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WesleyG

mac Trying to annotate PDFs in Evernote for Mac, get "Unable to Save Document" error

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I've seen another post on this issue in the Skitch thread, but I'm not sure if this is the same issue or not, so I'm posting it elsewhere.

 

I'm using Evernote for Mac v5.5.2, and for most PDF documents that I'm trying to annotate, I get an "Unable to Save Document" error when I try to close it after annotation. A few PDFs have annotated and closed just fine...but I hate spending a good deal of time annotating something only to find it can't be saved.

 

Does anyone else have this issue and/or know if there's a fix/workaround?

 

Thanks in advance for your help!

 

~Wes

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Normally any PDF I have in Evernote I annotate in Preview, so I haven't come across this in my day-to-day. 

 

Just tried it with a couple of PDFs using Evernote's annotation tools. After a few attempts I wasn't able to reproduce your error. 

One thing to try:

Open Disk Utility on your mac (Applications>Utilities, or search spotlight for "Disk Utility")

Select the drive Evernote is installed on and under "First Aid" select "repair permissions". 
 

It is possible that something is wonky with the permission in the directory where evernote is storing your database, and it has lost "write" privileges to that directory. 

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Thanks, Scott, for your suggestion. I tried repairing the permissions, but still got the same error.

 

In the process, however, I realized that I've been adding PDFs to Evernote in two ways: from files on my computer and through the Evernote Web Clipper (Chrome browser). For some reason, the PDF files on my computer are the ones having trouble being annotated/saved. The PDFs added using the web clipper, however, have no issue saving annotations.

 

Maybe I should just start annotating with Preview instead of Evernote (it just seemed easier to me to do it all in one place).

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this is puzzling and very likely has something to do with file permissions, though it may not be a problem in the way that Disk Utility is designed to fix. 

If this is indeed the case, then it is quite likely that you will get the same error when annotating in preview. Perhaps this would be worth testing. Locate a PDF that has generated that error reliably. Try annotating it in Preview and saving it (just hit cmd-s, it will save the changes to your EN database). Do you get the same error? 

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Thanks, Scott. I think I found a way to do it. I originally thought the Preview you were referring to was the Mac application (maybe it is). I know that when I click the annotate icon in Evernote, I get two options: "Annotate entire note as a PDF" or "Annotate a PDF". I had previously been selecting "annotate a PDF" because I didn't want two separate files (the unannotated and the annotated versions). But I discovered that if I annotate the entire note as a PDF, then the highlighting works.

 

That's enough for me. I'll just have to live with two separate files in Evernote. Thanks for all your help!

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Preview.app was indeed the application I was referring to. 

 

Yes, "annotate the entire note" is a workaround since it effectively creates an entirely new PDF file from the contents of the note. This sounds like it works in your situation but it may not be a practical workaround for all future needs. But, at least for now things are working! 

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For what it's worth, I have encountered exactly the same issue today. It has been a couple of weeks since I had to annotate a PDF, and had never had an issue. However when I tried today I kept getting that same error mentioned above consistently. Using Evernote 5.5.1 for the Mac. Any solution in the works? I use annotation often.

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I've just hit this issue today as well.

 

I've annotated many PDFs in EN over the last few months (even years, don't remember), this is the first time it's happened.

 

EN for Mac 5.7.2, OS X 10.10.1

 

Same process is always:

I have the PDF saved on my Desktop.

I create a note in Evernote then drag the PDF into it.

Then click the "annotate this note" icon, add the markup using the Skitch-like tools, and click the "x" icon top left to close and save the PDF.

That's when I get the Unable to Save note error.

 

The PDF is saved, but not the markup.

 

Dismayed to see in the forums that people have been having this issue for over a year and it's not resolved. Any advice?

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I've just hit this issue today as well.

 

I've annotated many PDFs in EN over the last few months (even years, don't remember), this is the first time it's happened.

 

EN for Mac 5.7.2, OS X 10.10.1

 

Same process is always:

I have the PDF saved on my Desktop.

I create a note in Evernote then drag the PDF into it.

Then click the "annotate this note" icon, add the markup using the Skitch-like tools, and click the "x" icon top left to close and save the PDF.

