5 Ways to Fix “A miscellaneous error occurred (32002)” with Sidecar on Catalina

Sidecar is a feature that lets users with both an iPad and a Mac link the two devices wirelessly or with a wire. With Sidecar, the iPad can be used as a second screen for the Mac.

Best of all, you can still use iPad apps while running Sidecar on your iPad. The iPad second screen scenario Sidecar presents doesn’t limit what you can do on iPad – it only adds to Mac’s functionality.

However, just like other new Catalina features, Sidecar is far from perfect. In fact, Sidecar is known to be plagued by a lot of errors, including the “Sidecar Device Timed Out” issue. This time, users are complaining about the A miscellaneous error occurred (32002) with sidecar on Catalina.

What is “A miscellaneous error occurred (32002)” in Mac?

When you look at the error message, it doesn’t say anything much about what happened or what caused the error. The error message is as generic as it can get.

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According to users who encountered this error, the message popped up when connecting to the iPad from the Sidecar app. The app works fine and it often lists all possible devices that are compatible with Sidecar, but when the user clicks on it, the following error message is displayed:

Unable to Connect to “iPad”
A miscellaneous error occurred (32002).

Disconnecting then reconnecting the device does not work in most cases, indicating the error is more serious than initially thought.

What Causes “A miscellaneous error occurred (32002)”?

One of the reasons why this error happens is that your Sidecar app is outdated. Any software that is not updated is prone to performance issues, just like this miscellaneous error.

You also need to double check whether your device is capable of running Sidecar.

To use Sidecar, you must have one of the following Macs:

  • iMac 27-inch (Late 2015 or newer)
  • MacPro (2016 or newer)
  • Mac mini (2018)
  • Mac Pro (2019)
  • MacBook Air (2018)
  • MacBook (Early 2016 or newer)

To use Sidecar with your iPad, your tablet must support either the first- or second-generation Apple Pencil, including:

  • iPad Air (3rd generation)
  • iPad mini (5th generation)
  • iPad (7th generation)
  • iPad (6th generation)
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (2nd generation)
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (1st generation)
  • iPad Pro 10.5-inch
  • iPad Pro 9.7-inch
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (3rd generation)
  • iPad Pro 11-inch

In addition to having a Mac and iPad that support Sidecar, you must also be signed into the same iCloud account on each machine.

For Wi-Fi use, the following additional requirements apply:

  • Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Handoff turned on.
  • Both devices are within 10 meters (30 feet) of each other.
  • The iPad isn’t sharing its cellular connection.
  • The Mac isn’t sharing its internet connection.

If your devices meet the requirements when you get this error, then there must be something wrong with the Sidecar app. It could be corrupted or a third-party app might be preventing it from functioning properly.

How to Fix “A miscellaneous error occurred (32002)” in Mac

When your Sidecar is getting the “A miscellaneous error occurred (32002)” error and your devices are compatible with this feature, you need to look at the other factors involved to find out where the problem lies. Here are to steps you can take to resolve this error:

Fix #1: Restart Both Devices.

There are instances when issues like the”A miscellaneous error occurred (32002)” error in Sidecar is caused by a temporary glitch in the operating system of either device. The easiest way to fix this is to restart both devices to refresh their systems. Make sure to close all apps before pressing the power button to reboot. After restarting, try to connect them again to see if you are able to successfully use Sidecar this time.

Fix #2: Forget Your iPad/Mac Bluetooth Connection.

If something went wrong with your Bluetooth connection, make sure to forget the other device first before reconnecting.

To forget your Mac on your iPad, follow these steps:

  1. On your iPad, tap on Settings.
  2. Tap on Bluetooth and find your Mac’s name under My Devices.
  3. Tap the blue i icon beside your Mac’s name, then tap on Forget This Device.

To forget your iPad on your Mac, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Apple menu > System Preferences, then choose Bluetooth.
  2. Hover the mouse pointer over your iPad device, then click the Cancel button that appears next to the device’s name.
  3. Once you’ve completed the steps above, you can then try reconnecting the devices via Bluetooth again.

Fix #3: Switch to a Wired Connection.

If Bluetooth is really not working, your other option is to connect the devices using a cable. Make sure you are using an authentic charging cable from Apple because fake charging cables will just lead to more errors. Most Apple devices are equipped with the ability to detect counterfeit products so your devices won’t recognize a fake charging cable. Connect the cable carefully and keep them steady while they are connected. Using a cable to connect your Mac to your iPad should resolve the “A miscellaneous error occurred (32002)” error in Sidecar.

Fix #4: Update Your Devices.

An outdated iOS or macOS can cause some of the features not to work properly. Make sure all iOS updates have been installed by going to Settings > General > Software Update to check whether there are no pending updates. On your Mac, click on the Apple Menu > About This Mac, then click on Software Update. Once your devices have been updated, try connecting them again to activate Sidecar. It might be beneficial to consider regular maintenance of your Mac, for instance, with tools like Mac repair app, to mitigate the risk of issues that compound this error.

Fix #5: Delete the Sidecar Preferences.

Open Finder and go to the following folder: /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration. You should find here the plist file for the Sidecar app. In most cases, you’ll find a preferences.plist that contains a reference to “iPad USB” and a NetworkInterfaces.plist containing multiple references to “iPad”. Move these two files to the Desktop and try connecting your iPad again. If it works, you can safely delete these two files by dragging them to the Trash.

Wrapping Up

Sidecar is a useful app for Mac users who prefer working on multiple screens. It increases your productivity and efficiency, without having to attach another monitor. If you come across the “A miscellaneous error occurred (32002)” with Sidecar on Catalina, you can try the above fixes to hopefully resolve the error.

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