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markbrown00 2008-07-14 04:55 PM

SOLVED: Mysteriously growing OmniFocus.ofocus file
My database file in my Application Support folder is mysteriously increasing in size.

It started at aprox 900k, but I wanted to get it a bit smaller for syncing with my iPhone. (Here in Australia we have small and expensive data plans so I need to ration my data usage.) I deleted some tasks and projects, and used the new archive feature to archive old completed tasks. But the file stayed the same size. Then, over the next few hours my file increased to 1.5MB, and this morning it's at 1.6MB.

Does anyone have any idea what is going on?

(P.S. I've also emailed this to support ninjas)

Toadling 2008-07-14 05:52 PM

From my observations, it seems the database file (actually a bundle of multiple zipped XML files) grows as you conduct transactions (i.e. add/edit/delete items). I think OmniFocus has been using this, or a similar model, for some time now.

Those zipped transaction files seem to hang around in the package until you sync to your remote server from your Mac, then sync your iPhone (or another Mac, I suppose), and then sync the original Mac again. I suspect OmniFocus does things this way to help ensure data integrity. Consequently, it's probably best to let it sync frequently so you don't get too many transactions piled up waiting to be processed. Of course, this is all speculation on my part.

In the OmniFocus for iPhone FAQ, it's recommended to keep your total number of actions under about 1,000 items for best performance. It's not clear to me, though, if this includes items that are "on hold". In other words, can I put things on hold to reduce my number of synced items to around 1,000? Also, what's the best way to find out how many items I'm syncing? Do I have to count them manually?


markbrown00 2008-07-14 09:52 PM

Thanks for the suggestion Toadling. Unfortunately i've synched now several times and the file is still growing. It's up to 2.1MB now. I've even done a rebuild.

markbrown00 2008-07-14 09:53 PM

Oh, and I'm definetly under 1000 tasks now (aprox 300) although I was over previously.

whpalmer4 2008-07-14 10:51 PM

[QUOTE=markbrown00;40832]Thanks for the suggestion Toadling. Unfortunately i've synched now several times and the file is still growing. It's up to 2.1MB now. I've even done a rebuild.[/QUOTE]

Have you been attaching things to actions, perhaps? A 50 kB file here, a 70 kB file there, pretty soon you've got a couple of megabytes more than when you started...

markbrown00 2008-07-15 05:20 PM

No, i'm pretty sure i've got absolutely no attachments...just links to a few files here and there.

chrobb 2008-07-15 05:31 PM

I'm seeing the same thing. My OF file jumped in size. I suspect it's from some audio files I've added when testing. Trouble is, I can't find the action where I added the audio file. Is there a way to search for them somehow? It takes my phone about 5 minutes to synch over Edge, during which time, I can't receive any calls. Can't wait for the push SDK to come out in September. I certainly hope OF utilizes it.

Lizard 2008-07-15 11:38 PM

markbrown00: Definitely send us an email ( Particularly if you are willing to email us your file, we should be able to figure out why it's growing.

gcrump 2008-07-16 05:53 AM

I can top that mine is 6.1MB's. I tried to do a archive and a rebuild, with no success. in reduction. In fact the 6.1 MB is what is on the iDisk. My local copy on this machine is 9MB.

I have well under 1,000 actions (about 600) and no attachments other than what gets linked in as part of the mail to omnifocus script. Clearly some of the HTML code is pulled in from the emails.

CatOne 2008-07-16 08:45 AM

I'm seeing this as well.

I think it may be "normal" for the new Omnifocus file format. Specifically, it looks like, to make synching much easier, that each task in OF is now represented as a file in the OF "file." Each of them is zipped. Thing is, the minimum file size with HFS+ looks to be around 4 KB, so each item takes 4 KB (minimum) of space. I have 560 .zip files in my .ofocus package file, and simple math gives about 2.2 MB for that. That's about what I have.

What I don't know is if OmniFocus will always leave the tasks this way, or if cleanup will address it at some point.

I can see that my Omnifocus file went from 132 KB on July 8th, 2008 and is now 2.4 MB in size. So the explosion of these same files is definitely responsible for it, but I don't know if it's by design or because cleanup of the sync items isn't happening along the way.

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