iTunes 5002 error blues cured

October 27th-2008 Update: Celebrating the 3rd aniversary of this post with an advice from one of my readers, John: try to retype all of your iTunes account information, that worked for him.

September 11th-2008 Update: It seems that the iTunes 8 update has resulted in a number of people experiencing the 5002 error, related to updating of iPhone Apps.

Please check this thread on the Apple Forums for possible solutions: Topic : ITunes 8 Upgrade Results in 5002 unknown Error when trying to update Apps

Some of my users has been kind enough to provide possible fixes to the issue:

July 1st-2008 Update: A regular trick when you have strange errors on Mac OS X, is to perform a “Repair Disk Permissions” using the “Disk Utility” application. You should also try this if you encounter iTunes error 5002. Thanks to David from for making that suggestion.

May 15th-2008 Update: The most recent comments points to a problem with missing credit card security codes, so please review your iTunes account information.

April 2nd-2008 Update: It seems that a recent update to iTunes has made this error much more common, look to the bottom of the comment-stream to get the latest.

There’s no clear solution to the problem, but re-registering with iTunes Music Store, and/or contact iTunes can,sometimes, fix the problem.

April 4th-2008 Update: Concensus is building around something we’ve been focusing in on for a while, that is DON’T EVER USE saved shopping carts. Due to an error in iTunes, you’ll get the 5002 error, if a product you’ve added to the shopping cart, is removed from iTunes Music Store, before you go to check-up.

iTunes Music Store seems to revise their catalogue a lot, especially tail-coating a new product launch, this is why it seems to be related to new versions of iTunes.

This blog-post is, by far, the biggest driver of traffic to my website, and if you read the comment-stream, you’ll notice a lot of frustrations, Apple, PLEASE recognise this problem, and FIX it – I’ll teel it in words you MIGHT understand: YOU’RE LOOSING BUSINESS!

Kim Bach, April 2nd and 4th 2008
I recently made my first purchase on iTunes, but I kept getting an error 5002 when trying to authorise my PowerBook. After trying again and again I gave up on it, and sent an e-mail to Apple Support, and they promissed an answer in 72 hours. Two weeks later, still no answer, so I turned to the support pages in iTunes Music Store, and there’s no useful information on error 5002.

When all else fails, FGI. So Googling “itunes computer authorization problem 5002” I found a promissing thread on MacNN Forums.

The user who started the thread on the 19th of october, finally solved his problem today. His solution was to shorten the name other computers on the subnet can use to access the computer. This setting can be changed by going to System Preferences/Sharing (in Danish: Systemindstillinger/Deling). After changing my computername and subnet name, I was able to authorise my computer with iTunes and listen to the audiobook I purchased.

I suspect that quite a few users have this problem, since the installation procedure of Mac OS-X allows you to enter whatever, ridiculously long, computername, and mine was indeed very long.

But I’m NOT impressed with the (lack of) support I got from Apple iTunes support. They MUST have heard about this problem before, so why the solution isn’t featured on the iTunes FAQ, beats me!

I wrote iTunes support to let them know about the solution, I really hope they return with an answer.

114 replies on “iTunes 5002 error blues cured”

The iTunes store returned with an acknowledgement that they recieved my suggestion. In the mail they asked me to send feedback using the iTunes Feedback page (, to ensure that my suggestions are considered for future product enhancements. I find it quite strange that iTunes support couldn’t redirect it, so I suspect that what I recieved was some kind of automated answer. Anyway, I acted “decent”, and submitted the solution to iTunes Feedback as well.

Hello Kim,

Your blog sent me off in the right direction. I, too, experienced the same problem you did (eror 5002, authorization). After reading your entry I went to Preferences -> Sharing and realized that my sharing name was *shorter* than my original sharing name (taken from your users name in WinXP). So I set my sharing name back to the original sharing name from when I purchased the music from iTunes, and voila! Back in business.

So, I dont know if it is length or exactitude that is the issue. In either case you got me going the right way, and for that and you blog entries, I thank you.


This sounds like a good tip, but what exactly needs to be changed to overcome the error #5002? My “computer name” in the sharing panel is only 6 characters long, but the address at which “Other Macintosh users can access your computer” is ridiculously long. Please help!

Hello D.P.

I changed it like I wrote in the post (going to System Preferences/Sharing and changing the computer name), and this worked for me. As you can see Matt who posted a previous comment, had a different problem, because he had made previous purchases on iTunes on Windows.

I don’t know for sure, but I believe that error 5002 can be caused by other things.

Do you have any special characters in your computer name?

I suppose that you have tried to re-authorise your computer?

Since I’ve noticed quite a lot of traffic due to the iTunes 5002 error, I’d like to share some information that I just became aware of.

As expected the 5002 error can be caused by other reasons…For instance when accessing a saved shopping basket.

It seems that it’s a bad idea to use saved shopping baskets as a wish list. This is because you might get the 5002 error when accesing a saved basket, if one of the titles in the basket has been deleted from the iTunes Music Store, since you last accessed it.

