ForumsTips & TricksGetting large number of notes synced onto an iPhone/iPod Touch

Getting large number of notes synced onto an iPhone/iPod Touch
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Posted: Nov 19, 2008
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There is currently a big problem in getting a large number of notes onto an iPod Touch (or iPhone I suppose). By a large number of notes (=tasks), I mean very large - I have nearly 7000 notes/tasks. The iPod just splutters and gives up after 5000 or so notes.

Once the notes are all synchronised, the system works like a dream, but the first synchronisation is a problem.

This is the solution (kludge) I eventually came up with:
1) EXPORT all my notes as CSV format
2) delete all notes from the website!
3) create a CSV file with a subset of around 1000 notes from the original file
4) IMPORT this subset of notes back to the website
5) sync the iPod
6) repeat steps 3 to 5 until all synced

This worked, I think since the sync only looks at the difference, and so there are never more than around 1000 records being synced at one time.

Maybe we could have a REAL solution though? ;-)

This message was edited Nov 19, 2008.

Toodledo Founder
Posted: Nov 19, 2008
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I think you are the only person with so many tasks and the iPhone is probably running out of memory trying to add that many tasks. We'll check it and see if there is anything we can tweak in the next version.

Thanks for the workaround.

Posted: Jan 06, 2009
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I'm now on Toodledo version 1.4 on the iPod, and unfortunately (because I bought a new PC and had to reset my iPod because of sync problems), I again had to do a complete sync from scratch.

Unfortunately, I have 7300 tasks (they are in fact mostly my annotated vocabulary language notes) and the iPod still bombs out at around 6000 tasks. Grrrr! Still, at least I know the kludge above now.

Not much fun, but again: I exported all notes to CSV from the website, cleared the website, cleared the iPod, broke the single CSV into about 10 smaller CSV files (because the website runs out of memory otherwise) which is really tedious work and error-prone, imported back to the website the smaller CSV files one at a time and synced one at a time, and finally got all my notes back onto the iPod.

Hopefully this will last a few months (until the next iPod reset, or other problem needing a complete resync).

Looking forward to anything you can change.

If I could sync folder by folder this would do it.


This message was edited Jan 06, 2009.

Toodledo Founder
Posted: Jan 06, 2009
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You are a pretty special case, and I don't think there is much we can do to get the iphone app to work with so many tasks, but we hope to look into this soon and see if there is anything that we can tweak.

Posted: May 22, 2009
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Again I need to do a resync of all my notes (I only changed my email address, and it forced a from-scratch resync), and this is still broken. It's a right pain to get things back working again (I've set aside all this morning to do it!).

Can you make it so that it is possible to select a particular folder to sync? That way it would be easy enough to just synchronise one folder by one.

I may be a pretty special case, but this is something that doesn't work with your software and I really think you should look at fixing it.

I see elsewhere that you are looking at bringing closer together your Todos and Notes. You can bet that there are people who really want to store a whole load of notes. You may think I'm storing a lot of records (around 7500), but come on, it's not as if I'm storing 7.5 million!

Posted: May 22, 2009
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Each time I have to get my many todos (currently 7606) synced to my iPod I get a little more efficient. Below I outline the problems and my workarounds.

There are a number of bugs in Toodledo which are a pain related to this, and they are as follows:

a) the iPod app crashes from around 5300+ todos, meaning that the sync directly just becomes impossible. By repeated attempts at synching I've seen as many as 6000 sync OK, but cannot get it to go to 7606!

b) If there is a folder on iPod with more than 1000 notes, you can't see how many notes there are in that folder, because Toodledo just displays the first two digits of the number, e.g. "13.." for anything between 1300 and 1399.

c) the Toodledo website crashes with out of memory errors when you try to import large amounts of notes (about 1000 at a time is OK). There is no workaround for this - you just have to import max of about 1000 at a time.

d) the CSV import/export throws away all your "Date Created" information. Thus if you export your notes, and reimport them, the date creation will be reset for all the imported notes to be the date of the import. There is no workaround for this. You're just gonna lose your real creation dates. Pity.

Following is how I most recently did got my todos resynced onto the iPod.
i) exported all 7606 todos into CSV format (at least the export doesn't run out of memory, even if it sadly does not export creation date)

ii) on the website, reduced the number of todos to the threshhold where sync will still work. To be structured, I deleted the items in 2 folders (one folder had 1116 todos, another folder had 1096 todos). This meant I now had a total of 5394 todos on the web.

iii) Delete all data on the iPod

iv) Resync the iPod. In actual fact, even with 'only' 5394 todos, the iPod app crashed the first time after about 5000 notes, but the second attempt managed to complete the sync.

v) [OPTIONAL CHECK] The problem of not being able to actually see how many todos are at this stage on the iPod is a pain, since it displays "53xx", but I wanted to be sure that all 5394 todos where synced. To do this I created 6 more blank notes on the website, bringing my total number of notes to 5400. I now synced again, and saw that the iPod now had "54xx" notes. So the sync was perfect so far.

vi) Create a copy of the CSV file with a subset of the todos from one of the deleted folders (e.g. the one with 1116 todos). Note that the number of todos must not be more than around 1000 or the import to the website will crash with out of memory error. Import these todos to Toodledo. Force sync on the iPod.

vii) Repeat step (vi) for the other deleted folder of todos.

viii) [OPTIONAL CHECK] Repeat step (v) if you wish to check all the todos are synced OK.

ix) Remove any dummy todos created for steps (v) or (viii).


This message was edited May 22, 2009.

Toodledo Founder
Posted: May 22, 2009
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We have some sync improvements coming out in the next iPhone update. Hopefully that will help you out.
Neal B

Posted: Jul 23, 2009
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mr_many_notes is not alone. I'm trying to import about 1,284 notes for transfer to iPhone.

On the first pass only 1,043 imported. I've identified the missing 241 notes and will see if I can get them in. There's other CSV issues I'm encountering such as tabs converting to spaces and leading tabs being totally dropped. I may have to try exporting as an XLS files and converting the tabs to spaces.

I'd like to second the comment that Toodledo on the iPhone just displays the first two digits of the note count when there are four or more digits. For me, this only affects the All count.

Posted: Sep 07, 2009
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I'm afraid I was forced to do a complete resync of all my thousands of Tasks again, and now - I suppose because of changes to the Toodledo software - it is totally impossible (even with using all the above hacks), to get all the tasks to synchronise. Totally impossible. Even if I reload them onto the web 1000 at a time and resync each time, it reaches about 5600 and just refuses to sync any further.

I've exported all my tasks one last time to CSV format and am going to have to take my data elsewhere and find another tool.


Thanks anyway.
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