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Plaxo synchronizes your Mac OS X Address Book with your Plaxo Universal Address Book. Wherever you install a Plaxo toolbar, your address book will be consistent and stay up-to-date automatically. You can also access your address book on the Web through Plaxo Online.

On Mac OS X 10.4 and newer, Plaxo for Mac also offers the ability to sync your iCal calendars to Plaxo Online (and on to any other Plaxo sync points, e.g. Google Calendars, Outlook, etc) For iPhone users, this is a real boon as your contacts and calendars are now kept in sync on your phone, desktop and the Web (and multiple Macs and PCs should you have more than one more...

What's New

Version 3.16.2:
  • Fixed problem where client would change birthday and anniversary years to be '2000'
  • Improved iCal calendar handling (specifically fixes problem on Snow Leopard with Exchange based calendars)
  • Fixed a few memory leaks


Mac OS X version 10.3.9 or later and an active Internet connection to sync your data. iCal sync and Apple Mail plug-in require Mac OS X version 10.4 or later You must be a Plaxo member to use this toolbar, join Plaxo here.

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Plaxo User Discussion

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Chrischram Member IconComment+85

This version still repeatedly crashes the Plaxo Assistant background process on my mid-2009 MacBook. Plaxo denies there is a problem. I can't find anyplace to upload my growing list of crash reports. I'm about ready to stop trying to get this POS to work.

Reply0 replies
Version 3.16.2
Chrischram Member IconComment+85

STILL not 64-bit compatible? I just tried this version on my mid-2009 MacBook running Snow Leopard. It never syncs anything because one of Plaxo's background processes crashes.

Reply1 reply
Version 3.16.1

Plaxo for Mac version 977 and 1011 were tested and qualified on both 32 and 64 bit installations of 10.6.2 so I can't account for why it is crashing on you. If you can please post this problem in Plaxo's help forum (in the Mac section) http://forums.plaxo.com/forumdisplay.php?f=22 then we can follow up with you to get a crash report and track down the problem.

Chrischram Member IconComment+85

This version claims to be compatible with Snow Leopard in both 32 and 64 bit mode. After several uninstalls/reinstalls I have been unable to get anything but crashes of background processes on my mid-2009 MacBook.

Reply0 replies
Version 3.16v977
Mtcobra Member IconComment+79

I've used Plaxo in the recent past until I found that it was causing some unusual effects to my Address Book. The Nick Name field was being altered. If my address book contained, say, two Charles, then the nick name of the first that I has set as 'Chuck' was ok, but the nick name of the second was changed to 'Chuck2.' Additional Charles's were numbered as well (3, 4, etc.)

In using SerialMailer, where I wanted to use the nick name within the body of emails, that numbering was unacceptable. 'Hi, Chuck3:' just wasn't the way I wanted it to be. Frustrated me until I found that by getting rid of Plaxo, the problem went away. I had to re-name all the numbered nick names, but they stayed as entered after that.

If any of you have found that Plaxo no longer does this altering, do reply and let me know. The other features were great. I just could not have it altering my nicks!

Reply2 replies
Version 3.12 v839
dcolace (Developer)

Plaxo for Mac has never altered the data that is synced. What you might be remembering is that older versions of Plaxo for Mac would create custom labels for things like email and phone numbers with things like "work 2" and "home 3" to match the multiple phone and email slots shown in the Plaxo Online interface. The past several versions of Plaxo for Mac have done away with these numbered, custom labels so that software that works with the standard, Apple provided, "Home" and "Work" labels will work correctly.

Billy the Biker

I would like to reinstall Plaxo, because I think it would be handy, but I had big problems with duplication in my Address Book when I installed it last summer, and had to manually go through twice deleting dupes. If I knew that it wouldn't happen again I would give it another try. MobileMe has worked the bugs out, so I am continuing to use it for the time being.

rampancy Member IconComment+127

While I still find Plaxo's web interface somewhat clunky, I find that the client-side software for Plaxo works well on both 10.5 and 10.4. Thanks for your efforts in supporting the Mac and Mac users - they are well appreciated.

Reply0 replies
Version 3.12 v839
globetrotterdk Member IconComment+0

I tried to cut down on the amount of menu items I have in the menu bar and set the Plaxo toolbar not to open at startup/login. The toolbar still kept appearing in the menu bar, so uninstalled the preference pane. Still the toolbar wouldn't die. It again appeared at startup.

Reply8 replies
Version 3.9v579
dcolace (Developer)

There is an option on the initial screen of the Plaxo system preferences to show/hide the Plaxo menu item.


True, but maybe there should be. At any rate, the preferences should work correctly when a user chooses for the toolbar NOT start at login/startup.


