Firefox Sync troubleshooting and tips

Revision Information
  • Revision id: 26749
  • Created:
  • Creator: Ibai
  • Comment: Documenting https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=768102
  • Reviewed: No
  • Ready for localization: No
Revision Source
Revision Content

If you've run into a problem with Firefox Sync, this article will walk you though the most common solutions.

Note: This applies to the latest Firefox version which can be downloaded from mozilla.org/firefox.

Firefox Sync doesn't work in the latest version of Firefox for mobile

Note: This section only applies to people using the Android version of Firefox Beta, Aurora or Nightly.

Because of a limitation of Android, you can't have two copies of native Android Firefox that use sync on the same device. So, for example, if you have the Beta version installed now and you then install Aurora, Nightly or the final version of native Firefox for Android, while leaving that Beta version in place, Sync will fail.

In order to use Sync with another version of Firefox for mobile, you will need to remove the previous version of Firefox from your mobile device. To remove Firefox, follow these steps:

  1. Access the Settings menu of your Android device.
  2. Tap on Applications.
  3. Select Manage applications.
  4. Select the All tab.
  5. Choose the versions of Firefox that you don't want to use and select Uninstall for each one.

You are all set. Now you will be able to set up Firefox Sync in the new Firefox.

Firefox Sync resets in the latest version of Firefox for mobile

If you are storing you Firefox Mobile in the SD card of your Android phone, there's a known bug that prevents Sync from storing data permanently. While the bugs is resolved, you can fix the situation by moving Firefox to the memory of the phone.

  1. Access the Settings menu of your Android device.
  2. Tap on Applications.
  3. Select Manage applications.
  4. Pick Firefox
  5. In this section, press "Move to Phone"

Firefox Sync resets every time I close Firefox

This happens when you have Firefox set to delete passwords when it's closed. To keep Sync from being reset make sure Firefox doesn't delete stored passwords when it's closed. If you have selected Use custom settings for history in the Privacy panel, you'll need to follow these steps:

  1. Click the menu button New Fx Menu Fx57Menu and select Options.Preferences.
  2. Select the Privacy panel.
  3. Ensure that Clear history when Firefox closes is unchecked.
  4. If you want or need to keep this setting checked, click the Settings... button next to it and then uncheck Saved passwords in the Data section.
  5. Close the about:preferences page. Any changes you've made will automatically be saved.

How do I fix Sync problems that display an error message?

If Sync displays an error message, it is possible the Sync Service is not operating as expected. Before attempting any of the procedures below, you should verify the Sync Service isn't experiencing failures by checking on the status of the service at https://services.mozilla.com/status/.

How do I resolve an incorrect name or password error?

If the "Sync encountered an error while connecting: Incorrect name or password. Please try again." error appears in the bottom error bar, complete the following steps:

  1. Click Preferences.... The Sync panel will display.
  2. Click Update. The Update Password window will open.
  3. Enter your new password in the window.
  4. Click Update Password to close the window and connect to Sync.

How do I resolve a wrong Sync Key error?

If the "Sync encountered an error while connecting: Wrong Sync Key. Please try again." error message appears in the bottom error bar, complete the following steps:

  1. Click Preferences.... The Sync panel will display.
  2. Click Update. The Update Sync Key window will open.
  3. Get a copy of your Sync Key from the device where you generated the new Sync Key. For details, see Where can I find my Sync Key?
  4. Enter your new Sync Key in the window.
  5. Click Update Sync Key to close the window and connect to Sync.

How do I resolve a wrong Recovery Key error?

If the "Sync encountered an error while connecting: Wrong Recovery Key. Please try again." error message appears in the bottom error bar, complete the following steps:

  1. Click Preferences.... The Sync panel will display.
  2. Click Update. The Update Recovery Key window will open.
  3. Get a copy of your Recovery Key from the device where you generated the new Recovery Key. For details, see Where can I find my Recovery Key?
  4. Enter your new Recovery Key in the window.
  5. Click Update Recovery Key to close the window and connect to Sync.

How do I solve Sync problems without an error message?

The following problems do not display an error message:

  • Your Sync client isn't compatible with the data you have on the Sync server.
  • The Sync servers are having issues to handle your data.
  • The Sync servers are under a heavy load - in this case, the error will stop when the server load returns to normal.

Follow these steps in order until one of them fixes the Sync problem:

Check to see if other extensions are interfering with Firefox Sync

  1. Disable all extensions and themes except Firefox Sync.
  2. Then test for faulty extensions or themes.

For more information on how to troubleshoot extensions and themes, see Troubleshoot extensions, themes and hardware acceleration issues to solve common Firefox problems

Update Firefox on all your devices

To improve the Sync service, the Sync data format may be changed when the latest Firefox version is released. This means that any of your other devices which have not been updated will need to be updated in order to keep syncing. Update Firefox.

Note: After updating, you may need to connect your device again. See How do I add a device to Firefox Sync?

Reset your Sync data

In some cases where you are getting regular errors and restarting Firefox or waiting doesn’t solve the issue, you can try to reset your Sync data. In order to do so, see How do I reset my Sync data?