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How to Fix iMessage

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My machine has been working flawlessly up until a week ago when iMessage requested my credentials again. Then I get the "An error occurred during activation. Try again" message. Also noticed that FaceTime is reporting the same error condition. I'm running 10.14.6 and from what I can discern I've not changed anything that would cause this. Restarted from my backup SSD and that behaves the same way. Created a new test account and that too throws the same error. Followed the steps in this guide and iCloud services work other than iMessage and FaceTime.

Ran iMesageDebug script which reported ROM: failed and BoardSerialNumber: failed. Is this the cause? If so should I create a new SerialNumber or SmUUID? Also noticed that my serial number begins with C0 which is listed in this guide as Taiwan (Quanta Computers). Could that be something that Apple flagged somehow on the backend which caused this?

Checked my serial number on checkcoverage.apple.com and received "We're sorry, but this serial number isn't valid". I believe that's a good response but the verbiage is a little different from what's listed in this guide so I'm not so sure...

Thanks for any direction / help you can provide!

Tom
 

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jaymonkey

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Ran iMesageDebug script which reported ROM: failed and BoardSerialNumber: failed. Is this the cause?

@tholstro,

Yes without persistent Critical System I/D's (eg: ROM, S/N ... etc) iMessage will not work.
Most likely cause is a NVRAM issue.

Should be no need to make new ID's .. you just need to make sure that NVRAM is working.

Checked my serial number on checkcoverage.apple.com and received "We're sorry, but this serial number isn't valid". I believe that's a good response but the verbiage is a little different from what's listed in this guide so I'm not so sure...

That is the correct response when checking S/N at Apples support site.

Cheers
Jay
 
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@tholstro,

Yes without persistent Critical System I/D's (eg: ROM, S/N ... etc) iMessage will not work.
Most likely cause is a NVRAM issue.

Should be no need to make new ID's .. you just need to make sure that NVRAM is working.

That is the correct response when checking S/N at Apples support site.

Cheers
Jay
Considering that my machine has been fine for more than half a year this is odd.

How do I confirm that NVRAM is working?
 

jaymonkey

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Considering that my machine has been fine for more than half a year this is odd. How do I confirm that NVRAM is working?

@tholstro,

You can test if your NVRAM is working with the following Terminal command :-

Code:
sudo nvram TestVar=HelloWorld

This will create a new variable in NVRAM called "TestVar" with the text value of "HelloWorld"
Now Reboot MacOS and then run the following Terminal command :-

Code:
sudo nvram -p | grep 'TestVar'

If you see the result "HelloWorld" then your NVRAM is working ok.
If you don't see a result then NVRAM is broken and needs to be fixed.

Cheers
Jay
 
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@pikachucraft3,

iMessage and all of Apples iCloud services work fine on WiFi, Ethernet is not a requirement. You do need however a MacOS compatible WiFi combi card in your laptop, Intel Wifi cards are not supported nor are USB WiFi Dongles, it must be a Broadcom one and it must appear to MacOS as "Built In".

See this Guide for more info :-


Cheers
Jay
Thx for the info and sry for this late reply, I honestly didn't want to install another WiFi card into my PC because I preferred it in Windows, and also that I probably destroyed a couple screws on the XPS back cover while screwing it while when I was changing the SSD. I did some more digging and found that I am actually able to activate iMessage/FaceTime using the USB WiFi adapter by installing Rehabman's Null Ethernet kext (as the 'ethernet' is only needed upon activation, and I'm guessing that macOS just needs to verify that there is an ethernet device, but doesn't actually rely on it past activation.) Thx again for the suggestion. Hope this helps other ppl.
 
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Hi to everyone, a simple (and stupid) question: if I haven't got an ethernet or a working wifi card on my laptop (it has CNVi wifi card, so I can't replace it), I can't make this services work, right? there is no way to have a wifi stick recognized as built-in wifi...it is all right?
Thanks
 

jaymonkey

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Hi to everyone, a simple (and stupid) question: if I haven't got an ethernet or a working wifi card on my laptop (it has CNVi wifi card, so I can't replace it), I can't make this services work, right? there is no way to have a wifi stick recognized as built-in wifi...it is all right?

@Gius96,

You can use the Null-Ethernet method ...


It creates a dummy ethernet adapter that is configured as "built-in" ...

MacOS only needs to see a "built-in" network device with a correct BSD name (en0) in order to authenticate to Apple's online services, it does not matter if the actual method you use to connect is not built-in so you can use a WiFi USB dongle to connect to the internet and access Apples on-line services ...

I haven't tried it myself but many people have reported good success using the method.

I recommend using the SSDT method as it the simplest install and be sure to use a unique MAC Address, I would recommend using the Mac Address of your CNVi card (since it's not used in MacOS) which you can get from windows or you can use an online MAC address generator :-


Cheers
Jay
 
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@jaymonkey ohhh oh oh, I did not really expect... iMessage it's working and connected. Incredible :headbang::clap:
 

jaymonkey

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@jaymonkey ohhh oh oh, I did not really expect... iMessage it's working and connected. Incredible

@Gius96,

That method has been around for many years but is not used so much these days as we have found better ways to workaround the problem using alternate hardware which we can spoof as "built-In". Unfortunately laptops with CNVi WiFi/BT are tricky and unless the BIOS has an option to configure the CNVi slot as a standard M.2 Type E and the card is not soldered on then the only option is to use a USB WiFi/BT dongle.

Happy that the method worked for you ... good to know it still works.

Clarification on CNVi here :-


Cheers
Jay
 
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I have a question about iMessages in the Cloud. When it was first released I had no problems with it on my then High Sierra install.
At some point it quit working, I thought upgrading to Mojave would have resolved it. Yet I'm still having the same problem.
So here is the run down:
  • iMessage works fine on my build with iMessages in the cloud being the only issue
  • iMessages in the cloud works fine on all my other devices Macbook Pro, iPhone, iPads
  • The issue is nothing is syncing, clicking on sync does nothing, turning it off and on, or signing in and out also does nothing.
 

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