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Selective Sync

Idea

In 2013 it was considered a more and more important feature:

 

 

Onthewire and GM, selective sync in desktop clients are somewhat of an inevitability. However, there are a host of usability issues that have made this impossible in the past and will continue to hinder progress in the near-term future. For example, searching across all your personal, shared, and business notebooks is not possible in any mobile or web (selective syncing) client (Clever included... great product btw). However, as more users' databases grow in size, the situation will become more important to solve. Just know that you're not alone in this issue, we Evernote employees are in this boat too, and are looking for the best way to help Evernote manage users' information as their libraries grow.

 

Now it's 2015...

Is the situation still the same? 

Any news on this issue? The databases of recent laptops are not growing in capacity as everybody relies on nice and fast SSD's.

I see my Evernote App growing, and do not want to fallback to using the web on computers with a smaller Disk. 

 

best

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OK - what are you actually asking for?  I have a terabyte hard drive and (after several years' hard effort) a 13GB Evernote database.  I don't have a problem hosting it on my laptop,  and I can always view notes on my internet-connected mobile.  No problems here...

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Quite a lot of Laptops made for mobility do only have 128GB or 256GB of SSD Storage. Having programs other than Evernote fills the disk up and on these devices it would be very convenient to be able to sync only specific notebooks for offline usage. 

Having your Evernote Database size, only the Evernote App would take 10% of the available disk space (on a 128GB SSD). 

 

So what I ask for is the same behavior you can do with the iOS App (i would guess also the Android App). Sync only specified Notebooks offline.

I totally understand drawbacks in search and so on, but I would be fine with having the "enhanced search" in attachments and so on only in offline notebooks. 

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Mobile devices tend to have even less storage capacity than you;re describing,  so they default to NO local storage,  and it's an opt-in to have individual notebooks 'offline searchable'.  I totally understand that some folks want the convenience of the installed app,  without the overhead (or security vuln) of a local database.  Short term you may be able to get around some part of that by setting up a separate account for the smaller device and sharing specific notebooks with it;  but I agree - selectable syncing would be a good feature to have.  (As long as you have one local device with a full backup database somewhere...)

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Quite a lot of Laptops made for mobility do only have 128GB or 256GB of SSD Storage. Having programs other than Evernote fills the disk up and on these devices it would be very convenient to be able to sync only specific notebooks for offline usage. 

Having your Evernote Database size, only the Evernote App would take 10% of the available disk space (on a 128GB SSD). 

 

So what I ask for is the same behavior you can do with the iOS App (i would guess also the Android App). Sync only specified Notebooks offline.

I totally understand drawbacks in search and so on, but I would be fine with having the "enhanced search" in attachments and so on only in offline notebooks. 

 

Requests for Selective Sync have been made since at least 2010, maybe earlier.

And there have been many discussions about this subject.

Just do a Google on "evernote selective sync".

 

IAC, I think it is inevitable that Evernote provide selective sync.  It is just a matter of time before we accumulate more Notes than can fit (or that we want to allocate) on the local drives of some of our Macs/PCs.  Sure I can go buy a 1TB drive, but maybe not for ALL of the devices that I want Evernote on.  

Evernote has long advertised itself as a "100-year company" and encourage us to put most of our stuff into Evernote.

 

Since Evernote has already provided selection sync (AKA Offline Notebooks) on iOS devices, it would seem they understand the method.

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Honesty, I'm a little worried that evernote is dying :(

I know the EN ambassadors will give infinite workarounds and excuses but people have been asking for this feature for years for reasons even EN themselves acknowledge as major requirements. The fact that the mobile apps already function this way is almost as if to mock.

Some bloke, on his own, added this feature to his open source project, which he does for free, in his spare time, in 2011

https://www.evernote.com/pub/baumgarr/nevernote#st=p&n=f1dcf228-2846-4228-8bc3-f

It may always have been EN's desire not to allow this ability (to stop people actually using their 10GB a month would be my guess), in which case I wish they would just say so, so many of us can stop wasting our time hoping for it.

 

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Hi.  A couple of things - "Evernote Ambassadors" don't post here - we're all Evernote users,  commenting on what's known and practical about using an IT product.  Posting work-arounds is meant to be helpful,  since - if you're asking for a feature,  you'd presumably like to use it starting now - and being realistic about how likely Evernote is to adopt any given feature isn't an 'excuse',  it's merely being pragmatic.

