Desktop client authentication trouble

I’m a frustrated non-techie, so please bear with me.

Nextcloud server had been running perfectly in a shared hosting environment, with me and my business partner using the desktop client to keep work synced.

Some weeks ago all of that ended, and I’ve been struggling to get the desktop app to sync to the server. I have full access to the Nextcloud server via the web interface.

The problem I face is an error: Access forbidden by server. To verify that you have proper access, click here to access the service with your browser.

This comes up when trying to set up the desktop client to sync with my computer - a Mac.

This happens when using the setup wizard. What happens is that once I’ve put in the server address (as I say, in a shared hosting environment with my ISP), a web browser page opens up requesting sign-in (without requesting any credentials), and then to grant access to the app.

That happily happens and I get a message that the desktop app should now be signed in.

Which is when I get the error: Access forbidden by server. To verify that you have proper access, click here to access the service with your browser.

I don’t know what credentials it has used to try to sign in because I never had the change to input these.

Subsequent to the initial breakdown in the sync between server and client, I’ve uninstalled and reinstalled both the server and client apps.

I don’'t know whether this manual for the desktop client is still current, but that is not the process flow for me although that looks familiar from my very first, successful install.

What am I missing?

I have already tried:

  • editing the config file to insert overwritehost and overwriteprotocol commands (because apparently one authentication error lies in incorrect redirect or calling of a page)

  • unsuccessfully removing #29 from done.php file LoginFlowV2
    This last was an attempt to address this error that I get in the logs:
    Undefined index: urlGenerator at /home/myusername/public_html/nxtcloud/core/templates/loginflowv2/done.php#29

My ISP is unhelpful to the point of serving no purpose.

I realise that I need to show some logs - I just don’t know where to find them or which ones are relevant to try narrow down this problem.

1 Like


@jboriginal You are welcome anyway. Please find my virtual sympathy.

Will read you long post and may come back with a conclusion later.


This is the home user forum and although you may ask freely and virtually anything, it may depend what you get answered for free. Ref. to Nextcloud GmbH there is professional support available:

  1. Customers and Partners (mainly) closed portal —
  2. An Enterprise Subscription from Nextcloud is available with email and phone support.

NOTE: Please be aware I am not affiliated with Nextcloud GmbH and my views are the free views as volunteer and EU citizen and appear in a private capacity solely.

Furthermore, consult the Nextcloud Community Guidelines in everybody’s interest, just as a more general advice to an apparent newcomer.

Sorry to hear of your mishap. This seems to be quite unfortunate not only for a new bee. :honeybee:

I will seek to provide some advice. However, this may not meet your expectations and please stay as pragmatic as possible.

Please do not hesitate for asking again openly at your convenience anytime.

  1. This Nextcloud Desktop 2.6 Client Manual should be the current instead of the outdated ref.
  2. You may find the most current NC desktop client release suitable to your OS at:
  3. Cloud storage is a model of computer data storage like the Nextcloud FOSS and please always distinguish between :
    • The central NC server – including NC database, NC data storage folder and CLI admin backend
    • Distributed client computers of connected user accounts depending on the OS flavour in use at any machine respectively at the convenience of such users
    • The NC server GUI frontend – the web service graphical user interface (GUI) over HTTPS providing access for both users and the admin by help of an web browser of your convenience like Apple Safari, Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome or others.
    • The NC desktop App/Client – as mentioned above. You can download the latest version of the Nextcloud Desktop Synchronization Client from the Nextcloud download page. There are clients for Linux, Mac OS X / macOS, and Microsoft Windows.
  4. Please consult the NC 16 Nextcloud Server Administration Guide thoroughly and I would like to always advice against tampering with the code on a general basis.
  5. You may consult the NC 16 User Guide. Please be aware some sections seem to be quite outdated, unfortunately.
  6. However, the NC 16 User Guide – The Nextcloud Web interface section seems to be quite appropriate documentation to start with.
  7. Please avoid to volunteer unintentionally as a beta tester of NC 17+ early releases if a newcomer to Nextcloud endeavours, if I may.

IMHO looking at your obviously more general issue and the apparent tampering to both system files and system code I may propose some phase of both studying and consideration before returning to this forum. Naturally, you are free task at your deliberation at any time anyway.
@jboriginal A fresh start and a fresh system setup according to the procedures as provided by Nextcloud would be the most beneficial approach, I presume.

Hope this helps.

BTW A problem solved (i.e. :white_check_mark:) or a little ACK to one or more of my comments (i.e. click on the heart icon :heart:) would show you are satisfied. This could be a kind gesture and would motivate me like authors of other advice to continue in lending a hand freely…

1 Like

@TP75 Thanks for your considered answer.

I’ll heed the advice and do a reinstall.

1 Like

If reinstallation does not help do try to get some logs. For example on there is a note mentioning on getting log from the client:
/Applications/ --logwindow

1 Like

Good advice and very helpful. I forgot about and will seek to include this in any future advice of my own, I presume.

Happy hacking.