Since around today, March 10, 2021 and recent update to 89.0.4389.82 Chromium stopped syncing to Google accounts. As is turns out, this is due to some changes made by Google.

What can we as users do?

More info: https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/chromium-browser/+bug/1917705/comments/8

  • Related to askubuntu.com/questions/1320973/… – guiverc Mar 15 at 1:36
  • Though written Slackware in mind, following can be of help if you must use Chromium: Syncing browser data I must warn you, it is a bit tedious to implement. – Ars Ivci Mar 16 at 6:16
  • Just came across this solution: gist.github.com/cvan/44a6d60457b20133191bd7b104f9dcc4 How am I supposed to answer this if only people with reputation can answer? Does it mean new persons cannot answer even if they know the answer. – Schultz Hartmut Apr 4 at 17:31
  • Subscribe to mailing list (as stated in gist 1). Then you just enable Chrome Sync API at console.cloud.google.com/apis/library/chromesync.googleapis.com Now create all the GOOGLE_API_KEY GOOGLE_DEFAULT_CLIENT_ID GOOGLE_DEFAULT_CLIENT_SECRET keys as shown above. I used TV-and-Limited-Input-devices when Creating OAuth client ID. Not sure that matters – Schultz Hartmut Apr 4 at 17:35
  • In ubuntu edit file: /etc/chromium-browser/default Add lines: ##all these are random numbers from a cat typing my keyboard so please do try them in production if you have free time... GOOGLE_API_KEY=AIzazUdJiNwlR6zYtNd GOOGLE_DEFAULT_CLIENT_ID=83728372837-wn4AKjPv02YM1x4gv.apps.googleusercontent.com GOOGLE_DEFAULT_CLIENT_SECRET=EERRN-JtEoGYoqL7xGZ6hhIxbM export GOOGLE_API_KEY export GOOGLE_DEFAULT_CLIENT_ID export GOOGLE_DEFAULT_CLIENT_SECRET – Schultz Hartmut Apr 4 at 17:35

There's literally nothing that can be done by users or anyone other than Google to change this. You will need to use the actual Google Chrome browser if you still want profile sync to work.

Google made the decision that their profile sync APIs are going to be restricted to Google Chrome only, and it's a decision by Google, not by Chromium or users of Chromium, that we can't alter. Their announcement on that change even said March was the date that this would get yanked, and March 15 would get actual login failure cases.

This is stated perfectly in the comment you linked to in that 'bug' (all 'bold' emphasis is mine):

This is an unfortunate consequence of a decision by Google to restrict access to the sync API to Chrome only (which explains why in comment #3 you're seeing that chrome 89 on linux works fine).

And the quote by the Ubuntu Developer from the Chromium upstream site data:

« What does this mean for my users?

Users of products that are incorrectly using these APIs will notice that they won't be able to log into their Google Accounts in those products anymore.

For users who accessed Google features (like Chrome Sync) through a 3rd-party Chromium-based browser, their data will continue to be available in their Google Account, and data that they have stored locally will continue to be available locally.

And once again, the developer makes a statement:

I'm afraid (and sorry) there's nothing that can be done from a packaging perspective to mitigate this regression. Reverting the snap in the stable channel wouldn't help, because it's not a version problem. The official announcement states that starting March 15 attempts to log in will fail anyway.

I suppose that users that can't do without the profile sync feature will need to move on to using the official chrome package distributed by Google, instead of chromium (which is probably what Google wants, really).

The section I put here in bold (the emphasis is mine) is the only course of action you have available to you if you want to use the Google profile sync still - stop using Chromium and instead switch to Google Chrome which does have access to the profile sync API bits at Google, and in turn will do Profile Sync.

If you are unwilling to switch to the full Google Chrome browser, then you are out of luck - there's literally nothing that the world or community at large can do on this.

  • Syncing a browser configuration folder, or parts of it, through a cloud service would allow the user to take synchronization in own hands. – vanadium Mar 10 at 17:58
  • @vanadium true, but it wouldn't be synced with their Google account which is what the core problem / complaint is, and is not a straightforward process. – Thomas Ward Mar 16 at 18:01
  • are there any good alternatives to profile syncing? I could not care less for google's "security concerns" they didn't care about for over seven years now (omgubuntu.co.uk/2021/01/chromium-sync-google-api-removed) but I want my boockmarks kept in sync over multiple devices and operating systems... maybe also over different browsers? – xmoex Mar 29 at 11:56
  • @xmoex Theres not really an alternative available at this time that is guaranteed to work cross platform and across devices. Short of installing Google Chrome anyways. There are tedious solutions but they are not guaranteed to be cross platform. – Thomas Ward Mar 29 at 12:12

Either install Firefox

Or install a thirty browser sync tool such as xbrowsersync

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