Yes,  selective syncing would help a lot of users;  no,  Evernote haven't seen fit to adopt it yet.  No,  they don't (usually) talk about what's in development,  because they lose competitive advantage.  And just for the record selective syncing would likely max out your monthly upload limit,  not restrict it - you'd be downloading and sending complete notes when you wanted to read and edit the content.  Their major concern may be avoiding the slow down of normal operations - and the resulting slew of complaints from users.

Keep hoping - at least it costs you nothing...  ;)

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4 hours ago, afly said:

Some bloke, on his own, added this feature to his open source project, which he does for free, in his spare time, in 2011

https://www.evernote.com/pub/baumgarr/nevernote#st=p&n=f1dcf228-2846-4228-8bc3-f

It may always have been EN's desire not to allow this ability (to stop people actually using their 10GB a month would be my guess), in which case I wish they would just say so, so many of us can stop wasting our time hoping for it.

 

Followup on this link

Welcome to NeverNote

This is an open source clone of Evernote. This program has been run on Linux, Windows, and OS-X, but the primary goal is to proved a Linux client.  While this is designed to work with Evernote, it is in no way connectedwith or supported by Evernote.

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2 hours ago, gazumped said:

And just for the record selective syncing would likely max out your monthly upload limit,  not restrict it - you'd be downloading and sending complete notes when you wanted to read and edit the content.

Your logic does not make sense:

  1. There is no limit in downloads
  2. Even if the note is already on your device, if you make changes to it, then the entire note has to be uploaded for a sync

So, the uploads would be the same for either full sync or selective sync.  There would be NO change in your monthly uploads.
 

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Not sure here, but selective sync seems to be most requested as to free up space on the local device.  With selective sync in place, my assumption would be that one could add notes to the selective sync notebook and they would pass through to the server, only eating local space for the time before the sync (kind of the existing IOS model).  Which could cause an increase in uploads for some.

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4 hours ago, JMichaelTX said:

So, the uploads would be the same for either full sync or selective sync.  There would be NO change in your monthly uploads.

 

6 hours ago, gazumped said:

And just for the record selective syncing would likely max out your monthly upload limit,  not restrict it - you'd be downloading and sending complete notes when you wanted to read and edit the content.

I'd agree with @JMichaelTx.  I see an impact to downloads, not uploads.
This also applies to mobile users who have not have selected offline notebooks.

For just reading a note, there is no upload impact for either selective or non-selective notebooks.  For editing a note, the impact would be the same.

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Yeah - the one thing I was sure of is that selective sync wouldn't avoid uploads happening at least as frequently as with any other notes.  "Max out" may have been a little over the top,  but since this isn't a legal process I figure I'm allowed a little hyperbole from time to time... ^_^

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...and @DTLow- so we're all agreed that when

8 hours ago, afly said:

It may always have been EN's desire not to allow this ability (to stop people actually using their 10GB a month would be my guess)

... that was probably wrong then?

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This discussion has been moved from the help forum to the  feeback forum so that it can be better addressed as a feature request. Please indicate your support by up-voting.  The voting buttons are in the top left corner.

My initial reaction was this is a non-issue because storage capacity is always increasing; however as the OP indicated, this trend has been reversed with SS Drives. There is also the privacy side to the discussion.

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4 hours ago, DTLow said:

For editing a note, the impact would be the same.

I don't think that is an accurate statement.  If you are a desktop user where do you edit the note if it is in a selective sync notebook?  In your desktop software or someplace else?  If in the desktop you will impact your upload, probably not enough to make any difference, but your upload total will increase.   OOPS - Edit.

4 hours ago, DTLow said:

I'd agree with @JMichaelTx.  I see an impact to downloads, not uploads.

Can have an impact on both depending upon use case.  If PC storage is the limiter then the behavioral change of increasing the number of notes added a month would increase uploads.  High web clip usage would no doubt increase downloads.  Clueless as to how the use cases in EN pan out as to which, or even if either, would have an impact per se.  If no behavioral changes, then a tempest in a teapot.

 

Edited by csihilling

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18 minutes ago, csihilling said:

If you are a desktop user where do you edit the note if it is in a selective sync notebook?  In your desktop software or someplace else?  If in the desktop you will impact your upload, probably not enough to make any difference, but your upload total will increase.

Selective Notebooks - Download note > edit note > upload note
No Selective Notebooks  -                       edit note > upload note
I'm not seeing a difference for upload

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My bad.  I'll modify the post.  Will leave the other bit.  

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6 hours ago, gazumped said:

but since this isn't a legal process I figure I'm allowed a little hyperbole from time to time

Not when you are misleading people.  You seem to have a lot of "hyperbole" events.

