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windows I've Just Discovered Why Evernote is Slow

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Hi All,

 

Evernote is the center of my working life, but I've really been struggling with slowness issues lately. Some notes can take 30 seconds - 1 minute + to open, and I started to notice that notes I frequently opened and updated would become slower and slower and slower as time went on.

 

I tried the usual steps like rebuilding the database, re-installing, etc. and I did find it worked, kind of... for a time.

 

Without a doubt my most opened note in my entire database is my To Do list. I use this one file to organize both my personal and professional life. As of about 5 minutes ago it had started to take about 2 minutes plus to switch to it, and would kick my processor into overdrive. Pretty ridiculous.

 

Just a simple text file with some simple formatting, or so I thought...

 

Here are 2 notes, exactly the same at first glance, but check out the underlying code by opening them with your text edior:

Test Note 1 (dropbox)

Test Note 2 (dropbox)

 

*save file, open with notepad

 

There is a ton of redundant and excessive formatting code in Test Note 1. Test Note 2 is totally clean. I simply took the content from Test Note 1 (in evernote), copied it to notepad, and then pasted it back into a new note and reformatted it (in evernote). This removed all of the excessive & eroneous formatting.

 

So you can imagine that if you have a note (like my To Do note) that is updated, modified, formatted etc on a daily basis. Over time this file's underlying code will become more and more bloated with useless code. So even though the note looks simple enough on the surface, underneath it is a cesspool of useless and redundant formatting.

 

So I have 2 questions

 

1) Can evernote fix this with a simple patch that aims to detect redundant formatting code and clean it up?

 

2) If not then maybe someone can code up a simple app/tool that allows you to export a .enex file, process it with the tool to remove excessive formatting, and then re-import it into evernote. could even do this in bulk, or even just have the tool go right into evernote and clear it out.

 

Anyways that's about it. Thought I would share that.

 

Evernote is running like a charm now.

 

Thanks,

inline99.

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Hi - I can't open your first link;  dropbox throws an error - but I think the answers to your questions are - 

 

1)  No

 

2)  export notes to enex and then re-import:  that'll strip out any extraneous coding and recreate a 'standard' note.

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I had no problem opening/downloading the first link -- Test Note 1.

 

Yeah, it had a lot of HTML bloat, but the note/file is only 12K -- very small.

I imported it into EN Mac 5.5.2 OK, went very fast.

And, the Note opens fast like all my other Notes.

 

Even though the Note is bloated, it is so small that it shouldn't affect performance, which it doesn't for me.  :-)

 

So, I'm not sure if you have found the problem/solution or not.

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Yeah, it had a lot of HTML bloat, but the note/file is only 12K -- very small.

I imported it into EN Mac 5.5.2 OK, went very fast.

And, the Note opens fast like all my other Notes.

 

Even though the Note is bloated, it is so small that it shouldn't affect performance, which it doesn't for me.  :-)

 

So, I'm not sure if you have found the problem/solution or not.

 

Yes for sure the file is small and opens fast. It was only to serve as an example of how excessive/redundant formatting can occur and bloat an evernote file and to show a visual exmaple of it when you open it in notepad. I didn't want to share my actual problem notes obviously (privacy), so I just clipped out a small part of it and changed the text as a demonstration of the bloat.

 

I can confirm that after cleaning up the bloated evernote files and removing the underlying excessive formatting, all of my notes are now running lightning fast!

 

So yup, it definitely fixed the slowness problem.

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Hi - I can't open your first link;  dropbox throws an error - but I think the answers to your questions are - 

 

1)  No

 

2)  export notes to enex and then re-import:  that'll strip out any extraneous coding and recreate a 'standard' note.

 

Not sure why the file is not working for you, Ive tested it, it works. Second user who replied here also tested and it works. Maybe blocked by your browser or something.

 

1) off the top of my head, it seems ridiculous that they can't fix a problem like this. although I'm not a programmer so I'll just shut my trap ;)

 

2) gotcha, I'll try that in the future instead of copying/pasting.

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Thanks to the OP for this post! I see a lot of slow to open notes as well. I can see this being a problem for large note libraries with multiple edits.

 

Will copying and pasting a note into a new note start this process over? Maybe exporting to OneNote and then back in?

 

Evernote has really gone downhill. Clearly doesn't load whole pages, slow notes, sync failures, and more. I really hope they get it together soon as I do like the product. If I export to OneNote and find that I can work with that then it's bye bye premium priced Evernote. Can't believe they are charging $50 per year for such a failing product.

