Can the ente desktop app automatically sync in the background?
Yes. The desktop app supports one-way background sync from folders on your computer to ente albums.
By using the "Watch folders" option in the sidebar, you can tell the desktop app which are the folders that you want to watch for changes. The app will then automatically upload new files added to these folders to the corresponding ente album (it will also upload them initially). And if a file is deleted locally, then the corresponding ente file will also be automatically moved to trash.
Paired with the option to run ente automatically when your computer starts, this allows you to automate backups to ente's cloud.
Press the Watch folders button in the sidebar. This will open up a dialog where you can add and remove watched folders.
To start watching a folder, press the Add folder button and select the folder on your laptop that you want to watch for any changes. You can also drag and drop the folder here.
If the folder has nesting, you will see two options - A single album and Separate albums.
Single album will create a new ente album with the same name as the folder's name, and will then sync all the changes in the folder (and any nested folders) to this single album.
Separate albums will create separate albums for each nested folder of the selected folder, and will then sync the changes in each nested folder separately.
For example, suppose you have a folder name
Photoson your computer, and inside that folder you have two nested folders named
Summer. In the single album mode, the app will create an ente album named "Photos" and put all the files from both
Summerthere. In the separate album mode, the app will create two ente albums, "New Year" and "Summer", each only containing the respective files.
In separate album mode, only nested folders that have at least one file will result in the creation of a new album – empty folders (or folders that only contain other folders) will be ignored.
After choosing any of the above options, the folder will be initially synced to ente's cloud and monitored for any changes. You can now close the dialog and the sync will continue in background.
When the app is syncing in the background it'll show a small progress status in the bottom right. You can expand it to see more details if needed.
You can stop watching any folder by clicking on the three dots next to the watch folder entry, and then selecting Stop watching.
Note: In case you start a new upload while an existing sync is in progress, the sync will be paused then and resumed when your upload is done.
Some more details about the feature are in our blog post announcing it.