The only way to fix this problem seems to be to contact iTunes Music Store support, and have them delete the saved basket.

The recommendation is to use playlists as wishlists, instead of saved shopping baskets.

Thank you to the friendly people at for this tip (in Danish).

Thank You.
I have been chewing my fingers off about this problem for the past few weeks, AND HAVE FINALLY FOUND THE @##@$ SOLUTION!!
Hopefully Apple Support will acknowledge this error and address it to others with the same dilema.

You’re welcome, and thanks for the feedback. Was your solution to shorten your computer name or did you experience a problem with saved shopping baskets?

I’m getting the same error (5002) but only on one song. I purchased another song just fine right in the midst of this problem. Darn that I need this one particular song for my work, and soon!

I’m running XP, and I shortened my shared name to 4 characters long. No luck. It had been 12 characters. Still waiting on a reply from Apple. Any thoughts? Thanks.

Oh, yes, two more data points: I’m using one-click shopping and the error code says ‘Could not purchase “Unknown”‘… Could it be that they are confused over the song title?

Hi Karen,

Thanks for posting a comment on my blog.

I’m getting LOTS of traffic due to the 5002 error, and Apple isn’t really doing enough to address the issues.

To my knowledge there are to reasons for this error, as described in my blogpost.

1. Too long a computername, if you have that NO purchases can be made at all
2. A saved shopping basket with a song that has been removed from the store at a later point.

But I’m sure that there are many, many more. Have you authorised
several computers for fairplay?

Can you tell me which song it is, and I’ll try to see if I can make the purchase. If so, I’m willing to help you by trying to buy the song for you.

Best regards

I changed my computer’s name and my “other macintosh users who can access your computer” name to just three characters. This was after buying a song with no problems, but after iTunes wouldn”t let me purchase a movie. Any suggestions?

I struggled with this for days, but found that if I de-authorised my computer and then re-authorised it, all of the problems went away. I hope this helps! DC

I have been getting the same 5002 error code, however not while buying songs, but while trying to write reviews for podcasts. It’s odd, I have 2 podcasts on ITunes and have been getting emails from listeners that they have tried to write a review, but get the 5002 error code instead. If I go to a podcast other than my own, there is no problem. I have checked the RSS feed and have had people write reviews in the past, however all of a sudden everyone that I know gets this error message when they try to write a review of my podcasts. Seems to be a weird generic message and there is NO support available for podcasters other than a discussion group of other broadcasters.

Thanks for the post Kim. I had exactly the same problem as yourself. My computer name defaulted to a ridiculously long name. I renamed it as you suggested in ‘System Preferences’ -> ‘Sharing’ & ‘Computer Name’. This resolved the problem; so thank you very much!
The support you received from Apple is very discouraging as well as disappointing.

I have this same error message, but it pops up when I try to load my podcast onto itunes. The rss feed is fine, there is nothing wrong with the link.

I am running itunes on a dell XPS, does anyone know how to fix this error 5002 message on a windows machine?

I’m getting the 5002 when trying to submit a feed for a podcast. I’ve tried shortening the name, deauthorizing and reauthorizing the computer, and nothing works. I have the most current version of iTunes.

Well, I just upgraded to 7.3.0, and it just started happening. I’ve always used 1-click shopping, and I’ve never touched my computer name. Any suggestions??

Hi Bill

And you didn’t have a saved shopping basket?

Have you tried to reauthorise your computer?

It seems that there are new bugs in 7.3.0, I’m getting reports about
errors related to submission of podcasts now.

The 5002 error seems to be quite generic – and back with a vengence.

i’m having the same error. everytime i try to continue my download of national lampoons van wilder it gives me error 5002

Update: One of my readers has sent me the following feedback (July 4th 2007) regarding an error in the Podcast submission process:

I’m just gonna wait on it for now, because an iTunes head-honcho-type person posted in an iTunes forum online that iTunes is having problems and currently isn’t accepting new feeds as a result of one of them.

When the problem is fixed, they’ll remove their post so that people know when the submission process will be working again.

Hey all, I had recently lost my macbook due to a catastrophic event (my fiance dropped a can of soda on it). When I received my replacement laptop I tried to use the iTunes store and received the same 5002 error when attempting to make a purchase. I attempted to change the sharing and also tried to authorize my computer and continued to get the 5002 error. I finally just clicked on sign-in, answered my bday and entered a security question and was able to download error free.

For those who are still having problems give that a try.


FYI, basket w/ 2 albums was screwing me. So i did one album on it’s own, fine. went to “buy album” on that album, got the erorr…so my issue was with a particular album (i presume some kind of databasing error at apple)

i have been trying to follow your directions for error 5002, no luck. my problem is that i received a store gift (album) but i get the error message when i try to redeem it. I have been able to redeem two monetary gifts but not the gift album. Can you help?

YES! Awesome! It works again!

Just go to itunes, store menu, de-authorize, enter account, then same again but re-authorize, enter account. and then log in and buy songs!


