Troubleshooting WiFi Sync

Enable WiFi Sync on the Desktop

Before we get started, be sure that:

  1. You have enabled WiFi sync under Codebook preferences on the Desktop
  2. Codebook is currently running on the Desktop and you are logged in


Are you running the Windows or OS X firewall, a VPN client, virus protection software or a similar product? If so, please try to configure your software to allow connections to port 57419. This should allow connection attempts from Codebook on your mobile device to Codebook running on your desktop to pass through a firewall.

Is this thing on (WiFi)?

At times we’ve seen mobile devices fail to establish an actual WiFi connection even though the WiFi bars in the status bar indicate a connection. And some customers don’t realize that they have to be on the same local WiFi network as their desktop/laptop in order to make the sync connection from their mobile device—it’s not enough to be on 3G or LTE. First, ensure you are connected to the same WiFi network as your desktop. If it appears to be connected already and sync isn’t working, try turning your mobile device’s WiFi feature off and on again.

Did you try a restart?

This sounds like a bad joke, but it often happens that home networking products like WiFi routers have bugs and need to be restarted once in a while. Many of our customers who report that sync suddenly stopped working find that rebooting their WiFi router does the trick. Usually this can be accomplished by disconnecting power from the device, and then reconnecting it to cause a restart.

Windows - Unable to register Bonjour/Zeroconf

On Codebook for Windows there is a status area at the bottom of the window that shows what port the sync service is running on (57419) if it’s running, or an error message if not. If you see the message “Unable to register Bonjour/Zeroconf provider” then Bonjour for Windows is not installed on your computer. The Bonjour protocol (also known as Zeroconf or mDNS) is used by all of our platforms to initiate synchronization over WiFi networks.

Bonjour is usually installed alongside iTunes for Windows, but users who do not (or do not wish to) install iTunes must download and install the stand-alone Bonjour for Windows package from Apple here:

Once installed, re-launch Codebook for Windows and you should see a status message that says “Started listener on Port 57419”. You may be prompted during startup from the Windows firewall to “Allow access to port 57419 for Codebook.exe”.

Note: Installing the Bonjour service is not required to use Codebook as a standalone application or for synchronization using Dropbox or Google Drive. In these cases this warning message can be safely ignored.

Windows - Allow Codebook through Windows Defender Firewall

By default Windows should prompt you to Allow Codebook through the Windows Defender Firewall when selecting WiFi sync. Sometimes the default selection to “Allow Codebook” isn’t proper, or your network classification has changed since you first “Allowed Codebook”. Here are instructions for ensuring that your Firewall exception matches your network classification: Adding Codebook to Allowed Apps for Windows Defender Firewall

iOS - Allow Codebook in Local Network Privacy

Starting in iOS 14, you need to allow Codebook to access other devices on your local network. You should be prompted the first time you attempt to sync at which point you should choose “Allow”. If you accidentally choose “Deny” or are receiving an error when attempting to sync, please visit iOS Settings > Privacy > Local Network and turn on the switch next to Codebook, then attempt to sync again.

Router Issues

In other cases specific issues are introduced with router configurations. For instance, in the past we’ve had positive results by disabling “Wireless Isolation”, Enabling RIP settings to RIP1, and disabling IPV6. It might be worth trying some of those options (or their equivalents) on your router.

Sync without Bonjour/Zeroconf/mDNS

If after ruling out the above possibilities still can’t sync Codebook on your Android or iOS device with your computer, it may be worthwhile to try to enter the desktop’s IP address into Codebook to see if a direct connection works:

  • Start by finding the IP address of your computer. There are great instructions here
  • Ensure Codebook is running on your desktop, signed in, and that WiFi sync is enabled
  • Launch Codebook on your iOS or Android device and sign in
  • Bring up the Sync view, tap “Choose a computer”, then at the top of the network browser view, tap on the Edit/Compose icon in the navigation bar
  • Enter either the IP address of your desktop (or a host name) and click “Done”
  • Tap the Start button at the top-right of the Sync view, in the navigation bar to start sync

If sync succeeds, the issue is probably that something is blocking Bonjour on your network. If Codebook fails to make the connection via IP this tells us that for whatever reason there is no route to that host on your network from your mobile device.

1 Like

I have an Android tablet and an Android phone that I sync with my Windows computer desktop. It seems that after I sync the tablet or the phone to the desktop and then try to sync the other one, I cannot connect. Restarting the desktop app and restarting the Android app sometimes helps but often the only solution is to restart the second Android device. Any reason for this - or do you need to add this hint to “Troubleshooting WiFi Sync” topic?