Losing review data when syncing, without warning

This has happened to be twice now.

I sync from the computer when I’ve created new cards, and have unsynced reviews on my phone. Then I sync on my phone and I lose some (but seemingly not all) of the unsynced reviews and they appear as new cards again.

This has never been a problem in the past. It always warned me if there was the potential for reviews to get overwritten. The lack of warning made me think nothing would be lost.

Is this going to be addressed? It’s seriously setting me back on my test prep.

if you review or edit on two different devices before syncing, Anki will preserve your changes from both locations. If the same card has been reviewed in two different locations, both reviews will be marked in the revision history, and the card will be kept in the state it was when it was most recently answered
Syncing with AnkiWeb - Anki Manual

Be sure to sync when opening and closing anki ( Automatic Syncing in Preferences)


i haven’t done any reviews on my computer. The behavior that I’ve seen twice now is different than what is described on that page. I believe it may be a bug.

It seems very possible that you edited those notes/cards in some small way – even if you don’t remember doing that while you were adding other new notes/cards. If you have new review history on one device and edits on the other, and they are reconcilable – Anki will reconcile them, just as described.

The very best thing you can do to protect your collection is sync every time you start and every time you stop using the app on every device. If you are doing anything else, you are in danger of this happening again, so be strict with yourself about it.

If I repositioned some other cards in the deck, would that count as “editing” those other cards? Because that definitely seems like an unwanted behavior.

Yes, if you repositioned a New card on one device that would definitely count as an edit. And if you had previously introduced/studied it on another device, that would be just the kind of thing that would cause this.

The serious unwanted behavior that Anki is trying to avoid is disregarding your most recent change. Anki can’t tell which thing was more important to you any other way.

But the even more serious unwanted behavor that Anki is trying to avoid is your collections being incompatible on sync and forcing you to sync one-way and lose data that was important to you.

In order to help Anki prevent those 2 things – you’re responsible for not making changes unless your collection is in sync.

I understand that. I’ve used Anki for over a decade now and never encountered this issue before. I think it would be a significant improvement that could save people a lot of lost time if this could be fixed by changing the syncing algorithm to prioritize reviews over repositioning or frankly any change other than modifying content of the card.

But a good quick fix would simply be to display the same warning that is shown in other circumstances that gives users the opportunity to force sync one side or the other any time that a sync has the potential to overwrite reviews.

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