Problem downloading attachments to iPad app under iOS 11

I have been using EndNote (X7) for many years and mainly use the database on Windows machines.  I also use an iPad and have the EndNote app that allows me to use the database, including attached PDFs, which is very convenient for reading.  I have 8000+ references, with perhaps 1000 attached PDFs.  I just bought a new iPad and am using iOS11.0.3.  I had no problem syncing the references, but the app always crashes after about two minutes of downloading attachments.  I have the app set to download the attachments to the iPad so that they are available for offline use.  I tried reinstalling the app, but the same problem occurs.

I am seeing this also on a new iPad Pro running iOS 11.1.1.  I reluctantly returned to EndNote iPad after giving up on Papers 3, Sente, and Zotero.  Until last night I was unaware that Clarivate had started to allow unlimited EndNote Web storage to users with EndNote X8 licenses.  I was also unaware that the option of downloading an entire library for offline use was now possible.

I have a library with about 6500 entries and about 6000 attachments.  I have been rebuilding the library on my MacBook and syncronizing the ‘fresh’ library to EN Web and the iPad.  The first 1000 attachments downoaded into the iPad without a hitch.  I uploaded another 3000 entries to EN Web overnight but when I tried to download the new attachments into the iPad to get it caught up, the iPad crashes after getting about 70~80 attachments.  Through many restarts of the iPad app and the attachment download process, I have dragged another 1500 attachments out of EN web into the iPad.

After the first 1000 attachments were downloaded into the iPad, I got a window last night that informed me the app was indexing the library and this process went on for a couple of minutes.  After I downloaded the overnight entries this morning into my iPad I got the records caught up to the current status of the web account and my MacBook library (5000).  It is only when I try to download more attachments that the iPad app crashes after a few minutes.  The pdfs are in the web account, as I have made spot checks by downloading attachments manually over the entirity of the new records (1001 to 5000).  I suspect that the iPad app is trying to restart the indexing process while I am trying to download more attachments, and that extra process is crashing the app.  How can the user manually start reindexing the iPad app’s existing library?

Although the process of getting improvements to the iPad version of EndNote is glacially slow, I am relieved/impressed that at least some work has been done to make it a more useable tool.  I wish that TR / Clarivate had been a little more forthcoming (e-mailings) about the new capabilities, such as the unlimited storage on the web account and the new ability to mass download (in theory at least) an entire library for offline reading.

Additional information for my earlier posting on crash problems with iPad Pro (iOS 11.1.1, 512 GB):

  1. Through many, many restarts of the synch with EN Web, I was able to get the number of attachments from my EN Web library increased to ~2500.  However, the crashing became so frequent (usuall when iPad EN was trying to upload attachments) that nothing further could be downloaded.

  2. I deleted the app from tha iPad and reinstalled.  I re-downloaded the library (6488 records, 6521 attachments).  The iPad crashed after downloading the entries.  I restarted and EN iPad showed a dialog box that claimed to be re-indexing the library.  I let this process go to completion and then tryed to download more attachments.

  3. Now, the iPad app crashes after downloading about two record attachments.

  4. When I say the app crashes, what I mean is that the EndNote screen disappears without freezeup or warning.  When I look at the iOS 11 task switcher, the EndNote program appears to still be running.

  5. Before I started this process last night, I tried uploading an older Mac OS X EndNote X8 library that holds all of my research.  Mac EN refused to sync this library to EN Web and instructed me to contact Thomson Reuters (Clarivate??) Technical Support.  I created a new library, deleted everything from my Web library, and set Mac Endnote to synchronize the new library to EndNote Web.  I slowly copy/pasted all of my former, corrupted library to the new one and syncronized everything into the EndNote web library.

This situation is rediculous.  I bought a very expensive top-tier 12 inch iPad Pro specifically to read and annotate literature  when I am commuting to/from university, as well as other times when I have a few moments to kill.  While the iPad EndNote has less restrictions (in theory) on what I am allowed to do with my literature library, it effectively is still a broken application.  Based on my experiences during the last 24 hours, this verion of iPad EndNote is little different from the first version that was released years ago.  Right now, if somebody else was selling a more stable suite of programs for the Mac OS X desktop and iPad, I would pay just about any price to walk away from EndNote and the galcial pace of its support.  I have tried Papers, Sente, Mendeley, and Zotero already.  Most of those programs are either equally buggy, abandoned by their developers, or obviously on their way to being dropped.

In your previous email, you mentioned about the new ability to mass download an entire library for offline reading in iPad. Is there a way to do so without doing one attachment at a time?


I don’t know if they have fixed the problem, but I found that I could upload the attachments in batches, so that is what I did.  I am not sure what the maximum size of a batch can be, but maybe 50 will work.  I have many categories defined, so I just uploaded them by selecting one category at a time and it worked.

Dear All,

I have been trying to do a lot of reading with the latest EndNote for iPad (2.6) and more frustation has resulted.  I synchronize my iPad Pro through EndNote online to EndNote X8 (Mac OS X 8.2, High Sierra).  I noticed yesterday that following a synch from iPad-to-web-to-Mac, the Mac library became irretrievably corrupted.  With only approximately 175 entries, I find it hard to believe that I am pushing either the Mac OS X app or the iPad Pro app beyond its limits.  I was able to recover my work from a TimeMachine backup and restore the more recent entries by syncing the Mac library to the web entries, and I attributed the problems yesterday to a corrupted pdf file from an Illiad request.  However, less than 24 hours after the first problem with a corrupted library, my restored library became corrupted again after a few exchanges with the iPad EndNote app.

I give up.  EndNote (Mac or iPad) simply can’t be trusted with user-generated content on pdf files.  While I greatly enjoy reading and annotating literature on the large iPad Pro screen, EndNote is obviously not up to the task of being a literature reading and annotating application.  The annotation tools in the Mac X8.2 app are astonishingly primitive for 2018 and clearly one end of this workflow is corrupting my files and/or annotations.  The iPad app is similarly primitive, with some of its competitors (Sente, Papers 3) having surpassed the latest EndNote iPad app yeas ago!  

I don’t have time to troubleshoot your software (or anyone else’s) AND do the research work that I am being paid to perform at my university.  Even if you or I eventually find and fix this issue, I fully expect that there will be many new problems in the future.  Software that claims to be able to ‘organize’ your research reading and notes, while also generating correct writing citations for any citation of any source, should be regarded with great skepticism.  I have tried many alternatives to EndNote and found all to be wanting for stability or features, and now many of the alternatives (Papers, Sente) have become abandonware.  I count myself fortunate that my university licenses EndNote X8 so that I don’t have to pay for it (directly at least).  if I had to pull out a checkbook or credit card for the questionable privilige of using this crummy program, I would be asking for a refund by now.  In the future, I will limit my use of your program solely to citing sources in my own writing, as I simply don’t trust it for anything else.  I will definitely delete this thing off of my iPad!

My new workflow is to read and annotate on the iPad pro with GoodReader  (a vastly superior annotation tool), synchronize the results back to a paid DropBox account, and use Mac OS X file tags and heiarchical folder structures in Finder to organize my work.  It appears that the companies selling academic literature management software packages (EndNote, ReadCube, Sente, Zotero, Mendeley, etc.) are more interested in selling me an annual subscription to a web service rather than debugged, stable software.  I can manage my literature on my own, electronically, without your help.  If I am going to pay to subscribe to a cloud-based service, I would prefer to not always be wondering about what that service is doing to my work behind my back.