It should also be noted that the toolbar (even the newest version) still restarts after having been told to quit. It also starts up when the prefs are set for it NOT to start at login/startup. These issues really need to be sorted out.

dcolace (Developer)

Which version of OS X are you using? I've recently tested this feature on Leopard and I know it is working as designed.

You might be confusing the fact that we will auto-launch Plaxo when you launch the Address Book (all OS versions) or Apple Mail (10.4 and above) as well as the Plaxo preferences since it services the functions of those respective plugins.

Plaxo is intended to be a service to your system and really should be running all the time. When it isn't actively syncing, it uses virtually no CPU time or other computer resources (check Activity Monitor for a comparison of everything else running on your Mac).

If you don't like seeing the menu bar icon, you can simply turn that off while still allowing Plaxo to run.


I start my Address Book at login/startup. I disagree that the Plaxo toolbar needs to be running all the time. I prefer to choose when I want the toolbar to function. The Plaxo service is still in it's infancy and therefore I only use it once in a while.

Regardless, of how often someone uses Plaxo, I can see no reason to justify it running all of the time as users aren't dumping hundreds of new contacts into their Address Book on a daily basis.

Thanks for the prompt reply.

dcolace (Developer)

You are certainly entitled to your point of view but I would argue that you are diminishing the usefulness of the Plaxo service by selectively employing it. One of the goals of Plaxo is to take the burden of contact management off of our members shoulders. With Plaxo running on your Mac, your calendars and contacts keep up to date without you having to think about it. From the web to your desktop (and likely to your phone) you shouldn't have to wonder if your latest edit (or Plaxo contact update) is where you want it to be.

Hopefully, we'll earn your trust so you can use our service to its full potential.


I'm going to have to back up globetrotter on this one, that last version of Plaxo had some bugs. The menu bar item was also unquittable, even if you quit it, it kept coming back, and during syncs I would get screen-height growl error messages full of XML code. It was very frustrating. I'm gonna give this new version a try, but Plaxo obviously considers Mac users second class citizens and the software is much less powerful (i.e. no selective calendar syncing) and buggier than its Windows counterpart.

dcolace (Developer)

We are completely committed to developing Plaxo for Mac to be the best solution available to Mac users to keep their data in sync across the web, and more. I use and depend upon it myself on my three home Macs.

Our Plaxo for Windows software has a couple of years head start as far as features and performance/reliability work. We started from scratch with the Mac software so that we could provide a custom solution that would integrate seamlessly with the Mac.

I'm sorry for any peculiarities you've run into in using Plaxo for Mac over the past months/years, but I think every release has marked steady progress in features and reliability. I hope that your experience with the updated release will bear this out.

Keep a look out for our coming release as it is one of the most significant releases we've done in quite a while in terms of new capabilities and reliability improvements.

smokeonit Member IconComment+5

with .mac everything is easy, online publishing and syncing your contacts with .mac and others...

if you absolutely don't want to get .mac give this a try...

but the .mac yearly fee includes online space and all those little perks like iphoto and imovie integration... and with the new 10/20/30GB online space offering the $/€99 a year seems very good to me...

for my part i'm glad to be a .mac member after using plaxo for a little while... and hte goodies are not free either with plaxo, and plaxo lacks the sharing/website/iphoto/imovie/idisk integration that .mac offers... for my part this is no go, but please try it out and judge for yourself... the whole approach seems so windows compared to apple .mac, i just had to post this and i really don't want to bash this approach, i just think that it could be and was done better if you look at .mac...

Reply1 reply
Version 3.0v447

What you describe is true to a point. I was in fact a .mac subscriber for a couple of years, but this year I let that drop. Mainly because I didn't like being 'forced' into the @mac.com email address. I have my own email address, and for some insane reason, .mac does NOT let you specify this as the sending/reply to address. I think you could do it manually, but no one wants to set it everytime they send an email. It made me realise that if I couldn't afford to renew, or they suddenly jacked the price up, I would lose all access to my email, and would require the whole tedious process of letting everyone know again.

I never really used the idisk, and I had stopped using iWeb in favour of RapidWeaver. There wasn't really much else I used, or at least, nothing that I felt was worth paying the money for.

I tossed this all up, and decided to go with a gmail account as that could pick up every email account I had, and lets me send from any of them. There are no lock-ins to use their mail service (even Yahoo make you pay if you want to access via POP or forward the email to another address!).

