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Dr. Manuel Kuehner

Will I be Able to Use Evernote in China?

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  • I live in Germany at the moment and use Evernote on an Android tablet.
  • I plan to move to China (near Shanghai) and I am wondering if I can use Evernote as usual (without a VPN)?

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Probably not, as you move behind the great Firewall. Through a VPN access should work.

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I'm not 100% sure (I wasn't involved in this specific project), but I believe you will be blocked from accessing Evernote and be prompted to use https://www.yinxiang.com/, which was spun off from Evernote and is basically the same product, but serves China users.

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Even with a VPN you may find the performance lacking.  At least I did ..

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Depends on many factors, like the performance and load of the VPN network you trust your data to.

Plus the Chinese government does not like things out of their control, so they tend to make life difficult for VPN services. This is true for publicly available VPNs, the more in times of unrest like in HK at the moment. 

They try to block the IPs of entry servers etc. So it is maybe a good idea to have more than one service available, and even install your own VPN solution using an own VPN server. This will reduce the likelihood that the target IP will be identified as hostile and blocked. 

Most companies doing business in China rely on their own VPN solution, and these dedicated VPN services are typically not affected, because they are politically neutral.

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On 10/30/2019 at 9:34 PM, PinkElephant said:

Depends on many factors, like the performance and load of the VPN network you trust your data to.

Plus the Chinese government does not like things out of their control, so they tend to make life difficult for VPN services. This is true for publicly available VPNs, the more in times of unrest like in HK at the moment. 

They try to block the IPs of entry servers etc. So it is maybe a good idea to have more than one service available, and even install your own VPN solution using an own VPN server. This will reduce the likelihood that the target IP will be identified as hostile and blocked. 

Most companies doing business in China rely on their own VPN solution, and these dedicated VPN services are typically not affected, because they are politically neutral.

Thanks for the reply -- I asked "without a VPN" because I no not want to have trouble. From the other, also helpful, replies, I gather, that evernote is apparently (sadly) not a solution for me in China.

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On 10/30/2019 at 1:04 AM, Scott T. said:

I'm not 100% sure (I wasn't involved in this specific project), but I believe you will be blocked from accessing Evernote and be prompted to use https://www.yinxiang.com/, which was spun off from Evernote and is basically the same product, but serves China users.

Thanks! I did not find an "English option" on https://www.yinxiang.com/. Am I blind or is there no option to change to English?

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Seems the English version is lost in translation ...

Probably they do not expect anybody from the rest of the world to join their service.

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Regarding a VPN: I do not think a self-hosted VPN will cause trouble.

Building an own VPN-Server is possible through a FritzBox (where it is part of the FritzOS), a Raspi or a NAS like a QNAP or a Synology. It is much easier to build and maintain by using a fixed IP4-adress. This will cost 5€/month, if I take the price Vodafone charges for this service on top of the normal fee for the internet access. So it will be like paying 300-400€ per year to maintain a virtual lifeline.

A connection via IPSec can be build by typing stuff into an iPhones (or other devices) settings, so it can be removed when passing through border control, and rebuild later. For an OpenVPN client in most cases special apps are needed, that might be found if a device is controlled on entry.

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@Dr. Manuel Kuehner, as @PinkElephant mentioned, YXBJ is not intended to be used outside of China, so I don't think they have a need to provide a translated version of the page. Note that YXBJ was specifically spun out so it could provide for the unique needs of Chinese users. As part of the spin off, all supporting systems were moved into China. So the entire service and all data is hosted within China, on Tencent AFAIK. Please keep that in mind should you want to consider using it.

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