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3 hours ago, DTLow said:

Selective Notebooks - Download note > edit note > upload note
No Selective Notebooks  -                       edit note > upload note
I'm not seeing a difference for upload

Exactly.  Seems very obvious to me.

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Hmmn.  So this selective sync thing then.  You have a note which exists on a server,  and not on your local device.  Then you download it to your local device and read it carefully for an hour.  Then you delete the note. How does the server confirm that no changes were made? 

If you start to make changes your local app has to notify the server that it will need to update its copy of the note.  And when you finish and close,  the final copy can be sent.  But over the period between starting to edit and closing,  how often does the server need updates to save contingency copies in the event of lost connections/ crashes etc.? 

If you edit for an hour then forget to close,  will the note content be saved locally until it can be synced?  Or lost because it wasn't sent to the server?  What if this note is accessed on more than one device?

I think the admin side of selective sync might be a little more complicated than just download and upload...

However like I said last year..

On 30/03/2015 at 11:57 AM, gazumped said:

I agree - selectable syncing would be a good feature to have.  (As long as you have one local device with a full backup database somewhere...)

I'll leave Evernote to worry about the details of making it work.

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30 minutes ago, gazumped said:

Hmmn.  So this selective sync thing then.  You have a note which exists on a server,  and not on your local device.  Then you download it to your local device and read it carefully for an hour.  Then you delete the note. How does the server confirm that no changes were made? 

If you start to make changes your local app has to notify the server that it will need to update its copy of the note.  And when you finish and close,  the final copy can be sent.  But over the period between starting to edit and closing,  how often does the server need updates to save contingency copies in the event of lost connections/ crashes etc.? 

We currently have select sync on the mobile platforms. It works.

>>If you edit for an hour then forget to close

I don't see this as a select sync issue.

On the iPad, (my notes are stored offline) and  we have a "close" action which I often forget to do   I'm not sure why this is necessary; we don't have it on the desktop.

The app has to recognize if a change is made, and then do a sync. I'm thinking this is not done after the hour long update, it is done during the update. On the desktop, I set the frequency at 5 minutes.

 

 

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>>What if this note is accessed on more than one device?

Again, not a select sync issue.  You get a conflict error.

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24 minutes ago, gazumped said:

I'll leave Evernote to worry about the details of making it work.

I think that would be an excellent idea.  But not only the details, all of the IT concepts, architecture, and design.

What is the purpose of your post?  Are you trying to help someone?  Demonstrate your knowledge of IT?  Clarify errors?  What?

I don't really like doing this, but as an IT professional I cannot stand by and let you make comments that have no basis in fact, and may mislead people.
This thread is about a request to provide selective sync.  Although on one hand you state that "I agree - selectable syncing would be a good feature to have.", you continue post remarks that are clearly anti selective sync.  You seem to want to make it appear to be something very hard to do, or with terrible adverse consequences.  You have been wrong in almost all of your assertions.

Your remarks serve only to cause distractions, and perhaps cause other users to have concerns, where there is no validity in your remarks.  You are clearly just guessing, and guessing wrong most of the time.

34 minutes ago, gazumped said:

Hmmn.  So this selective sync thing then.  You have a note which exists on a server,  and not on your local device.  Then you download it to your local device and read it carefully for an hour.  Then you delete the note. How does the server confirm that no changes were made? 

If you start to make changes your local app has to notify the server that it will need to update its copy of the note.  And when you finish and close,  the final copy can be sent.  But over the period between starting to edit and closing,  how often does the server need updates to save contingency copies in the event of lost connections/ crashes etc.? 

If you edit for an hour then forget to close,  will the note content be saved locally until it can be synced?  Or lost because it wasn't sent to the server?  What if this note is accessed on more than one device?

I think the admin side of selective sync might be a little more complicated than just download and upload...

You clearly do not understand even the basics.  Selective sync adds only one significant burden:  Download the entire note when it needs to either be viewed or edited.  Once downloaded, everything else works just like the notes that are permanently downloaded (sync'd) to your device.

As @DTLow stated:

18 minutes ago, DTLow said:

We currently have select sync on the mobile platforms. It works.

So Evernote clearly already know how to handle selective sync.

I do hope we can move on from here.

