I have a friend at work. I have his cell phone number, which I entered into my cell phone’s Contacts directory. He moved to Japan and sent me a Christmas card with his new address, which I dutifully entered into my Mac’s Address Book application. Around this time, I got tired of manually keeping my address books up-to-date, so I bought SyncMate and did a bidirectional sync. Being a cautious person, I first created his record in the contacts app on my tablet, and did my initial sync between my Mac and tablet. The phone number was copied from my tablet to the computer, but the address information on the computer was wiped out. Of course, a week before this, I had thrown away the envelope the Christmas card came in.
This fiasco prompted me to do a series of syncing tests between my computer and tablet. Thank goodness I kept my phone (on which I store the most current Contacts data) out of this...
All tests done with WiFi sync. Version used was Expert 7.0.365
Initial impression is that Syncmate seems to look at file modification dates first. The files with the most recent mod dates get copied.
I tried bidirectional copying/syncing partial records of contacts, and both partial records were left in place (untouched) on each device.
I then deleted the record on the Tablet, but left it on the computer. Did another bidirectional sync. It restored the contact deleted from the tablet using the computer record, even though the computer record was older! This is good news. So it seems to err on the side of adding records. (Premature euphoria--see below.)
When I did another bidirectional sync after deleting from the computer, it deleted from the tablet record as well. This is bad.
Added the record back on the computer, did bidirectional sync. It came back on the tablet. Next deleted on the computer, but modified on the tablet to make its modification time more recent. After a bidirectional sync, the recent record was again deleted from my tablet.
Made sure the record was on the tablet, but not on the computer. Tried bidirectional sync again. It worked; the computer file was updated.
Will repeat the whole sequence, leaving syncmate on between experiments:
Just have the phone number on the computer, and the address but no phone number on the tablet (tablet changed most recently). This time, after sync, the computer information was updated with the partial information on the tablet.
Does not function reliably when there is a partial record on each syncing device.
Experiments with full records.
Full record on computer, deleted record on tablet. Bidirectional sync. Wiped the record off the computer.
7:34 Created full record on computer. Record does not exist on tablet. Tried bidirectional sync. Full record copied to tablet.
7:37 Deleted record on computer. Modified record on tablet so its modification time was more recent. Did bidirectional sync. The more recent record was deleted from the tablet. Now the record is completely gone.
7:44. Closed Syncmate on computer. Recreated record on tablet. Did bidirectional sync. It recreated the record on the computer.
7:48 Deleted record on computer. Quit Syncmate, got back in and did a bidirectional sync. (now the modification time for the computer file is more recent than the tablet’s, but the tablet has the full record. Syncmate deleted the record on the tablet!
Summary and conclusions
Syncmate does not function reliably with partial contacts records.
Syncmate does not function predictably with complete records.
Syncmate seems to give the computer precedence when syncing.
If you want to insure you don’t lose data, don’t rely on Syncmate; keep your records in sync manually.
I cannot use Syncmate until this problem of deleting records and unreliable and unpredictable syncing is fixed. If it does this with contacts information (which I may be able to recreate, although with a lot of pain) I cannot imagine how it would mangle my appointments. I have a complex business and personal appointments. It would be a catastrophe to have them messed up by this program.