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How can TntConnect 3.0 help me use Dropbox better?


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First published by:
Troy Wolbrink
on 24 May 2013
Last revision by:
Troy Wolbrink
on 4 Apr 2018
13 people found this article useful.

92% of people found this useful
How can TntConnect 3.0 help me use Dropbox better?

For a few years now, I've been encouraging TntMPD users to put their database on Dropbox.  It not only allows you to keep your TntMPD database in sync between your multiple computers, but it also provides a constant off-site backup in the cloud.  And it works on both Mac and PC!  TntMPD 3.0 embraces the use of Dropbox to a whole new level.

New Default for "Dropbox Mode"

Under [Tools | Options], there is an option to "Prevent multiple users at the same time (Dropbox Mode)":

In TntMPD 3.0, the default for this option is now "On".  The reason for this is to prevent "conflict files" in Dropbox when more than one person makes changes to the database at the same time.  With this option turned on, if more than one person tries to edit the same database (synced to the same Dropbox folder), the first person will be able to open the database as normal.  Anyone who tries to open the database after this will be told that someone else has the database open, but you're allowed to open the database as "Read Only".  (And maybe you'll call your spouse and ask them to get out of TntMPD when they're done and call you back.)

Here's what that prompt looks like:




Sometimes "Dropbox Mode" doesn't work.

"Dropbox Mode" works by putting a small file next to the database when someone opens it in TntMPD.  Within seconds this small file is synced to all the other computers with Dropbox installed ... unless your computer or their computer is not connected to the Internet!  If either of you are not connected to the Internet, then it's very possible that more than one person will open TntMPD at the same time, and when each of your computers finally reconnects to the Internet, Dropbox will realize what happened.  Dropbox will keep one person's view of the database (with their changes) as the main file, but the other person's view of the database (with their changes) will be saved as a "conflict file" in the same folder.


TntMPD 3.0 To the Rescue!

TntMPD 3.0 was designed to expect these conflict files and deal with them.  This way you don't lose anyone's work in TntMPD when they were disconnected from the Internet.  Now when you start TntMPD, if TntMPD finds a new conflict file, it will prompt you to deal with it:

Just make sure the box is checked for each conflict file and click "Auto-Sync".  Within a few seconds, you'll see this:

Now, your TntMPD database will have all the changes that would have otherwise been lost.


What if I don't have Dropbox?

 

TntMPD 3.0 will help you get started.  Just pull up the "Dropbox" dialog.  There are two ways to do this.  Under the "File" menu, click on "Resolve Dropbox Conflicts".  Or click the Dropbox icon on the tool bar.

 

    

Now you should see this:

Click the first button and your web browser will pull up the Dropbox website here.  Follow the instructions to install Dropbox and/or create an account.  Once Dropbox is installed, you should see the Dropbox icon in your system tray (PC or Mac):

Back in TntMPD, the Dropbox dialog should have changed to this:

 Click the second button to automatically move your database to Dropbox.  It will move it to a "TntMPD" folder inside your Dropbox folder:

        

You can run this on all your computers (PC or Mac).  On all your other computers you can run this same procedure to get Dropbox installed and your database moved over.

Keep your eye on the Dropbox icon in TntMPD

If you ever see it turn red, you don't need to wait for TntMPD to prompt you.  Just click it and deal with those pesky "conflict file" right away!


What about Google Drive?

The problem with Google Drive is that if more than one person opens TntMPD at the same time and makes changes, Google will not create a "conflict file" for the person whose changes get lost.  This means that one person's changes will win, the other person's changes will be gone forever. 

So take this bit of advice and USE DROPBOX and DON'T USE GOOGLE DRIVE with TntMPD!

Recent Comments

By: Troy Wolbrink Posted on 30 May 2013 4:16 AM

At this time, there is no Android app (or iOS app) that can open a TntMPD database.  Maybe in the future.  But for now, think of Dropbox as a tool to backup your database, and to sync your database between Mac and PC computers.

