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Backing-up or syncing your data, what’s the difference?

Syncing and backing up are two distinct processes with different purposes and functions. Understanding the differences between them is essential for effective data management and protection.


Syncing is the process of manually keeping files consistent across multiple devices or locations. When you make a change to a file in one location, you need to manually sync that change to update the file across all other locations where the file exists. This ensures that you have access to the most up-to-date version of your files from any device, which is especially helpful if you're using multiple devices interchangeably.

However, syncing also means that changes, even accidental ones, can propagate across all devices if you choose to sync them. For example, if you delete a file or make a minor edit on one device, this action can be mirrored across all other devices if you manually sync the changes. This includes overwriting previous versions of a file if you sync a more recent version.

It's crucial to manage your files mindfully when syncing. It's your responsibility to ensure that the version being synced is the most complete and recent. If you're working on multiple devices, make sure you save and close files after making significant changes, before syncing them to another device. 


Auto-sync is enabled by default, but you can switch it off in Settings. Auto-sync doesn't back up your content, you will need to use the in-app Backup feature in Settings if you want to back up your Nebo library. You can read more about this below.

To learn more about syncing in Nebo, our article About the Sync Feature provides more in-depth information.

Note: Auto-sync is not instantaneous, it may take a few seconds for all your notes to synchronize across your devices. 

Backing Up

Backing up, on the other hand, involves making a copy of your data and storing it in a separate location for protection against system failure or data loss. Backups preserve the original version of your files and allow you to recover them if needed. In Nebo, you have the flexibility to back up your entire library, specific pages, or entire notebooks.

In Nebo, you have the flexibility to back up your entire Nebo library, a specific page, or an entire notebook

In Summary

Syncing helps keep files up-to-date across devices, but it carries the risk of propagating accidental changes. Backups provide a safety net against data loss by preserving snapshots of your data. Both processes are crucial for data management.

Note: Syncing is not included in the free version of Nebo for iOS or Android. To utilize syncing capabilities, an upgrade to the full version of Nebo is required via a one-time in-app purchase.

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