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How does cloud sync work?

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Cloud sync is currently in a limited beta.

Cloud sync allows DoggCatcher to be run on multiple devices whose feeds and episodes are synchronized. This works by generating a cloud key on one device and then linking other devices with that cloud key. Changes made on any linked device will be synced up to the cloud, and then down to all devices that share the cloud key.

As you make changes on a device that is linked, those changes are synced to the cloud within a few seconds. Other devices receive those changes on feeds updates. That includes both automatic and manual feed updates, so if you are using a device that hasn't yet synced the latest info from the cloud, you can refresh the feeds and a sync will occur.

Synchronization occurs for most aspects of your feed configurations and some of your global settings.

What IS synced:

The feeds that you are subscribed to

Global feed options
-Auto downloads
-Number of episodes/articles
-Auto delete policy
-Play order

Feed configuration
-Auto downloads
-Number of episodes/articles
-Auto delete policy
-Play order
-Username
-Password
-Episode identifier
-Pin expired
-Make filenames unique
-Full fetch
-Is Virtual
-Nickname
-Custom enclosure directory

Episode
-Play position
-Episode state (new/in progress/done)
-Play local or stream

What is NOT synced:
Categories
Virtual feed media files
Expired episodes

16 Comments

Hi,

I am an android user with 4 devices running various mods of android os (4.x). I use 2 phones, a 10" tablet (xoom) a 7" tablet (nexus 7)

Any chance of getting in on the beta?

See the FAQ post on how to join the beta group - http://www.doggcatcher.com/node/4189

I'm just wondering if progress is still being made on this feature or if it's been placed on the back burner? I'm looking forward to using it. I tried to join the beta but never got a response from my Google groups request.

Follow Step 3 - Click here and then click on the button 'become a tester' & Step 4 - Click here to update DoggCatcher to the beta

DC will update to the beta version as long as you're using the DoggCatcher Podcast Player version of the app & not DoggCatcher Podcast Lite

I have followed the step to get on the beta and was wondering if it is still possible to get a cloud key.

Read the Cloud Sync - getting started post from DC's Google forums to find out how to get the key

Thanks Wayne. In my haste I read through the first paragraph too quickly. I got the key now. Cheers.

HI I have three android devices, HP slate 21, Nexus and Kindle Fire, I have been searching for an all device option, but being a long standing Dogg catcher user I would love to try this service out rather than look at competitive options.

Stuart

Submitted by WayneC on Thu, 01/08/2015 - 19:07
See the FAQ post on how to join the beta group - http://www.doggcatcher.com/node/4189 for the HP slate 21 & Nexus devices, currently the beta version of DC is only available from Google's Play Store..so can't be installed on Kindle Fire tablets.

I'd like to see an option that lets me select only certain feeds to be updated on a cellular device. I am subscribed to lots of feeds on my tablet and those are all updated via wifi. For my phone, I'd like to be able to have only SOME of those feeds downloaded to reside on the device. If I listen to an episode on the phone, sync the status back to my tablet; if heard on the tablet, sync status to the phone. The real difference is that - to save both on local storage and cellular data - I only want a subset of my subscriptions to be available on the phone. I think this could perhaps be done by adding either a device or subscription identifier of some sort so that Doggcatcher would a) recognize me by my user ID and b) check the subscription to see whether it belongs on all devices, or just some. Cloud syncing would only occur for subscriptions that are tagged for all devices. If this is already possible and I've just missed it, please point me in the direction of instructions for set-up. Thanks for a great product!

As someone who just lost all of their Doggcatcher settings twice due to file system failure and had to recreate them all from scratch I am keenly interested a viable backup option. However since my phone is one of the many which have followed the trend to remove any external storage options I am even more interested in a cloud synch option. And while I love Doggcatcher and have stayed a faithful user for years, the lack of a proper synching feature is one of the reasons I keep my eyes open for another app.

Unfortunately, a Cloud Backup or Synch feature is clearly not anywhere close to the developer's priority list. The app keeps getting minor bug tweaks but the synch feature is still inaccessible from the settings screen. And searching for posts on the site reveals that even after 3 years in beta status, the current Cloud Synch still doesn't include Categories.

In Doggcatcher, Categories are some of the most critical settings to reconstructing any Smart Playlists that a user has created. Without them, the user has to go through each podcast's settings and reassign previous Categories. Having just done this twice I can attest to how time consuming and frustrating this task is, especially after previously investing time and energy into setting it up and refining each Playlist to work as desired.

And we long time users can take a hint. After 3 years of Beta development, the feature is still kept locked for most users.

We get it. Cloud Synch is not a development priority for you! And even if it is a priority for you, network synching is a tough nut to crack.

Years ago I remember watching development stagnate on a popular iOS productivity app 'Things' while it's devs tried to roll their own home-made version of network sync. But the irony is that at the same time others like Dropbox, Box, and Google Drive had already cracked it. Why did they insist on reinventing the wheel? Over time the app dropped in quality and popularity and users left to find alternatives. So I won't assume that developing robust Cloud Synch system is the needed solution. It may not be. However, the need for an effective Cloud Backup option is no less crucial because of that!

Perhaps settling for an easy to use ' Save Backup to Dropbox' feature would resolve the problem. Or perhaps there is another cloud system you would prefer to use. Regardless of how you do it, please consider providing a way for us to backup our Doggcatcher App settings (including Playlists and Categories) to a cloud filesystem service (like Box, Dropbox, OneDrive or Google Drive) so that we can restore them to a different device (or one that just bricked on us) and immediately pick back up with the same Subscriptions, Playlists, Categories and Settings that we had previously.

I know this may be a difficult request to fulfill, but anything you could do would be helpful!

Just been reading the list of items that should synchronize and am left wondering if cloud sync actually works - the only thing that I can see syncing between my two devices is feeds that I have subscribed. I am wondering what the trigger is for synchronisation? Is there a way to force a manual sync as would be good to get play position syncing working.

thanks

Press "Refresh Feeds" (DC Navigation Menu) feeds will manual sync during the update, currently not having any problems syncing play position between devices. Check the "Event Log" (DC Navigation Menu>More) to find out the cause of a cloud sync failure.

Also there are a couple bug issues that could cause a cloud sync failure
0002182: Creating a new virtual feed, and then syncing fails - http://mantis.doggcatcher.com/view.php?id=2182 and 0001857: Initial sync fails when there are a large number of episodes on the device - http://mantis.doggcatcher.com/view.php?id=1857

Thanks quick for the help Wayne. I took the simple option of deleting the problem feeds, as it wasn't syncing I did that on both devices. My tablet had a second feed that was failing so that went too. Have now successfully sync'd on both devices and indeed one of my feeds that I deleted (one I have been meaning to get round to removing) has disappeared.

However, there is still no sight of play position syncing , I don't have anything extra showing in the logs and neither of the other issues appear to be the problem.

I just tried playing, on the device which is at the play position I wanted, for a little while and went through the refresh again. Threw up and new feed failure which when deleted and re added worked fine and refreshing fine again but play position still not happening. :-(

Send a log right after the problem happens again (DC Navigation Menu>More>Report Problem) also reference the name & URL of the feed + name of the episode you're experiencing the play position sync issue.