To be clear.... no way to have 2way sync with android client

#1

There doesn’t appear to be a way to have a true 2 way sync (with deletes) for a android client folder.

Is this correct?

I see I can sync a server folder to device (good for downloading from server)

I see I can set a auto upload for a custom folder (good for uploading new files to server)

But if I delete a file on the android it doesn’t delete on server?

So if my thinking is correct the only way to have true file syncing for my file syncing client/server
is to add a android app to do file syncing on top of my file syncing software.

Got it, I think

Anyone know a good android file syncing app?

FolderSync?
Syncthing?

#2

As someone who knows a little background but none of the code involved, here are two reasons I can think of for why the Android app would work the way it does:

  1. UX choice - most people delete things from their phones because they don’t want them taking up space, but they’re less likely to have that problem on any cloud.
    These files were important enough to have been uploaded (auto- or not) or manually selected for download/sync, so they shouldn’t be removed from the server unless the user makes a deliberate choice (via the app itself) to do so. “Just” sync apps like the ones you mentioned have different user expectations.

  2. Technical limitations - Android doesn’t give apps their own general-purpose folders to ‘own’; it either gives them free access to storage or it doesn’t. For this reason, it also isn’t good at notifying apps to changes in “their” folders. It can inform apps that new media is available within the volume and let them make their own decisions about it, but that’s only for certain file types.
    Any app that wants to “own” and sync a folder will have to add its own scheduled background task to poll for changes. Several choices will need to be presented to the user, so that battery life/delay trade-offs are what the user intends. To my knowledge this extensive job hasn’t been done on the Nextcloud Android app, and I don’t see a ticket for it at first search, but I’d love to see it added.

For what you want, I can recommend:

  1. If you want to remove something from your Nextcloud, use the Nextcloud app to delete it, and you’ll be prompted to remove it on the server. Just use the app as your file manager for this purpose, if there’s nothing complicating your use-case.

  2. If you’re going to use a different sync app to delete things on the server end automatically, I’ve had luck with SyncThing. It would be best if the SyncThing server directory was not within your Nextcloud directory, as Nextcloud’s database believes itself to be the authority on everything that’s there.
    If the same server is running Nextcloud and SyncThing, and you want files synced using SyncThing to show up in Nextcloud, see Configuring External Storages and pick Local. If they’re on separate servers, choose your connection protocol. Either way, don’t forget to configure the cron job so that Nextcloud sees any changes you make via SyncThing.

The best to you,
mactrent

1 Like
#3

For now…

Synchronize Ultimate

[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.icecoldapps.synchronizeultimate&hl=en_US&showAllReviews=true]

Does everything I want it to do.

1 way sync, 2 way sync, with or without deletion, timestamp folder creation,
Rules, conditions, file sync using regex patterns on files and folders, schedules and
the list goes on.

Yes, you are right, some things I want 1 way like camera pics, upload and
“delete source file”.

Somethings I want 2 way sync with deletion.
I have app that makes nightly bu’s on android and only retains 3 most recent copies
and deletes older copies. With auto upload server would end up saving all copies with
no delete and don’t want to have to keep manually deleting old copies.

Or when syncing a folder should scan entire folder and sync all files not just new files
and skip old files.

Guess I expected more features from a modern android cloud client.
I’m not knocking NC, love it.

2 Likes
#4

So, I’m a bit late to the party, but i haven’t messed with Nextcloud since I asked a similar question and was told basically “yeah, it should do that” (Mobile App Functionality: Sync Folders) and judging from your post here that is apparently not the case (which makes me sad, as I was really hoping to migrate away from Dropbox).

Having said that, I’ve used an app on Android for years called DropSync (by Metactrl, who also make similar apps for Box, Google Drive, OneDrive, something called MEGA, etc). For free it will completely synchronize (two-way) a folder on your Android device with a folder in Dropbox, which is something the native Dropbox app does not do, and my understanding is that no app is allowed to do on iOS unless Apple were to relax restrictions in their API. There isn’t a folder ‘ownership’ that I’m aware of, or maybe it just sortof pretends it ‘owns’ all the folders you configure. The Pro version does the same, but for multiple files, and is well worth the price. I sent an email to Metactrl to see if they might consider making a version for NextCloud, because that would be amazing. But in the meantime, I’m trying out Synchronize Ultimate

In my case, I synchronize the downloads, DCIM and documents folders both between my and my wife’s phones and with a Windows server VM. I wrote a program (running as a Windows service) that renames my pictures and video by timestamp and sorts them into folders by date, and Dropsync takes care of propagating all the changes to all the phones. Anything over two weeks old gets moved to backed-up storage media which is scanned by Plex so we can stream it all to TVs or devices without taking up space. Consequently the files are moved off of our phones at that time. For this to work it’s gotta be full two-way sync in all places, so that’s the one thing holding me up from switching to NextCloud.

#5

Synchronize Últimate is the only one that works. It does work though.

#6

FolderSync work well for me.