Resolving We Can’t Sync Right Now Error (0x8500201d)

January 18, 2019 |

greater than 7 minutes

The Mail app is a decent application used to manage emails on Windows 10, but it is not without its issues. In recent times, a good number of users noticed the program had stopped receiving messages on their behalf, or they started to experience problems while trying to sync their email account with the app.

In most scenarios, even after users click on the Sync button, an error of this form shows up to inform them of the issue: Something went wrong; we can’t sync right now. But you may be able to find more information about this error code.

Error code: 0x8500201d

We have to assume you ended up on this page to find out how to fix We can’t sync right now error…

Well, in this guide, we are going to show you how to fix Error 0x8500201d. This particular error might be a result of inconsistencies in your PC settings. Your account configuration might be incorrect, for example. Fortunately, from a wide selection of troubleshooting procedures, we can proffer a reasonable number of solutions.

How to fix Mail app Error 0x8500201d on Windows 10 devices

We recommend you create a restore point now before you move on to use the solutions below. This way, if something goes terribly wrong, you can quickly return your PC to the state it is in currently. We also advise that you attempt the fixes in the order you find them listed here.

Check your PC Date and Time; Verify that the correct settings are in use:

Given its nature, the proposed check is often overlooked by most users who are struggling to resolve the error code 0x8500201d when syncing emails. Nevertheless, you are better off attempting it as the first fix now since it is the easiest of the lot.

Go through the steps below to check the Date and Time on your system:

  • Look to your taskbar and click on the displayed Date and Time, then select Date and Time settings.
  • On the window that shows up, you should see the Set Time automatically parameter. Toggle on its switch (if it is currently set to off). Do the same thing for the Set time zone automatically option.
  • Now, you must move on to work on your Internet Time settings; navigate to the Internet Time tab on the Date and Time window. Tick the checkbox for the Synchronize with an Internet time server option.
  • Click on the server to select it. Click on Update, then click on OK. You do not have to wait for the completion of the update process (click on the OK button and move on).
  • Now, relaunch the Mail app (if it is currently open) and see if the synchronization operations go smoothly this time.

Re-enable mail syncing:

If the Mail app on Windows still fails to sync your emails even after you have verified that your Date and Time settings are in order, then a refresh of the synchronization process might resolve the problem in view. You first have to disable the sync functionality, then re-enable it. The instructions below will guide you to do just that:

  • Open the Mail app. You can do this quickly by typing Mail into the text box present on the Windows Start menu to perform a quick search for this keyword, then selecting Mail (Windows app), which is usually the first item that shows up on the results list.
  • On the Mail program window, you should see the Gear icon (for settings). Click on it. On the right pane, under the Settings menu, click on Manage accounts. The app will now list all the email accounts that have been configured for use on your PC.
  • Click on the email with which you are experiencing syncing problems to select or highlight it, then click on Change mailbox sync settings. Now, you have to disable the Syncing option (switch it off).
  • Close the Mail app, then reopen it once more. Navigate through the basic menus as you did earlier to end up on the Accounts screen. There, you have to click on Change mail sync settings again (one of the options on the Account settings window).
  • Now, re-enable the Syncing option you switched off earlier, and you are good to go. Check if the Mail app can now receive messages for the affected email account. If the same syncing problem persists, we recommend you restart the Mail application, then check again.

Re-add the affected email account:

Here, you are going to delete the email account that the Mail app is struggling to sync, then re-add it. The removal and re-addition processes may force some changes that might eventually resolve the synchronization issue. Follow the steps below:

  • Open the Mail app. We believe you are familiar with this step. After the required program window comes up, you must navigate through the appropriate menus or options to get to the Manage Accounts screen.
  • Click on the email account with which the Mail app is experiencing problems to select it. The Account Settings screen will come up now, and there, you should see the Delete account button. Click on it.
  • Exit the Settings screen, close the Mail app, then restart your PC. After Windows reboots, you must relaunch the Mail application, then click on Settings (usually at the left bottom corner of the program window).
  • Click on Accounts. Click on Add account. Now, you get to enter the credentials for your email account. If you do everything correctly, the Mail app will reconfigure your account and initiate the synchronization operations for it.
  • If the syncing process fails again as it happened before, you must close the Mail app, relaunch it, then check once more. You can also try disabling Contact sync for the email and see if this change does you any good.

Try a new account:

The previous fixes have been centered on resolving issues that directly affect the email account you are trying to get the Mail app to sync. Perhaps, you missed something important along the way or the problem you are dealing with is simply unsolvable.

In that case, you must consider using a new account and see if the same syncing issues spring up. If everything goes well, you will know that the problems have something to do with the old account specifically. Furthermore, you can simply continue using the new account.

  • First, you must create a new email account. If you have one already, then fine. Otherwise, you have to launch your browser and get a free email account from Google (Gmail) or Microsoft (Outlook or Windows live).
  • At this stage, we have to assume you have the new account ready. Open the Mail app, then go to Accounts (once the window comes up). You can delete the old email account you are struggling with now (if you are yet to get rid of it).
  • Type in the credentials for the new email account and add it. The Mail app will move to configure it. If the syncing process does not begin immediately, you can resolve the problem by closing the Mail app, then reopening it.

Do a clean boot:

Here, you are going to find out if the syncing problem affecting the Mail app can be traced to external influences (from other programs on your computer). A clean boot lets you boot up the Windows on your PC with a minimal amount of startup drivers and processes only, which means third-party applications are rendered inactive.

This way, if you do a clean boot and the Mail app sync problem persists, you can rule out external influence as the cause of the issue. Otherwise (if the problem is non-existent in the platform provided by the clean boot), you can work your way to isolate the exact application or process responsible for the sync failure.

The instructions below will guide you to perform a clean boot:

  • Bring up the Windows Start menu by pressing the Windows button on your PC’s keyboard (or clicking on the Windows Start icon). Type in the following keyword: msconfig

Windows will perform a quick search, and from the results that show up, you must select Msconfig (or System Configuration). Your system will launch the needed app now.

  • Navigate to the Services tab (by clicking on it). There, you should see a long list of services operating on Windows. Click on the Hide all Microsoft services option (to tick its checkbox).
  • Now, click on the Disable all button. Windows will now move to disable the services that you can see. You must minimize the System Configuration window, then head to the Task Manager app to do some work there.

Use this combination of buttons to open it: CTRL + Shift + Esc

  • Navigate to the Startup tab (click on it). There, you will see the list of applications programmed to start up automatically when Windows boots up. You have to disable all of them.
  • Right-click on an app to see some options, then click on Disable. You must perform this action on every program you see on the list.
  • You are now free to close the Task Manager app and return to the System Configuration window you minimized earlier. Click on the OK button there. Windows will save the changes.
  • Restart your PC. Given the operation you just carried out, your system will end up in a Clean Boot environment when Windows starts up.


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