I also had some problems with Error 5002 on iTunes while purchasing an album. The solution that worked for me was to de-authorize my computer and re-authorize it to play the songs. My computer’s name has changed in the past so I think that’s what makes iTunes crazy…

hey there. i was recently plagued by the seemingly notorious error “5002”. after reading your blog, i found many options that might work, but for me i was still baffled. i changed my computer name, tried changing the itunes downloading setting from “one-click” to “shopping cart” and visa-versa, tried downloading the most recent itunes version, attempted to change credit card info, etc. nothing worked. finally i switched over to another itunes account that i hadn’t used in over a year. this actually worked. the account that had the 5002 error wouldn’t even allow me to switch my payment option. the whole thing was tainted through. i’ll keep my fingers crossed that this account doesn’t catch the 5002 “bug”. the 5002 error almost seems like a virus. my advice: open multiple accounts as back up. better to be safe than sorry.

Just wanted to say thanks for the fix– I’ve had numerous iTunes issues over the past 2-3 months and the Apple Support has been woeful at best. Changing my sharing name was an instant success. Kudos & thx!

I fixed this problem (finally). I changed my password and then when I tried to buy a song it said my address needed updating because it wasn’t a regular US address (huh?). I left my address alone but my credit card security code was no longer entered. I reentered it and everything’s fine now.

Thank yall for everything. I used Travman’s suggesting for the quickest fix: I just changed my password and that fixed it. I’m back in business.

“I fixed this problem (finally). I changed my password and then when I tried to buy a song it said my address needed updating because it wasn’t a regular US address (huh?). I left my address alone but my credit card security code was no longer entered. I reentered it and everything’s fine now.”

This instantly fixed my problem. Maybe some recent update caused my card’s security code to be deleted.

Thanks for all your hints. Unfortunately, none of them worked for me. I’ve tried all of the following:
1) Change computer’s name in Sharing settings
1a) from ‘Gandalf’ to ‘qwe’ to make it shorter
1b) from ‘Gandalf’ to formerly used name ‘BLACK’
2) Change iTunes account password
3) Re-enter credit card’s security code
4) Deactivate and activate account
5) Change purchase behavior (one-click vs. cart)
6) Buying whole album or just a song from that album
7) Kicking myself in the ass.
I’m lost 🙁

Adding to my previous comment:
I’ve been trying to buy the Album “Treasure Box” by “The Cranberries” for three months now. Furthermore, I can’t buy the song “Les chants magnétiques, pt. 2” by “Jean-Michel Jarre” from the Album “Les chants magnétiques”.

Sorry to hear that none of the tips helped you, and thank you for making a summary of all the things you can try to solve the problem, I’ve considered doing that myself, since the comments are stacking up, and it’s easy to get lost.

Have you managed to make any purchases at all? A wild guess could be that you have the wrong “store” selected. You’re limited to make purchases in the iTunes Store of the country in which your credit card is registered.

You can change the country by scrolling to the bottom of the iTunes Music Store and select the correct store under My Store in iTunes.

Hi Kim,
thanks for your appreciation. I’ve managed to buy several other songs from the same iTunes (Germany) Store and have, for example, even managed to buy songs from the same artist (Jean-Michel Jarre). As I’m a software developer myself, I keep wondering if Apple has a default error message that pops up when all other error mechanisms don’t apply, as a sort of fallback message when the system itself is somehow baffled…

THank you! Thank you! Thank you! I added another account and IT WORKED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you so much!!!

I managed to get my Itunes working again by following Matthew’s suggestion. I just clicked on forgot password, answered my birthday and security question, and retyped the password I had originally chosen. Then I went back to Itunes and it worked without a problem.

Thanks for the help everyone. I was having the same error (5002), even got the “address in a different county” – error – message (then to my surprise the USA was not a listed choice….. hummmmm).

I went into my profile, found that the security code from my credit card was missing – (where did this information suddenly disappear too?) I edited my personal info and was immediately able to make my purchases.

As this is personal and private information I find it unsettling that my info should suddenly be tampered with, however I am happy to be back.

I had the same (5002) problem. It happened after my computer updated to the newest version of iTunes. I signed out and then signed back in and retyped all of my information. And voila, it worked! Thanks Kim for the feedback!

I got the 5002 error, after seeing that some were having a security number missing, decided to check that and realized i was using an out of date credit card. Changed that and now I am downloading fine.

None of the solutions fix the bug “Error 5002” for me I’ve tried it all.The only solution that was said is to delete shopping cart and start over.THAT DOESN’T WORK FOR ME.I believe the people with the shopping cart access problem lies with the store and not our computers,correct me if I’m wrong.I never had this code before i updated like most people.David says he’s solve code “5200” NOT “5002”,I don’t have a permission problem.I can connect to the store and buy with “1 click purchase” selected I can’t with my shopping cart.So anyone with the REAL solution respond SOON PLEASE!!!!! ITS BEEN LONG ENOUGH ( Jan 14,2008 -9:00am )

Les, I’m sorry that none of the tips worked for you, and the tip David links to, is for Mac OS X.

It seems to be a complex problem, and it might be time to try to submit all these experiences to iTunes Music Store.

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