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Evernote has really gone downhill. Clearly doesn't load whole pages, slow notes, sync failures, and more. I really hope they get it together soon as I do like the product. If I export to OneNote and find that I can work with that then it's bye bye premium priced Evernote. Can't believe they are charging $50 per year for such a failing product.

Good luck with that. The "power user" crowd has a topic running for finding an alternative to Evernote: https://discussion.evernote.com/topic/66103-power-user-discontent-best-alternatives-to-en/. No clear consensus that I can see...

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Hi All,

 

Evernote is the center of my working life, but I've really been struggling with slowness issues lately. Some notes can take 30 seconds - 1 minute + to open, and I started to notice that notes I frequently opened and updated would become slower and slower and slower as time went on.

 

I tried the usual steps like rebuilding the database, re-installing, etc. and I did find it worked, kind of... for a time.

 

Without a doubt my most opened note in my entire database is my To Do list. I use this one file to organize both my personal and professional life. As of about 5 minutes ago it had started to take about 2 minutes plus to switch to it, and would kick my processor into overdrive. Pretty ridiculous.

 

Just a simple text file with some simple formatting, or so I thought...

 

Here are 2 notes, exactly the same at first glance, but check out the underlying code by opening them with your text edior:

Test Note 1 (dropbox)

Test Note 2 (dropbox)

 

*save file, open with notepad

 

There is a ton of redundant and excessive formatting code in Test Note 1. Test Note 2 is totally clean. I simply took the content from Test Note 1 (in evernote), copied it to notepad, and then pasted it back into a new note and reformatted it (in evernote). This removed all of the excessive & eroneous formatting.

 

So you can imagine that if you have a note (like my To Do note) that is updated, modified, formatted etc on a daily basis. Over time this file's underlying code will become more and more bloated with useless code. So even though the note looks simple enough on the surface, underneath it is a cesspool of useless and redundant formatting.

 

So I have 2 questions

 

1) Can evernote fix this with a simple patch that aims to detect redundant formatting code and clean it up?

 

2) If not then maybe someone can code up a simple app/tool that allows you to export a .enex file, process it with the tool to remove excessive formatting, and then re-import it into evernote. could even do this in bulk, or even just have the tool go right into evernote and clear it out.

 

Anyways that's about it. Thought I would share that.

 

Evernote is running like a charm now.

 

Thanks,

inline99.

 

Did you try 'simplify formatting' in the pull down menu under format?  I'm not sure that would remove all the extraneous formatting code but it's worth a try.  There is also an option to make it plain text which would remove the extraneous codes.

 

Steve

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Thanks to the OP for this post! I see a lot of slow to open notes as well. I can see this being a problem for large note libraries with multiple edits.

 

Will copying and pasting a note into a new note start this process over? Maybe exporting to OneNote and then back in?

 

Here is how I've been able to keep my evernote running smoothly. Before this I would have problems like evernote taking 5 minutes to start, sometimes taking 20 seconds to open a note. Just terrible, almost un-usable. But the following steps have made evernote run pretty much flawlessly for me over the past few months:

 

1. Strip formatting from slow notes - Any notes that are slow to open (usually means they contain bloated code underneath), just copy them into a plain text file, then dump it back into a new evernote file and reformat. This problem will be most apparent for notes that you regularly access and modify. For me that is my main task and to do lists that I look at on a daily basis.

 

2. Rebuild your database every month or so - Export/Backup everything just to be safe. Then close evernote, access your database folder and delete the contents. Then re-open evernote and it will re-build the local database by accessing the cloud and syncing your data from the evernote server.

 

Those 2 things alone have made evernote run smooth for me. No more 5 minute waits to start or shut down. No more hanging / freezing while switching between notes. It's like a new program compared to what it was a few months ago when I was having these problems.

 

PS: I use evernote in a pretty simple and straight forward way for note taking and keeping myself organized. I don't do much web clipping or keeping media in my database. I keep project notes, ideas, task lists, someday maybe's etc. With some very light formatting to make things easier to read. So your results may vary if you're doing lots of web clipping and storing media (which I think is just a silly use of evernote in my opinion)

 

Good luck.

 

T.

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2. Rebuild your database every month or so - Export/Backup everything just to be safe. Then close evernote, access your database folder and delete the contents. Then re-open evernote and it will re-build the local database by accessing the cloud and syncing your data from the evernote server.

