This is the official user feedback forum for Sidewise, the Google Chrome extension that brings a dockable sidebar and Tree Style Tabs to Chrome.
+5
Answered

Backing up / Importing Sessions or Synchronizing across computers

Nayelianne 7 years ago • updated by SkepticalViews 3 years ago 10

First of all I'd like to commend you on the great extension. Back when I used firefox I was a Tree Style Tab user and recently I found the need for keeping my tabs organized. The folder and renaming tab feature is great and the "Note"  button is super handy. So far your extension was the closest(and best functioning) I found to an integrated sidebar on chrome(the whole auto-resize and positioning saves me of a lot of trouble) :)

But more often than not I have the need of working on more than one computer, which means I'm using a different app for keeping those tabs stored on the cloud (it uses google authentication), loading them on the second computer and then manually reorganizing everything on Sidewise to match the other computer. It'd be okay if that list of tabs didn't change as often as it does, but lately, it's been agonizingly time consuming and very tiring to reorganize everything properly.

I tried copying the entire extension folder that's buried inside the AppData folder and replacing it on the second computer, but nothing happened... So I'd really love to know if there's any way to export the saved settings and tabs, even if I have to manually copy files/folders and replace them every time I make a switch.

Anyway, thanks for the great work so far. <3

Answer
Joel Thornton 7 years ago

Some kind of syncing and export functionality is on the todo list, though probably won't make an appearance for some time. I want to get most of the planned core features in place first, which will give me a good idea of what should be syncable/exportable and how it should function -- i.e. what should be synced when, should everything be considered one big "shared session" or do we want to have separate "work", "home", etc. sessions, and so on.

Regarding a manual export/transfer mechanism, there isn't a real clean way to do this right now. While it is possible to dump all of Sidewise's settings and pagetree/notepad content and import it on another machine, the bigger problem is getting the specifically currently-open tabs to carry over from one machine to another, which is more of a Chrome-specific thing. This might be well-accommodated by Chrome's own ability to sync "open tabs" but I haven't tried it.

That being said, if you want to give it a try, I'll give you the basic starting points.

Firstly go to Chrome's Extensions page, check the Developer mode checkbox in the upper right, then click background.html under the Sidewise entry in the extension list. From there switch to the Console tab. We'll be entering Javascript commands into Sidewise's background page to export/import its state data.

Quick and dirty export of Sidewise's state:

copy(JSON.stringify(localStorage))

This exports a copy of Sidewise's state data to your system clipboard.


Quick and dirty import of state from the clipboard:

var s = <PRESS CTRL+V TO PASTE THE DATA><press Enter>
for (var k in s) { settings.set(k, JSON.parse(s[k])); }

This imports the state data from the clipboard into Sidewise's current settings, overwriting whatever's there currently.

Then disable/enable Sidewise from the Extensions page to restart it.


I haven't tested this across multiple machines but I was able to export, hand-modify, and then import the state data on my single Chrome instance and after restarting Sidewise the modifications were there.

But again this doesn't address the issue of which tabs are open on each machine. During its startup, Sidewise will do its best to figure out which open tabs correspond to which entries in the tree, but this is definitely unexplored territory :)

Good luck!


+5
Planned

Saving tab trees to bookmarks

Muntoo Meddler 7 years ago • updated by Joel Thornton 7 years ago 0

The problem

In the event of a Sidewise/browser malfunction, or accidental closing of a branch, the ability to save all tabs (including hibernated) to a folder in the bookmarks would be very useful.


Currently, I manually hibernate everything, and then individually wake trees that need to be saved. I then use the "FreshStart - Cross Browser Session Manager" extension to save these tabs. Unfortunately, it is a slow method when I have a large number of tabs in a tree.


A solution

Saving the bookmarks to a folder like FreshStart does would be useful. Each folder in Sidewise will correspond with a folder in the bookmarks.


This is just an idea (and a bad one): a 'metadata bookmark' could be saved as well to record the state/location of each tab in the branch, as well as its labels/highlights.


<hr />


P.S. You may want to take this into consideration before implementing "non-core features" -- even if I suggest some! ;)

Answer
Joel Thornton 7 years ago

An ability to save both single tabs and branches of tabs to bookmarks is definitely planned and I consider it a core feature. The "metadata bookmark" idea is an interesting one; I'll have to give this some consideration. It would definitely be a hack, but it would sure be nice to have those Sidewise-specific states retained. Perhaps it will be a (default off) option that users can turn on if they want to make that trade-off.


