Firefox Sync troubleshooting and tips

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Before you begin: Please check the Cloud Services Status to make sure that your service isn't temporarily down.

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

Important: Firefox Sync requires the latest version of Firefox. Make sure you update Firefox on any computers or Android devices. Then, if necessary, update Sync.

I set up Firefox Sync but nothing is syncing

Your devices need to be on the new version of Sync in order for them to share information with each other. If any of your devices are still on the old Sync, you must unlink them before setting them up with the new Sync. Please see How to update to the new Firefox Sync for step-by-step instructions.

How do I know if I'm using the old or new version of Firefox Sync?

  • New Firefox Sync requires only an email address and password to get started. No device codes or recovery keys are needed.
  • Old Firefox Sync required device codes instead of an email sign-in.

I've lost my Sync account information

If you're unable to connect to Firefox Sync because you've lost Sync account information, see I've lost my Firefox Sync account information - What to do.

I'm unable to sync my passwords in Firefox for Android

Passwords will stop syncing in Firefox for Android once the master password has been set. See Using Master Password on Firefox for Android for more info.

My bookmarks aren't syncing to Firefox for Android

If you have more than 5,000 bookmarks in your Firefox profile, Firefox for Android won't sync them. Some limitations in Android and Sync itself make larger quantities of bookmarks unreliable, so this limit is there to protect your data.

Firefox Sync resets every time I close Firefox

This happens when you have Firefox set to delete passwords when it's closed. If you've selected Use custom settings for history in the Privacy panel, you'll need to follow these steps:

  1. At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Firefox button and then select Options.At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Tools menu and then select Options.On the menu bar, click on the Firefox menu and select Preferences....At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Edit menu and select Preferences.

    Click the menu button New Fx Menu and choose 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. Click OK to close the Options window.Click Close to close the Preferences window.Close the Preferences window. Close the about:preferences page.

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://status.services.mozilla.com/.

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... in the error bar. 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 Recovery Key error?

If the "Sync encountered an error while connecting: Wrong Recovery Key. Sync will automatically retry this action." error message appears in the bottom error bar, complete the following steps:

  1. Click Preferences... in the error bar. 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:
    • Go to the PreferencesOptions menu on your other device. From the Sync tab, click Manage Account and select My Recovery Key. Write this key down.
  4. Enter the Recovery Key from your other device in the Update Recovery Key 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.

Try these steps in order until the issue is fixed:

Update Sync 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. See Update Firefox for more information.

Note: After updating, you may need to reconnect your device.

Clear 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, log in to https://account.services.mozilla.com/ and click Clear your Sync data.

We generally recommend not taking this approach unless evidence suggests that it will help: there are a number of issues (such as bookmark database corruption) that will not be improved by this step.

Firefox Sync resets every time I close Firefox

This happens when you have Firefox set to delete passwords when it's closed. If you've selected Use custom settings for history in the Privacy panel, you'll need to follow these steps:

  1. At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Firefox button and then select Options.At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Tools menu and then select Options.On the menu bar, click on the Firefox menu and select Preferences....At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Edit menu and select Preferences.

    Click the menu button New Fx Menu and choose Options.Preferences.

  2. Select the Privacy panel.
  3. In the Firefox will: menu, select Use custom settings for history and 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. Click OK to close the Options window.Click Close to close the Preferences window.Close the Preferences window. Close the about:preferences page.

How do I resolve an incorrect name or password error?

If you change your Sync password, you might see this error message on your other devices "Sync encountered an error while connecting: Incorrect name or password." error appears in the bottom error bar. You can update your password on your device by completing the following steps:

  1. At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Firefox button and then select Options.At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Tools menu and then select Options.On the menu bar, click on the Firefox menu and select Preferences....At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Edit menu and select Preferences.

    Click the menu button New Fx Menu and choose Options.Preferences.

  2. Select the Sync panel.
  3. Click Sign in and enter your password in the sign in page.
  4. Click Sign in to sign back in to Sync.

Other devices disconnect when I update Firefox

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. See Update Firefox for more information.

Note: After updating, you may need to reconnect your device.

Firefox Sync shows a "Cookies are still disabled" error message

If you see the Cookies are still disabled error message, change your permissions for Firefox Accounts to allow cookies.

Sync cookes disabled error

Here's how to do it:

  1. Go to accounts.firefox.com
  2. Click on the lock icon in the address bar.
  3. Click on More Information button.
  4. Click on the Permissions tab.
  5. Scroll down to Set Cookies and select Allow.
  6. Restart Firefox.

If this does not help, please make sure that there are no add-ons blocking cookies for accounts.firefox.com.

For advanced users: Make sure DOM Storage is enabled:

  1. In the Location bar, type about:config and press EnterReturn.

    • The about:config "This might void your warranty!" warning page may appear. Click I'll be careful, I promise! to continue to the about:config page.
  2. In the filter search for dom.storage.enabled.
  3. Make sure the value is set to true. If not, double-click to change it.
  4. Restart Firefox and sign in once more to accounts.firefox.com.

See also http://kb.mozillazine.org/dom.storage.enabled.


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