Top 7 Solutions - An Unknown Error Occured in iMessage on a Mac

Have you encountered the 'an unknown error occurred iMessage' error recently? Keep reading this article to learn more about it, and try these 7 solutions to fix it fully.

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Users have often reported that they couldn't sign into the iMessage application correctly on macOS: upon trying for several hours, the loading cycle rotated for 2-3 minutes, and the "an unknown error occurred iMessage" was exhibited on the screen.

After upgrading to Monterey, I keep getting "an unknown error occurred" when I try to log into iMessage. - Apple Community

Being a system-based app, iMessage is susceptible to distinct errors, and an unfamiliar error is the most common one that users face. But you shouldn't fret, as resolving this error is easy. Here are 7 effective methods to fix the "an unknown error occurred" in iMessage on a Mac.

Recover Lost Messages with Software [Most Effective🔥]

Before trying the solution listed in the article, you must know that this error often leads to data loss. Therefore, to safeguard your data on your MacBook, it's crucial to install EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard for Mac.

This professional tool helps restore deleted iMessage chats on Mac without a hitch and recover deleted iMessage data on your Mac. Download this professional data recovery software now!


You Can Trust EaseUS Data Recovery Software

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard has acquired an extensive technical base in data recovery and trusted by billions of users since 2005. Check out reviews on Trustpilot.

Then follow the steps below to recover your lost or deleted iMessage data on your Mac:

Step 1. Search for lost files

Select the disk location to search for lost files (it can be an internal HDD/SSD or an external hard drive) where you lost data and files. Click the "Search for lost files" button.

Note: Before data recovery, you'd better click "Disk Backup" from the left sidebar to create a backup of your HDD/SSD to avoid further data loss. After backing up, the software can recover data from your disk backup, and you can use the HDD or SSD again.

Recover Data Step1

Step 2. Go through the scanning results

This software will immediately scan your selected disk volume and display pictures, documents, audio, videos, and emails on the left pane.

Recover Data Step2

Step 3. Select the file(s) and recover

Click the data to preview, and click the "Recover" button to have them back.

Recover Data Step3

After saving the recovered data, check out the 7 proven methods below to fix the "An unknown error occurred" in the Mac iMessage app.

Fix 1. Check Internet Connection to Fix 'An Unknown Error Occurred'

The iMessage application is solely dependent on the internet connection. If there's no connection, iMessage will not open, and if the connection is poor, you will obtain an "An Unknown Error Occurred" notification.

This texting application gets constant updates from the Apple servers. Therefore, you might want to ensure that your system is linked to a stable internet connection the moment you start using iMessage on your MacBook.

reset network setttings on macOS

Share this article on social media to help others learn how to fix the iMessage not responding when an unknown error occurs.


Fix 2. Check Your Apple ID to Fix iMessage Unknown Error

You must verify the entered Apple ID in case iMessage won't sign in on Mac. These are the steps to check your Apple ID:

Step 1. Navigate to "Messages" on your Mac and select "Preferences".

Step 2. Move to "Accounts".

Step 3. You will notice "iMessages" on the panel's left side, and select "iMessage".

Step 4. Verify the entered Apple ID. The information will be shown on the screen. Now, ensure the box beside "Enable this account" is ticked. If the Apple ID is wrong, sign in to iMessage with the right account.

sign in to iMessage

If you notice that the box is already ticked, you need to untick it and check it again after a few seconds of waiting.

Fix 3. Check for a Service Outage

You are to blame for your inability to log into iMessage Mac, but Apple is to blame as well. Apple may be experiencing a system disruption, or its server is offline for maintenance as a whole, which makes the iMessage not working on a Mac.

The "Apple's System Status" website has additional details. It is verified that the problem started on Apple's server if the current state other than "iMessage" is yellow. You are going to have patience with it out in this case. Apple is attempting to resolve the matter. The problem with iMessage not signing in on Macs will vanish when it's resolved.

