Google Drive can’t connect [COMPLETE GUIDE]

by Matthew Adams
Matthew Adams
Matthew Adams
Windows & Software Expert
Matthew is a freelancer who has produced a variety of articles on various topics related to technology. His main focus is the Windows OS and all the things... read more
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  • Google Drive can't connect? If that's the case, there might be something up with your overall connection. 
  • The first thing to note is that the Windows Firewall can block software connections. As such, switching it off might solve the Google Drive no connection problem.
  • If you encounter any other problems with your Google Drive, please visit our Google Drive section for the proper solution.
  • There are a lot of Google products nowadays and we wrote about all of them. So bookmark our Google troubleshooting hub for further reference to any other issues.
Fix Google Drive error

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Google Drive can’t connect? If that’s the case, there might be something up with your overall connection.

So check that first with the Windows Internet Connections troubleshooter.

However, if you’re certain your overall connection is ok, these are a few potential fixes that might enable you to connect with the Google Drive app.

How can I fix the Unable to connect message in Google Drive?

Google Drive has millions of users worldwide, but despite its popularity, this cloud storage service has its flaws.

Speaking of Google Drive and its issues, here are some problems that users reported:

  • Google Drive not syncing Windows 10 – According to users, sometimes Google Drive won’t sync in Windows 10 at all. This can be a big problem, but we already covered this issue in great detail in our Google Drive won’t sync article, so check it out for more solutions.
  • Google Drive sync problems – Many users reported that syncing issues can occur with Google Drive. If that’s the case, be sure to check if your antivirus or firewall aren’t interfering with Google Drive.
  • Google Backup and Sync can’t connect – This issue can appear if you’re using Backup and Sync application on your PC. To fix the problem, be sure to remove all applications that can interfere with Google Drive.
  • Google Drive constantly unable to connect – Many users reported that this error message appears constantly on their PC. If that’s the case, restart Google Drive and check if that helps.
  • Google Drive unable to connect after sleep, proxy – Sometimes this issue can occur if you’re using a proxy. Simply change your proxy settings in Google Drive and check if that solves your issue.

Solution 1 – Switch off the Windows Firewall

The first thing to note is that the Windows Firewall can block software connections. As such, switching it off might solve the Google Drive no connection problem. This is how you can switch off the firewall:

  1. Enter ‘firewall’ into the Cortana search box. Now you should select Windows Defender Firewall to open firewall options and settings.
    Google Backup and Sync can't connect
  2. Click Turn Windows Firewall on or off to open the options shown directly below.
    Google Drive constantly unable to connect
  3. Now click both the Turn off Windows Firewall options there and press OK.
    Google Drive unable to connect after sleep

Most users don’t know what to do when the Windows search box goes missing. Read this article to learn how you can get it back in just a couple of steps.

You want to check if your firewall is blocking certain ports? Follow the simple steps from this guide to find out.

Solution 2 – Check Anti-Virus Software isn’t Blocking Google Drive

It might be the case that anti-virus software is blocking Google Drive’s connection.

As such, it’s worth checking your anti-virus application settings. As the settings vary greatly for each utility, no specific instructions can be given for this.

However, you should search for some firewall options in the anti-virus software that might enable you to unblock programs.

Alternatively, you could uninstall your anti-virus utilities via Programs and Features.

If you can then connect to Google Drive, it will be clear enough that the anti-virus software was blocking the connection in some way.

According to users, antivirus tools such as McAfee and Avast can lead to this issue, so be sure to remove them.

For the Norton users, we’ve got a dedicated guide on how to completely remove it from your PC. There’s a similar guide for McAffe users, as well.

If you’re using any antivirus solution and you want to completely remove it from your PC, consider getting one of the best uninstaller software. These tools will remove all files related to a specific app without leaving any trace.

If removing your antivirus software solves the issue, you need to switch to different antivirus software.

You can find lots of options available, but there are a few things to take into account when picking the best antivirus software for your PC, including a good threat database, up-to-date shields, and browsing security and privacy.

It’s worth mentioning that there’s a quick workaround that can fix this problem for ESET users.

To fix the problem, simply open ESET settings and activate HIPS (Host intrusion prevention system).

After doing that, Google Drive should start working again.

Looking to change your antivirus with a better one? Here’s a list with our top picks.

Solution 3 – Remove the e-Rewards Notify Software

Have you installed the e-Rewards Notify software? If so, you should remove that software from Windows.

This program is known to disconnect Google Drive as it automatically configures your network to use a proxy. Google Drive doesn’t work with an authenticated proxy.

Note that e-Rewards also creates three new Windows services which you can switch off by entering ‘services’ into the Cortana search box and clicking Services.

Search for the e-Rewards services in the window shown directly below, right-click the services and select Properties and then press the Stop buttons.

Google Drive not syncing Windows 10

If a certain software is interfering with Google Drive, the best way to fix the problem is to remove it. There are many ways to do that, but the best one is to use uninstaller software.

In case you’re not familiar, uninstaller software is a special application designed to remove other programs from your PC.

In addition to removing the desired applications, this tool will also remove all files and registry entries associated with it.

