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Dropbox vs. iTunes

dropbox itunes app file sharing sync

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#1 Chris8


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Posted 02 January 2014 - 08:35 AM

I am using the app on my iPod and set it up to have the data read through iTunes file sharing.

To test out how things work, I made a few changes to some Notes, then I went to the app, and noticed that the notes had not changed. So, I decided to sync my iPod, and check again; but there was no change to the notes. As best I could determine, I needed to connect the file sharing between RM and with the new current data file, within iTunes. When I added the file again to the RootsMagic document, finally it had the most recent data with all my changes.

This seems cumbersome and I wonder if there is an easier way to set it up so that iTunes checks for any updates each time I sync?

If I were to switch to Dropbox, would that automatically update the data on the app whenever I save my changes?

#2 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 11:12 AM

If I were to switch to Dropbox, would that automatically update the data on the app whenever I save my changes?

I would describe the process with Dropbox as semi-automatic rather than automatic. With the Dropbox approach, if you make changes to your RM database the following steps are required to sync with your mobile device.
  • On your PC, copy your RM database to a folder called RootsMagic which is in a folder called Apps which is in a folder called Dropbox - the folder called Dropbox being your Dropbox folder. The Dropbox folder is created for your automatically when you create the Dropbox account. The RootsMagic folder under the Apps folder is created for you automatically by your mobile app the first time you try to sync up.
  • Dropbox will sync the new copy of your RM database to the Dropbox cloud automatically. If you have a good Internet connection, this should only take a few seconds even if you have a fairly large RM database.
  • The next time your use the RM mobile app, the app will recognize that the RM database has been updated and will download it for you. Actually, there is a brief dialog with you to be sure you really want to download the new version of your RM database. Other than the brief dialog, this step is automatic.
The only thing that's actually completely manual is step #1. You could make step #1 automatic by storing your RM database in the Dropbox/Apps/Rootsmagic folder in the first place, but this is not recommended. In any case, I find the sync with Dropbox to be remarkably simple, fast, and trouble free. It took me less than 5 minutes the first time I set it up, and less than a minute now that it is set up. However, the "less than 5 minutes the first time I set it up" should probably be taken with a grain of salt because I was already a Dropbox user long before the mobile app came out, so I already had my Dropbox account ready to go.


Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: dropbox, itunes, app, file sharing, sync