Outlook cannot synchronize subscribed folders in Gmail

Last reviewed on July 15, 2014   —  2 comments

On July 15, 2014, Google turned off Basic Authentication for all users and now requires all mail clients to use oAuth 2.0. Outlook and other desktop email clients do not currently support entering the pin codes required by oAuth 2.0 and must use special app passwords instead.

With Basic Authentication turned off, users who are not not using two-step verification will be unable to connect to Gmail servers using Outlook, Thunderbird, and other email clients.

You may receive the following message when Outlook attempts to log into your account:

imap error message

An email is generated when an email clients attempts to log on and is blocked.

You may receive the following send and receive error message:

Task 'Synchronizing subscribed folders for alias@gmail.com.' reported error (0x800CCC0E) : 'Outlook cannot synchronize subscribed folders for alias@gmail.com. Error: Cannot connect to the server. If you continue to receive this message, contact your server administrator or Internet service provider (ISP).'

If you are using two-step verification, you do not need to enable basic authentication; accounts with two-step enabled require an application-specific password for access using applications, such as Outlook, that do not ask for the pin code.

You have two choices: enable two step verification and use app passwords in clients that don’t support pin codes or turn basic auth back on. Two step verification is more secure and is highly recommended.

To turn Basic Authentication back on, go to Gmail account settings and choose Allow less secure apps.

Change gmail security settings

If you aren't using two-step verification, you can enable it in Settings. You'll need to create an app password to use instead of your normal Gmail password.

Enable two step verification video tutorial

Written by

Diane Poremsky
A Microsoft Outlook Most Valuable Professional (MVP) since 1999, Diane is the author of several books, including Outlook 2013 Absolute Beginners Book. She also created video training CDs and online training classes for Microsoft Outlook. You can find her helping people online in Outlook Forums as well as in the Microsoft Answers and TechNet forums.

Please post long or more complicated questions at Outlookforums.

2 responses to “Outlook cannot synchronize subscribed folders in Gmail”

  1. Shahzad

    Diane, this was very helpful. Its all done with your help with video. thank you.

  2. JC

    Thank you!! Finally a solution.

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