ie8 var w= - “Message: Invalid argument.”

I have a site that has an IE8-only problem:

The code is:

var w =, wname, wfeatures, 'false');

The error is:

Message: Invalid argument.
Line: 419 Char: 5
Code: 0
URI: http://HOSTNAME/js_context.js

I have confirmed the line number of the code (the "Line" and "URI" are correct), and I understand in later versions of IE8, this is considered accurate.

I have checked all the incoming parameters in the call by dumping alerts, and they all look valid.

This problem does not happen on FF (probably 3).


The problem appears to be in using assigning the result of when doing "var w". When I split the line into two statements it works in IE8.


Based on:

When a function is to be invoked immediately, the entire invocation expression should be wrapped in parens so that it is clear that the value being produced is the result of the function and not the function itself.

This is not exactly what is going on here, but I found that applying the principle solved the problem, in IE8's compatability mode.

var w = (, wname, wfeatures, false));



IE is picky about the window name argument. It doesn't like spaces, dashes, or other punctuation.


the problem might be the wname, try using one of those shown in the link above, i quote:

Optional. String that specifies the name of the window. This name is used as the value for the TARGET attribute on a form or an anchor element.

  • _blank The sURL is loaded into a new, unnamed window.
  • _media The url is loaded in the Media Bar in Microsoft Internet Explorer 6. Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) and later. This feature is no longer supported. By default the url is loaded into a new browser window or tab.
  • _parent The sURL is loaded into the current frame's parent. If the frame has no parent, this value acts as the value _self.
  • _search Disabled in Windows Internet Explorer 7, see Security and Compatibility in Internet Explorer 7 for details. Otherwise, the sURL is opened in the browser's search pane in Internet Explorer 5 or later.
  • _self The current document is replaced with the specified sURL.
  • _top sURL replaces any framesets that may be loaded. If there are no framesets defined, this value acts as the value _self.

if using another wname, won't execute...


Actually a name can be used however it cannot have spaces so"../myPage","MyWindows",...) should work with no problem (


I also meet this issue while I used the following code:'test.html','Window title','width=1200,height=800,scrollbars=yes');

but when I delete the blank space of the "Window title" the below code is working:'test.html','Windowtitle','width=1200,height=800,scrollbars=yes');

Hi using the following code its working...


Previously i Entered like

onclick="'privacy_policy.php','Window title','width=1200,height=800,scrollbars=yes');

Means Microsoft does not allow you to enter window name it should be blank in function...

Thanks, Nilesh Pangul


What does position four represent, the one that has 'false' as an value? Shouldn't that be false, (i.e. without quotes?). It's possible that earlier versions of IE would coerce the string to a boolean, but newer ones don't.


Try remove the last argument. Other than that, make sure urlstring, wname, and wfeatures exist.


I discovered the same problem and after reading the first answer that supposed the problem is caused by the window name, changed it : first to '_blank', which worked fine (both compatibility and regular view), then to the previous value, only minus the space in the value :) - also worked. IMO, the problem (or part of it) is caused by IE being unable to use a normal string value as the wname. Hope this helps if anybody runs into the same problem.


If you want use the name of new window etc posting a form to this window, then the solution, that working in IE, FF, Chrome:

  var ret ="", "_blank"); = "NewFormName";

  var myForm = document.createElement("form");
  myForm.action = "xyz.php"; = "NewFormName";


It seems when even using a "valid" custom window name (not _blank, etc.) using to launch a new window, there is still issues. It works fine the first time you click the link, but if you click it again (with the first launched window still up) you receive an "Error: No such interface supported" script debug.


This is an old posting but maybe still useful for someone.

I had the same error message. In the end the problem was an invalid name for the second argument, i.e., I had a line like:'/somefile.html', 'a window title', 'width=300');

The problem was 'a window title' as it is not valid. It worked fine with the following line:'/somefile.html', '', 'width=300');

In fact, reading carefully I realized that Microsoft does not support a name as second argument. When you look at the official documentation page, you see that Microsoft only allows the following arguments, If using that argument at all:

  • _blank
  • _media
  • _parent
  • _search
  • _self
  • _top

When you call in IE, the second argument (window name) has to be either one of the predefined target strings or a string, which has a form of a valid identifier in JavaScript.

So what works in Firefox: "Job Directory 9463460", does not work in Internet Exploder, and has to be replaced by: "Job_Directory_9463460" for example (no spaces, no minus signs, no dots, it has to be a valid identifier).


For me the issue was with a dash "-" in the window name field. I removed the dashes and IE does not error out and in fact opens the window.


The answers here are correct in that IE does not support spaces when setting the title in, none seem to offer a workaround.

I removed the title from my call (you can use null or ''), and hten added the following to the page being opened:

<script>document.title = 'My new title';</script>

Not ideal by any means, but this will allow you to set the title to whatever you want in all browsers.


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