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Good grief. For someone who repeatedly pontificates about off topic posts you do add an amazing volume of irrelevant text to what was a straightforward query and a routine answer.  And please don't continue to tell me what I really mean.  I do agree that selective sync would be a good thing - I'm one of the (only) 2 people that ticked the voting box above.  I'm not posting 'anti' comments by wondering about the implications,  I'm simply asking questions to which I don't have an answer (is there any other kind?) just as everyone else here is entitled to.  I'd encourage anyone who wants this feature to click the top left link,  and when I say I'll leave Evernote to worry about the details,  I'll do exactly that.  You're not employed by the company,  and "IT Professional" or not,  your views on any topic as an outsider are worth no more than anyone else's.

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17 minutes ago, gazumped said:

I'm not posting 'anti' comments by wondering about the implications,  I'm simply asking questions to which I don't have an answer

Yeah, your questions are like "When did you quit beating your wife".  They seem designed to cause doubt where you have no basis for the doubt.  You are asking questions about software design.  Most people here don't care about how it is designed, they just want the feature, and for the feature to work well.  It is up to Evernote to provide a great design and implementation once they have decided to implement a feature.  Maybe then we will have some complaints about the design, or really how well it works or doesn't work.  Until then why don't we focus on helping users, answering their questions, and where we can, provide workarounds.

You ask questions that serve no purpose.  Your questions imply issues that don't exist.  Who do you expect to answer your questions?  Since these questions in particular have nothing to do with the request, or what features might be desired, what is their purpose?  They are your uninformed speculation about Evernote design.

I hate it that it is necessary (IMO) go off-topic.  But when you make the kinds of statements you do, which are also off-topic, you can expect a response.
If you will keep on-topic, and not throw out bogus questions and/or statements, then I will be glad to keep on-topic.

28 minutes ago, gazumped said:

You're not employed by the company . . .

I have no association with Evernote other than being a customer who has had a paid subscription for a Premium account for years, and I have never claimed otherwise.  

33 minutes ago, gazumped said:

"IT Professional" or not,  your views on any topic as an outsider are worth no more than anyone else's.

Maybe so.  I don't really care what you think.  I suppose everything as some level is an "opinion", but all opinions are not equal.  I'll state my case and each person can make their own judgement based on the rationale I present.  I don't know about you, but I would not ask the opinion of a writer (or any other non-mechanic profession) about my car problems.  And when the "writer" offers an unsolicited opinion about my car problems, I just ignore it.  ;)

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I do agree that some sort of selective sync is needed as if you store a lot of data in evernote, there's not way to keep it from growing very big.    Please implement

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Hi

Does the new v6 desktop version have this selective sync function?

I will resubscribe it if they implement it.

Thanks

JH

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I can't believe that Desktop apps still don't have this feature.

Evernote is a good app, but there are so many features needed, but they spend their time implementing useless chat service, increasing prices... Sad!

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On 3/16/2016 at 5:04 AM, afly said:

Honesty, I'm a little worried that evernote is dying :(

I know the EN ambassadors will give infinite workarounds and excuses but people have been asking for this feature for years for reasons even EN themselves acknowledge as major requirements. The fact that the mobile apps already function this way is almost as if to mock.

Some bloke, on his own, added this feature to his open source project, which he does for free, in his spare time, in 2011

https://www.evernote.com/pub/baumgarr/nevernote#st=p&n=f1dcf228-2846-4228-8bc3-f

It may always have been EN's desire not to allow this ability (to stop people actually using their 10GB a month would be my guess), in which case I wish they would just say so, so many of us can stop wasting our time hoping for it.

 

I have been thinking the same thing for at least 5 years.... They supposedly give us this generous upload limit when you get premium, which I have had for 5 years, but really they KNOW you really can't use any of it if you have the desktop app installed. In 2017 it's getting pretty irritating. I'v started uploading most things to google drive now because of this. NOT COOL EVERNOTE.

I really have to say, I never had such a love-hate relationship with any other product. On the one hand I am rooting for them because I love the app and use it a lot, but it seems like they are intent on not listening to their costumers which is infuriating and really dumb. 

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7 hours ago, lpr said:

it seems like they are intent on not listening to their costumers

...Their 5 customers?  That's how many votes this "vital" feature has received.  The feature request to add a dark mode/ night theme has 122 votes.  I totally agree this would be a useful feature - though Evernote may have reservations based on how their hand was bitten off when they foolishly allowed 'unlimited' uploads for premium customers.  That had to be cut back to 10GB when folks started backing up their terrabyte drives to their space...  and 10GB is a limit not a target.  If every premium account started dumping 10GB/ month into the servers 1) everyone would scream that sync speeds fell through the floor - especially if some of those notes existed only on the server and 2) even Google would have trouble digesting petabytes of new storage each year...

