Textmaker losing thousands of words.

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JRM
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue May 23, 2017 10:11 pm

Re: Textmaker losing thousands of words.

Post by JRM » Tue May 23, 2017 11:14 pm

@Lynnec,

Have you considered the possibility that something else in your system might be overwriting the files? I know TextMaker is the obvious suspect, but you mentioned that you back-up to the cloud, and that sets off alarm bells for me. You don't mention what cloud technology you use, but such solutions often involve software that monitors a selection of folders on your local disc and synchronizes them with the versions in the cloud storage. If you are saving into a folder that is monitored by the cloud 'sync' software, the cloud software should automatically upload the new version. However, if there is a problem in the cloud 'sync' software, it could make a mistake about which file is the newest version, and overwrite your local file with one downloaded from the cloud. If you only see the problem with TextMaker, there could be something about the way that TextMaker writes files that causes the 'sync' software to make a mistake - perhaps in the way that the timestamps in the file are updated when a new version is saved. I am a fellow SoftMaker customer and I am not trying to make excuses for any problems in the software, but to me (a software engineer myself), this is a more likely explanation for the kind of problem you have been seeing, as it doesn't appear to be occurring for other users working on large documents.

If my guess is right, the problem might disappear if you saved your documents to a folder that is not automatically backed up to the cloud, and then copy them over to a folder monitored by the cloud 'sync' software at the end of your writing session and see what happens to them after a few minutes. However, I appreciate that you may not be keen to conduct such an experiment if it risks losing more of your work.

lynnec
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2015 3:55 pm

Re: Textmaker losing thousands of words.

Post by lynnec » Thu May 25, 2017 6:03 pm

Thanks for your reply! I'm still searching for the perfect word processor, but LibreOffice is close.

lynnec
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2015 3:55 pm

Re: Textmaker losing thousands of words.

Post by lynnec » Thu May 25, 2017 6:16 pm

Copying to the cloud - I have a separate folder for cloud storage, and I have set up a separate backup to that folder that runs a couple of times a day. So nothing from the cloud touches my original files, because, like you, I don't trust the sync properties! So I do exactly as you suggest.
I write, and I have 10 separate backups for each file that is saved in a separate folder. The problem must be Textmaker, because when the problem happens, it corrupts the file I'm working on and all the backups for that file. I have to go to the previous session to retrieve an older copy, which is why words are lost.
There are numerous reports of this happening, but in slightly different ways, mostly, I'm guessing, because everyone has their files set up differently. Although the documents are long, the overall size is in kb, so not too large.
I have one folder per book. Inside, I keep the original documents. They are backed up to the cloud folder, File History and a straightforward external file copy, via mirroring left to right (not synced). Textmaker does its own backups, which are saved to another folder.
My backups are: File History (Windows) using the Windows program (continuous)
Folder backups: using Syncback, mirrored to an external hard drive, plus a weekly backup saved to a hard drive which is switched off once the backup is done (twice a day)
Cloud backups: using Gdrive and OneDrive. Both have separate folders, and content is mirrored to them daily.
So far, Libreoffice has not misbehaved. However, there are some aspects of Textmaker (like the tabs!) that I really miss. Moreover, when I found a problem with LO, they worked very hard to find a solution, which will be rolled in to the next version (a crash when rolling through font preview). At no time did they fail to follow up, or tell me that it must be a problem unique to me.

JRM
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue May 23, 2017 10:11 pm

Re: Textmaker losing thousands of words.

Post by JRM » Wed Sep 27, 2017 11:26 pm

@Lynnec

Returning here after several months, I'm genuinely puzzled by the symptoms you've been seeing. You seem to know what you're doing, and are taking very prudent steps to preserve your data. Personally, I don't trust Windows 10, but even I can't see an obvious way that it could be mucking this up.

The thing about this that is so strange is that you mention that all the backups for a file are corrupted at the same time. It's very unlikely that TextMaker would keep backup files open in any way after switching to a newer version, though it's conceivable that it is indeed a bug in the software. Depending on the type of drive that you're saving your documents onto, I suppose that the operating system could be delaying the writing of updated data to the disk, and TextMaker's particular way of handling files could influence that behaviour, but your description suggests that you're seeing the data missing straight away, and I'd only expect data loss to occur if the drive you were saving to was disconnected unexpectedly or your system crashed.

If it was me, I'd probably try logging disk activity in the folder where the document is being saved using Microsoft's SysInternals Process Monitor ( https://docs.microsoft.com/en-gb/sysint ... ds/procmon ). It ought to prove definitively which processes are corrupting your files, but apart from the difficulty in doing this (I can't walk you though it as I haven't used the latest version, and I'm on Windows 7), it won't prove anything unless you can reproduce the issue at will.

I'm also a fan of LibreOffice, but SoftMaker Office has behaved well for me. Your experience is quite a mystery, though I suspect I'd view it rather more negatively if I was the one losing some of my work!

lynnec
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2015 3:55 pm

Re: Textmaker losing thousands of words.

Post by lynnec » Thu Oct 05, 2017 12:50 am

It's not Windows. If you search this forum, you can find other people who have had similar problems. It's intermittent, and it seems to happen with longer files. It happened to me three times before I gave up.
What is corrupted is that day's backups, not all the backups, so I had to go back a day to discover a document I could read. I work in docx, and I save to my computer, an internal hard drive, an external hard drive, and the cloud.
I imagine that saving the document manually to a new file every so often might help, but I don't really want to add that extra step when the program is supposed to do it for me, and by then I was shaken enough not to trust the program any more.
When I go to my incrementally saved files (using File History), all the documents for that day are corrupted, too. But obviously, I'm only looking for them when a problem occurs.
This is a widely known bug in Microsoft Office Word too, but in programs that have been rewritten or revised, like LibreOffice, it doesn't happen, or at least it isn't a known bug. So it might be a carry-over.

kelltic
Posts: 15
Joined: Fri May 29, 2009 6:10 pm

Re: Textmaker losing thousands of words.

Post by kelltic » Mon Oct 09, 2017 10:44 pm

I also write novels. I saw the topic of your post had an omg moment. Late last year I formatted a 154K-word manuscript in Textmaker and was very impressed with its capabilities. However, I later discovered the file had been corrupted. Textmaker works wonderfully well in .tmd format, but I will never again trust it to translate anything as important as a book I've worked on for two years to .doc or docx. Which brings me to this: Many agents and publishers are accepting manuscripts in .rtf format. Any wordprocessor can open a .rtf file, even awful Word, even awful WordPerfect. Atlantis Word Processor is the most comprehensive example of a .rtf application. It will save files in .doc or docx. without damaging them. It is very stable, maintains multiple backups, and I've used it with the sidebar they call the Control Board showing the Chapters as bookmarks so I can jump quickly from one to the other. I have never lost anything in the 15 years I've used it. You might give it a try.

For now, I am using Textmaker for lesser documents and hoping for its glitches to be resolved.

lynnec
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2015 3:55 pm

Re: Textmaker losing thousands of words.

Post by lynnec » Mon Oct 09, 2017 11:29 pm

Funny you should say that. I bought Atlantis last week, after giving it a thorough trial! It has some really useful tools, and so far it's been solid. When I had a problem, they did work hard to get it sorted out, which was heartening.

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