Repost from old forum - IOS camera upload not uploading/syncing in the background

Due to the recent changes, I’m not sure if any questions remaining on the .DE forum will be addressed, so am reposting this here. Thanks!

rotaryracer- 26d
I’ve been using Seafile for about a month now and it is working great! I’m going to migrate away completely from OneDrive in the next few weeks. For reference, I’m using the IOS client v2.4.2 and Seafile Server for Windows v5.03.

The one outstanding issue is that Seafile does not seem to be automatically uploading pictures from the iPhone and iPad camera roll in the background, whether the app is running or not. I have Auto Upload, Upload Videos, and Background Upload all enabled. Wifi Only is disabled so that it can upload via celluar or wifi. The Upload Destination is set to My Library.

When I launch the client, it will show that there are X number of files to be uploaded/synced, but it doesn’t take any further action. As an example, this morning I had 19 files that needed to be uploaded, but it did not begin the upload/sync. I tried refreshing the Camera Upload folder to see if that would do anything, but no luck.

The only way I’ve found to manually start the sync and get those files uploaded is to turn off Auto Upload, then re-enable it and set the Upload Destination to My Library. I choose not to reset the uploaded/synced picture files, and then it will push any non-synced files up to the server. This is a repeatable solution, but not ideal.

Any thoughts on how to get automatic upload/sync working correctly across IOS devices would be greatly appreciated!


daniel_pan - 25d
We will look into the issue.

rotaryracer - 18d
Thanks Daniel! I downloaded/installed the latest update to the IOS client (v2.4.3) - I didn’t expect any changes as they weren’t listed in the changelog, and behavior with uploading (and the manual workaround) is still the same.

Also, to make sure I’m giving you the correct info, is there another way to verify server version? I just went to the web client and looked at the version number at the bottom right, but that seems odd given your changelog dates. I downloaded and installed in the last week of May (27-May is what most file creation dates are showing in the folder), which makes me think I may have a newer version of the server running? Assuming I really am on 5.0.3, would updating to 5.1.3 help?

Thanks again…

Simsala - 15d
Background upload is also not working for me (iPhone 4s, Seafile Server 5.1.3, Seafile App 2.4.3).
In my case it is not necessary to stop and start auto upload, opening the app is enough to start uploading new photos.

rotaryracer - 2d
Hi Simsala - good to hear I’m not the only one, I guess. :slight_smile: I just fired up the mobile client again about 30 minutes ago, and just opening the app still didn’t auto-upload the files. I did my manual workaround and all photos were synced in seconds.

daniel_pan/others, any luck replicating the issue and/or coming up with a resolution? If there is any kind of log I can provide that would help, please let me know.


We are trying to fix the problem:

That’s great news - thank you very much Daniel! Aside from this one small issue, Seafile has been working flawlessly and is far superior to our previous OneDrive solution.

Thanks again…

Got notified via the App Store that there was a new IOS client and one of the fixes was for auto-upload. I’ve already updated my phone and will be testing this weekend. Thanks very much for the quick action on this!

Well, I’ve tested the newest IOS client with a couple of pictures, but no luck on auto-upload. I tried shutting down the app and restarting the phone, but there was no change. I’m running IOS 9.3.4 on an iPhone 5S, if that matters. For the IOS client, I have Auto Upload, Upload Videos, and Background Upload all enabled, and Wifi Only disabled. Under the iPhone settings, GPS access for Seafile is set to always, so it should recognize when I leave work and head home. The server version says (in the web browser) 5.0.3 - I thought I had the latest, but perhaps not. Any chance that could be a possible cause? I tried my old workaround (turn off Auto Upload, turn on Auto Upload, set the destination to My Library, select no for reset photo sync) and it uploaded the picture with no problem.

Is there a specific time interval Seafile uses to automatically upload files (i.e. every 15 minutes, 30 minutes, other)? It’s been at least a few hours since I took the one picture, so assuming it should’ve uploaded. In the interim, would it make sense to do a forced sync whenever you pull down and refresh the Camera Uploads folder? That would be easier than doing the disable/enable shuffle described above until the auto-upload is pushing files up correctly.



Seafile will check the photo changes every 30min. And every time you open the app, Seafile will force to detect whether the photos changed. If there are changes, seafile will try to upload the new photos. Does you use the iOS client 2.4.6?

Hi poetwang - thanks for the info. I have the new IOS 2.4.6 client installed and it’s connecting to server 5.0.3 running on Windows 10 64-bit. I took a test picture last night around 6PM and left the Seafile client open on the phone all night - it still shows “Camera Upload 1 Photo Remain” as of 6AM this morning. I would expect they are two separate things, but could my not having the newest version of server be causing an issue?

I’ve also tried closing the client, reauthenticating, and then waiting to see if the photo would upload - still “stuck”, unfortunately. I’ve tried toggling “Wifi Only” on and off to see if that will help (although I’m on LTE - should be fast enough to upload quickly), but no change to behavior.

Hope this helps - any other info I can provide to help track this down, please let me know.


As a follow-up, I upgraded to server 5.1.3 and Python 2.7.12 this morning with no change in picture upload behavior. It still shows “…1 Photo Remain”, and have had the app open and running in the background since about 6AM. I also confirmed that in the Apple settings under Privacy/Location Services, Seafile is set to “Always”. I’ve moved my location twice so far this morning (about 2 miles and 7 miles respectively) from where I took the test picture last night, but still no upload.

Anything else I can try/test, please let me know.


Hi Rotaryracer,
I’ve got almost exact same configuration as you have. My issue is that the background uploading doesn’t work. When open the app it will sync the photos straightaway but once the app is running in the background new photos won’t get uploaded even after 30 mins interval.

