Sync on Exit

With the new sync system, is there any way to force it to always sync on exit of the application? I keep getting some local changes not making it’s way to DTTG because I make the change then close the application before it syncs.

I wish DT would prompt me on exit asking if I’d like to sync any outstanding changes.

Any thoughts on how anybody else handles sync? Today I don’t understand what forces a sync so I have stress about it resulting in always hitting the keyboard shortcut. The new sync works great, but this day in age I hate that I’m even having to think about sync. :slight_smile:

Sync runs on an interval between 30 seconds after a change to approx 4 minutes of idle time when set to Automatic. (It obviously runs on the specified interval if set otherwise.)

You needn’t think about Sync. Just work and let Sync happen in the background. (And don’t sit and watch it. Seriously. :smiley: ) If you need to Sync, just do a Manual Sync in those instances.

I don’t want to think about sync, but my most common action is causes a sync failure every time. I open DevonThink, I make a fast annotation to a PDF, I close DevonThink.

That annotation NEVER syncs because there is no sync on exit. There is also no indicator on whether or not there are any modified changes waiting. So for my most common use case (90% of my interactions) sync is not automatic and it fails me every single time.

Not notifying the user of pending items on exit is setting that user up to be disappointed.

I appreciate all the advances recently, but not syncing on exit is a disregard for data integrity. Just my 2 cents.

Seriously though. Super happy with the direction things have been going, but this is a serious pain point.

Actually that’s incorrect. If you have the Synchronize button on the Toolbar, it does indicate changes.
Screen Shot 2016-10-23 at 12.55.38 AM.png

Thanks, that will help a bit. I was just using the keyboard shortcut and did not have synchronize on my toolbar.

I’ve added it now and that will bring back some trust. I’d still love to see an automatic sync on exit or a prompt asking if I’d like to sync changes before quitting.


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I’m having this problem, too - from time to time, some items are left unsynced by chance just because I was too fast closing the database. Not much of an annoyance, but still… This behaviour just doesn’t make sense to me. Would it hurt anybody if all remaining items were synced automatically on exit?

This is planned for an upcoming release.

I just started setting up a sync (via Dropbox sync store) for 1 database across 3 different computers. It works remarkably well so far! Though I’ll probably have data integrity anxiety for a while so may make more backups than usual. But so far so good.

Two questions:

  1. Per the above posts from Oct 2016, there is no option to “automatically sync on exit.” Based on my own testing, that still seems to be the case. But I wanted to check to confirm – that functionality has not yet been built in? Would certainly be useful / protective!

  2. Assuming it’s not in yet, I’d rather not force the database to run constant syncs as a precautionary measure. Would choosing “automatic” in Sync Preferences be the wisest move for now? Reading some other threads, it sounds like that means DT wilk sync every time a database item is changed. (Still not ideal, because I compulsively Command-S in all documents I’m working on, so that’ll trigger a lot of syncs. But “not ideal” is not so bad : ) )

No, there is no Sync on exit still. And instead of Automatic, why not set it to a longer interval if you don’t want it to Sync to often?

The main reason is that I don’t want to forget to sync after entering archival notes on my home computer, and then start working from the work computer and not have some of the newly entered material that I entered at home. I suppose I could try to figure out an Automator script to do this, but if I remember to use the Automator instead of hitting Command-Q then I’d just as well remember to hit “sync” so probably that doesnt make sense.

If you don’t want it to Sync Automatically but don’t want to go to long either, try a shorter interval, like every 5 minutes then. Or, add the button to your Toolbar and habitually hit it before closing DEVONthink.

This is possible if you have Keyboard Maestro and quit using ⌘+Q. Basically you would build the macro to intercept the quit command, activate the sync via the menu, wait for a determined amount of time, and then close the app. It’s not as elegant as a built in option, but it is a solution.

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I had to rebuild a database after I quit while sync was in progress (which I did not realise was happening). The database was large and there was an awful lot to sync (I’d imported most of my old evernote database) so not a typical situation, but the database was damaged when my two macs got badly out of sync. I would say it is essential that there is a sync on exit and I’m glad to hear it is planned.
The toolbar button is helpful, but I should not have to think about it. Sync on exit, it’s safest and best.

It’s important to say that I’ve had no problems at all in normal use but I do make sure that the toolbar button is not showing the need to sync before I quit.

@philipsmn - thanks for the tip – Keyboard Maestro looks extremely useful, and not just for this

and @christecurtis [and the developers/support time] – Yikes that does not sound good. Particularly because one of the ways my sync continues to misbehave is to freeze midway through the sync and just sit on “updating record 38 of 39” or whatever, forever, until I cancel it and quit and restart, at which point it will continue updating where it left off except at normal speed again (sometimes hanging up again, eventually requiring another quit and repeat). I haven’t found another way to get it to keep syncing short of cancelling and restarting the app–here’s hoping what you’re describing doesn’t happen to me.

Sync seems pretty robust when it’s updating “normal” activity - e.g. I’ve added a dozen or so web pages to a couple of databases or groups. I’ve had the occasional delay or glitch (e.g. losing connectivity with the remote WebDav server) but it has caught up without problem the next time I have come in.
I don’t think I would risk adding 3,000+ notes to one database then quitting before everything had properly synced. Might work, but went wrong for me and left the database damaged.

Just checked back on this thread and was happy to see this. I’m dealing with this by closely watching for the blue sync indicator on the Mac app when I’m finished editing documents. I still get bit by quitting too soon probably once a week (which means sync is always a point of stress for me).

The actual sync mechanic is rock solid and I never have any data issues. I’m very grateful for the improvements made over the past year! Its still just a thing I constantly have to think about it. I work in an environment where I’m opening & closing the app often and closing my laptop’s lid often moving from meeting to meeting. If I had the app open on a system that just always had DTPO running, this would be a non issue.