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Offline notebook still syncing after I changed setting?



I have a Mac and an iPad, and I am a premium EN user.
I have a  Notebook "A" which is pretty big. On iPad, Notebook A was set to sync as an Offline Notebook.  A became a pacman gobbling my iPad's storage.
Yesterday, on Mac,  I created Notebook B. On iPad I set B as an Off Line Notebook that syncs to my iPad. And it does.
 I manually copied some (not all) Notes from A into B, so that B is a subset of A. All  members of B are  members of A.; but some members of A are not members of B.
The storage space of  A's membership greatly exceeds that of B's membership.  (that is the point of this exercise)
On iPad, I changed the setting for A so that it no longer is an Offline Notebook. Only B should sync with iPad. Not A.
Then I synched.
A, and its contents, still show up as a Notebook on my iPad.  It is still gobbling storage.
How do I stop A syncing to my iPad? 
How do I remove A's membershipdfrom my iPad's storage, while retaining B's membership?
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thanks. But clearing the cache did not remove A from my iPad,


" until the iOS makes a demand for space." 


I apologize but I am borderline illiterate in Techspeak.  Does the above mean that this Notebook will remain in my ipad unless and until I run out of storage space in the ipad. at which time the iPad will delete that Notebook?


Why doesn't the EN software delete the Notebook from the iPad rather than delegating that EN task to Apple?

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Evernote has not documented how they manage storage for offline notebooks or for cache.

So it is only from personal experience and user reports here that we have any clue as to how this works.


If you turn off the Offline Notebooks for a particular Notebook, then Evernote should, at some point, release the storage for it.  

At some point, well before you run out of space on your iPad, the Apple iOS will request/demand that Apps release space they are not using.  Evidently, at that point, Evernote will release the space previously used for the Notebook that is no longer set for "offline" usage.


I can't answer any of the "why" questions about Evernote.  Only the Evernote developers could answer these questions, and they are not likely to do so.

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thanks. But clearing the cache did not remove A from my iPad,


" until the iOS makes a demand for space." 


I apologize but I am borderline illiterate in Techspeak.  Does the above mean that this Notebook will remain in my ipad unless and until I run out of storage space in the ipad. at which time the iPad will delete that Notebook?


Why doesn't the EN software delete the Notebook from the iPad rather than delegating that EN task to Apple?

In I hope non-tech speak, since A is a synced notebook, the note titles will still appear on your iPad.  If A is not selected as an offline notebook the content of the notes will only be downloaded when you access one specifically.  It will be cached at that time, so it's not a bad idea to clear the EN cache from time to time if you are concerned about storage..  


So by un-checking A as an offline notebook and clearing the EN cache you should have released the bulk of the storage.

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I hit the button that deactivates the off-line synching of Notebook A.  I cleared the EN cache.  I used iPad EN as usual for a day or so (this includes the ordinary synching along the way). Tonight, I looked at my EN Notebooks list on my iPad and Notebook A is still there, and so are its contents. I cleared the EN cache just now; but the contents of A are still in my iPad.

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That is normal, and does NOT mean that Evernote is still storing all Notes in Notebook A offline.


The Notebook list shows ALL Notebooks, whether they are stored offline or not.

All Notes in a Notebook (offline or not) are listed, but Evernote is storing ONLY the header info (Title, dates, etc) for each Note.  It does NOT pull down the Note contents until you tap the Note to display it.

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Schrodinger's cat would find this to be purrfect.  By the way thanks everyone for your help.  


So .... In Notebook A, there is a photo of a cat. That notebook, including that cat photo, are in my Macbook, and on the EN servers.  So far all is well.  Even I can understand it.


I just opened A and the cat photo, on iPad.


In light of JM's most recent response I am analytically perplexed. Here is why.


As I (mis?)understand JM, he says that because, on the iPad, Notebook A is a non-sync off-line Notebook, therefore the cat photo does not exist in my iPad and it occupies no storage space in my iPad.  When, I think he says,  I look at the Notebooks list, it lists Notebook A, but the cat photo still does not exist in my iPad.  OK, that makes sense. But he says that, when I open A, the cat photo springs into iPad existence thus permitting me to open the cat photo (which I just did ). Then when I close out of Notebook A, the cat photo returns to the state of not existing in my iPad.


