Google’s Updated Back Up & Sync Clients Bring Buggy Features

September 16, 2017 - Written By Daniel Golightly

Users of Google’s services on the desktop have been asking for more control over their backup and sync tools for quite some time now and Google has finally answered the call to action, but there seem to be a couple of problems in the implementation. That’s because the latest update to the program now allows users to not include screenshots or RAW file-format images in their backups from PC, Mac, or laptop, but getting changes isn’t consistent between Google Drive and Google Photos – and worse, only seems to work some of the time. More specifically, the options are available for the Google Photos Client but are notably absent from the Google Drive client despite both having been updated to the most recent version – version 3.36.6721.3394.

As to the changes themselves, with the update, users will be able to choose whether or not to include screenshots or RAW photos in the files being backed up via the Google Photos Client. To access the features, users simply need to access the client’s preferences menu and select the newly “changes” option next to the folder selection interface. Inside of that menu, users will be able to select or deselect for either category of photos. That should save quite a bit of the limited space the files take up in Google Photos since RAW files are generally enormous and most users probably don’t want a forever copy of their screenshots – which can still be backed up manually at the website, for those rare exceptions. According to the source, the system does very well at distinguishing and skipping RAW files, which is probably helped by the ease with which specific file formats are labeled. However, screenshots still seem to slip through the vast majority of the time – which may hint at a problem with the algorithm Google is currently using to distinguish them since they are generally saved in more common image formats. That’s also a problem that reportedly happens across Android, iOS, Ubuntu, and Windows.

Bearing those things in mind, users are also getting a couple of much-needed bug fixes with the update. First, for Mac users specifically, a fix described as ‘macOS High Sierra compatibility’ comes with this version of the client. Furthermore, the update is expected to fix ‘folder duplication’ issues.