Troubleshooting Live Mesh: Stuck on Processing & Talking to Server (OS X)

My XPS16 has now become my desktop and the MacBook Air is now my laptop. As a Windows user, Live Mesh is my preferred sync service. Why not Dropbox is for another post. Back to Mesh, I decided to sync my Photographs folder with the Air and it all started well. The images started showing up and the folders were syncing.

A few hours later I noticed Live Mesh on OS X kept showing Processing and Talking to Server for a folder. Something was not right. Looking into the synced folder on OS X, new images weren’t showing up and heading over to, it showed Mesh wasn’t running on the Air; but it was. Digging around forums it wasn’t a widespread problem but there were a few complaints.

As it turns out, Live Mesh has some limitations on the number of files/folders that can be shared and with how many users. Syncing a folder that crosses a limit causes Mesh on OS X to freeze with folders talking to server and Live Mesh processing. Unfortunately, fixing this isn’t as simple as un-syncing the huge folder. For all its “Ease of use” rhetoric,  OS X lacks a simple uninstaller (aka Add/Remove programs in the Windows world). As a result, uninstalling Live Mesh is a bit tricky. It involves using a Unix command and deleting files/folders from two locations.

Step 1: Uninstall Live Mesh on OS X

  • Quit Live Mesh from the taskbar
  • Launchpad -> Utilities -> Terminal and run the following command:

defaults write AppleShowAllFiles YES

  • Finder -> Go -> Go to Folder -> ~/Library/ -> Application Support
  • Here you delete two folders: Live ID and WLMesh
  • Now, Finder -> Applications and delete the Windows Live Mesh file

Congratulations, you’ve unlocked the I know how to uninstall apps on OS X badge.

Step 2: Stop syncing the biggest folder

Head over to the PC where you synced the big folder and stop syncing from both machines.

Step 3: Reinstall Mesh on OS X

Once you reinstall Mesh you might want to devise a new strategy on how you want to sync your folders. Syncing everything for a bus ride isn’t the most efficient solution.