In other words, the cat photo does and does not exist on my iPad, depending on whether I look at it.


Therefore, Notebook A's contents occupy no space in my iPad's storage provided that I never open A; and Notebook A's contents vacate that storage space when, after having been opened A, I close A.


Have I totally confused myself on this?

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I think you are overthinking it. 


Offline Notebooks on mobile devices is more related to storage than to sync. Syncing still happens regardless of what the setting for "Offline Notebooks" is. That is, stuff is still synchronized between your device and the server. 


What is affected is how much is stored by default. 


First, a glossary (my made-up usage for the purposes of this post, not truly reflective of the actual lexicon!):

1) Cache: This is a temporary and usually partial LOCAL store of data. This is volatile, that is, anything in the cache should at any moment be removed from the cache. (NOTE: This does not remove it from your Evernote account or the Evernote server, just the local storage).

2) Storage: this is the ​permanent, non-volatile storage of data on your local device. 

3) Headers: This is partial note info. This includes things like some computer gibberish, the thumbnail of any images in th note, the first two lines of text, the title, the tags. NOT the complete contents. 


The default behaviour is that the header (partial note information) is cached for all notes and notebooks. This small amount of data is what is synchronized and cached on your device when you sync. For your cat photo note, you might see a thumbnail of the photo, which is part of the header and helps you identify the note as the "cat photo note". The photo itself will not exist on your iPad, until you open the note, at which point the photo is fetched from Evernote's servers. It is only at this point that the photo becomes part of your device's storage as it enters the cache (volatile).

When you access a note, that is, when you actually open the note containing the cat image, the full contents are then fetched from the servers and cached only at the moment the note is opened and NOT before. This cached data will linger for some unknown period of time and may be removed automatically at any time. 

Syncing still happens here, but by default it is only headers that are synced for all notes until you open any note in which case the full contents are retrieved from the servers. When you make changes to the note contents after they have been fetched, the full note header and contents are then pushed back to the servers to complete the sync, so that your changes are reflected on Evernote's servers and all of your other devices.

The full note content will occupy space on your device only after you have opened the note.  This would eventually be automatically cleared.


Offline Notebooks on mobile change how things work a bit. It changes what is synced automatically, and how it is stored.

What is synced: Designating a notebook as offline means that for that notebook, it actually syncs the full note contents at all times, rather than just the headers.

How it is stored: Rather than being in a volatile cache, this data is stored in non-volatile storage. This means, unlike the default case, that at no time will this information be deleted automatically as long as the notebook is designated offline.

The full note content is occupying space on your device whether or not you open the note. This will not be automatically cleared, as long as it is part of a notebook designated "Offline". 


In BOTH cases, syncing still occurs for all notes, but precisely what is synced changes slightly. In the default case, only headers are synced (unless you open a note, in which case the contents are fetched) and are always stored in a volatile cache. For Offline Notebooks, full note contents are synced and stored in a non-volatile place. 



What this means is that in the default case, you might have notes that are available offline, or appear to be immediately available, because their contents have been cached. This typically happens when you are accessing notes you have recently opened. While the cache is volatile, it lingers for some unknown period of time, meaning that recently accessed notes might be stored, in their entirety, in the cache. When the cat photo note syncs, the cat photo will not exist on your iPad until you open the note and the photo is fetched. 


In the Offline Notebooks case, this means that when you open a note, the contents you are seeing were retrieved not from Evernote's servers, but from your device's non-volatile storage (which is regularly updated through syncing). 


Syncing will happen no matter what. Offline Notebooks just dictate whether or not the full note contents are synced in full, and whether the data are stored in a volatile or non-volatile place. 


Offline notebooks: Full contents always synced. Stored in non-volatile space. Full note content (e.g., cat picture) occupies space on your device indefinitely. 

Default: Only headers are synced. Note contents fetched from servers as needed, and cached in volatile space. Full note content (e.g., cat picture) occupies space only after opening, and temporarily. 


I hope this clears things up. 

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@Scott:  GREAT writeup!   Evernote should use your post to create a KB article!


I have Evernoted it for future reference.

Thanks for the kind words. As you noted in your other post, much of the knowledge floating through this topic is derived from our experience and speculation, so we can only hope that anything we are saying on this topic is at least somewhat accurate! 

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