Help! Something is broken!
We have collected some of the problems that our users have experienced in the past.
Please check if your problem is described on this page before posting to our Google group.
  • Help! The number of contacts varies between in different accounts
    Under certain circumstances it can happen that shared contacts will not get synced properly.
    First of all you should check that your app is not running out of quota. Once the free quota per day is exceeded, the app will not work properly anymore and will most likely not sync your contacts to all subscribers.
    If you are sure that your app did not exceed the free quota, you'll have to perform the following steps to get the correct number of contacts in all accounts:
    • Duplicate contacts
      You may have duplicates in some of your subscribers accounts.  
      Please perform the following steps to get rid of duplicates:
      1.  Switch all subscribers having duplicates to read only mode
      2. Once they are in read only mode, please delete all instances of the duplicated shared contacts. Do not leave a single instance of these duplicate contacts, remove all of them.
        Do not use the "merge duplicates" function of GMail, this will cause more duplicates and other problems
      3. Wait for the next sync to run. Only one of the contacts should show up in each account
      4. If the duplicates are removed successfully, switch back to edit mode if desired.
    • Missing contacts
      Shared contacts will not appear immediately. You'll have to wait until the application fully synced your contacts. Depending on the sync frequency that you've chosen and the number of shared contacts this may take several hours.
      If contacts are missing even after the sync has been finished, please perform the appropriate troubleshooting-action:
    • First of all, please double check if you have reached the maximum number of contacts in your edition. The maximum is the total number of contacts, not the number of contacts per group.
    • Check if the number of contacts in your GMail group is matching the number of contacts displayed in the Shared Groups application.
      If the number is correct and contacts are missing in a single account, please click on the Reset button of this subscriber. The missing contacts should be added on the next sync.
      If the number is not correct or some of the shared contacts are missing in several accounts, please perform the following steps:
      1. Login to an account holding all of the shared contacts
      2. Select all shared contacts in the group that has not been fully synced
      3. Add these contacts to any unshared group, but keep them in the shared group
      4. Remove these contact from the unshared group that you've just added them to.
      5. This will give them a new timestamp and will force a fresh sync.
      6. Wait for the sync run and check if the contacts appear in all users accounts.
    • All is messed up! I'd like to start from scratch
      If the number of contacts differ in all of your accounts and the steps above are too time consuming to cure your setup, it may be the easiest way to start from scratch.
      Perform the following steps in such a case:
      1. Login to the Shared Groups application with the owner of the shared groups.
      2. Remove all Shared Groups and click on "Keep groups" when performing the deletion
      3. This will trigger a deletion of all data in your app. This will take some minutes for very small system up to some hours if you have many contacts/subscribers. Please wait for some hours after deleting the Shared Groups to be on the safe side.
      4. Login to your "master" account and make sure that this accounts holds the correct number of contacts in each group. Clean up duplicates etc.
      5. Login to all other accounts and remove all shared contacts using the Google Apps contact manager.
      6. You should now have a single account holding the correct number of contacts and no shared contacts in all other accounts.
      7. Login to the Shared Groups app, share the existing groups and add the subscribers once again.
  • Help! I'm logging in with an administrator account, but I cannot create any address books!
    If you have set the management option to "admin only", you can only create or manage address books if you are detected as an administrator. This requires that your administrator account is added as a developer to the Google App Engine application that you've used for the shared contacts installation

  • Help! I've added many contacts to my shared address book and added several subscibers.
    Some subscribers do not have the full number of contacts - or see just a fraction of the shared contacts!

    This error may have different reasons:
    1. App Engine quota exceeded
      All shared contacts have to be copied from our application to all members of a shared address book. If you shared 5000 contacts with 10 subscribers the app has to perform at least 50000 copy operations!
      Google App Engine free quota limits get exceeded if you perfrom more than about 10000 copies per day.
      Please login to 
      Google App Engine to check the quota.
      In our example you should add only two subscribers per day - or to enable billing and increase the available quota.
      If you decide to increase the daily quote you should spend all of the additional resources on CPU only!
    2. Google servers down!
      We are running on Google's infrastructure and we are using the public Google API to synchronize the contacts.
      Unfortunately the services provided by Google via API are not very robust and cause problems from time to time. Please have a look at the logs to narrow down the root cause.
    3. Password has been changed
      If you have added a subscriber directly by entering email and password you may run into trouble when this user changes the password.
      Once the user changes the password the shared contact application looses access to the users contacts. In this case you'll need to remove the subscriber and add the subscriber with the changed password.

  • Help! Some of the subscribers do have duplicate contacts, what can I do?
    Please follow these steps to remove duplicates:
    1. Login to the shared contacts app and switch the subscriber with duplicates in it to "Read only" mode for all address books
    2. Login to gmail with the subscribers account that has duplicates in it
    3. Select a contact that appears multiple times and delete all of the instances of this contact
    4. Wait for the next sync run, only one contact should be recovered
    5. If this works fine for you, remove all instances of contacts with duplicates and wait for the next sync
    6. If the addressbook is fine, switch back the subscriber to "Edit" mode if desired

  • Help! Some of my contacts are vanishing from my shared address book!
    Most likely one of the member of the address book deleted the contact by accident. The user interface of the Google contact manager is a little bit misleading when it comes to contact deletion. Have a look at our FAQ for further information

  • I cannot login, single-sign-on is not enabled
    Please enable single-sign-on in your Google Apps domain:

Help yourself: Check the logs

To find the root cause of a problem it is required to have a look at the logs. In most cases this will tell you what is going wrong and hopefully the following table will give you some instructions how to solve the problem.
To view the logs you'll have to login to Google App Engine and select the shared contacts installation. If you click on logs, you'll get all error log entries.
You can change the log level to get warning of info messages as well.
The following error messages may appear somewhere in the logs if something is broken:

Message Description Solution
Failed to authenticate user=xxxx@xxxxxxx.com, continue with next id The given user failed to authenticate. Most likey the user changed the password or the security token has become invalid. Remove the user from the shared address book and invite or add the user with the actual password.
IOException: Timeout while fetching: http://www.google.com/m8/feeds/contacts Google server is not responding. In this case contacts may already have been created. Under certain circumstances you can end up with duplicate contacts. Please check if some contacts have been created multiple times. The Google contact manager has an option to detect duplicate contacts.
DatastoreTimeoutException: Unknown Google App Engine datastore is not responding after trying multiple times. Important data may not have been stored. Please check if contacts have been create or if data has become corrupted.
DeadlineExceededException Google servers need more than 30 seconds to reply to a request. In this case contacts may already have been created. Under certain circumstances you can end up with duplicate contacts. Please check if some contacts have been created multiple times. The Google contact manager has an option to detect duplicate contacts.
ApiProxy$UnknownException: An error occurred for the API request datastore_v3.RunQuery() Unknwon internal datastore error. Important data may not have been stored. Please check if contacts have been create or if data has become corrupted.