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This will ensure that the problematic application is completely removed and prevent any leftover files from interfering with your PC.

If you want to learn how to remove software leftovers, check out this article and find out how you can do it.

Solution 4 – Restart Google Drive Sync

Sometimes the easiest solution is the best one, and many users reported that they fixed Unable to connect message simply by restarting Google Drive.

To do that, you just need to follow these simple steps:

Keep in mind that this is just a workaround, so you’ll have to repeat it until you find a permanent solution.

  1. Restarting Google Drive can be a simple fix for connection errors. First, you should right-click the Google Drive icon on the system tray.
  2. Then click the More button with three vertical dots.
  3. Next, you should select the Quit Google Drive option on the context menu.
  4. Now open the Google Drive app again.

Solution 5 – Create a new administrator account

According to users, sometimes this issue can be caused by your user account.

If your user account is corrupted or not configured properly, you’ll encounter Unable to connect message in Google Drive.

However, you can easily fix that by creating a new user account. To do that, just follow these steps:

  1. Press Windows Key + I to open the Settings app.
  2. When Settings app opens, navigate to Accounts section.
    Google Drive not syncing Windows 10
  3. Navigate to Family & other people section in the menu on the left. In the right pane, click Add someone else to this PC.
    Google Drive sync problems
  4. Select I don’t have this person’s sign-in information.
    Google Backup and Sync can't connect
  5. Now choose Add a user without a Microsoft account.
    Google Drive constantly unable to connect
  6. Enter the desired user name and password and click Next.
    Google Drive unable to connect proxy

If you’re having trouble opening the Setting app, take a look at this article to solve the issue.

Windows won’t let you add a new user account? Follow some easy steps and create or add how many accounts you want!

After creating a new account, you need to change it to the administrative account. To do that, just follow these steps:

  1. In Settings app, go to Accounts > Family & other people. Now locate the new account in Other people section. Select the account and click Change account type.
    Google Drive not syncing Windows 10
  2. Change Account type to Administrator and click OK to save changes.
    Google Drive sync problems

After doing that, switch to the new account and check if the problem with Google Drive still persists. Keep in mind that you might have to install Google Drive again on the new account.

Learn everything there is to know about the administrator account and how you can enable/disable it right here!

Solution 6 – Run Windows Program Compatibility Troubleshooter

The Program Compatibility Troubleshooter is one of the troubleshooters included in Windows.

This can come in handy for fixing software that isn’t working, as is the case with Google Drive’s connection error.

So it might help fix Google Drive, and this is how you can run the troubleshooter.

  1. Open Control Panel and navigate to Troubleshooting.
  2. Now you can click Run programs made for previous versions of Windows to open the window directly below.
    Google Drive sync problems
  3. Click Advanced and select the Run as administrator check box.
    Google Backup and Sync can't connect
  4. Now press the Next button to select a program to fix. Then you can select Google Drive from a list of programs.
  5. Click Next again to start the scanning. The troubleshooter might then show you a list of Google Drive issues it can fix for you.

You can’t open Control Panel? Take a look at this step-by-step guide to find a solution.

If the Troubleshooter stops before completing the process, fix it with the help of this complete guide.

Solution 7 – Change proxy settings

According to users, sometimes proxy settings can interfere with Google Drive and cause Unable to connect message to appear.

Apparently, Google Drive has some issues with proxy settings, and if you have issues with Google Drive, be sure to turn off Automatically detect proxy settings.

After turning off this option, enable Direct connect and your problem should be completely resolved.

Solution 8 – Reinstall Google Drive app

If you’re having problems with Google Drive, you might want to consider reinstallation.

Sometimes your installation can get corrupted and that can cause this and other Google Drive problems to occur.

In case your installation is corrupted, you can fix the issue simply by removing Google Drive from your PC.

To ensure that Google Drive is completely removed, we advise you to use one of the uninstaller applications we mentioned in one of our previous solutions.

Now you just have to install Google Drive again and your issue should be resolved.

Keep in mind that you need to install the latest version of Google Drive if you want to avoid this and similar issues in the future.

Those are some probable fixes for Google Drive connection errors, so feel free to try them all and let us know if they work for you.

If you have any other suggestions or questions, feel free to leave them in the comments section below.

  • Why is Google Sync not working?
You need to disable and re-enable sync app or service wise. We have a full guide to help you fix this problem.
  • What are the best cloud sync?

Some of the best file sync tools are SyncBack, Easy2Sync, and FreeFileSync. See our complete list with the best file sync tools for Windows 10.

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • First, check your Internet connection. The lack of Internet connection is the usual cause of this problem. If that’s not the case, try temporarily turn off your Firewall and disable the antivirus software. They might be blocking the connection.

  • Open Settings and under Sync, tap on Google. You can now disable and re-enable sync app or service wise. Just tap on the service that’s causing the sync error, wait a few seconds to let it take effect, and then try to re-enable sync.

  • Click the Windows Start button and find Google Drive File Stream or Drive File Stream programs. Click on it and wait for 20 seconds. Google Drive File Stream will reload and you should regain access to your files.

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