MacJournal sync via MobileMe = systematic deletion of all content

MacJournal ravesMacJournal gets all kinds of raves from the various software reviewing sites, but I have to wonder why.

The raves were enough to get me to overlook the very "web 1.0" style of Mariner Software's website. The MobileMe sync feature was enough to get me to pony up $34.95 instead of going for Journler, which is cheaper now and has a very nice feature set itself. I wanted this app to serve as my new business journaling software. The sync ability is important to me because I often do my best thinking at home, away from the daily hubbub at the office.

Once installed, MacJournal worked fine.

But then I tried to sync it across two computers. Every time the MobileMe sync ran, it wanted to delete several entries.

Right now, after a series of updates, my MacJournal journal has been whittled back down to the first entry I made. Good thing I had saved the rest as one-off backups, because I saw the problem coming thanks to MobileMe's warning about massive changes due to sync.

In the Mariner Software email receipt, it says:

* Have a question or comment? Join the Mariner Software Discussion Forum.


Like most forums, you have to register to post. However, once I registered, I was informed:

Before you can login and start using the forum, your request will be reviewed and approved. When this happens, you will receive another email from this address.

Lovely. Nothing like the warm welcome of customer support! Mariner offers no support email, so this is it: A discussion forum jailed off from the real world.

–Not that I expect much from the forums. The existing threads have very stale content, much of it about problems syncing, with no clear resolution. One poster even goes so far to advise everyone to skip MobileMe sync for MacJournal altogether, and use a direct syncing application to pass the database back and forth.

That's not what I wanted!

So MacJournal is turning out to be a major dud software purchase and likely a waste of $35. Maybe I will just stick with Bare Bones' Yojimbo, which I use for note-taking, and expand my use of it to include journaling. The problem there, though, is there's no way to export Yojimbo except one entry at a time, which again is pretty frustrating for an application in 2008.


Update September 16th:

Not one to just rant and quite, once my user account was manually approved today, I posted this issue in the Mariner forums. So far, the only response is from someone else experiencing the same problems. Alas.

Update September 19th:

No other responses. I would say this does not bode well for expecting any kind of support. Mariner MacJournal is not at all recommended by me.

Yojimbo without .Mac (update)

Via my Lijit stats, I see that quite a few people are coming here searching for a solution of syncronizing or backing up Yojimbo without .Mac.

Alas I don't have an answer. I gave up and signed up for the .Mac service, despite their claimed "right" to snoop through or destroy whatever I put there. I'm using much more encryption on my entries now, that's for sure (and probably a best practice anyway).

I wish there were another answer. Alas....

EULA blues: How can I synchronize Yojimbo without .Mac?

After comparing many programs for my regular note-taking, I keep returning to Yojimbo. The tagging system and spotlight support are enough for me to find my misc notes. Syncing via .Mac has a nice wrinkle in that it will merge changes to individual files, so if you update a file on one computer, and another file on the other computer, when you sync them both changes are reflected on both machines. Still, while the tagging approach can be fast, creating more complex relationships is difficult, if not impossible. In the end, Yojimbo is not ideal, and I'm still planning on trying alternatives, but this is what I have.

What's worse, I'm kind of painted into a corner because BareBones has decided, in their wisdom, to provide no way at all to export your items except one at a time. There's also no way to export for backup, unless you want to manually back up the Yojimbo Application Support folder in your user Library.

This means that, out of the box, the only way to move files or back up your notes in Yojimbo is to use .Mac ... which is not ideal, when you consider the rather objectionable .Mac EULA, that includes such lovely items such as:

Subject to any specific license agreements for various .Mac software
features (including third party software), Apple may change, suspend or
discontinue any (or all) aspects of .Mac at any time, including the
availability of any .Mac feature. Apple may also impose limits on the
use of or access to certain features or portions of .Mac, or restrict
your access to any part or all of .Mac, in all cases without notice or

In other words, they can just kill your stuff without consequence. Oh sure, they would never do that! But if not, then why do they claim the right in the agreement?


Apple reserves the right to terminate your access to .Mac at any time,
with cause or without cause, in the event of any breach of this
Agreement by you (or anyone using your account or any sub-account),
your infringement of Apple's or .Mac's or others' intellectual
property, or any other circumstances which, in Apple's sole discretion,
merit termination. Any such termination may, if Apple elects (and
subject to applicable law), be without any refund to you of any prepaid
fees or amounts.

Translation: Apple can arbitrarily cancel your account and keep your money, and you have no recourse.



Translation: Apple can look at all your private files.

Why would I pay $99 a year, or more, for service under such terms? So this is now what I'm trying to avoid.

So does anyone out there know of a way to synchronize Yojimbo between machines without .Mac?


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