By: Jacob Collins Posted on 13 Aug 2013 9:09 PM

I'm racking my brain trying to get my workflow going:

TntMPD==>Outlook==>iCloud==>iPhone and back through the daisy chain.

I have my Database housed in Dropbox, which means that I should be able to use TntMPD on various computers (not simultaneously, a la "Dropbox Mode") whether office PC or personal Mac.

Now, if I have two Outlook computers synced to my Dropbox account (one office, one home) and my own personal MacBook Pro (mobile), I should be able to, in theory, use the TntMPD desktop interface the same way on any machine.

HOWEVER, I will only be able to get the updated information to/from my iPhone if I sync TntMPD with Outlook, on a PC. Correct?

By: Byard Parks Posted on 9 Dec 2014 2:12 AM

Odd, but I have tntmpd opening from dropbox on PC-wife and dropbox Mac-me, however, when I update a contact on my mac, it doesn't change the file on my wife's PC.  Why is this?  As far as I can see the two Tntmpd files are operating somewhat independently.   Anyway that I can "save" the information that I have entered on my mac tntmpd so that my wife can see it? Thanks

By: Troy Wolbrink Posted on 17 Dec 2014 7:17 PM

Jacob, you are correct.  TntMPD syncing with Outlook on a PC is the only solution right now for syncing contacts in TntMPD with iCloud.

Byard, when you're in TntMPD (on your Mac or on your PC), under the "Help" menu, and click on "View System Info".  This will show you were your database file is located on your hard drive.  Make sure (on both computers) that it's the same file in your Dropbox folder.

By: BenjaminRenfro Posted on 22 Jun 2015 6:25 PM

I installed dropbox, but when I click the icon in Tnt it still tells my I need to install it.

By: Troy Wolbrink Posted on 8 Jul 2015 5:47 PM

Benjamin, I believe this is a bug in TntMPD that will be resolved in the next release.  For now, you'll have to manually install from www.dropbox.com

By: FransMalgo Posted on 2 Aug 2015 4:45 PM
100% of people found this useful

Same as Benjamin, after installing dropbox , the option 'Move my database to Dropbox ' doesn't work. Greetings

By: KennyHood Posted on 28 Jan 2016 9:02 PM

Same as Benjamin and Frans. Is this a Windows 10 issue? DropBox is installed, but not recognized by tntMPD.

By: MaryEllenKluck Posted on 8 Mar 2016 7:50 PM

Troy, we love TntMPD -- thanks for all your work!   What would happen if I unchecked the "Prevent multiple users at the same time (Dropbox Mode)" box?  Would it allow two users to simultaneously make changes -- and save both people's changes?   (Similar to how docs work in Google Drive?)  Or would some changes be lost?  Thanks!

By: Troy Wolbrink Posted on 23 Mar 2016 8:59 PM
100% of people found this useful

Hi Mary,

It would allow multiple people to work at the same time.  You'd get more Dropbox conflict files, but TntMPD 3.0+ can resolve these and merge changes.  The one downside is that if you delete something (like a task) it might come back when merging changes.  In other words, you wouldn't lose any data, you just might have it coming back when you wanted it gone.  A future version of TntConnect will deal with this, and then the option to prevent multiple users will go away.

--Troy

By: JWhaley Posted on 8 Jun 2016 2:36 PM

I already have Dropbox but it keeps asking me to install it when I click on the Dropbox icon on TNT.  I have the latest version.  How can I connect TNT to my already existing Dropbox account?

By: Troy Wolbrink Posted on 8 Jun 2016 8:40 PM

Have you upgraded to TntConnect?

By: imachir Posted on 2 Apr 2018 4:39 PM

Can I backup my database to Dropbox without having the Dropbox application installed on my computer? Thanks - Ian

By: Troy Wolbrink Posted on 2 Apr 2018 5:37 PM

Ian, Dropbox must be installed.

By: Dave_Johnson Posted on 25 May 2018 5:29 AM

How dos this work to sync with my spouse if she has a different DropBox Account on her computer?

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