User Manual

GoodReader Networking: Auto Sync

GoodReader can automatically sync* individual files and entire folders to their remote versions hosted on online servers of the following types: Dropbox, OneDrive, Google Drive,, SugarSync and also any WebDAV, AFP, SMB, FTP* or SFTP server.



There are two different types of sync - normal sync and download-only sync. The idea of normal sync is to keep the contents of a local file or a folder identical to what you have on a server. The idea of download-only sync is a convenient distribution of frequently updated documents to a group of people.


The sync process consists of two parts: initial setup and actual synchronization.


Initial setup. Do this only once per each file/folder you wish to synchronize. Open a connection to a server, find a file or folder that you wish to sync, tap it so it becomes highlighted. The Sync button will appear at the bottom. Press it. Then select a target local folder inside GoodReader where you want this file/folder to be put. Then press the Download here & Synchronize button. This will create synchronization record in Downloads section and show you the parameters window where you can set various sync options. Once you`re done with it, you`re ready to sync. All relevant remote files will be automatically downloaded to your device when doing the very first synchronization, so there is no need to run a separate downloading process for this file/folder with the Download button.



Actual synchronization. You execute the sync by pressing the Sync button on the main screen of the iPad (it`s not the same Sync button that you used for the initial setup) or on the Connect control panel of the iPhone. Alternatively, you can find the Sync button at the top of every file viewer`s navigation menu. This button will execute the sync for all the folders and files with all the servers that you have set up for synchronization.

A progress popup appears during the sync process. Press the Hide button to hide this popup and continue the sync in the background. You will be able to continue reading your documents while the sync is working. Press the Sync button again to bring back the hidden progress popup.

Normal sync. During this process GoodReader analyzes the contents of both local and remote folders and does the following:


  • looks for modified files (for example, freshly annotated PDFs) on your device and uploads them to a server, replacing old ones there
  • looks for modified files on a server and downloads them to your device, replacing old ones there
  • looks for new files on a server and downloads them to your device
  • looks for new local files and uploads them to a server
  • looks for deleted files on a server that were previously present, and deletes them from your device
  • looks for deleted local files that were previously present, and deletes them from a server


Download-only sync. This type of sync doesn`t care what happens with your local files, it never puts anything on a server, never deletes anything from it, it only looks for new and modified remote files and downloads them as needed. By default, files that were deleted from a server will be deleted from your local device. However, you can prevent this from happening by resetting the Delete local files switch in the sync record parameters window. In case if you choose to delete such local files, you can also choose whether or not you want to keep modified local files that were deleted from a remote server. This option may be useful to preserve your valuable notes that you`ve put over a PDF file, even if the corresponding remote file was deleted from a server.


Attention: When doing a normal sync, be extra careful when deleting files/folders from a synced zone, either on your device or on a server, because this will make GoodReader delete their synced counterparts during the next sync session. If you accidentally deleted such local file, do not sync, but rather open a connection to a server, find this file there and manually download it to a local folder where you accidentally deleted it from.
However, you can prevent this from happening. There are two switches available on a sync record parameters window (press a blue button to the right of a sync record to edit its parameters). These switches allow you to prohibit a deletion of local/remote files/folders whose remote/local counterparts are missing at the time of syncing.


If you modify a synced file both locally and on a server independently and then try to sync it, this will create a sync conflict, because GoodReader will not know which version of a file to choose. You can set up a policy on sync conflicts per each sync record individually. The following options are available: Ask what to do (the default option, you will be able to manually choose an appropriate action per each conflicted file individually during every sync session), Leave unresolved (leaves both files intact, allowing you to deal with this conflict later), Local files have priority (replaces remote conflicted files with local ones, making you loose remote ones forever; be careful with this option!!!), Remote files have priority (replaces local conflicted files with remote ones, making you loose local ones forever; be careful with this option!!!), Create duplicates (renames both files to avoid further conflicts, leaving you with both versions of a file everywhere - on your device and on a server; the safest option). Also, during the actual synchronization, GoodReader may sometimes offer you the Discard this conflict, files are identical conflict resolution option. Use this option to save your Internet traffic, but only if you know for sure that these files are identical.

While every effort was made to ensure data integrity in all abnormal situations (losing Internet connection, manual process abortion, etc.), we strongly encourage you to take precautions to make sure that the sync process will not be aborted halfway. Sync process is a sensitive one, and it may result in a data loss if used inappropriately. Just keep that in mind, and everything should be fine.


Important: Do not modify (upload, rename, delete, etc.) your files and folders, both local and remote, while GoodReader performs the actual synchronization. Doing so may result in a damaged file being transferred and/or inconsistent file/folder structure either on your device, or on your server.



* Auto Sync is a part of Pro Pack.


Related Questions

V5 is THE killer app

V5 is worth the wait. GoodReader has gone from being just a good file management app to nearly being an OS in its own right.

In addition to viewing, annotating and creating txt and pdf docs, the new drag and drop file management is the missing link in making the iPad a complete solution.

Pencil integration is really really good.

I`m just beginning to dig into the new features and interface, and deciding what other apps I can now delete.

Opening it and finding that V5 had installed was like Christmas morning!

GQB, Review on the App Store

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