Regarding the issue of feature bloat: I agree this is something to be studiously avoided; I can think of numerous examples of once-great lightweight apps that gradually become laden with features that are low-value cruft, and which end up detracting from the performance, usefulness, and clarity-of-vision of the earlier versions.

I have in mind a "core" feature set that will eventually result in a total of about 9 sidebar panes that will come "built in" with a Sidewise install, and I plan to have 4 or 5 of these *at most* turned on by default, along with an ability for the user to control which panes are visible (and their ordering) in the options page. I consider these "built in" panes to be a part of my original vision for Sidewise, together comprising a comprehensive set of sidebar-oriented tools that give great visibility and control over the user's browsing experience. All of these panes will be designed to work together in a holistic manner.

Any additional sidebar panes will likely be made available by installing extra "sidebar pane" extensions from the Chrome Web Store, which will also allow for other folks to create their own sidebar panes, or give existing extensions the ability to show up as a Sidewise pane.

I am taking a similar tack with the options page, with an overall goal of the default "non advanced" options page taking up about one screen-height at the most. Power users can then "reveal advanced options" if they really want to get customization-crazy.

+5
Completed

"Close window" shortcut shouldn't close Sidewise window

Samuli Kärkkäinen 6 years ago • updated by Samuli Kärkkäinen 3 years ago 4

Sidewise does its best to act like it's not a separate window, which is good. With Firefox's Tree Style Tab, one of my common usage patterns was changing the tab using mouse wheel, and closing tabs using ^W. With Sidewise that instead closes the Sidewise window. It would be good if ^W in the Sidewise window instead closed the currently active tab.

Answer
Joel Thornton 6 years ago

Good idea. Fixed in next version. 

+5

Is Sidewise supposed to save folders and their content between browser sessions?

Johnny Wilson 6 years ago • updated by Snooz 5 years ago 2

Is Sidewise supposed to save folders and their content between browser sessions?

+5

How do i disable last session feature?

Lee 5 years ago • updated by marcus shmidt 3 years ago 4

I don't need it because i use History in chrome if i want to restore last session. 

i can't understand even why the feature made in.. 


i found this session feature at other simillar ext. but ... why? Chrome's History feature is enough.


annoying so much. i everytime remove it. 

btw thanks to nice ext.


I'm going to donate some $ if few problems solved.

+5

Closed tabs still visible in Sidewise

RevHardt 5 years ago • updated by Hawk 4 years ago 1
  • Tabs closed from the browser window (via mouse or keyboard) remain in the Sidewise window without fail. In addition, they are indistinguishable from open tabs, which causes mass confusion.
    They have to be manually closed in Sidewise too, and sometimes refuse to be removed (cannot reproduce on demand, but fairly common).
    Closing tabs from Sidewise works as expected. No other tab management extensions enabled.
  • Tabs remain in Sidewise between sessions (corresponding option is unchecked - not sure if it is because Chrome continues in background)
  • Open tabs jump around sometimes (not reproducible on demand), and often refuse to remain in position even after manual rearrangement. Happens irrespective of Sidewise smart focus logic option status.
+5

Anyway to disable the top tabs if Sidewise is enabled?

Ben Galiagos 6 years ago 0

 Seems silly to have two tab locations in the browser.

+5
Under review

Chrome scrollbar no longer at right hand side

onguarde 7 years ago • updated by Joel Thornton 7 years ago 4

The chrome window is no longer minimised when sidewise tree is docked.

I can no longer easily right the right scrollbar simply by flinging my mouse over to the rightmost side of the screen.


I use it frequently for panning so its a little annoying.

In windows, placing the chrome window slightly offscreen doesn't work. 

Windows 7 will automatically, move it back into the viewable area. I tried to search for a way to turn this off but it seems its not possible.


Anyone else finding this an issue?

+4

Import Failures on Version 2017.2.12.0

David Kirk 11 months ago • updated by Klaus Thorn 10 months ago 1

I am getting an error when trying to import any Sidewise config export.


A pop-up opens and says: "There was a problem importing the data. Unexpected token u in JSON at position 1464." as well as a long dump of errors.


How to duplicate:

  1. Install Sidewise.
  2. Open a single tab for google.com.
  3. Click Sidewise gear.
  4. Scroll to the bottom of the Sidewise Options and click Export.
  5. Click Import and paste what you just exported.