Dropbox Sync

dropbox
sync

#1

Findings supports sync of your library across your macOS and iOS devices using Dropbox.

Enable Dropbox sync on your Mac

To enable Dropbox sync on Findings for Mac, use the menu Findings to open the Preferences. Under the ‘Library’ tab, use the ‘Sync with Dropbox’ checkbox to enable sync. You will then go through two steps:

  1. Authorize Dropbox on the web. A browser window will open to give access to Findings. Follow the instructions there (it’s very straightforward). You may have to login to Dropbox if you are not already logged in.

  2. Back in Findings, you will be asked to locate the root Dropbox folder. Typically, it’s the folder in /Users/<your_name>/Dropbox. Select the folder, and click the ‘Select’ button.

After that, Findings will move the library content to Dropbox.

Enable Dropbox sync on iOS

To enable Dropbox sync on Findings for iOS, tap on the ‘gear’ icon at the bottom right of the welcome screen of the app. There you will see an option to enable sync. After you tap the switch, follow the instructions to login to Dropbox. The app will then download files from Dropbox and upload some files to Dropbox.


Other sync services

** WARNING: THIS IS AN EXPERIMENTAL FEATURE **

We do have plans for more syncing options in Findings. While it was tested with Dropbox, the sync system should in theory work with any file sharing mechanism. The foundations are the same. At the moment, it is not directly possible to store your Findings data outside of your local drive or Dropbox, but we are interested in adding support for other options, including for instance iCloud Drive, Google Drive, Box, networked disks and external disks. The potential limitation will be that it won’t work with the iOS version at least initially, where I will need to implement all the upload/download functionality and connection to the servers myself. Thus, at least initially, it would be only on Mac.

There is an experimental and thus unsupported way to make it work now. It’s a ‘backdoor’ that I use for testing other options. Behind the scenes, it really works just the same as Dropbox sync in accessing files on your hard-drive, so it should not put your data at risk, but as with any experimental feature, extra caution on your backup strategy is critical (of course, you always need a back up of your disk, which can always fail at any time with no warning). It is only possible on Mac.

OK, with that said, here are the instructions:

  • On the shared folder (Google Drive, Box, etc.) or external disk/volume, create a folder somewhere called ‘Findings-Data’
  • In that folder, create a folder called ‘Apps’
  • In the ‘Apps’ folder, create a folder called ‘Findings’
  • In the ‘Findings’ folder, create a folder called ‘_backdoor’ (with the underscore!)

You will also need to create a Dropbox account, even if you are actually not going to use it (sorry about that: like I said, it’s just a convenience I added to the app for testing sync without actually using Dropbox). If you need to create a Dropbox account, you can use this link: https://db.tt/WzUp3nE

Now, in Findings, you will select the Dropbox sync option:

  • Open Findings
  • In the menu Findings, select ‘Preferences’
  • Check the option ‘Dropbox Sync’
  • You will need to authorize the app with Dropbox (again, in the end, you won’t use it anyway)
  • After that, you are asked to select your Dropbox folder. Here, instead of Dropbox, select the ‘Findings-Data’ folder you created above.

You can share the data with another computer by doing the same on the other machine (e.g. a computer at work, one at home).

And that should be it! If you use a hard drive for sync, be careful to quit Findings before unplugging it. Let us know if you run into any problem, or have more question.

Changes in Findings 2.1 (currently in beta): you do not need a Dropbox account to try an alternative sync. Instead, create the ‘_backdoor’ folder as described above, but then press the option key while clicking the button in the first alert ‘Yes, I have a backup’. You will then be able to directly select the folder, at which point you need to select ‘Findings-Data’.


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OneDrive Compatibility
#2

Considering Dropbox’s reputation of poor respect for privacy and doing dastardly things on macOS, can we have an update on iCloud support? I trust Apple a lot more than I trust Dropbox (which is not at all). I even have a file at the root of my Dropbox directory addressing NSA/GCHQ/Dropbox employees snooping around my files. I expect them to violate my privacy.


#3

I do have plans for more syncing options in Findings. While it was tested with Dropbox, the sync system should in theory work with any file sharing mechanism. The foundations are the same. So while it is not directly possible to store your Findings data outside of your local drive or Dropbox, I am interested in adding support for other options, including for instance iCloud Drive, Google Drive, Box, networked disks and external disks. The potential limitation will probably be that it won’t work with the iOS version, where I will need to implement all the upload/download functionality and connection to the servers myself (even for iCloud Drive, there are still complications). Thus, at least initially, it would be only on Mac. I’ll keep you posted!


#4

Hey there!

Just wondering if there is any update to getting syncing working with OneDrive. I would love to be able to use the mobile version of Findings on my phone and my watch while I am working at my bench, but I can not use Dropbox!

Best,
Caroline


#5

Hi Caroline,

I am sorry there is no such update in the making for now… And I can’t promise much at this stage.

Thanks for your feedback,

Charles