Ways to keep game files up to date between multiple PCs

BlackCatWorks

I don't know how to change my avatar
Member
Joined
May 31, 2019
Messages
9
Reaction score
0
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Hello! I'm looking for a way to have my game files update between my Desktop and my tablet so I can show updates while I'm away from home. What do people recommend for keeping files up to date without having to redownload them every time you make a few changes? Does dropbox work?

Thank you for your time.
 

MushroomCake28

KAMO Studio
Global Mod
Joined
Nov 18, 2015
Messages
2,589
Reaction score
3,782
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
I'm having quite a hard time deciding where this thread should go. It's definitely applicable to all RPG Maker engines, but I'm hesitating between General Discussion and Useful Development Tools (since you technically need some kind of software to sync your files). I think for now I'll move this thread to General Discussion (to my fellow moderators, please move this thread if you know where this goes).

Moved to General Discussion


Personally I use dropbox, the desktop version, and I put my game's folder in my dropbox. The desktop version of dropbox makes it so there's a folder called "Dropbox" on your desktop and everything inside that folder gets synced with your dropbox. Installing dropbox folder on multiple computers (using the same dropbox account) will actually sync everything in the dropbox folder on all computers (and in the cloud, dropbox's server).

People usually recommend not doing that though, as there has been some reports of people losing some files or having some corrupted files while using a sync service between multiple devices. Those reports were generally people using the Steam sync feature. However, using the dropbox service, I have never had any issues on my end for many years.
 

TheoAllen

Self-proclaimed jack of all trades
Veteran
Joined
Mar 16, 2012
Messages
4,819
Reaction score
5,511
First Language
Indonesian
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
The file corruption in dropbox is when you edit the game directly in the dropbox folder. If you don't do it, you will be fine. Usually by moving it to local back and forth or disable dropbox sync for a while when you dev the game. The former is safer though.
 

MushroomCake28

KAMO Studio
Global Mod
Joined
Nov 18, 2015
Messages
2,589
Reaction score
3,782
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
@TheoAllen Yes, that's why I advised caution. Personally, I always leave the sync on and work on my game in the dropbox directly and have never got any issues.
 

Kes

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Aug 3, 2012
Messages
21,779
Reaction score
10,999
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
@MushroomCake28 You are, then, lucky as there have been multiple instances of Members coming here with questions about how (if at all) to reinstate files which have been corrupted by Dropbox and other cloud programs by the synching issue. It is not something I would recommend.
 

Shaz

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
38,784
Reaction score
12,215
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Note that no matter what online syncing tool you use (dropbox, steam, anything else), you will still have to download the updates when you move to a new computer. It's just that that's done automatically for you.

I believe the issue with syncing is when someone has done work on their game, saves and closes the editor, then shuts down the computer, without waiting for the syncing to be completed. They think because the editor is closed their work is saved, but there's still that background process going on, and that could take a little while to complete depending on how much work has been done and how long it's been since it was saved.

I've also seen enough people lose hours of work that I wouldn't keep my working project in one of those locations. If I used something like dropbox, I'd just copy/paste to there after finishing a session, but would have my working version in a completely different place.
 

Larry Jones

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Dec 20, 2014
Messages
98
Reaction score
88
Have the game files saved on a USB that you move between the two? If your tablet has a port for that?
 

Andar

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Mar 5, 2013
Messages
29,492
Reaction score
6,858
First Language
German
Primarily Uses
RMMV
as there has been some reports of people losing some files or having some corrupted files while using a sync service between multiple devices.
I believe the issue with syncing is when someone has done work on their game, saves and closes the editor, then shuts down the computer, without waiting for the syncing to be completed.
I believe the difference is due to how the files are opened. Most people don't know that there are two different ways to handle datafile.
The "regular" way of file access is to keep all your data in your RAM, and when you tell the program to "save", it opens a file and places all data inside it before closing.
Unfortunately that way does not work if your data is too much. Simply because it would both require too much RAM to keep all data active, and too much time to save all that data (no one want to wait five minutes on every save).
For that reason database programs like MS Access, Filemaker (and I believe all RMs as well) use a different form of file acces: They keep their files constantly open, loading and saving partial data in a background function when that specific data is needed.
If you ever worked with database programs you often find that they don't have a save button at all, or if they have it is just a button to sync the data immediatly.
This has the advantage of lessening the RAM-needs as well as reducing the save time, but it has the disadvantage that the files are constantly open and thereby more receptive to power failures or other interruptions. If a file is closed it cannot be damaged by such things, but an open file can easily be corrupted if something goes wrong.
And that is also the reason for the increased problems with syncing - a file can only be kept open by one program, and while it is open nothing else can access its data. But a cloudsync in the background needs to open the file for itself to sync it with the cloud version.
A good cloudsync program should detect that the file is opened by another program and then abort the sync. Unfortunately if it does not, it reads the "no access allowed" reply from windows as "file is empty" and updates the cloud-version of the file with a 0-byte-version (this is a simplification, the actual process is a bit more complex).

So the cause of those failed cloudsyncs that destroyed project files in the past depends on a very bad timing in file access - especially in the early years of cloudsyncing with early versions of their background programs. I know that a lot of the cloudsync companies have improved their programs since then and have better algorithm how to detect open files - not because they care about RPG-Makers, but because the same happened to cases where a company used a different database program for their data.

So yes, the chances of destroying your files by working inside a cloudsync'ed folder have been lowered compared to how often that happened several years ago - but I would still not risk it for my projects.
 

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

Latest Threads

Latest Posts

Latest Profile Posts

I was planning to release a useless plugin for april fools, but then I thought I let it be.
Tfw every dev around me is using Live2D in their MV games and make me question my skills repeatedly.

Spending the day reworking my maps, especially the first "biome". This time it's not even in the dark. :LZSwink:
Activity on the forums has increased lately, probably because of people staying home. The amount of work for moderators has increased lol.

Forum statistics

Threads
95,522
Messages
929,784
Members
125,791
Latest member
Oersted_LAL
Top