Haravikk

Bittorrent Sync Android App Improvements

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I'm really liking the UI improvements for the Android version of Bittorrent Sync, and it runs nicely, but I have some feedback I'd like to give:

 

Advanced Settings

 

I'd really like to see advanced settings made available for shares, in particular I want to be able to set predefined hosts so I don't need to use a tracker or DHT to locate peers; all my shares go through my NAS which is on 24/7, so I set it as a predefined host on Windows and Mac machines, but I can't on Android (that I can see).

 

Faster Startup

 

Between opening the app and seeing your shares there is still a long delay in which you appear to have no shares at all (as if your settings have been lost). While I can understand that it takes time to reconnect and get status for a share, I don't see why the app shouldn't be able to at least list them with a status of "connecting…" or such.

 

More Control Over When Syncing Occurs

 

The one thing that confuses me with the Android sync app is when it will actually sync; I have it set to open on boot, but I often find that I have to re-open it manually, otherwise I'm not sure if it's actually doing anything. Also, besides the battery saving option we don't have a lot of control over when syncing occurs.

 

For me, I only want Bittorrent Sync to open when I have WiFi enabled; even better I'd love to see an option to restrict Bittorrent Sync to only running when power is connected. I do this for a lot of other apps so that they don't even need to run at all; not that I've had any trouble with Bittorrent Sync and battery life (I haven't noticed any difference at all in fact), but I don't have a data plan for my phone so there's no reason for it to be open at all if I've turned WiFi off.

 

Store Indexes With Folders

 

One complaint I have with Bittorrent Sync is that it stores all indexes on the internal memory, even if they're for a share on the SD card. I'd much rather see Bittorrent Sync use both an internal and an external data/cache directory, and store indexes in the appropriate one. This way if all my shares on the SD card, the Bittorrent Sync only uses up space on the SD card, or the same for internal memory.

 

I know phones are getting larger and larger storage amounts, but more budget devices can still be pretty limited. Besides which, an index servers no purpose if the share it's for isn't connected (i.e - because the SD card is unmounted). I know that internal memory is typically faster, but does that really impact Bittorrent Sync much? Personally I've found the performance of Android's SQLite databases to be great regardless of where they're stored.

 

 

Anyway, just some things I'd like to see considered in future updates; I'm loving the app in general, and it's my preferred way to sync stuff I need on the go.

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Option for syncing images and movies stored on SDcard with the Camera Backup option, so when the device is configured to store pictures taken with the camera, on the SD card, these are also synced and not just those on internal storage.

 

A passcode for the app when opened might also be usefull

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A passcode for the app when opened might also be usefull

What is it with people wanting additional passcodes in every single app they install? If you don't want someone else to see your porn, lock your phone and don't give it to them unlocked (or watch what they are doing with it).

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What is it with people wanting additional passcodes in every single app they install? If you don't want someone else to see your porn, lock your phone and don't give it to them unlocked (or watch what they are doing with it).

No need to start trolling just because I see use for something you seem to think is redundant. Just trying to be constructive here.

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No need to start trolling just because I see use for something you seem to think is redundant. Just trying to be constructive here.

Okay. So would you care to elaborate what use you are seeing?

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I suppose a passcode would make sense for protecting your sync settings and keys/links, but it probably wouldn't be able to protect to the actual sync folders unless it can somehow set permissions to prevent access by file system browsers?

 

I do generally agree that it's a bit of a slim case since you'd have to give your phone to someone you don't trust, or if you have your phone setup without a PIN/gesture on the lock-screen; actually I'm in the latter case, but I use Avast! for Android to set a PIN preventing access to key apps (such as settings, play store etc.) so if someone stole my phone they would have to wipe it completely since they couldn't get access to anything with root permissions, or anything that can force-close apps, enable USB debugging etc.

 

Still, it's not a bad thing to have as an option for the security conscious, though I think it probably is a bit extreme, or rather, if you're worried about the safety of your sync settings, then you probably have bigger concerns for your phone's security.

 

 

Also, I think we can probably mark the faster startup item as completed; one of the recent updates seems to list my sync folders much more quickly than before, and gives a spinner indicating that they're being re-loaded.

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In general I like to have a passcode on the app since I would like to store all the sensitive data (such a meeting minutes, and not porn as suggested, not that it is any concern to you ChrisH) and such in one place. If I want to access that I would like it to be passcode protected. You're right when you say you secure the entire device with a passcode and thus secure the data. The thing is I access my phone dozens of times a day and I don't want to enter the passcode every single time, so It's setup with a pattern lock (which is not the most secure) and only locks every 30 minutes, for easy access, which is enough security for for general use of the phone. For the cloud data however I want to lock with a passcode every single time it is accessed, hence the request for a passcode. I agree this will not stop android savy persons who know how to access the data via file explorer apps, file encryption of the local files would make this a complete package.

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That's the classic conflict between comfort and security ;)

Maybe you could use a launcher where you can set passcodes for single apps? That way you would not have to wait for this request to be implemented.

 

Thanks for the explanation. And no, I don't care what you sync.

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