Top 6 Ways to Fix Cannot Connect to App Store Issue on Mac

The App Store used to be an easy to use app on my Mac. Until one day I needed to download a task manager app, but the App Store wouldn’t allow it. An “Unable to connect to the App Store” message was displayed in the application window. I finally downloaded the app, but not after trying some of the troubleshooting methods below.

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Fix cannot connect to selected image from Mac App Store

The problem is mainly related to the network. Other times, your Mac’s date and time settings can also affect the performance of the App Store. We have listed six different solutions to this error below. Check them.

1. Check the internet connection

First of all: is your internet connection working properly? As mentioned earlier, you will most likely come across this error due to poor internet connection. To be sure, we recommend that you run the following troubleshooting tests. First, launch Safari or your favorite Mac browser and check if you can access any website without issue. If you can access multiple web pages on the browser, your internet connection is good. Otherwise, turn off your Mac’s Wi-Fi and turn it back on.

You can also restart the Wi-Fi router or implement some of the Wi-Fi signal troubleshooting tips to boost your router’s network signal. For wired Internet connectivity, unplug the Ethernet cable from your Mac (or USB hub) and plug it back in to reestablish the Internet connection. Finally, you can also try to connect your Mac to another wired / wireless network and check if you can now use the App Store.

Fix cannot connect to Mac image from App Store

2. Force quit the App Store

If your Macbook fails to connect to the App Store, forcing the app to close and relaunch may restore its normal functionality. There are several ways to force quit an app on your Mac. Check them out below.

Method 1: Using the keyboard shortcut

The easiest way to force quit an active app (the App Store in this case) is to use the Command + Option + Shift + Esc keyboard shortcut. Hold these four keys together while the App Store window is open and the app and other related processes will be terminated until you launch it again.

Method 2: Using the Force Quit Applications menu

Step 1: With the App Store window open in the foreground, tap the Apple icon in the menu bar and select “Force Quit” or “Force Quit App Store”.

Fix cannot connect to Mac App Store

This will launch the “Force quit applications” menu.

2nd step: Make sure the App Store is highlighted and press the Force Quit button.

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Step 3: Select Force Quit on the confirmation prompt to continue.

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Method 3: Use the activity monitor

Step 1: Press ‘Command + Spacebar’ to start the Spotlight search.

2nd step: Type Activity monitor in the search box and double-tap Activity Monitor in the results pane.

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Step 3: Select App Store from the list of processes and tap the “ x ” icon in the upper left corner of the activity monitor.

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Step 4: Select Force Quit from the pop-up window.

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And that’s all. Force close the App Store, relaunch it and check if it works now.

3. Check the date and time setting

Another common root cause of this error is incorrect date and time settings on your device. To resolve this issue, make sure that the date and time information on your Mac is updated automatically.

Step 1: Launch System Preferences and select “Date & Time”.

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2nd step: Tap the lock icon in the lower left corner of the “Date and Time” section.

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You will be prompted to authenticate (by password or Touch ID) the process before continuing.

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Step 3: Make sure the “Set date and time automatically” box is checked. Finally, tap on the lock icon to save your changes.

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4. Disable the VPN

Some Mac users have been able to get the App Store back up and running by disabling their VPN connection. Instead of shutting down your VPN connection, you can change your VPN’s Split Tunneling settings to exclude the App Store.

Fix cannot connect to Mac 10 App Store

5. Disable proxies

Unless you are connected to a network that requires one or more proxy servers to access the Internet, you should turn off proxies on your device. Otherwise, you may not be able to use some apps and services such as the App Store. Follow the steps to check your proxy settings.

Step 1: Launch System Preferences and select Network.

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2nd step: Then select Advanced.

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Step 3: Go to the Proxies tab.

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Step 4: Uncheck all the proxies on the page and press OK to save the changes.

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6. Update macOS

You also want to make sure that your device is running the latest version of macOS. This keeps the App Store up to date and eliminates bugs affecting the performance and usability of the app. Tap the Apple icon in the menu bar, select “ About this Mac ” and tap Software Update.

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Your Mac will check for available updates; make sure it is connected to the internet. Tap Upgrade Now to download and install the update.

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Is the App Store online

The error may have nothing to do with your network, device configurations, or software bugs. Sometimes it’s just Apple. If the App Store servers are down, you cannot access the store. Although this rarely happens, it is a reasonable possibility. If the error persists, we recommend that you visit Apple’s System Status page to check if the App Store server is online and accessible. You can also restart the device and try to access the App Store again.


Read the article below to learn more about some useful macOS apps that can help you optimize your Mac’s performance by intelligently organizing files and apps, removing unwanted data, improving search, and more.

Last updated Sep 10, 2020

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