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Solving MobileMe/iDisk "Root Transactions" problems Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
From time to time, customers using their MobileMe iDisks to sync their OmniFocus data will get an error message that talks about finding too few (or too many) "Root Transactions". These problems generally occur to customers that have the "Local iDisk Syncing" feature enabled in the MobileMe pane of System Preferences. It happens when Apple's MobileMe sync process gets confused, does the wrong thing, and smashes two versions of the OmniFocus database together on Apple's iDisk server.

When this happens, the next time our own (separate) syncing code looks at the iDisk server, it finds a database it can't understand. That is what causes the error message. Though the data on the various devices is still intact, our syncing process has been broken when this happens.

More info on the problem is available in this post:
Warning from OMNI: iDisk Sync can report false conflicts

To resolve this, we recommend the following. The steps below will help you delete the bad data from the iDisk server, and then re-sync information to the server from the device which has the most up-to-date information.

We are including one suggested tweak to your OmniFocus settings; it helps work around the problem that the Apple sync process can cause with our data.

If at any point something happens that these steps don't take into account, contact the support ninjas. Be sure to include what dialog box or error message you're getting, and at what point you're seeing it. They'll be happy to help you.

It's very important that you start this process on your Mac which has the most up-to-date information. We're going to replace the data on your other Macs and your iPhone/iPod with the information from this mac.

Once you know which Mac has the most recent data, please go to it and do the following:
  1. Quit OmniFocus.
  2. In the Finder, select Go -> iDisk -> My iDisk from the menu bar.
  3. Open the Documents folder in the Finder window that appears.
    (Your computer is connecting to Apple's iDisk service directly, so this may take a few seconds)
  4. In the Documents folder, you'll see a file named "OmniFocus" or "OmniFocus.ofocus". You want to rename the file to "Old-OmniFocus.ofocus".
    (Just rename the existing file and leave it on the iDisk until everything has been straightened out.)
  5. Next, go ahead and start OmniFocus on the Mac.
  6. In the Sync preferences pane, select "Sync With: MobileMe".
    You should see something like this in the Location field:<your MobileMe user name>/Documents/
  7. We suggest changing the last part of that path from "/Documents/" to "/Backup/" (minus the quotes, of course.)

    By moving your OmniFocus sync data from the Documents folder to the Backup folder on your iDisk, Apple's sync process won't corrupt your data down the road. This is the workaround mentioned before.
  8. Once that's done, press the 'Sync now' button on the right side of the preference window. This will copy your OmniFocus database back to your iDisk, making it available for your other devices to sync with again.
  9. Next, press the "Send Settings" button at the bottom right of the Sync preferences pane. This will create an email. You want to make sure it's going to one of the mail accounts that the other computers/iPhones/iPods you want to sync with all receive.
  10. Once that's set up, go ahead and send the mail.

At this point, there's a new OmniFocus database on your iDisk in a location that won't break in the future; you've also sent an email to the other devices telling them where they should look for the sync.

On a Mac, you just need to click the link in the email. On an iPhone or iPod tapping the link in the email should launch OmniFocus; some versions of Mail on iPhones and iPods have a bug that will launch Safari instead.

If you encounter this bug, the fix is to return to the mail message, copy the link, paste that into Safari's address field, and let safari launch OmniFocus instead.

At this point, OmniFocus will launch and may ask if you want to replace your existing Sync settings. Let it do so.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Your devices may ask whether you want to use the "Server" or "Local" database at this point; you want to answer this question VERY carefully. Please read the next paragraph before you answer this question on ANY of your devices.

It is very important to tell OmniFocus to use the server data on every device except the one you started with. That copies the information on the iDisk server back down to the device, using that version of the database INSTEAD OF the one that's currently on this Mac, iPod, or iPhone.

Once you complete this process, you'll be back up and running, and protected from Apple's iDisk syncing process doing the wrong thing during future syncs.

If you had disabled it previously, you can now re-enable the iDisk sync process in the MobileMe pane of System Preferences on each of your Macs.

Last edited by Brian; 2009-09-04 at 05:14 PM.. Reason: update with info about bug in MobileMail and changes in OF 1.7

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