Fix 4. Force Quit Suspicious Third-Party Software

Due to the installation of third-party software on Mac, you may be unable to sign into iMessage on MacBook. Third-party software, including anti-virus, VPN, and firewall, creates issues with iMessage. Therefore, you may first restrict the programs and access iMessage. If you find the iMessage is working appropriately, force quit via Activity Monitor or uninstall the program, and the error text will disappear.

hit the X icon

Fix 5. Check Date & Time Settings to Solve the Unknown iMessage Error

You might be wondering why the date and time settings on your MacBook could be more precise. But the reason is directly associated with the "an unknown error occurred in iMessage" error. The moment you boot your Mac and link it to the Wi-Fi, Apple servers will verify your system's status.

Having inaccurate data and time perplexes the server, forcing it to demonstrate the said error notification. These are the steps to check the date and time settings on your MacBook:

Step 1. Navigate to the "Apple" menu on your MacBook.

Step 2. Hit "System Preferences".

Step 3. Click "Date and time", and ensure that they're set appropriately according to your time zone.

change date and time settings

To fix the error, you must tick the box next to "set date and time automatically". If the box is already ticked, you must untick it and tick it again manually.

time and data settings

Suppose the iMessage still prompts "An unknown error occurred"; install the trusted EaseUS data recovery tool to restore your lost messages first to avoid permanently losing data.

Fix 6. Reset NVRAM on Your Mac

In case you reset NVRAM, the "an unknown error occurred in iMessage on a Mac" could easily be fixed. Non-Volatile Random Access Memory, or NVRAM, is one type of memory used on Mac to keep settings in a particular order. The list includes the following:

  1. Sound volume
  2. Display resolution
  3. Startup-disk selection
  4. Time zone
  5. Latest Kernel Panic Information

In several instances, users discovered that the error notice "cannot sign into iMessage on Mac" vanished after refreshing their NVRAM. Let's take a look at what a breeze it is to carry out this reset:

Step 1. Shut down your Mac.

Step 2. Turn your MacBook again, and immediately hold the keys together: "Option + Command + P + R".

NVRAM Reset Keys

Step 3. Wait 30 seconds only, and liberate the keys. Holding the keys will cause the Mac to restart.

Step 4. You may reset the NVRAM entirely after the computer restarts, and you can return all of the specified settings to their original configurations.

Fix 7. Check Software Update on Your Mac

If none of the above solutions works and you can't sign into iMessage on your MacBook, it's crucial to search for an update. This error will vanish if you can update the device manually. Go through the steps below to check the software update on Mac:

Step 1. Navigate to "Apple menu" and move to "System Preferences".

Step 2. Hit "Software Update" and search for available updates.

upgrade to Ventura

Step 3. In case any update is showing, hit the "Update Now" button to install the latest update.

boot Mac into safe mode

You may select "more info" for more details about the macOS update.


In a nutshell, if you are unable to access iMessage on your Mac, you shouldn't be frightened. This is a typical iMessage problem that can be resolved easily with the remedies listed above. In case you have lost data while fixing this error, install EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard for Mac now!

An Unknown Error Occurred in iMessage on a Mac FAQs

Go through the FAQs below to understand the topic better:

1. Why does it say an error occurred during the activation of iMessage on Mac?

When you have provided the wrong Apple ID or password, then the possibilities are high as to why you're not being allowed to activate the iMessage.

2. How do I fix iMessage not working on Mac?

You may reset NVRAM to fix iMessage not working on Mac. This specialized Mac memory helps keep settings in a particular order.

3. Why can't I log into Messages on Mac?

When you can't log into Messages on Mac, you need to check for VPN and security software, as they might restrict you from logging in. Otherwise, you provided the wrong Apple ID and password, which caused this error.

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Updated by Brithny

Brithny is a technology enthusiast, aiming to make readers' tech lives easy and enjoyable. She loves exploring new technologies and writing technical how-to tips. In her spare time, she loves sharing things about her game experience on Facebook or Twitter.

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