ideas? Thanks.

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I have had this happen to me. I have this vague suspicion that it has to do with the app state in the browser since it generally resolves by quitting the browser completely (for me this is tricky because Chrome persists in the tray so it can give desktop notificaitons, so I have to right click on the Chrome icon and tell it to really quit). Then when I start the browser and refresh it generally resolves.

Unless they’re having a service outage which is a little hard to distinguish because the app is cached so it just acts weird when the service is down (like the “load more” button on the home screen just doesn’t).

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Thanks. Unfortunately, no luck. I turned off Chrome’s background apps, and rebooted. Confirmed that no Chrome-related processes were running. Same issues. Sometimes art would load, but would disappear as I adjusted settings. Most of the time, I would just click “open” and it would say “rendering” and dump me to an image of the tray with no art. The picture of the tray is current, and the app says it’s connected.

Thanks for your answer. This is very frustrating. I was just getting the hang of things.

Just adding that I’ve tried the app with different computers and different browsers, with the same result. Art that appears in my home screen simply won’t render. The camera image continues to refresh, though, including recognizing when I put in different PF material.

I emailed support yesterday as well, but no response yet. I’ll update here if it gets sorted.

I’m sorry to hear you’re having trouble, and that you didn’t get a clear error message.

After taking a look at the information from your Glowforge, it appears you were trying to engrave lines.

When you upload a file to the Glowforge app, strokes (or outlines) become cuts, and fills (filled-in shapes) become engraves. The print failed here because these lines didn’t have any enclosed area to engrave. Thanks for letting us know about this.

To print successfully, you have a few options:

  1. You can keep your current design and choose to score it instead of engraving it
  2. You can edit your design by replacing the lines with thin rectangles that have a fill

If you need more help learning to design for your Glowforge, we have a tutorial that walks you through creating a design from scratch, with step by step pictures about how to create a shape to cut out using Inkscape, a free design program.

This shouldn’t affect other designs, however, so could you please try the following for me?

  1. Go to your dashboard at
  2. Select the simple svg that first produced the issue, and choose “delete design”
  3. Place Proofgrade material in the bed of your Glowforge and open the “Gift of Good Measure”
  4. If the design does not appear as expected, or if you run into any other trouble, please take a screenshot of what you see. Make sure to include the rulers in your screenshot and show as much of the bed as possible
    • Mac: Press Shift-Command-4 and click and drag a box around your image. You’ll find the screenshot file saved on your desktop
    • Windows: Click on the Start Menu and search for the Snipping Tool. Open the Snipping Tool > New then click and drag a box around your image. Click the Save icon and name and save your file
  1. Send that screenshot to us and we’ll investigate

Thank you in advance!

Thanks for the reply, Vee. I deleted the offending design, logged out of the app, and power cycled the GF. The problem with other designs persists.

I tried your steps. The first time I tried 1-3, the “Gift of Good Measure” design appear on the tray image as expected. I then deleted it, and tried to open another standard file. It would not render (I got a "rendering message, then just an image of the tray with a “no artwork” message in the upper right).

I tried refreshing my browser several times, and once got a design to load. But then numerous other attempts to load a design failed. Refreshing the browser didn’t work again. Here’s what I see when I open a design:

Hey, Vee. An important update here.

I share the GF with my wife; we have separate logins. I logged in to the app using her account, and the GF functioned normally. I was able to load, delete and reload art as much as I wanted. I also did two test jobs. I logged out, and logged back in with my credentials, and I was no longer able to render art.

So, it appears that my faulty, now-deleted design, has somehow munged my account. Can you figure out what happened, before I mess up the wife’s account, too?


And one more follow up. After doing a successful job through a third account login, the problem reasserted itself. This is very frustrating.

Since the Glowforge software was updated to have “auto-save” functionality a while back, it has become dangerous to delete artwork, especially in the “free” designs you get with the machines, because the deletes are now sticky, and it’s possible to make the file go away such that you need GF Support to restore it for you. Probably safest to avoid that workflow for the time being.


Thanks for letting me know. As @chris1 pointed out, you may be running into this behavior due to designs saving automatically once you’ve deleted the artwork from them. That sounds like what happened with the Gift of Good Measure. If you’d like to open a new design, it may help to return to your dashboard first and upload the design on its own. If you need to make major changes to a design (such as removing all the artwork) but might want to use the original design again later, try making the changes in design software and uploading them with a new file name.

Could you please try opening a few files from your dashboard? If you deleted the artwork from any of your designs, you may need to upload them again from your computer. Please let me know if you’re still running into trouble.

I’ve also resent the Gift of Good Measure to your account. You should be able to open it from your dashboard now.

Thanks again!

@vee I’m afraid you’ve misunderstood. All my art appears in the Home gallery. When I try to open it, it does not render.

To be clear, when I said I “deleted” gift of good measure, I meant I deleted it from the tray image, then I tried to open new art. I did not delete the file from my dashboard.

Again, the first time I log in, I can get one file to open and render. After that, no other file (my own or GF’s) will open and render. However, when I log in through another account, everything works. There’s something wrong with my primary account.

With Autosave, deleting from the tray image is going to delete it from the file too.

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Support didn’t misunderstand. They were correct. If you delete components or the entire design on the layout image, or as you say, the tray image, the S/W remembers that you deleted it and the next time it is opened those components are gone. That is what the Autosave feature does. It saves the layout, settings and positions that you last used. So if you delete something there it will be gone the next time it is opened. You would have to re-upload a project to restore the file to the original. Or in the case of the Gift of Good Measure, Support had to do it.

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If you don’t want to cut a part, drag it off to the gray no-cutting zone, and the machine will ignore it, but it will not be removed from the file when you close it. :slightly_smiling_face:

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Thank you, @rpegg - I think I understand. So even though the files appear to be on the home screen, I’ve actually deleted the contents. When I try to open them, the layout image correctly shows me – nothing. So despite the fact that it LOOKS like I have all of the GF files, and my own art, I really have deleted most of it. And I can’t tell.

This is incredibly confusing and counter-intuitive, especially since I can cut/copy/paste art on the layout screen just as I would in MS Paint (and if you think I just gave you a hint as to my graphic design skills, you’re right).

Anyway, thank you all for your help. Now I’ll get to rebuilding my library.


If I understand your explanation correctly then, yes. If I were to delete any of the individual components on this layout they would also disappear from the selections on the left side. The Autosave feature saves the layout, settings, etc as you make changes. You can undo or Ctrl-Z to step back but if not you would have to re-upload the file to the project area to get the original design back.

Autosave is not perfect and requires change, but it’s a lot better than not being able to save settings for repeat projects. For the time being we just need to remember to “ignore” or position components outside the borders that we don’t want to print rather than delete them.


What adds to the confusion is the thumbnails on the home page don’t update to reflect how they have been changed.


Exactly, @palmercr Had the thumbnails disappeared, too , it would have been much more apparent what the issue was.

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Thanks @rpegg for clarifying.

@adamsteinfeld, I’m so sorry for the confusion. Thank you for your feedback. It’s much appreciated and I’ll make sure to share it with the team.

If you find any more catalog designs that you’ve deleted and can’t reset yourself, please let me know by emailing or posting a new topic and we’ll get you a new copy.

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