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Fix Multiple Attachment Problem / Better Drawboard integration


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Dear Evernote Team,

Drawboard PDF for Windows is an excellent way to compensate for the missing penultimate as windows user. There are just two problems:

  1. Drawboard need to be the standard PDF Reader. Otherwise changes done with Drawboard will not affect Evernote files. ( I have no Idea why...)
  2. Even when Drawboard is set as standard PDF Reader attachment-files will be handled not correctly. Whenever you open a file (for example a pdf) in evernote with Drawboard, edit it (for example mark something) and save it, evernote will produce a copy of the old not edited file in the attachement folder.

It's not that bad. I have no problem with using Drawboard as my default PDF Reader and I can just delete the whole attachment folder when it hits a certain filesize or every month. However it would be nive if you guys from evernote could fix this minor troubles. :)

Best regards,

dobili

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Hi.  That's not a 'minor trouble',  that's just sloppy housekeeping on Evernote's part.  Windows requires a disk-based copy of the file to work on.  Your stored PDF is part of the Evernote database,  and isn't readable by other software.  So Evernote creates a copy of the file you have said you wish to see or edit,  so that your other software can process normally.  When the revised version of the document is saved,  it goes back into the database,  leaving the working copy behind.  I don't know why Evernote leaves it there - there may be a good reason.  But I also delete the content of the Attachments folder from time to time when it gets too big.  The files there don't seem to be required for anything.  Maybe we'll get an 'empty Attachments folder' button someday...

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Hi gazumped,

Thank you for your input. The problem with Drawboard is a special one, because it will create multiple attachment. When you open the "test.pdf" the first time evernote will create the "test.pdf" file in the attachment folder. The next time you open the file via evernote and edit it with drawboard evernote will create a second file named "test [1].pdf" and so on. When using Acrobat instead evernote will not produce multiple files, it will stick with the one "test.pdf" file.

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  • Evernote Employee
23 hours ago, gazumped said:

I don't know why Evernote leaves it there - there may be a good reason. 

Yes, there is. We have not detected that the process that was started has ended. The fact the file changed does not mean the editing program has gone away (when editing anything, I'm a firm believer in save-early/save-often). The real "fun" is with Windows-Store apps - since they're sandboxed, we _can't_ tell if the process has ended, so we can't delete the working copy.

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39 minutes ago, dconnet said:

The real "fun" is with Windows-Store apps - since they're sandboxed, we _can't_ tell if the process has ended, so we can't delete the working copy.

Oh, I see the problem here. When you are trying to open a file which was editet by a Windows-Store App before, evernote can't tell if the program which has edited the file last time is sill running and therefor evernote has to create a new copy to avoid the situation that two different program are working on the same file at the same time, right?

Well, in this case why does evernote not just try do delete the existing files when it is forced to create a copy? If these file are still open in a program windows will prevent evernote from deleting these files (that's the user's fault!). If these files are not open, evernote can delete them and the attachment folder will be clean again.

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1 hour ago, dconnet said:

Yes, there is. We have not detected that the process that was started has ended. The fact the file changed does not mean the editing program has gone away (when editing anything, I'm a firm believer in save-early/save-often). The real "fun" is with Windows-Store apps - since they're sandboxed, we _can't_ tell if the process has ended, so we can't delete the working copy.

Wow -- so Microsoft took something that kinda/sorta/usually works with native Windows applications, and pretty much broke it when Store-ified? Ouch.

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1 hour ago, dconnet said:

Yes, there is. We have not detected that the process that was started has ended. The fact the file changed does not mean the editing program has gone away (when editing anything, I'm a firm believer in save-early/save-often). The real "fun" is with Windows-Store apps - since they're sandboxed, we _can't_ tell if the process has ended, so we can't delete the working copy.

Does this apply to Excel as well?  I typically click save, then x out of Excel.  Sometimes the original file name is in the attachments folder, sometimes not.  Particularly a problem if there are any pivot tables in the model which seems to err more than not. 

Since I don't need to search in some of the models I have moved them to DropBox with a file link in the note.  Works pretty much the same without the filename(1)..... problem (plus I get a specific backup of every changed model which isn't all bad).  Okay as a workaround, but if I needed to search the contents of the file, not so much.

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1 hour ago, dobili said:

Well, in this case why does evernote not just try do delete the existing files when it is forced to create a copy? If these file are still open in a program windows will prevent evernote from deleting these files (that's the user's fault!). If these files are not open, evernote can delete them and the attachment folder will be clean again.

As a guess, just because a document is still being edited doesn't necessarily mean that the application that's editing it has locked its copy on disk. You may very well be able to delete a file that's being edited without the application knowing. Probably depends on the application.

Edit: I know for a fact that this is the way the application that I work on does things. We read the document, close the file and wash our hands (obviously we remember the original filename); if you save, we just save over the old file.

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  • Evernote Employee
3 hours ago, jefito said:

Wow -- so Microsoft took something that kinda/sorta/usually works with native Windows applications, and pretty much broke it when Store-ified? Ouch.

Some programs are even worse. Acrobat. They create tmp files, delete the existing, rename. (We have an open bug about not having edited pdfs updated - that's why)

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4 hours ago, dobili said:

If these files are not open, evernote can delete them and the attachment folder will be clean again.

Not necessarily. For instance opening a file in Notepad does not lock the file. So you could delete a file out from under a running program. 

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3 hours ago, dconnet said:

Some programs are even worse. Acrobat. They create tmp files, delete the existing, rename. (We have an open bug about not having edited pdfs updated - that's why)

It's like the WIld West out there... :) 

3 hours ago, dconnet said:

Not necessarily. For instance opening a file in Notepad does not lock the file. So you could delete a file out from under a running program. 

Exactly. You could do it to us, too (somewhat larger than Notepad, though somewhat less well-known)...

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