Data loss - browser usage

The majority of our users use our apps within a browser on a PC. We have had issues in the past where the browser cannot sync because of some unexplainable network connection issue. The app reports a network connectivity error but other webpages load fine. Closing and reopening the browser seems to resolve the issue and unsynced changes are synced when the app is reloaded.

Today I had a user report that unsynced changes were lost. We looked at a few possible reasons namely that the user had used a different browser than than the one they thought they were using when last in the app. The user states that he checked all the browsers installed on the machine (there are 3 installed) and there were no unsynced changes in any of the browsers.

This has led to some data loss where the changes the user made were not saved in the browser’s cache and synced when reopening the app.

This is the first time in the 3 or so years we have been using AppSheet that this has happened and I’m at a loss to explain or understand why. Any opinions are welcome. Would certainly want to avoid this in the future if possible.

For this particular app, it has been in use for more than a year. All of the Offiine/Sync options are enabled EXCEPT for ‘Store content for offline use’. Keep in mind, this has not happened the entire time this app has been in use and I’m certain these options have been the same for nearly that entire time.

@Steve @Phil @Aleksi @LeventK

I’m afraid I have no insight to offer. I could wildly speculate, but I don’t think that would help…

I have always assumed that data transactions are stored locally in the devices cache until they are passed to AppSheets servers. Assuming this is correct, two quick scenarios to rule out would be:

  • Your user cleared their device / browsers cache before the transactions were passed; or
  • Your user was running the application in the browsers incognito mode (which saves no local cache beyond the current session by design), and then closed the session before the data transactions were passed.
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I thought I knew the answers to the two scenarios you posed but, I confirmed with the user just to be certain:

  • The user did not clear the cache
  • The user was not running the application in a private or incognito session

This seems to be linked to the network connectivity error we receive. The application stops background syncing and when the user attempts to manually sync, the user is shown the error regarding network connectivity. In the past, when the user is presented with the error, closing and reopening the browser and reloading the app seems to resolve the issue. Any unsynced changes are then synced as expected.

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@Steve , please do. Anything is possible and data loss is unacceptable. I’d be willing to look into any possibilities you can suggest.

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Actually, @Jonathon covered the two things that jumped to mind immediately. I also relayed your post internally asking for a developer to respond. You might also consider engaging support@appsheet.com.

If you can recreate the issue I would try and determine if it occurs on any device connected to that network, or if it is device specific.

I also wouldn’t rule out the above cache-clearing scenarios completely. It is my experience that, when users do odd things, they deny it. Clearing browser history / working in incognito mode isn’t unheard of :wink:

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:100:

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