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Mac OS X: iSync stopped working fix

OK, here is a followup to this post, about the Mac sync failing because it couldn’t login. Two weeks later, my .mac account expired, but I also couldn’t get iSync to sync my cell phone and my Mac.

After reinstalling Mac OS X, my installation of Missing Sync stopped working, and rather than re-install it, I thought long and hard about whether or not I really needed that PDA after all. Since I never carried it anymore, and I only used it for one program, I went hunting for a replacement. Alas, nothing can truly take the place of that excellent work of simple elegance, but I eventually found another piece of software that would do the job on my non-Palm cell phone.

Every time I ran iSync, however, it wouldn’t sync the Palm, and it gave me an error message. So, since I’d decided I could do without it, I removed the PDA from iSync.

And that’s when iSync stopped working.

I’d click to launch it, and it would bounce up and down in the start bar, but then… nothing. It would stop bouncing and the little arrow would never appear to let me know it was an open app. If I switched to it, the menu bar showed the iSync and File menus, but if I clicked, I couldn’t get them to drop down.

So, it’s off to Google, and then the Apple Support boards for help.

Now, if you’ve come here from Google, you need to know that the Apple Support discussion forums are one of the very best sources for unofficial information on how to fix stuff that goes wrong with your Mac. They are also not indexed by Google– you pretty much have to search them using the Apple site. This is also where I found the fix for the earlier problem with my .Mac login.
So it was that I cruised over there and found  this post which helped immensely (ok, be fair– it completely solved the problem). So, here it is:

First, you must be willing to go against the official Apple advice.

Go into your user library’s application support folder (/Users/YourName/Library/Application Support/). Look for the “SyncService” and “SyncServices” folders. There will be one of each.

One of these is the WRONG one. And even though Apple’s own tech notes say “As if it were a swarm of bees, you should stay away from the SyncServices folder,” I’m sad to say… you’re gonna have to touch it.

IMPORTANT STEP (backing up):
Open both folders and look at the file dates. Find the most recent (for me, that was SyncServices). Take the other folder and right-click it. Select “Create Archive of SyncService” to make a quick .zip backup of the folder.

Now. Take a deep breath and delete the folder you backed up.

Re-launch iSync.

Did it work?

If not, you can restore the original folder by unzipping the SyncService.zip that you created, and try something else (maybe try the same with the other SyncServices folder, just to be sure you didn’t get the wrong one).

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