SeaMonkey Internet Suite

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Sync alternative: Xmarks

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Complemented 2016-03-29 – 10:31

I found that alternative in Wikipedia.

setupwizardMy Tests

If you want to try / use Xmarks Sync you have to  download and install the Xmarks for Firefox add-on. Installation worked without problems for my En-US SeaMonkey 2.40 final Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; rv:43.0)from official download page, Gecko/20100101 Firefox/ 43.0 Build 20160120202951, (Default Classic Theme) on German WIN7 64bit (although SeaMonkey is not listed as compatible Application), you can work with it after relaunch of SeaMonkey.

Features are Bookmark SyncBackup and Restore, Online Bookmarks Access, Bookmarks Sharing, Open Tabs Sync, Sync Profiles, History Sync, what means more or less “bookmarks and history sync”; strikethrough means that I did not find out how to get that working. Great: I can transver my SeaMonkey-bookmarks and -history to a parallel installation of Firefox 48.0a1 (2016-03-27) (other direction not yet tested).

Missing Features (compared to Mozilly Sync): Sync for Add-OnsPasswords (“disabled”, but you can easily switch to LastPass…, which is recommended in the Xmarks dashboard), Preferences.

How to use: For synchronizing Bookmarks you have to create an account, what works without problems. From menu ‘Tools  →  Add-On-Manager’ the Xmarks [Options] button’ will launch a setup-wizard with link to createon account. After confirmation via your e-mail-account you can use Xmarks.

SyncNowVia menu ‘Tools  →  Add-On-Manager’ the Xmarks [Options] button’ you will reach the dashboard. The Sync Tab shows some options for sync-data-upload to Xmarks (“only upload”, “bi-directional sync”, “Download from server only”). The Restore Tab will show a list with uploaded Bookmarks and allow to select from what State you want to sync.

I did not find out how the “Open Tabs Sync” works, but I can’t imagine for what that feature should be useful.

My rating

I can’t recommend Xmarks. The service does what it should do, but at least for me that all is completely unintuitive:

  • it’s unclear when you are settings and when you are starting a sync. process. [Ok] button closes Sync, is it necessary to click [Ok] to update the settings before you switch to an other tab?
  • When you click [Synchronize Now] it’s unclear what you will do, you will have to check your preferences in the Sync-Tab before. There is no Help-button, only a hidden, very confusing 976 pages Help.PDF on a cloud help page.
  • In Advanced-Tab [Show Log File] button does nothing (like “Learn More” link, I got a “Request too large” warning when I Uploaded, but after  [Ok] → Relaunch the Xmarks dashboard showed “Sync Successful”
  • [Bookmarks Preview] below Buttons below list  of uploaded sync data will open a new Browser TAB what asks for sign in, but you can’t type authentication data before you closed the dashboard.
  • List  of uploaded sync data does not show whether also History data has been uploaded. It’s completely unclear What History data is available for download
  • The Status information progress bar seems to have no correlation to real progress.
  • When you start complete Sync. including download of History data the status information will show “ready”  for History, although download has not yet started.
  • Help forum does no longer exist, no “Contact” link

Well, it’s free and it works, and a better alternative has not yet been presented, but …

Some additional information

The version (4.3.18) I tested also is available from AMO, the user ratings are very varying, from “best tool ever” to “Deleted all my Bookmarks, do not use!”

Clker-GrafkThe SeaMonkey-Project is living thanks to contributions of the Community, manpower and donations. Any amount is appreciated (suggestion: 5 €/year or Flattr). Possibilities for donation: to the SeaMonkey e. V. or via my private campaign. Backgrounds concerning the reasons why I currently do not recommend to donate for the SeaMonkey e. V. you find  here in the unofficial German SeaMonkey News Blog, the posting in the official SeaMonkey Blog has been deleted. With a click on the pile of money picture at the right you will reach my private donation campaign (not under responsibility of the SeaMonkey-Project or of mozilla). So, if you you want to help to improve SeaMonkey, please donate. Plans how to use donated money will be published and discussed here in the Blog, starting in April 2016.


Author: rrbd

Freelancer, Engineer, Camper, Canoeist

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