That's when I get the Unable to Save note error.

 

The PDF is saved, but not the markup.

 

Dismayed to see in the forums that people have been having this issue for over a year and it's not resolved. Any advice?

Have you reached, or are you approaching your monthly upload limit? When annotating a PDF, the entire PDF is re-uploaded and counts against your limit. If the PDF is 3mb, and you make a change, its a new 3mb upload. Do that 6 times and you've got 18mb counted against your limit. 

 

How big is the PDF? how big is the note? (These can be seen in the header for the attached PDF, and the note information popover, respectively). Do either of these exceed the limits of your Evernote account?

 

It could be a file permissions issue, perhaps the PDF is "locked" for some reason (I encounter this from time to time for a reason I cannot explain)What happens if you:

1) save the PDF back to your desktop. 

2) try to modify and the PDF using Preview

3) If that works, create a NEW note in Evernote and attach the PDF to that note

4) try annotating the PDF again.

 

If (2) doesn't work, it sounds like an issue of file permission, and not necessarily an Evernote issue. You can try saving a new copy of the PDF which might have more linnet and appropriate file permissions. 

 

 

 

Also, you say you click the "Annotate this note" icon. Why not click on the annotate button for the PDF itself (or right-click and select "Annotate this PDF")? 

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I logged an incident with the Evernote Support Team for this issue well over a month ago. The good news is they have told me they have been able to reproduce the problem successfully on a consistent basis. So it IS an obvious bug. The bad news is they told me there is no timetable for correcting the problem. I confirmed this with them a couple of days ago when following up on their progress. I was disappointed to hear that this is not being looked at since I would consider PDF annotation a fairly significant piece of functionality. I can only suggest that others experiencing the issue log an incident as well. It may not be important for Evernote to look at this problem just for me. However if we get more incidents logged perhaps then it will be worth their time to look at.

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I've just hit this issue today as well.

I've annotated many PDFs in EN over the last few months (even years, don't remember), this is the first time it's happened.

EN for Mac 5.7.2, OS X 10.10.1

Same process is always:

I have the PDF saved on my Desktop.

I create a note in Evernote then drag the PDF into it.

Then click the "annotate this note" icon, add the markup using the Skitch-like tools, and click the "x" icon top left to close and save the PDF.

That's when I get the Unable to Save note error.

The PDF is saved, but not the markup.

Dismayed to see in the forums that people have been having this issue for over a year and it's not resolved. Any advice?

Have you reached, or are you approaching your monthly upload limit? When annotating a PDF, the entire PDF is re-uploaded and counts against your limit. If the PDF is 3mb, and you make a change, its a new 3mb upload. Do that 6 times and you've got 18mb counted against your limit.

How big is the PDF? how big is the note? (These can be seen in the header for the attached PDF, and the note information popover, respectively). Do either of these exceed the limits of your Evernote account?

It could be a file permissions issue, perhaps the PDF is "locked" for some reason (I encounter this from time to time for a reason I cannot explain)What happens if you:

1) save the PDF back to your desktop.

2) try to modify and the PDF using Preview

3) If that works, create a NEW note in Evernote and attach the PDF to that note

4) try annotating the PDF again.

If (2) doesn't work, it sounds like an issue of file permission, and not necessarily an Evernote issue. You can try saving a new copy of the PDF which might have more linnet and appropriate file permissions.

Also, you say you click the "Annotate this note" icon. Why not click on the annotate button for the PDF itself (or right-click and select "Annotate this PDF")?

Thanks for the suggestions, however I have a Premium account and am nowhere close to hitting the monthly limit. I'd also checked file permissions already, no issue there.

Adding the markup in Preview then saving the pdf is my current workaround. Still can't annotate further in EN, regardless of which method I try.

As the previous poster has written that EN have confirmed this is a known issue I'm going to log it with them as well, although given the length of time this has been outstanding I think it's time to look at alternative software too.

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I am getting the same error. Every time I input a pdf from my file system I not able to annotate the pdf. It gives me the error 'unable to save'. Lost about an hour of annotating :/

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