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Still Long Sync on iPhone... Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
I have always updated to the latest Omnifocus on the Mac and on my iPhone. I sync via Mobile Me. I continue to have very long sync times on the iPhone, I would estimate around 60 to 90 seconds. It defeats the purpose if I have a quick idea I want to add on the phone and I have wait almost 2 minutes for syncing to complete.

I recently did a fresh install of Snow Leopard, new install of Omnifocus on Mac and on the iPhone. I still get long sync times. I really only have a few categories and maybe 10-20 tasks..no attachments..it does not make sense.

What can I do to speed up the sync..it is the one thing that has been a constant problem. Everything else, updates, etc..has been fine. I really need to figure out how to not get stuck in a long sync every time I open the app.

Thanks
Frank
 
Have you worked the issue with the support ninjas?

If the issue is that the app takes too long to start when you pull the iPhone out of your pocket to make a quick note of something, why not turn off Auto-sync? Then the app will only sync when you direct it to do so, at a time of your choosing. You can make your entry, start the sync and then push the sleep/wake button on the top of the iPhone to prevent any accidental input when you put it back in your pocket -- the sync will continue.

Another way to help keep database size and sync time down is to get your devices synced up whenever you switch from using one to the other. Don't make simultaneous changes on desktop and iPhone if you can avoid it, but rather use one, then sync both devices before switching to the other. It's easier if two people take turns editing a document, right? Same applies here, it's much harder to keep the changes straight if both people are making changes to a document simultaneously. It's also easier to get duplicates in your database if you are completing repeating actions in two places.
 
Thanks for the tips.

Turning off auto sync would pretty much negate the whole setup of Mac - iPhone - Mobile Me sync. I need to have everything in sync, so that is why I have it on, and why I purchased the programs.

I have my desktop version up pretty often and sync it from there..I never am updating both at the same time. If I am on my phone I am not usually near my desktop.

How long SHOULD it take? Whenever I boot up Omnifocus on my phone it starts to sync and it takes at least 60 seconds to complete. Then if I add stuff I need to sync again. Similar apps such as Pocket Informant sync to google calendar in seconds, the native calendar on my phone syncs via mobile me in seconds. I actually have more content on my calendars. Basically ever app that syncs to a source on my iphone happens very quickly, except Omnifocus.

Ideas?
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by frankmcma View Post
How long SHOULD it take?
Definitely not 60-90 seconds; for me, it usually takes less than ten seconds. (According to my Settings screen, I currently have 193 projects and 1295 actions in 231 zip files. Usually I have fewer than 75 zip files, but I haven't synced my MacBook in a while. Syncing just now took ~5 seconds.)

That said, we did just track down a problem that can cause OmniFocus for iPhone to freeze for much longer than expected when integrating changes at the end of the sync process: instead of processing all of the downloaded changes at once, it's processing each change independently (recalculating everything, saving, then starting on the next change). This takes much longer than it's supposed to, and unlike the rest of the sync process the app will stop responding while this is happening, without even a progress bar to let you know what it's doing. That's definitely not intentional, and we'll try to get it fixed for the next release.
 
10 seconds would work for me. This seems to be taking a very very long time so perhaps that is the problem.

Are there any tips for now to speed up sync? I am not totally clear on the zip files, are they just backups? If I did less frequent backups (once a day rather than twice, no backup when quitting) will this help?

Any tips would be great..thanks
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by frankmcma View Post
Turning off auto sync would pretty much negate the whole setup of Mac - iPhone - Mobile Me sync. I need to have everything in sync, so that is why I have it on, and why I purchased the programs.
No, it doesn't do anything of the sort. It allows you to do the sync at a time which is more convenient for you, so that the app can start up as fast as possible. If you leave the app running after making your change and force a sync, as I suggest, it does the sync and you're all set for the next time. If you think that there's some possibility that the iPhone hasn't received some vital update from the desktop, you can always do a sync on the spot.