 

Everyone should note that deleting the Evernote database will delete all Local Notebooks and unsync'd notes that will NOT be restored when the database is rebuilt from the Evernote Cloud Service.  Note that "Local Database"  is NOT the same thing as "Local Notebooks".

 

So, if you choose to follow the above process, you MUST export all of your Local Notebooks to ENEX files BEFORE deleting the Evernote Database, and then import these ENEX files back after the database is rebuilt.

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2. Rebuild your database every month or so - Export/Backup everything just to be safe. Then close evernote, access your database folder and delete the contents. Then re-open evernote and it will re-build the local database by accessing the cloud and syncing your data from the evernote server.

 

 

It is often mentioned that Evernote employees read every post. 
 
If that is the case, I'd like to hear their comments on whether monthly rebuilds are a beneficial practice.
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WARNING

 

People recommending export and restore are giving very dangerous advice. As JMichael said, it's the only way to get back local notebooks but comes with other dangers.

 

Exporting and rebuilding does not guarantee to restore note links and it loses notebook information - the ENEX format doesn't record the notebooks.

 

After bringing notes back in, you have to manually move them to notebooks.

 

I started the smartENEX project with some prompting late last year but was bogged down by a combination of client work and being busy with Touchgram. So far it's just documentation.

 

Performance Comments

I agree that the bloating is a bit of a concern but wonder if something else is going on with your machine.

 

I have a Mid-2011 iMac with 16GB of RAM.

 

I have nearly 20,000 notes of which many are heavily formatted because I clipped them with formatting.

 

I do use Simplify Formatting and the Chrome clipper's simplified view a lot of the time.

 

Notes appear in a fraction of a second for me.

 

I am not a fan of the way Evernote encodes styles inline and I think it's creaking and has never been a great content production system, although it could serve as the foundation for one. I would like to see them using native editors rather than abusing Javascript editors the way they do but they have painted themselves into a corner with being driven by web-clippings. Any editor has to be an inline editor preserving the look of a web page.

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WARNING

 

People recommending export and restore are giving very dangerous advice. As JMichael said, it's the only way to get back local notebooks but comes with other dangers.

 

Exporting and rebuilding does not guarantee to restore note links and it loses notebook information - the ENEX format doesn't record the notebooks.

 

@AndyDent:  I was NOT recommending the export/import of ENEX as a good way of backup/restore of Evernote Notes. 

My point was that IF you choose to rebuild your Evernote database by deleting it, that you MUST first export your Local Notebooks to ENEX files, else they will be lost.

 

I agree with you that there are some severe limitations to using ENEX as a backup/restore process.

See EN: Backup and Restore Issues

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As this is a Windows thread it's worth mentioning that the database file is easily found (usually at C:\Users\<user>\AppData\Local\Evernote\Evernote\Databases)

 

Copying the EXB file -or the complete Database folder-  to a safe location is a simple and effective backup for all your data. 

 

If a restore is ever necessary,  set up a new 'empty' Evernote account with your normal login details.  Exit Evernote.  Rename the newly installed Database file (or the whole folder) to .OLD and replace it with the backed up version.  Instant Evernote. 

 

It worked for me with around 18K notes,  and its an easy operation to automate so you never had a backup problem. 

 

At the moment I'm enjoying Revert - https://revert.io/ - which is clipping a cloud backup for me every day without fuss.

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I read about 30 words into evernote, it transcribes them OK, then stalls for a couple of minutes. What is the maximum size of a file? 

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I assume if you do not have Wifi on that Evernote microphone cannot be used. Is this correct

 

I know speech-to-text needs an internet connection,  not sure about straight recording - if it doesn't work for you in Evernote,  try using a third-party recording app and attach the resulting MP3 / WAV file to a note.

 

-And on the max size of a "file",  there's a maximum note size which varies with the plan you're on.  You can attach files to the note up to that size.  https://evernote.com/contact/support/kb/#!/article/23258452

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what are the prices of the 4 types of Evernote and can you upgrade or downgrade any time or are there contracts

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Is there a stylus or pen that can be used on an iPad to handwrite and then can this handwriting be converted to text eg within evernote and then export to say Microsoft Word for Mac  

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Full terms and conditions and prices are on the website.

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I haven't tried this option ever, but as an alternative to the risky procedure of deleting your locally stored database and letting Evernote download the whole thing (many gigabytes in my case) again from the cloud, might the "Optimize Database" function built into Evernote be better?