So for me, Plaxo is a reasonable alternative that integrates nicely into the address book at a nice price :^)

chinarut Member IconComment+0

Thought I'd give everyone here a heads up about a known defect I encountered:

"The issue you are facing is a known bug in Plaxo update request. Once you send an update request with your vcf card and the contact responds with a personal message. Unfortunately, Plaxo picks up the vcf card of yours and replaces your contact's information with your information."

good news is your official online version (aka. My Cards) remain unaffected. (whew!)

Patch in progress. no ETA from support.


"While sending an update request please send [a] personalized message to your contacts requesting them not to reply for the update request e-mail directly. Do mention them to fill up the form and click on the 'Confirm' button."

Reply0 replies
Version 1.0
chinarut Member IconComment+0

Plaxo b2v159 has been chugging well for quite awhile and now suddenly, the Plaxo menu items are greyed out and it no longer syncs.

Any suggestions on how to troubleshoot this?

Reply2 replies
Version 1.0b2

I went to use Address Book this morning and the menu was enabled. I don't know what I did other than sleep my mac and wake it up. I tried clicking around to see if it's particular selections and the Plaxo menu continues to be active.

Any insight into the circumstances that cause the menu to be greyed out would be great. glad to be going again.

be happy to help troubleshoot the issue if need be - just contact me.


chinarut (Developer)

I got a kind response from Drew Colace, Plaxo Developer and got permission to post this known issue on his behalf:

In b2 v159, syncing your data with Plaxo Online no longer locks up the
Plaxo menus as it always did in previous versions - so, now when
Plaxo for Mac is busy communicating with Plaxo Online, we disable
menu commands that could cause problems during a sync. We do disable
many of the menu choices during sync, but there still are a couple of
options available to you which makes the responsiveness of the menu
during sync better than in previous versions.

One situation, that is looks like you've encountered, is when Plaxo
for Mac exits a sync operation with an unexpected error it may get in
a state where it believes it is still synching data even when it is
not. In this case, generally just quitting Plaxo for Mac and
restarting it sets things right again. We've made further effort for
the coming update to Plaxo for Mac to guard even more against this
case so hopefully you will not encounter this situation again once we
release the next update.

But, depending on the size of your address book and what might have
been going on, it could have just been possible that Plaxo for Mac
was doing its job fine and was just busy for awhile syncing quietly
in the background when you went to use one of the Plaxo menus. ( I
guess it's okay for me to hope, after all, that it was working
correctly) I am hopeful this is the case given your report that you
just put the Mac to sleep and upon awakening it, Plaxo for Mac's
menus were once again responsive. This would not have been the case
if Plaxo for Mac was confused about its sync status.

I hope this sheds some light on what you encountered even if it
doesn't give a definitive answer.

Thanks again for your report!

Kind regards,
Drew Colace
Plaxo, Inc.

chinarut Member IconComment+0

I just did an initial install to a fresh install of Address Book. Worked like a charm!

I'm a long-time Plaxo user from my Outlook day, used the web version as a crutch for the past 6 months, and really happy to see progress coming along on the Mac OS X front!

I was very pleased to see my old categories come back as Groups in AB and all my contact notes show up in AB as well. It's *very* nice to browse my categories and have easy access to my notes compared to the web version.

Be aware you may need to do a "sync now" - the "initial sync" didn't do anything and was a cause for false alarm in 1.0b2.

I didn't see my contacts with AIM IDs show up in my iChat and since Plaxo now supports Skype IDs - I'd love to see both these apps integrated a bit more smoothly.

I'm a bit confused on the system requirements part - I've seen 10.4 on one site, 10.3 in the release notes, and 10.3.9 here. I have it running on 10.4.5 right now.

Going to keep using this for a few days before posting some ratings.

All in all, this is very promising and look forward to a complete iCal (and if Plaxo gets really ambitious - Mail) integration and then it'll really be bye bye Outlook! ;)

connect on!

Reply1 reply
Version 1.0b2
tychay (Developer)

I am not the developer but I do work for Plaxo.

The entries for your AIM account should now be correctly delivered to your address book. To import them into your iChat, you just add them from your iChat via the "Add Buddy…" menu (Cmd-Shift-A). Scrolling down the right side will show you which of your Address Book contacts have AIM accounts attached to them.

I'll ask the developer if there is a way to automate this process.

I'm not sure about Skype since I haven't installed it since my system crash. I'll ask the developer to look at that.

BTW, if you use Windows, download the AIM beta client ("Triton"). Plaxo is built into it and you can use it to link up with all the AIM users who have e-mails attached to their AIM ID. That's pretty cool. :-)

Take care,


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Current Version (3.x)


Downloads 15,186
Version Downloads 4,036
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Date 19 Jan 2010
Platform OS X / PPC 32 / Intel 32
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