Actions Disappearing or Syncing Problem

This might be user error, but you all are so knowledgable I thought I’d mention just in case anyone had an idea. I find that if I create a Drafts action on one device and then go pretty quickly over to another of my devices and use Drafts, there’s a good chance the new action will disappear (seemingly that the older version of the Action Group is overwriting the newer one).

I recognize that I ought be giving iCloud at least a little time to catch up before using Drafts on another device, and also admittedly I’ve usually got my iCloud Drive close to capacity, and that either of these things might be the problem. Also it’s wholly possible that I open Drafts first and turn on Wi-Fi or cellular data second on a device, probably also not a good practice. But, Drafts is so good at immediately syncing the drafts between devices, I’ve been surprised actions aren’t working the same, and so I thought I’d check if something else was at issue.

My workaround has been to be sure I do an Action Groups backup after doing any major work on one device, and that’s usually kept me from losing any new actions (because I can reimport them). Anecdotally I want to say I think this usually happens when I create an action on my iPad and then go over to my iPhone or Mac (as if Drafts is treating the iPhone as the default site of knowledge instead of whatever device was used last), but I feel like this has happened with other device combinations, too.

I appreciate any advice you all can offer. Thanks!

I’ve never had a sync issue like that occur, and I have edited a LOT of actions in a LOT of action groups over the last five years or so. The sync always happens for me wthin a few moments.

I can imagine a situation where this could occur, but it doesn’t sound like you have this, but I’ll mention it just in case.

  1. On device X, connected to the Internet, add a new action, A1, to action group A.
  2. On device Y, not connected to the Internet, add a new action A2, to action group A.
  3. Connect device Y to the Internet, and after a few moments, I think device X would have action A1 effectively deleted, but A2 would appear. This would be because the most recent version of action group A was the one from device Y, which never received the update from device X, but would overwrite the version on device X on sync.

However, you do mention something about “turning on” wifi or cellular, which means that Drafts isn’t going to be doing any background sync and you are enforcing some sort of manual sync delay and potential to do dubsequent updates which will “out rank” the previous ones in terms of which one is most recent and takes precedence for sync.

Obviously, the ideal would be to narrow down the steps to reproduce the issue, and send Gregg the logs in a support request to

Being “close to capacity” on iCloud sync should not affect things. Exceeding capacity might, but “close” is just that, and actin groups are pretty small data-wise.

If space in iCloud is an issue in general, don’t forget that you might be able to free up space by removing old backups and Drafts versions. They do tend to rack up after a while.

Simple answer is that action groups are synced, as a group, in a last edit wins fashion. The only case where you should see what you describe is if you edit the same group on multiple device before sync as occurred, and the most recent edit will win.

Edits including opening an action to edit options, re-ordering actions, etc. Just using the actions in the group would not cause something like describe.

@sylumer went into more detail, but are you modifying those groups in multiple places simultaneously?

I have experienced the same problem several times when making new actions and switching to another device. I make sure to back up my actions and and close drafts in the first device before switching. I think it is a lag in iCloud syncing. I am not modifying in multiple devices at the same time, but it happens after modifying or creating a new action, then switching to the new device shortly afterwards. This happened multiple times until I learnt to backup!