 

Hold down the CONTROL key while clicking on the HELP menu to reveal "Optimize Database," and several other normally hidden maintenance/repair options.

 

Rob

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Good question.

 

My current database file is 13.5GB and I've reinstalled it a couple of times this year on different machines.  A couple of years ago it would take about a week to download an earlier 7GB database,  but now it takes a few hours - still a long time I know in a busy day,  but I cheated;  did this last time whilst out of the office and came back to find the job done.

 

A complete reinstall isn't (IMHO) such a big deal in Windows - removing the software takes a few minutes,  deleting the database (after copious backings-up) is -scarily- a keystroke or two,  and the reinstall again a couple of minutes.  Rebuilding the database takes the longest,  but done overnight or in some other planned downtime,  takes no productive time at all.

 

The Ctrl+Help commands are a bit of an unknown quantity,  and Evernote support do say not to use them unless specifically told to do so by them.  Agreed they're always worth a try if you have problems anyway,  but I'd still strongly recommend a database backup first,  and you need to bear in mind that "optimize database" (forinstance) will take some time - possibly hours - and may or may not fix an issue anyway.

 

I'm not sure the expanded help items are either less of a risk,  or any quicker than the complete rebuild.  Up to the individual which option you choose...

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I've only been an EN user for about 6 months when, a few days back, text entry slowed down to about one character per 5 (yes 5!) seconds on my HTC DNA phone. Until then, everything was similar to other apps. Too bad, as I was just about to upgrade. From searching around, it seems that this is non-device related and something systemic.

 

If this has to do with "HTML bloat" or other house cleaning issue, the app should take care of those things automatically. Since EN is now completely unusable, I'm forced elsewhere, e.g., OneNote, as usability & reliability always trumps functionality. I'll keep checking back on progress, but for now, can't afford all the uncertainty.

 

If I'm just caught out on a technicality, anyone, please point me to a link(s) where I may try for a resolution, as I was really looking forward to trying out some of the more advanced functions. Again. If there is a setting or some persistent fix I can try, then fine. I'm not interested in a "workaround" involving some side process, as everyone seems to be suggesting. that just interrupts productivity.

 

TIAFYH

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I've only been an EN user for about 6 months when, a few days back, text entry slowed down to about one character per 5 (yes 5!) seconds on my HTC DNA phone. Until then, everything was similar to other apps. Too bad, as I was just about to upgrade. From searching around, it seems that this is non-device related and something systemic.

 

If this has to do with "HTML bloat" or other house cleaning issue, the app should take care of those things automatically. Since EN is now completely unusable, I'm forced elsewhere, e.g., OneNote, as usability & reliability always trumps functionality. I'll keep checking back on progress, but for now, can't afford all the uncertainty.

 

If I'm just caught out on a technicality, anyone, please point me to a link(s) where I may try for a resolution, as I was really looking forward to trying out some of the more advanced functions. Again. If there is a setting or some persistent fix I can try, then fine. I'm not interested in a "workaround" involving some side process, as everyone seems to be suggesting. that just interrupts productivity.

 

TIAFYH

 

This is a Windows thread,  so none of the comments so far relate to your particular problem,  nor am I aware of any "systemic" problem causing massive slowdowns in data entry. The standard fix for mobile device problems is:  uninstall / reinstall.  If that doesn't fix the issue,  you're probably better off trying another app.

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This is a Windows thread,  so none of the comments so far relate to your particular problem,  nor am I aware of any "systemic" problem causing massive slowdowns in data entry. The standard fix for mobile device problems is:  uninstall / reinstall.  If that doesn't fix the issue,  you're probably better off trying another app.

 

It seems obvious to me that Post60  was trying to point out performance problems on other platforms, as well as Windows.

And, in fact, I have seen performance issues raised recently for EN Win, EN Mac, and EN iOS.

I don't know if there is a link or not, but there might be.

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I use an iPad 2. After dictating approx 20 words, a blue clockwise arrow is seen and it may be 30 secs before I can dictate again. Is this Normal ?
 

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I use Evernote on Windows, and access the notes on Android devices all the time. In four notes that I use constantly have the "excess formatting" issue that the OP noted. The only way to get rid of this is to copy and paste the entire note content into Notepad (or some other "format-free" editor), then paste it back. I just did this to my notes... they were all > 200kb before, all < 6kb afterwards. Ridiculous.

This is totally unacceptable. There are lots of other word processors out there that somehow manage to undergo multiple edits without accumulating this useless cruft.

FIX THIS PLEASE

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