SYNC


SYNC Function

Estimated reading time: it save countless hours of gaming! So don't waste time here, read it!


Introduction

Now that you are a PRO backupper you are (surely) interrogating yourself: ok, I've done backups of all my savegames...

...but there's a voice inside that raise some questions...

...unanswered questions.

Some of them are:

  • But backups... are on my comPLAY Storage on my local disk! What happen if my cousin (after a cool bowling night) decide to play with my pc while I'm sleeping and, obliviously, it decide to explode in thousand of pieces, and catch fire? (The PC. Not the cousin).

  • I have a big powerful PC but because [REASONS] I play a lot on my little laptop. How can I sync savegames? My shitty laptop doesn't have a lot of space on disk, so I don't want to sync ALL games, but only the ones I'm actually playing!

  • I want an external device that contain all my most recent progress! What can I do?

  • I have a fantasmagorical FAST internet connection. Can I syncronize my savegame using one of my favourite cloud provider?

  • I have a fantasmagorical SLOW crappy internet connection. With data cap. On certain days I'm so unlucky that it working... slow. When I'm lucky it doesn't even work, so I can rapidly change my mind and do something else. How can I save and sync my data without an internet connection, but without having to waste time?

The answer to all these question is the same: use the SYNC function!


Access SYNC menu

SYNC Menu

After you access the SYNC menu you can find on the bottom the local comPLAY Storage you set during the profile creation phase.

On top you can find all the External comPLAY Storage locations you added.

The first time you come here obliviously you will not find any of them.

Your only work is to choose where you want to backup your data (An external storage? A cloud? An usb flash drive?), ADD the location and then start SYNC whathever you want to be sure that all these location must be in sync.

Let's start in order...


How SYNC works

What is, sintetically, an External Storage?

Its simply an external comPLAY Storage synched with your local comPLAY Storage.


Manage ExStorages

Before starting to sync local and External storages you have to ADD some locations to the list


Add an ExStorage

To add an External location where you want to backup/retrieve your data, simply press the big ADD button to the top-left on the screen.

Chose in what situation you are and you will find the appropiate answer:

  • I never created an External Storage -> In that case select a folder where (inside) you want to put the 'comPLAY Storage' folder.

  • I already created the External Storage. -> simply select it with the folder selector.

In both case, tell comPLAY where is located/where you want to create your ExStorage and...you are done!


Delete an ExStorage

You can delete an ExternalStorage selecting it with the mouse and press RIGHT MOUSE BUTTON.

Beware that it will simply disappear from your comPLAY profile, but no data will be deleted from disk!


Refresh status

Can happen that an ExStorage can't be available when doing various action, but is not a problem...

Press the Refresh button on the top-right side to check again availability of all ExStorages you have previously inserted.


Type of ExStorages

When you add an ExternalStorage, you have to say to comPLAY what kind of ExStorage it is.

Each type of ExStorage is trained to memorise some data in a certain way. Each are the available types:

  • COMPLETE ARCHIVE - This will completely synchronize ALL your local content, even the ones that aren't strictly savedata!

  • MEMORY CARD - This is a storage that will maintain only savedata. Extra content like screenshots will be not synced or downloaded/uploaded.

  • CLOUD - What will be synced on this kind of storage depends on what you have set inside Edit Settings menu. Also, if comPLAY recognize a cloud provider (like Dropbox) a special icon will be displayed


SYNC Pipeline

If you have succesfully inserted some ExStorage, you can succesfully start the SYNC Function!

This will download new archives from ExStorages, backup your latest progress (if Save Synchro is enabled), and upload every media has been backupped on available ExStorages.

These 3 works will be done in order (unless you press the button for one of these three jobs individually!).

Let's see them in detail:


Downstream

Downstream do a very simple operation: copy new backups from all ExStorage(s) to Local comPLAY Storage.

This mean that if any/all of your ExStorage has new backups, they will be copied to your local comPLAY Storage and you can easily restore them from the Restore backup menu!

Watch out: only backups that exist in ExStorage(s) Storages but not in Local one will be copied!

What you mean?

Than Downstream will NEVER delete any savegames on Local Storage directory. This is a safe measure: continue reading to understand why.


SaveSynchro

This should merit a special page just for it.

The first time SaveSynchro is started it will check every pinned games and will automatically create an archive that contain your latest 'SAVEDATA' (it will leave out your game configuration, so be sure to manually backup it if you want!) inside your local 'comPLAY Storage' (inside a special archive called _LATEST_[GAMENAME]_[DATA]).

Then the Upstream function will transfer it to an ExStorage.

See it like an automatic backup,ok?

The important things is that it will also automatically restore it in case your local pc contain savedata older than the one backupped, or if the game hasn't any data on the machine.

You can use it to syncronize two different PCs with the same savedata (but maintaining different configurations, because SaveSynchro it will NOT SYNC THE GAME CONFIGURATION)

So its basically like Steam Cloud. But with the difference that you decide when and where to synchronize.

Beware that SaveSynchro WILL NOT TOUCH GAMES THAT USE STEAM CLOUD, so the two backups mechanism can cohexist at the same time.

