New post
0

Observing Lists Syncing Issue

Hello--

For some reason, last night when I opened up SkySafari 5 Pro, I got a message that I've seen several times before, that there are files located on my device that no longer exist on my Google.  Since I am synced with Google Drive, I usually opt not to keep the files on my device when given this prompt.  In the past, when I've kept the files, I end up not seeing my edits sync across to my other device.  When I opened the app on my phone, I got the same message, and did the same thing, only to find that now, all of my lists have been deleted, with all of my observations and my last full backup several months ago.  I've long been afraid this could happen but I've trusted it and it's worked up until now. 

 

Chris

9 comments

  • 0
    Avatar
    Bill Tschumy

    Chris,

    Sorry you are having problems.  

    If you get this message, you should look at the files listed and decide if they are ones you actually want to delete.  Never hit "delete" if they are files you think you want.I add this confirmation just to make sure we don't automatically delete files that you really want.

    If you go to Google Drive in a browser, do you see the files there?  If you never explicitly deleted the files then it sounds like something is screwing up.  At startup we just retrieve the list of all the files on Google Drive.  If there is a local file that is no longer on Google Drive, we display the message you are seeing.

    Is it possible you have logged into a different Google account when this has happened?

    I haven't heard of anyone else losing data like this so I'm not sure what else it could be.

  • 0
    Avatar
    Chris Brandt

    Hey Bill

    The files used to be on the Google drive but aren't anymore.  I don't use Google Drive for anything but this and haven't gone in and physically made any changes to anything.  Also my phone/tablet being Android keep me logged into the only Google account I have, so I really don't know what could have happened.  As I mentioned, when I've kept files before and continued editing them, it quit syncing across to my other devices. 

    As for others, I'm not sure very many are A) extensively using the observing list feature and B) syncing between devices on Android.  Maybe that's why?  It's always seemed to me to be one of the biggest areas that could be improved, as I've had many troubles getting it set up and keeping everything working before this happened.

    Chris

  • 0
    Avatar
    Bill Tschumy

    Chris,

    I'm very sorry you have lost these.  You could check with Google to see if there are any automatic backups you could use to get them back.  I assume they are now gone from all you devices?  If you have a device when them still present you could recover from there.

    I really don't know what could have happened.  It could be our problem or it could be a glitch with Google Drive.  Al I know is no one else has reported any data loss like this.

    For SkySafari 6 we are actually going to change to use our own servers for syncing (and some other neat features).  This will allow more flexibility (and hopefully robustness). 

  • 0
    Avatar
    Chris Brandt

    I went back and added my observations since March from screen shots I had taken of each one. Everything is almost back to normal now with only a few lost observations overall. Really looking forward to SS6 on Android. How is it coming along for iOS? Are you still thinking late this year/early next year for an Android release? 

    Chris

  • 0
    Avatar
    Bill Tschumy

    Chris,

    Good to  hear you were able to recover things mostly.

    The Android version of SS6 isn't due out until spring of next year.  iOS version is coming along.

  • 0
    Avatar
    Chris Brandt

    Just had another problem with the cloud syncing.  This time I didn't receive any warning about files existing on my device that no longer exist on the cloud.  The last 20 or so objects I logged over the past 2 weeks on my tablet, upon opening SS5 on my phone, I didn't see the objects I logged.  So I opened SS on my tablet, and the logs were gone from those objects.  I screenshotted every one of them, but this is a real pain having to go back and add them back in.  I'm going to just sync my tablet to the cloud going forward and unfortunately won't be able to look at my observations on my phone, a huge loss as I loved this feature, but it's just simply not working as it should.

  • 0
    Avatar
    Bill Tschumy

    Chris,

    I'm not sure why you are having these problems.  I'm not getting other reports of this.  All I can think of is that you opened your phone and you made a change to the list there before the changes on the tablet were synced to it.  That change would then get pushed to the server and picked up by the tablet, losing those observations.  We make no attempt to merge changes across two devices.  It is a "last change wins" kind of scenario. 

    Cloud syncing is really hard.  Not to make excuses, but it is not just us.  I regularly see problems in Apple's apps with iCloud syncing on iOS.  I don't regularly use Google Drive so I don't know about it there.

    We are hoping the new cloud syncing mechanism in SS6 will alleviate some of these problems.

  • 0
    Avatar
    Bill Tschumy

    I will also say that if you can find a reproducible problem with Google Drive syncing, I will try to fix it.

  • 0
    Avatar
    Chris Brandt

    I'm trying to understand how this works.  Let's say I make a change to a list on my tablet at 5pm today but it doesn't sync because I'm not connected to wifi.  Then I make a change on my phone at 6pm and it syncs.  Then I open my tablet up, and instead of syncing then, it sees a version out on google drive last updated recently and downloads it, overwriting the one that had more data?

    I guess this is possible, although the 'change' I made on my phone would really have just been me opening up an observation to read it and not actually changing it I don't think.  My guess is that more people would have these types of problems if more people were extensively using A) the observation capabilities of Android and B) multiple devices consistently like I am.  I like how Windows handles this type of scenario, presenting you with an option to choose between two files being copied to the same directory, showing the last update date and time as well as the file size before overwriting, but only in a scenario maybe where the list about to be overwritten is actually larger in file size than the one that's about to overwrite it.

    I'm really looking forward to the new observation list changes and the new cloud syncing. 

Please sign in to leave a comment.