msynctool – Error while synchronizing: Unable to open fifo – Workaround in Fedora 17

After installation of Fedora 17, synchronization of contacts from a Nokia Smart phone to Evolution stops working. This could be a temporary hiccup, due to the freshness of Fedora 17. Till such time, here is a workaround.

Upon upgrade, if you pair your phone via bluetooth to the computer, you will find that doing a refresh of the contacts to sync them from the multisync-gui does not work. It refreshes for a very long time without exiting. Similarly, to debug this, if you use the command line version, msynctool throws an error “Error while synchronizing: Unable to open fifo”.

You can try the following workaround:

  1. Visit https://syncevolution.org
  2. Download the latest sources. Choose the file with the latest date.
  3. At this time, it was syncevolution-1.2.99.2.tar.gz. Remove the default syncevolution rpm file that you installed earlier. That is the one from the Fedora RPM repository.
  4. Unzip it into the folder and follow the instruction in the INSTALL file.
  5. Be careful of the permissions in the /usr/lib, /usr/share and one more library in /usr. The copy command changes the ownership and permissions of some files / folders. Make sure that you know what you are doing.
  6. Pair your phone with the computer using bluetooth as you would normally do.
  7. On your desktop, look for Sync within the Internet group of programs
  8. Run the Sync program.
  9. Click “Change or edit sync service“. Your phone should be paired and listed there.
  10. Go to the bottom of the window, you will see your bluetooth phone listed there. Make sure you select Nokia as the template. Click on it and choose to sync the contacts, tasks or notes. I left that at contacts.
  11. Click on the Sync or Sync Now button.
  12. Follow the instructions and contacts will be automatically synchronized correctly.

To overcome the issue with Fedora 17, you can try this out in Ubuntu. You need to install the packages sync-ui, syncevolution. It worked much better in Ubuntu.