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Internet download usage high when syncing?

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This past Sunday night (January 20), I downloaded EN for Windows after not having used it for years (back then it was on another laptop), and then, within the just-downloaded desktop app, I signed in to the first of my two EN accounts. The first-time sync for this first account took approximately four hours, during which I occasionally monitored the progress; there were no sync failures. When I got up in the morning (January 21), I signed in to my second account and let the first-time sync happen -- again, this sync took several hours, and there were no sync failures.

This first account has a total of approximately 7,200 notes spread out among my main notebook (approx. 5,500 notes) and eight stacked notebooks. There is also a shared notebook that is the main notebook for the second account.

The second account has a total of approximately 10,800 notes spread out among my main notebook (approx. 6,100 notes) and seven stacked notebooks. There is also a shared notebook that is the main notebook for the first account.

Normally, our household Internet usage is just less than 1 GB a day on average; sometimes a bit more -- rarely double -- but very often less. As you'll see from the screencap below, the usage for January 21 is inordinately high. The sync for the first account, which took about four hours, involved about two and one half hours on January 21 (from midnight to 2:30 am); the sync for the second account, which took about the same total length of time, involved about four hours from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm on the same day.

The archived thread found at https://discussion.evernote.com/topic/88106-data-usage/ provides some advice I will follow in the future, but the questions I have are as follows:

1. Would the first-time syncing of my two EN accounts have resulted in approximately 12 GB of Internet download usage? (My ISP sometimes has issues with the accuracy of Internet usage statistics, including how they are displayed when checking them within one's account.)

2. Now that the first-time syncing is out of the way, do I need to exercise caution at other times to ensure that the Internet download usage isn't as high as it was this past Monday? What tips do you have for minimizing the download usage?

Any other thoughts, suggestions, and feedback are welcome. Thanks in advance for any replies.


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Hi.  If you open the Evernote app on your Windows device and go to Tools > Options > General,  you'll be able to check which folder contains your databases.  You can also open the folder from there.  How big are your two main database .EXB files?  That's the data that was downloaded as a one-off to set up this account on your device.  I have something around 45k notes in one 21GB account. 

If the size and content of your notes is comparable to mine,  you'd expect your total database sizes (18k notes) to come in at around 9GB.  If you add some padding for size differences and error-checking,  10-12GB doesn't seem hugely excessive. 

You could save much of that in future by keeping a local copy of your database folder and when you set up a new device,  install Evernote and close it.  Replace the new databases folder with your 'old' copy,  and the bulk of your notes won't require additional downloads.

This is a one-off exercise - new and edited notes will be processed individually.  There is a 'usage' feature which will record your ongoing activity.

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Thanks for that description and explanation.

The total size of the two .EXB files is currently about 13,700,000 KB, or 13.06 GB -- there is the answer to my first question.

Thank you too for the tip about what to do in the future -- there is the answer to my second question.

Lessons learned.

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The other way to not download all of that data, and get a clean local database to boot, is after installing and signing in, go to Tools|Options|Sync and check "on demand sync." That will dynamically download note bodies as you need them, and purge them every 30 days. (can be changed.) Search works fine as the client will tell the server to search and return undownloaded notes in your results.

That is what I do. My database is well over 8GB but my local copy is under 500MB.

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16 hours ago, pcammall said:


A thanks to you too for your tip. As a result, I discovered I can also change the syncing behaviour for my shared notebooks.

There are a couple of caveats relative to making your own backups, merging notes, and search response time. though merging notes may have been fixed.  But it all those don't effect your use case, a good solution.

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