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Upload Embed Image Tool is slow to upload images

We have recently had several reports of the Upload/Embed Image Tool being slow or unresponsive. If you click the button to upload an image and the circle spins indefinitely then you are experiencing this too.

We have experienced the slow performance ourselves as well. As far as we can tell, the tool is still functioning as it should. We've recently successfully uploaded images on multiple different Canvas instances and it took a couple of seconds each. Most likely the problem is due to high activity on the Canvas server. 


For some background, here is how the upload process works:

  1. The image is uploaded to the Cidi Labs server
  2. A request is sent to Canvas to add the image to the course
  3. Canvas adds the request to a processing queue (this is where the problem lies)**
  4. The Upload/Embed Image tool pings Canvas every few seconds to see if the image has been processed yet
  5. When Canvas returns that the image has been processed, it is embedded into the editor (if you selected that option)
  • **Note: Canvas prioritizes images added through its own tools over images added via the Canvas API. 

This process typically takes a few seconds, but it has taken over ten minutes depending on how much traffic the Canvas servers are experiencing. High traffic times like the beginning and end of semesters are often the times where it can take awhile. Once the image has been sent to Canvas, it should still be added to the course files once Canvas processes the request even if you leave the tool. 

One tip if this is happening and you are pressed for time is to choose the "Download" button and save the image to your computer and use the built-in Canvas upload tool. As noted above, Canvas gives preferential treatment to its own tools so they shouldn't experience the lag that can come through using the API. 

Finally, we are wrapping up a new version of the Upload/Embed Image tool and one of the improvements is a little more transparency in this process. The new version will let you know when the tool is waiting on Canvas. It will also only check 12 times. If the count reaches 12, Design Tools will return a message about high activity and provide a link that can be clicked at a later time if you want to wait for Canvas to process the image. This will prevent the tool from expounding the server congestion.

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