Why Is My App Store Not Working on Mac? 11 Fast Fixes

What To Know

  • When the App Store stops working on your Mac, there could be several causes. 
  • Sometimes your Mac or MacBook isn't the problem. Check Apple's System Status page to see if the problem is on Apple's end.
  • Some solutions include: installing a macOS update, restarting your Mac, checking your internet connection, and more.

So you went to download a new app on your Mac or MacBook, but the App Store isn't working! There are several things that could have gone wrong. Whether the App Store has a blank screen, won't open or load, can't connect, gives an error message, or can't download and update apps, we have the fix! Here's how to get your Mac's App Store working again.

Can’t Connect to the App Store on a Mac? Here Are 11 Fast Fixes

Your MacBook or Mac's App Store is usually reliable, but it might let you down from time to time by not connecting or working. Here's our troubleshooting guide to getting the Mac App Store connecting, opening, and working again. For more great Mac tutorials, check out our free Tip of the Day

Jump To:

1. Check the Apple System Status Page

If you cannot connect to the App Store on your Mac, the problem might be on Apple's end! If this is the case, you might see the error message "App Store error; try again later". You can visit the Apple System Status Page to check if the App Store is down. If the App Store for Mac is up, there will be a green dot next to Mac App Store.

iPhone Life
Discover your iPhone's hidden features
Get a daily tip (with screenshots and clear instructions) so you can master your iPhone in just one minute a day.

2. Check App Store Restrictions

If content restrictions have been set on your Mac's App Store, the App Store might not be working the way you want it to. Here's how to check if your Mac's App Store is restricted:

  1. Click the Apple logo.  

    click apple menu icon on macbook or mac
  2. Click System Settings

    click system settings on mac or macbook
  3. Click Screen Time

    click screen time on macbook or mac
  4. Make sure Content & Privacy is toggled off (gray, not blue).

    click apple menu icon on macbook or mac
  5. If you want to have some restrictions in place, you can toggle Content & Privacy on and select your restrictions. Keep in mind that setting App Restrictions may limit your options in your Mac's App Store. 

3. Check Your Internet Connection

If the Mac or MacBook you're using isn't connected to the internet, you won't be able to access the Mac App Store. Make sure that your Mac is connected to the internet via a stable Wi-Fi network. You can also run an internet speed test to make sure your connection is fast enough. If the App Store still won't open on your Mac, move on to our next suggestion.

4. Update macOS: Get the Latest Apple Software Update

Doing a macOS update may help with your App Store error since software updates can fix bugs and glitches. For this reason, it's good practice to do a Mac update whenever a new version of macOS comes out.

5. Check Your Mac's Date & Time Settings

Another thing to try if your App Store won't open on your Mac or MacBook is to check the date, time, and location settings. 

  1. Click the Apple menu icon and select System Settings.

    click system settings on mac or macbook
  2. Click General.

    Click General
  3. Click Date & Time.

    Click Date & Time
  4. Make sure the date, time, and time zone are set correctly.

    Ensure the date and time are accurate

6. Force Quit & Restart the App Store

If the App Store still won't load on your Mac, it may be the result of a software glitch, and you can force quit the app on your Mac to try and fix the issue. 

    7. Turn Off Your VPN

    Your Virtual Private Network (VPN) could be interfering with your Mac's App Store, causing it to not open, load, or have a blank screen. Turn off or disconnect your VPN to see if this is the root of the issue. 

    8. Sign Out Of Your Apple ID

    First, make sure you're signed in with the correct Apple ID. Even if you're logged in correctly, sometimes the solution to a bug is to sign out of your Apple ID and then back in again. If the App Store on your Mac is not opening or working, this could be a quick fix!

    9. Do a Network Settings Reset

    If the App Store won't load on your Mac or MacBook because it won't connect to the internet, and you've already checked your Wi-Fi connection, it's time to do a Network Settings Reset. After this, you'll have to sign back into your Wi-Fi network. To do this:

    1. Click the Apple menu icon and open System Settings.

      click system settings on mac or macbook
    2. Click Wi-Fi.

      Click Wi-Fi
    3. Click Details.

      Click Details
    4. Click Forget This Network....

      Click Forget this Network
    5. Click Remove.

      Click Remove
    6. Return to the list of available networks and find your Wi-Fi network. Click Connect.

      Click Connect
    7. Enter your password and click OK.

      Click OK

    Now you should be reconnected to Wi-Fi with your network settings reset.

    10. Force Restart Your Mac or MacBook

    One of the final steps to take if your App Store is not working on a Mac is to restart your Mac

    11. Contact Apple Support

    If none of these steps have worked, contact Apple Support. Follow the link, tap on the Mac you're using, and you'll be connected to an Apple associate via phone, email, or chat. If you live close enough to an Apple Store, you can drop in and ask for help.

    Next, find out what to do if the App Store on your iPhone is not working!

    Master your iPhone in one minute a day: Sign up here to get our FREE Tip of the Day delivered right to your inbox.


    Author Details

    Leanne Hays's picture

    Author Details

    Leanne Hays

    Leanne Hays has over a dozen years of experience writing for online publications. As a Feature Writer for iPhone Life, she has authored hundreds of how-to, Apple news, and gear review articles, as well as a comprehensive Photos App guide. Leanne holds degrees in education and science and loves troubleshooting and repair. This combination makes her a perfect fit as manager of our Ask an Expert service, which helps iPhone Life Insiders with Apple hardware and software issues.
    In off-work hours, Leanne is a mother of two, homesteader, audiobook fanatic, musician, and learning enthusiast.