EVernote will have this feature under consideration,  and maybe even in development - but the fashion for high-end low-storage units might come and go and the implications for their expensive infrastructure are quite extensive and high risk.  I don't see any reason for Evernote to rush into a decision about this.

Oh yeah - and 3) there are work-arounds... web access / 2nd accounts / shared notebooks...

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1 hour ago, gazumped said:

though Evernote may have reservations based on how their hand was bitten off when they foolishly allowed 'unlimited' uploads for premium customers. 

I think that's a very good reason for Evernote not implementing selective sync

I'm sorry for the users with limited space on their devices - my iPad only has 128GB
But I get to chose which notes to download

Evernote could implement the feature
Selective Sync - but limit the total database size

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On 2/4/2017 at 5:17 AM, gazumped said:

...Their 5 customers?  That's how many votes this "vital" feature has received.  The feature request to add a dark mode/ night theme has 122 votes.  I totally agree this would be a useful feature - though Evernote may have reservations based on how their hand was bitten off when they foolishly allowed 'unlimited' uploads for premium customers.  That had to be cut back to 10GB when folks started backing up their terrabyte drives to their space...  and 10GB is a limit not a target.  If every premium account started dumping 10GB/ month into the servers 1) everyone would scream that sync speeds fell through the floor - especially if some of those notes existed only on the server and 2) even Google would have trouble digesting petabytes of new storage each year...

EVernote will have this feature under consideration,  and maybe even in development - but the fashion for high-end low-storage units might come and go and the implications for their expensive infrastructure are quite extensive and high risk.  I don't see any reason for Evernote to rush into a decision about this.

Oh yeah - and 3) there are work-arounds... web access / 2nd accounts / shared notebooks...

There are multiple related threads and requests for this feature, with use cases and votes. The thread linked to below seems to be the main/active thread atm, for those who want the feature and would like to vote on it: 

 

Edited by EAngell
clarification on "main thread" for voting on this feature request
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1 minute ago, EAngell said:

This seems to be the main/active thread atm, for those who want the feature and would like to vote on it: 

My point exactly.  And there are now 6 whole votes...

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14 minutes ago, gazumped said:

My point exactly.  And there are now 6 whole votes...

Sorry, but you misunderstood (or I should have been clearer.)

I should have said "the thread below," which I linked to in my previous post. One of the forum mods requested that votes be collected there. There are currently 48 votes for it in that thread, as well as a new update re: an upcoming beta with a partial work-around:

 

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This is crucial for business users. Imagine a company with hundreds of employees adding data to Evernote every day. And ALL this data needs to fit into your laptop.

 

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3 hours ago, Eduardo Estefano said:

This is crucial for business users. Imagine a company with hundreds of employees adding data to Evernote every day. And ALL this data needs to fit into your laptop.

 

A company with hundreds of Employees should have a Business account which keeps an individual's notes separate.  There is a partial fix in beta at the moment which I used (in the Windows version) to drop a 17GB database to around 1MB,  so things are coming along...

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The "disk space is cheap" argument against selective sync misses the point.  Yes, limiting the size of synced data is a concern.  But the better reason for selective sync comes into play when you use Evernote for personal, work, side projects, and lots of other stuff.  I would love to use Evernote at work, but I definitely don't want my whole life of personal notes syncing to a business-owned device.  I want just the set of notebooks I use for work-related stuff.  Selective sync should be an obvious feature!

I end up creating multiple Evernote accounts for different purposes.  But this never works out, since I do want access to common notebooks or notes everywhere.

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On 2017-08-01 at 오후 2시 1분, David Alexis said:

But the better reason for selective sync comes into play when you use Evernote for personal, work, side projects, and lots of other stuff.

You should be aware the regardless of Selective Sync, your entire set of notes is available and will be displayed.  The online notes are accessed via the internet

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Hi.  Most of us tend to use two accounts in a business situation - share a notebook between the home account and the business account so you can make notes if necessary,  or use the web access for lookups.

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50 minutes ago, Eduardo Estefano said:

Selective sync did not make into production on the windows app?

Yes it did - Tools > Optons > Synchronization and "enable on demand sync".  If you already have a full database on your hard drive,  it's necessary to exit Evernote,  delete the Databases folder and allow Evernote to rebuild it from the server - which in this case won't take very long and will not be the 'full' database.  Opening notes will be slower than usual for a while,  because the content has to download.

NB - Evernote is unable to rebuild Local Notebooks from the server (obviously) - if you have any local notebooks I'd avoid on demand sync,  or be prepared to export and re-import them after the modified database is rebuilt.

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