Quote:
I have my desktop version up pretty often and sync it from there..I never am updating both at the same time. If I am on my phone I am not usually near my desktop.
It sounds like you maybe don't need to sync at all except when you switch between devices. Do a bunch of work on the desktop, decide to run some errands, pull the iPhone out of your pocket and start a sync as you grab your car keys. Now the iPhone has all the data, and you don't need to worry about syncing until you return and want to get the desktop up to date. Remember, if you've done something on the iPhone while you are out, you're going to have to sync the desktop before it becomes aware of those changes, unless enough time passes that it happens to do one of its hourly syncs after the iPhone has synced all the changes back to the server. If you are making use of the feature where mail messages can be delivered into OmniFocus, then you might want to sync now and then if you thought something urgent might come via that route.
Quote:
How long SHOULD it take? Whenever I boot up Omnifocus on my phone it starts to sync and it takes at least 60 seconds to complete. Then if I add stuff I need to sync again. Similar apps such as Pocket Informant sync to google calendar in seconds, the native calendar on my phone syncs via mobile me in seconds. I actually have more content on my calendars. Basically ever app that syncs to a source on my iphone happens very quickly, except Omnifocus.
OmniFocus is sending around more information than meets the eye. Syncing items such as calendar entries is an easier problem than syncing formatted outlines with attachments. MobileMe's calendar sync is pretty pokey in my experience. I told it to sync over more than the 1 month of past history, and my iPod went to sleep before it finished. OF took 7 seconds to sync my database of 544 projects, 4540 actions, 43 zip files, 4.2 MB on MobileMe. I reset the database on my iPod and told it to re-fetch the whole thing (via WiFi), and it did so in 16 seconds. Added a bunch of actions to the Inbox, and synced in 10 seconds. Sometimes a sync can take a long time if the sync database is ready for compaction, especially if you are doing it over a slow uplink. Also, iPhones vary quite a bit in computational power -- which model do you have? I would expect a 1st generation unit with a marginal Edge connection to be pretty grim, and a 3GS with a good 3G connection to be pretty snappy, though not as snappy as it would be with a reasonable WiFi connection.

I still think you should have the support ninjas check this out with you, to make sure that the sync performance you are seeing is reasonable for your device, database, and connectivity. If your performance can't be improved, then you ought to give more consideration to my suggestions about syncing when it is convenient to possibly encounter a delay.
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by frankmcma View Post
Are there any tips for now to speed up sync? I am not totally clear on the zip files, are they just backups? If I did less frequent backups (once a day rather than twice, no backup when quitting) will this help?
No, it's not related to backups; and I apologize, "zip file" isn't the clearest of terms, since it tells you how the file is stored on disk rather than what data it's actually storing. A better way to refer to those files would be to simply call them "change files".

(Warning: this response is probably a little long and technical; feel free to skip to the end for the quick summary.)

Each "change file" represents a set of changes to the database; each time you edit your database (enter a new action, add a due date, edit a note, complete it, etc.) OmniFocus creates a new change file with the edits you just made. Those change files are synced up to your sync database where your other copies of OmniFocus can download them, applying those changes to their own copies of the database. Once all your databases get in sync, they can create a new reference database (by "compacting" all the change files up to that point) which becomes the starting point for a new chain of changes.

The most common problem most people experience is caused by never getting all their databases into sync, so OmniFocus is never able to compact its change files into a new reference database. The change files build up into a bigger and bigger chain of changes, making sync and load times slower and slower.

If you don't plan to sync a device for a while and you know it doesn't have any local changes, it's best to unregister it. In fact, if you want to force your database to compact all the way down to just a single change file representing the reference database, you can go into Sync Preferences on the Mac, click the Show Clients button, and unregister every single thing on the list (including the local machine)—then Close the clients list and click on Sync Now. Just remember that unregistering a client will break synchronization with it, so the next time you sync that client you'll be prompted to replace its local database with a fresh copy of the database from the sync server (losing any changes you may have made on that device before you synced).

In summary: each change you make creates a new change file; those change files build up until all your devices get back into sync so they can agree on a new reference database. Syncing all your OmniFocus devices regularly (and unregistering them when you're not using them) is the best way to keep your sync and load times fast.

Does that help?

Last edited by Ken Case; 2009-09-29 at 08:03 PM..
 
I use several todo items as places to hold notes, so I may have an item called "Ideas" that I will add some text to periodically. In this case, if I am on the phone and want to add a line or two of text to that item, I would want to sync before I do anything, so I can ensure that all the existing text from the desktop is there before I add to it.

I have the latest iPhone 3GS and as I said, all other apps are speedy and sync quickly.

You and Ken both said under 10 seconds for sync..but I am not getting that. So I should check with support if there is not an easy answer. Also Ken above mentions a problem in the current version, and this may be what I am experiencing.
 
Ken that does help. It's actually a clear and concise answer and it makes sense. Plus it gives me something to try! I think I will try that and see if that helps..thanks!
 
I have the same problem here. Syncs on the iPhone take well over a minute. I only have around 30 zip files, so this is obviously not right. I'd love to find out what's causing this.
 
 


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