FaceTime: When It Doesn’t Ring

Back in July last year I mentioned a small issue I had with FaceTime and iMessage. In that case they were doing what they were supposed to, making sure I was me and not somebody else trying to use my Apple ID.

This post is about a recent issue I had with FaceTime. An actual malfunction. Oddly, I could call my sister, and my parents could call me, and my sister could call me, but my sister and I couldn’t call my parents. The Mac they use for FaceTime simply wouldn’t ring, as if nobody was calling it. Very strange. We tried everything from signing out to deleting plist files to reinstalling FaceTime and none of it worked.

I discussed this problem at length with a software developer who knows a bit about how FaceTime works. He told me that FaceTime and iMessage go everywhere together, and if you sign out of FaceTime and then sign in again, the system doesn’t get completely reset. However, if you sign out of both FaceTime and iMessage, wait several minutes, restart, and then sign in again, this will result in a complete reset of both services and things should get back to normal.

Sure enough, after following these instructions, FaceTime worked fine. Surprisingly, all of the many iMessage threads we had going came back too — nothing was lost in this process. We are back to normal now: every member of the family can call any other member of the family without any issues.

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