Android Notes Apps

Unfortunately Android does not come with a standard Notes App. So, a lot of programs appear on the market. What I want to have is an App which allows an automatic backup to an own server, security for the access and easy data import and export. The visible note data should not be synched to any cloud. I will describe what I found in following chapters.

Finally I selected App Note Everything for Palm memos import, and WebDAV File Manager for an automatic and periodic sync to my in house Linux server.

A new groupware solution is coming 2012 from http://owncloud.org version 3. Lets see, if it is better.

Features wanted:

iNotes

The App (version 1.2.6) was written by Jacub Klos. The trick to store the notes in order to sync them to an Exchange ActiveSync server, is to use the calendar for storage and put a specific mark in the data set, a % character in the field location.

Unfortunately Android Calendar allows a maximum of 1 month in the past to sync the calendar data. That works for now, but what, if you loose your calendar on the smart phone, and you you want to restore your data?

Therefore I deinstalled the App.

Notes for Exchange

This App (version 1.4) from Mr. Hundera works with the same trick as iNotes for storaging the notes in the Android calendar. The more clever idea was to put the note at the date of 29.02.2036. This will be synced to Exchange ActiveSync in any case, forth and back. The recognition mark in this case is here the string ExNotes v0.5 in the calendar field location.

What should work is the category field in calendar. The category can not be set in Notes for Exchange, just in the Exchange ActiveSync server calendar. The category also shows up in the Outlook 2002 calendar, but not in Notes for Exchange, hmm, not good.

A provided Outlook plugin should move a new generated note in Outlook to the Calendar and sync it to Exchange ActiveSync. Unfortunately this does not work in my test.

Therefore I deinstalled the App.

B-Folders

The App B-Folders from http://www.jointlogic.com/b-folders/2/download/ look promising, but the Palm memo CSV import is possible only with the desktop version. The desktop version (Win, Mac, Linux) cost $30, the trial time is 30 days.

Note Everything

The App note Everything looks promising, but important features, like password security and sync, are available only in the pro version.

The Export and Import of notes to the SD-card as text files is possible.

The secure transport of the text files to a webDAV storage can be done with WebDAV File Manager.

PalmNote

The App PalmNote (version 0.1.16) from Andy Anderson is lightweight (105 KB). It is possible to have a widget. The backup function must be done by App MyBackup. It needs the OI (OpenIndents) Filemanager to work. The Export of data is possible only in the XML format.

You have to export the Palm memos under Windows Palm desktop in the type Tab separated values, e.g file Palm_memos.tab. Select all memos then select export and mark all 3 export fields (Memo, Private, Category).

Attention: You have to modify your text file to suite the needs of the Android system (Linux). The End-Of-Line character must be LineFeed, the character coding must be UTF-8 in case you have Umlauts (German).

Copy the file to the Android SD-card and import to PalmNote. The Palm MPA-Archive could not be imported.

Memonic

Too big with 5 MB.

Color Note

As far as I can seen, there is no import possibility.

Classic Notes Lite

Has no categories.

Jorte

Calendar and Note App.

CSV Import via file /sdcard/jorte/todo_memo_data.csv .

OI Notepad

Version 1.2.3

Setup webDAV Storage, Default

The question is, how to backup the data in a secure manner.

The most flexible solution looks like a webDAV storage, with a personal Linux server via SSL transfer.

First the Apache2 server must be setup, like described iin the German computer magazine c't 15-2011, page 134-139, and Linux kompakt 01/12, page 68-75 (www.heise.de).

# Install the Apache2 webDAV module
$ sudo a2enmod dav_fs

# Extend in the file /etc/apache2/sites-available/default-ssl the "VirtualHost" block
# The file storage will be in /var/www/dav
$ sudo mkdir /var/www/dav
$ sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/dav
$ sudo chmod -R 750 /var/www/dav

# Edit
 # webDAV setup 2012-03  RudolfReuter
        Alias /dav /var/www/dav
        <Location /dav>
          DAV On
          AuthType Basic
          AuthName "dav"
          AuthUserFile /var/www/pw.dav
          Require valid-user
        </Location>

# setup the new password file (server password)
$ sudo htpasswd -c /var/www/pw.dav rudi  #Username
# the new password will be asked twice
$ sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/dav/pw-dav
$ sudo chmod -R 750 /var/www/dav/pw-dav

# For Digest Authentication, see http://httpd.apache.org/docs/2.2/mod/mod_auth_digest.html
$ sudo htdigest -c /var/www/rudi.pw-dav dav rudi
$ sudo chown -R root:root /var/www/dav/rudi.pw-dav
$ sudo chmod -R 750 /var/www/dav/rudi.pw-dav

# Restart Apache2
$ sudo /etc/init.d/apache2 restart
or
$ sudo service apache2 restart

attachment:webDAV_files_browser.png

For test purposes copy a few file in the folder /var/www/dav.

Now have a look in the web browser to address: https://www.rudiswiki.de/dav

A login mask appears and you have to enter Username and Password.

Please see the screen shot on the right, how it could be in Firefox.

Now you see, that it works in principle, with the webDAV storage.

Next step is to select an Android App, which could do an automatic, periodic sync.

Sync Data File to Server

Now, that an export (XML) and storage (webDAV) possibility for the notes data exists, the question arise how to backup the data in a secure manner.

Important features:

I have tried 4 different Apps. Just the forth one works:

Now I can sync every hour (5 min to 1 h interval) the content of my selected folder to a webDAV storage folder on my server.

The only drawback is, that you have to select the sync direction manually.

List of pages in this category:

-- RudolfReuter 2012-02-08 05:34:31


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rudiswiki9b: AndroidNotes (last edited 2012-07-30 17:13:13 by dslb-084-058-129-133)