[RESOLVED] Backup very large

I have Arc running 6 months now and it works pretty good. But it puts 1,4 GB of data/backups in my iCloud storage. Is 6 months of location data really that big? I disabled backups in Arc settings now but I guess I have to wait until I see the result of this?

Hi! Yep, unfortunately the way that data is stored in iCloud’s CloudKit service is very inefficient in its use of space. The backups do indeed get that large.

Which is one of the reasons why I’m working on a replacement backup system - still iCloud based, but using compressed JSON files on iCloud Drive, rather than iCloud’s CloudKit database service.

The new system allows me to ensure that the backups stay a sensible size. And has the added benefit of the backups also being inspectable via iCloud Drive.

I’m hoping to have the new backup system ready within a few weeks. Unfortunately it’s meant that I’ve had to delay work on Arc Mini and Arc v4, which sucks. But the current backup system just hasn’t scaled well to the sizes of our databases, so it’s time for it to be replaced.


Aside: I’ve moved this discussion to the Known Issues category, because it’s a common question, and ultimately one that I have to resolve by replacing the backup system. (It’s just not possible to get the backups to be more space efficient while using the CloudKit service).


Any news here?

Asking because my backup data is more than 11Gb.

The new backup system is ready to go. I’ve been testing it extensively over the past couple of months, which unfortunately is a painfully slow process, due to having to add and delete tens of thousands of files from iCloud Drive every day. But I’m finally happy with all of the results (albeit not so happy with some bits of UI that could do with more polish), so will be releasing the update possibly this weekend :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes::tada:

The new backup system will immediately start taking over from the old system, and once a full backup has completed with the new system, the old backups will be automatically deleted, freeing up all of that iCloud space.

The new backups are perhaps about 5% of the size of the old ones (eg if your backups are currently 10GB, the new backups will be only about 500MB). And they are also considerably faster - able to complete the first full backup potentially in less than a day (although typically a few days, if you don’t do the foreground + no screen lock trick, to speed things along).

So yeah, I’m doing a final sweep over it all today, and if all looks good I’ll prep for release on the weekend.

Ok so, the new backup system is now live! It’s in the 3.5.0 update that went out a couple of days ago.

It’ll immediately start working on doing a new full backup to the new system, which is stored on your iCloud Drive (thus easily visible, unlike the old iCloud CloudKit based system).

It also uses orders of magnitude less iCloud space, eg 500 MB instead of 10 GB.

It’s also a lot faster. Best case is it could finish your first full backup within a day. Though more likely it’ll get spread out over 2-3 days, unless you do the trick of leaving Arc in the foreground while the phone is plugged in to power and screen lock timer is turned off.

Once it’s finished the first full backup to the new system, it’ll delete the old stuff from iCloud CloudKit, freeing up all those wastefully used gigabytes. Yay! :tada:

Is this specifically about just back ups or does this concern the Arc app data as well?

Because mine is 14GB :face_with_spiral_eyes:

@diversario, which Settings app view is that from? That looks like the “iCloud → Manage Account Storage” view to me?

The view for how much space the app is taking up on your phone is at “General → iPhone Storage”.

Ah yes, correct, that was from iCloud. On the phone just 5GB.

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