Hey new2seafile - yeah, so far, it’s probably the only glitch/limitation I’ve found since moving from OneDrive. Honestly, I don’t think OneDrive uploaded reliably in the background either, but it did upload when I launched the app. It sounds like mine differs from yours slightly in that it will never upload at launch - the settings just shows “X photo remain” and it will stay like that indefinitely, or at least until I do the manual workaround outlined above. As an example, I still had the “1 picture remain” test pic from 6AM yesterday morning. At around 7-8PM, I took about 10 more pictures at my nephew’s birthday party. As of 10AM this morning, I had “11 pictures remain” in the settings screen…more than 12 hours plus a location change, and no upload. :frowning: I did just do the manual workaround and they pushed up quickly…Seafile is SO much faster than other solutions I looked at.

One thing I want to look at and test further is my wife’s iPhone 6S. I just moved her over to Seafile as well and setup auto-upload for pictures. I think hers is working as intended, or at least I saw some pictures in the Camera Upload folder - just not sure if it was a true background upload or if the app was running. We’re on the same carrier and both connect to the wifi network when at home, so I don’t think it’s service related. Just for grins, I may also try completely uninstalling and reinstalling the client…maybe there’s some legacy stuff still left behind after the IOS client upgrade to 2.4.6?

In the grand scheme of things, auto-upload not uploading is probably a small thing given how well Seafile works for everything else…but it would be awesome if we could figure out the root cause and resolve. Hell, maybe it’s an excuse for me to upgrade to an iPhone 6S if it’s a hardware limitation. :slight_smile:


Just did some more test on the latest client. It seems that background uploading works for a while (1-2 mins) after putting the app to the background. And then it’d stop working until the app is re-opened.
As far as I know only icloud works flawlessly in the background (for the obvious reason). All other cloud clients including amazon photo, google photo, onedrive, owncloud and dropbox have different sorts of issue in regards to background uploading.
Seafile is almost perfect. Thanks to all devs’ hard work.

Hi Rotaryracer,
Does background upload work on your wife’s 6s? Just tested it on the 6s with latest client and ios but everything works apart from background upload (which seems to be one the most important features).

Hey new2seafile - I haven’t had much of a chance to do specific testing with it, but it appears to be hit and miss. I was pretty encouraged as I haven’t done anything to it after installing it on her phone and when I checked the other day, there was only picture pending upload. Every other picture she had taken since install had uploaded successfully, and I never had to use the manual workaround. Unfortunately, I checked again this morning and there were 34 pictures pending for upload from the afternoon before. :frowning: I don’t know if she had left the house since the pics were taken, so maybe it didn’t detect a location change via GPS? Either way, I would’ve thought it would go up to the server at the 30 minute interval, compare files, and sync any not found.

I’ll see if I can pry the phone away from her long enough to document some tests, but I’d say the 6S isn’t the silver bullet I was hoping for.

One thing I can confirm…when it uploads, it uploads FAST. I am still amazed at how fast Seafile syncs compared to other options I’ve used before.

Hi poetwang / daniel.pan - any other info/details I can provide on this that would help narrow down the cause? Everything else has been working flawlessly in Seafile with the exception of this minor detail. If you need additional info about my configuration (client/server/network), I’m happy to provide. The manual work around (disable Auto Upload, re-enable Auto Upload, set location to My Library, answer no to Reset Uploaded Photos) is easy enough to do, but ideally it would either (A) compare files and auto-upload anything new as soon as I launch the IOS client, or (B) in a perfect world, just upload in the background at preset intervals. It sounds like this is already the desired behavior that’s programmed in, I’m just not lucky enough to have it work correctly in my setup.

Thanks again for all your hard work!

Actually I’ve been using the latest client for a while. It did some auto upload sometime. But if the app stayed in the background long enough I had to restart the app to get the upload work. It seems that your problem is a bit different here.

Thanks N2S - I’ll check again on my wife’s iPhone 6S, as the new client did seem to work, although auto-upload would stop after awhile. Perhaps it’s similar to what you were seeing and I just need to restart the client on her phone? On my iPhone 5S (running newest version of IOS and Seafile client), auto-upload never works, regardless of what options I select or deselect. The only way to get pictures to upload is to do the manual workaround. I’ve tried uninstalled and reinstalling the newest Seafile client with no change, and am running the newest version of Seafile Server for Windows. We’re both on the exact same carrier connecting through the same home network to the same server, so I’d be inclined to think it was my phone. That said, I think you mentioned you have a 5S as well?

Unfortunately I use 6S not 5S. So the problem your wife encountered is as same as mine and the workaround is to restart the app. In this situation disable-enable auto upload won’t work as the app just seems to lose the connection to the server.

Your phone seems to have the vice versa issue as restarting the app doesn’t work for you and you’ll have to disable-enable. I remember seeing this issue on the old version (2.4.1 maybe?) but never occurred for the new version.

Upload Still breaks at random times. using iOS client 2.4.7
Tested on iPhone 6 and 6s.

using workaround: disable and re-enable auto sync, upload video and background sync.
workaround had to be done multiple times.


Hi, I do have the same problem with 2 iphones 6.

It was working fine until (I think) 2-3 weeks ago when I realized that the background upload was not working anymore.
And I confirm the workaround is working for us as well, but of course, it is not very convenient.

We are running on IOS 9.3.3 and IOS 9.3.5 with version 2.4.7 of Seafile client and server side 5.1.4


Hi zabrakoo/thedavix - thanks for the update. Sounds like a similar glitch to what myself and others are seeing.

@daniel.pan / @poetwang, any new updates? I’m running IOS 9.3.5 and the 2.4.7 client with 5.1.3 server (Windows). If there’s any type of logging that I can run on the server side (or anything built into the client), I’d be happy to send over more detail if available.

Thank you again for all your hard work!