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How can I choose which bookmark set to keep, instead of combining the two sets, when syncing two devices?

  • 10 replies
  • 1 has this problem
  • 484 views
  • Last reply by lolex

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I have FF on two computers, and other devices. 'Computer 1' is my main computer where I use FF on a daily basis. I'm not always logged into my FF sync on comp 1, while 'computer 2', which I use only occasionally, remains logged in most of the time. So after several days of changing bookmarks on computer 1 without syncing, I log into sync, and it automatically combines the two sets of bookmarks from both computers, so I get a bunch of deleted bookmarks back. That's just annoying because then I have to go through the bookmarks again and delete old stuff all over again.

Is there a way to tell Sync to keep a given bookmark set before performing a sync, instead of combining them? This is not a very smart design. The user should be prompted to make a decision.

Chosen solution

lolex said

markhammond said
Sync should handle this case just fine - it generally remembers deleted items, so shouldn't recreate them when reconnecting.

Thank you for your response.

Well, Sync remembers deletions (or any updates) as long as I'm actually logged into my Sync account. If all my devices are signed in all the time, Sync automatically transfers any changes in real time, no problem.

But if I delete a bunch of bookmarks on my main device while I'm NOT signed in, while at the same time, a different computer that still has those deleted bookmarks is currently signed in (or has been signed in more recently), then that older data will be the version on the Sync server.

Ah, yes, Sync doesn't remember deletions while it is not configured. That's a feature we may add, but in the meantime I'm glad you found a tool that suits your purposes.

Mark

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Are that bookmarks you originally created on computer 1 or are that bookmarks from computer 2?


You can try to disconnect computer 2 as well and only connect when you need to sync bookmarks on this computer. When you connect computer 1 to Sync then data from another computer will be synced to your computer. I don't know if and how Sync marks data on the Sync server to know its original origin.

Modified by cor-el

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cor-el said

Are that bookmarks you originally created on computer 1 or are that bookmarks from computer 2?

Sorry, I'm not quite sure I understand the question. Basically I'm asking if there is any way to control the direction of the sync process. You know how sync apps let you choose the type of sync: 1-way or 2-way sync, and choosing which data set to keep.

I just want to tell Sync "only keep bookmarks from this computer", that's it, because other devices still have old data. Instead, as soon as I log in, it starts syncing without giving me any control, and it just throws everything together, combining old and new bookmarks.

Pkshadow, Thank you for the links, but none of those guides address this issue.

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You can't set the direction of how Sync works with regard to the bookmarks. If you connect to Sync then your current data is uploaded to the Sync server and data from other devices stored on the Sync server is merged with your current data (bookmarks). That is how Sync works and it can have side effects if you disconnect regularly. So there is not much to do about this apart from being cautious with disconnecting Sync.

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That is too bad. Hopefully the mozilla team will consider upgrading the sync app in the future to give the user some control.

I loved the Xmarks extension when it was actively supported. It gave the user so much control over the syncing, and kept backups of previous syncs.

Is there any good syncing extension that you would recommend? Thanks.

Modified by lolex

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There are other options but you will have to look and go through them

https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/search/?platform=windows&q=Sync

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Sync should handle this case just fine - it generally remembers deleted items, so shouldn't recreate them when reconnecting.

The best I can suggest is that you install the https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/about-sync/ addon, then recreate the problem and send the sync logs from both computers - that addon will help you bundle the logs up.

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markhammond said

Sync should handle this case just fine - it generally remembers deleted items, so shouldn't recreate them when reconnecting.

Thank you for your response.

Well, Sync remembers deletions (or any updates) as long as I'm actually logged into my Sync account. If all my devices are signed in all the time, Sync automatically transfers any changes in real time, no problem.

But if I delete a bunch of bookmarks on my main device while I'm NOT signed in, while at the same time, a different computer that still has those deleted bookmarks is currently signed in (or has been signed in more recently), then that older data will be the version on the Sync server. So, as soon as I sign in the device where I deleted bookmarks, Sync starts combining or concatenating the two different records 'additively', and I still get the deleted bookmarks back. So, the problem is that when Sync sees a bookmark present on one computer, and it doesn't see it on the other computer, Sync doesn't seem to recognize the last action that caused that difference - either a new bookmark was created on the first computer, OR the existing bookmark was deleted on the second computer. For some reason Sync fails to see the deletion, IF at the time of the deletion the browser wasn't logged into Sync.

I installed the About Sync extension but that's just beyond me. I don't think it does what I need.

Anyway, I found the Eversync extension which allows manual syncing, which is exactly what I was asking about. Apart from the normal auto-sync feature, it can also perform three types of manual sync: 1. Merge local and server data 2. Upload (Overwrite server data) 3. Download (Overwrite local data)

And it also has a very nice auto-backup feature that creates frequent images of the bookmarks as long as Firefox is open.

Modified by lolex

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Chosen Solution

lolex said

markhammond said
Sync should handle this case just fine - it generally remembers deleted items, so shouldn't recreate them when reconnecting.

Thank you for your response.

Well, Sync remembers deletions (or any updates) as long as I'm actually logged into my Sync account. If all my devices are signed in all the time, Sync automatically transfers any changes in real time, no problem.

But if I delete a bunch of bookmarks on my main device while I'm NOT signed in, while at the same time, a different computer that still has those deleted bookmarks is currently signed in (or has been signed in more recently), then that older data will be the version on the Sync server.

Ah, yes, Sync doesn't remember deletions while it is not configured. That's a feature we may add, but in the meantime I'm glad you found a tool that suits your purposes.

Mark

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markhammond said

lolex said
markhammond said
Sync should handle this case just fine - it generally remembers deleted items, so shouldn't recreate them when reconnecting.

Thank you for your response.

Well, Sync remembers deletions (or any updates) as long as I'm actually logged into my Sync account. If all my devices are signed in all the time, Sync automatically transfers any changes in real time, no problem.

But if I delete a bunch of bookmarks on my main device while I'm NOT signed in, while at the same time, a different computer that still has those deleted bookmarks is currently signed in (or has been signed in more recently), then that older data will be the version on the Sync server.

Ah, yes, Sync doesn't remember deletions while it is not configured. That's a feature we may add, but in the meantime I'm glad you found a tool that suits your purposes.

Mark

Yes, please consider adding that feature, that would be much appreciated. A proper sync app should be able to recognize all previous deletions, even if the user wasn't logged in at all times. This reminds me of Windows file sync apps like GoodSync, which wouldn't work very well if they weren't able to detect past deletions.

Nevertheless, I do like FF Sync a lot for what it is and what it does. As long as all devices are concurrently logged in, it works very well and very fast to keep them all synced in almost real-time. Not to mention that it can sync other things than just bookmarks. I especially like the feature that allows sending a tab to another device, which is the whole reason I use FF on my smartphone too.

Thank you for the info and suggestions.