SaveSynchro is working good even without any ExStorage: it will simply backup your latest data inside the Local comPLAY Storage. But, in that case, remember that if your HD catches fire you will lose every data.

So it works better if you do the whole SYNC Pipeline! (Downstream -> SaveSynchro -> Upstream).

SaveSynchro Issues

Based on how hard you messed with you damned PC, sometimes the SaveSynchro will ask user to decide on some tricky issues.

For example it could prompt to you what to do if there are multiple archives to restore from (if you have played on different PC contemporaneously it could happen).

Is normal for every synchronization solution, and SYNC Function is designed to reduce at its bests these situation.

In that case comPLAY will save also your local savegames and then you have to choose (on the list) what savedata is the right one you want to maintain.

comPLAY will restore the one your select. The conflicts is then resolved and all the other archives are deleted from ExStorages.


Upstream

Upstream has a very simple function: it copy new media from Local Storage to all ExStorage(s)

Watch out: only things that exist in the Local Storage but not in the single ExStorage will be copied

What you mean?

Than Upstream will NEVER delete any savegames on your ExStorage directory. This is a safe measure: if Local and ExStorage storages are in sync, and you go crazy and you delete all your backups from Local and you do an Upstream, comPLAY simply doesn't copy anything because there aren't any new backups to sync, and you will retain all your data on ExStorage location.

This mean that...I can't really delete any savegame I don't need anymore

Not exactly: that's why Hard Upstream exist!


Hard Upstream

Both Downstream and Upstream NEVER delete any savegames.

They simply limit themself to copy (from Local to ExStorages, or viceversa) backups that doesn't exist on the other side.

But If I want to sync Local and ExStorage(s), forcing file deletion?

or you can read the same question in this way:

But if I want to delete some backups for old games I don't really need anymore? Doing Upsteam/Downstream will copy them on the other side once again! How can I do some 'spring cleaning'?

Using Hard Upstream.

What is doing Hard Upstream?

It does a (probably) destructive operation: it makes ExStorages a PERFECT COPY of the Local comPLAY Storage folder.

This mean that, after finishing it, ExStorage will contain the SAME data that local comPLAY Storage has. Basically: a perfect clone of your local storage.

I don't understand perfectly: why is destructive?

Because he doesn't care that most recent savegames are in one of the ExStorage(s) location: it simply clone a local storage into each ExStorage(s) locations, deleting every files that doesn't exist also in the local one.

Check the example below to understand it in a pratical way.


Examples - Use SYNC in a creative way

These examples are the solution of the problems I've illustrated at the beginning of the chapter.


External backup of my savedata

GOAL: Avoid data loss caused by cousin's Feng-Shui

HOW: Add a ExStorage that point to an external HD, and add another ExStorage that point to your Dropbox storage folder

A more tecnical HOW:

  • Open the SYNC menu
  • Create a new ExStorage on your external hard drive -> Select your external drive like D:\ or E:\
  • Install the Dropbox client and create an account
  • Create a new ExStorage, but this time put the folder inside the Dropbox syncronized folder. comPLAY will recognize automatically that is a CLOUD Storage.
  • Now all is setup properly.
  • Remember to star the SYNC function!

Now, when your PC catch fire, you can either:

  • Run out of the room screaming in fear, because you have your cloud backup on Dropbox
  • Damn your cousin, take the external hard disk and run away, because you have your backups on Dropbox, and also you have your local ones on the Hard Drive!

When you will buy another PC, you can simply do the same steps you done above. When you finished just press Downstream and there you go: all your backups are ready for restoring, on your local disk!

Sync your savedata across more PCs

GOAL: Sync your [COOL GAME] progress across your gaming laptop and your desktop computer

HOW: Install comPLAY on both PCs, create a profile with the same name on both machines, add on both PCs the same ExStorage (your cloud or an external usb drive?) then enjoy

A more tecnical HOW:

Sync your progress across a poor laptop and a Desktop PC

GOAL: Sync your Solitaire progress across your poor laptop and your desktop computer

HOW: Same step as previous example, just a little variant

A more tecnical HOW:

  • Follow the step done in the previous example BUT before doing SYNC...
  • ...on your little laptop go to Quick preferences and set your Memory to the lowest possible. Is a 5 seconds job, if you are quick
  • Than PIN your Solitaire game (or the ones you want to play on your laptop)
  • ???
  • Do SYNC
  • Profit!

I want to continue my game at my friend's home!

My internet connection is on vacation !

Isn't important if is only a temporary or a definitive breakup. The most important things is that you have downloaded comPLAY!

GOAL: Sync your Solitaire progress across your poor laptop and your desktop computer

HOW: Use comPLAY...like you normally would. Use an 'external storage' of any kind.

A more tecnical HOW:

Well, there isn't a lot to say on this, but its just a prompt on what you can do using comPLAY.

If you sync your savegames using any cloud solutions and, suddently, you can't access it anymore, just "fallback" to a local storage solution.

Create an ExStorage that point to an external devices like an USB Flashdrive, add it on your machines and simply...use SYNC like you normally would.

You are then certain sure that you have the latest backups on your Flashdrive.