Monday, March 24, 2014

Mavericks iBooks Apple ID and Sync issues - one possible fix

iBooks for Mac 1.0 has not been well received; Apple Discussions include a good range of rants and removal hacks. (You can, and should, register your feedback here. Tom Cook’s Apple seems to pay attention to those submissions.)

I’ll join the chorus. My initial experience on a Mac that migrated from Mountain Lion to Mavericks did not go well — possibly because my Mavericks account iCloud services use a different Apple ID than my iTunes/Apple Store/App Store purchases.

In particular when I did my usual wired sync with iTunes I received this unfortunate error message:

Screen Shot 2014 03 24 at 7 52 22 PM

It’s an unfortunate error message because;

  1. There’s nothing to tell me what “A_Decade_of_Reversal” is (book? app? podcast?).
  2. The item (a PDF) was actually on the iPhone, the problem is it wouldn’t sync to my Mac. (Precisely the opposite of the error message.)

Once I figured out what this item was (I searched Google on “A Decade of Reversal” and found the medical journal article I’d saved to iOS from for iOS) I tried starting up iBooks and was asked to provide my Apple ID for iBooks store purchases…

Screen Shot 2014 03 24 at 7 49 02 PM

Except the Apple ID I use for all my purchases is not the old address shown above, nor is it two of my other 3 (known) Apple IDs, it’s my Apple ID [1]. I tried entering that one and iBooks refused it.

I was stuck.

This is what seemed to work:

  1. Got iBooks to sign me out of the address. I did this by messing with Store and auto-download setting in Preferences, but I think one could just go to the Store menu and sign out. Then sign in again with the correct Apple ID for purchases. This triggered a message telling me I would have access only to books for the new Apple ID, but interestingly very little content seemed to change.
  2. From within iBooks choose “Move Books from iTunes”. I thought this already happened, but it seemed to happen “again”.
After that I could sync, and after my first sync the PDF “A Decade of Reversal” nicely synchronized disappeared. Oh, nicely played Apple.
So I downloaded it to my phone again (view PDF, choose open in iBooks) and tried another sync. This time it showed up in iBooks for OS X. I’m hopeful sync will work from now on.
BTW, if you do provide feedback, don’t forget we need to be able to edit basic metadata again (lost Mavericks) - Category, author, title, etc. 

[1] Which, but the way, I thought didn’t have an associated iCloud account. Wrong; I just checked and it does. Everything except email, probably because the email address was orphaned when I failed to renew my .Mac online service some time in the early 00s.

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