1. crashnburn_in's Avatar
    Complex Issue: iPhone Contacts with unified/ linked cards double sync with iCloud & back up with iTunes + Outlook

    **Current State:**

    - iPhone 4
    - iOS 5.1.1b

    **iCloud Control Panel/ Application Setup** (Windows): downloaded, not installed or used

    **Current Syncing:**

    - iPhone > WiFi/ 3G > iCloud
    - iPhone > USB Cable > Windows 7 x64 > iTunes 10.6.3.25 > Outlook 2010

    **Yes, I need syncing on both my Laptop and iCloud.** Why?

    - Manual Sync with Laptop is INFREQUENT
    - So I need iCloud for daily incremental updates
    - Manual Sync with Laptop is ESSENTIAL
    - Non-cloud backup copy as I'm in areas with no net (think 3rd world, rural)

    **Contacts:**
    Linked Cards (unified)

    - iCloud
    - iPhone

    Note: Also, a bunch of the contact cards are not all linked to each other and many of them I had to be linked manually, as a bunch of names were duplicates. Some were with first name only, so non-unique "first name" identifiers and hence not auto linked or unified.

    **How they look right now in the iPhone CONTACTS:**

    **CONTACTS**

    iPhone:

    Groups:
    All Contacts >

    From My PC:
    All from My PC >
    GroupName 1 >
    GroupName 2 >
    GroupName 3 >
    GroupName 4 >
    GroupName 5 >
    GroupName 6 >
    GroupName 7 >
    GroupName 8 >

    iCloud:
    All iCloud >
    GroupName 1 >
    GroupName 2 >
    GroupName 3 >
    GroupName 3 > (Yes.. Duplicate/ Repeated?)
    GroupName 4 >
    GroupName 5 >
    GroupName 6 >
    GroupName 7 >
    GroupName 8 >
    GroupName 8 > (Yes.. Duplicate/ Repeated?)

    THATS A LOT OF INFORMATION What do I need help with?

    1. I need some way to figure out and count the number of contacts I have on iCloud v/s the number I have in iPhone/iTunes/Outlook. Where and how can I look that up?

    If that number is not the same on both then one COPY has CONTACTS that are missing on another. The larger set should then be my MASTER copy.

    2. If possible, I'd like to link/ merge / consolidate the CONTACTS from both the sources or be able to setup a 3 WAY SYNC that does not create issues like this or duplicates in the future (or atleast for now)

    3. Figure out my Larger/ Master Contacts STORE, back it up and keep it safe for synching so that I can update iOS 5.1.1b to either of following (most stable version of the following):
    - iOS 6.1.x
    - iOS 7.0.x

    4. Set up some kind of 3-way sync so that the above 2 Sync Backup scenarios can be maintained.

    **NOW**

    - What should I do and in what order?
    - I know this is a tough one, but would like to go methodically so that there is lesser room for issues and loss of CONTACTS and other data.
    01-25-2014 12:34 AM
  2. Just_Me_D's Avatar
    First of all, if you initiate the contacts app on your iPhone and scroll to the bottom of the list, it will clearly tell you the total number of contacts. When I login to www.icloud.com and scroll to the bottom of the contact list, I see the total number of contacts I have so I'd like to think that it is similar with other email accounts and even via Microsoft Outlook.

    Second, you can have multiple email accounts configured on your i-device and still be able for all of them to use one contact list. Having said that, if you have multiple email accounts configured and each account is set to sync their contact list, disable all of them except one. I prefer that your primary list be kept via iCloud because you will be able to sync your iPhone, iPad, PC or Mac simultaneously. If you make a change on one device, it will get synced to all of your device that are configured with iCloud.

    Finally, always keep an exported copy of your contacts on your computer, on a cloud storage service and/or on a USB drive for emergency purposes.

    Summary:
    1. manually weed out your duplicates, if you don't have multiple accounts configured. If you do, simply disable syncing of the contacts from all accounts except one.
    2. Move your contacts to iCloud and then configure your devices to be used with iCloud
    3. Keep an exported copy of your contacts in a safe place for emergency purposes.
    01-25-2014 10:46 AM
  3. crashnburn_in's Avatar
    First of all, if you initiate the contacts app on your iPhone and scroll to the bottom of the list, it will clearly tell you the total number of contacts. When I login to www.icloud.com and scroll to the bottom of the contact list, I see the total number of contacts I have so I'd like to think that it is similar with other email accounts and even via Microsoft Outlook.

    Second, you can have multiple email accounts configured on your i-device and still be able for all of them to use one contact list. Having said that, if you have multiple email accounts configured and each account is set to sync their contact list, disable all of them except one. I prefer that your primary list be kept via iCloud because you will be able to sync your iPhone, iPad, PC or Mac simultaneously. If you make a change on one device, it will get synced to all of your device that are configured with iCloud.

    Finally, always keep an exported copy of your contacts on your computer, on a cloud storage service and/or on a USB drive for emergency purposes.

    Summary:
    1. manually weed out your duplicates, if you don't have multiple accounts configured. If you do, simply disable syncing of the contacts from all accounts except one.
    2. Move your contacts to iCloud and then configure your devices to be used with iCloud
    3. Keep an exported copy of your contacts in a safe place for emergency purposes.
    - I will check out the Number of Contacts as you suggested. Thanks.

    - i do not have any of the email accounts configured at all for Sync with iCloud etc.
    - Only thing I have SYNC ENABLED on iCloud is CONTACTS - PRIMARY CONTACTS - (Nothing to do with email accounts as I do not use it to respond or add contacts majorly)
    - I am not sure why you got off track on EMAIL accounts as I did not post anything related to that
    - I have a single iCloud email account for iPhone, iTunes etc. AND I do not use that email on the iPhone for email. Just iCloud/ iTunes.
    - The GROUPS are fine.
    - The LINKED / UNIFIED duplicate contacts happened because of "Dual Sync" of the phone with iTunes+ Outlook and later with iCloud (when I upped from iOS4 to iOS 5.1.1b)

    I am guessing this was due to a faulty iCloud that people say was fixed in version 6?

    I do not have duplicates per se, these show as single contact in iPhone but when looking below it shows - Linked/ Unified Cards - iCloud > & iPhone >

    Do you get what I am saying?

    Should I install the iCloud Setup Application for Windows?
    01-25-2014 02:49 PM
  4. Just_Me_D's Avatar
    - I will check out the Number of Contacts as you suggested. Thanks.
    Okay, and you're welcome.

    - i do not have any of the email accounts configured at all for Sync with iCloud etc.
    Okay
    - Only thing I have SYNC ENABLED on iCloud is CONTACTS - PRIMARY CONTACTS - (Nothing to do with email accounts as I do not use it to respond or add contacts majorly)
    Okay
    - I am not sure why you got off track on EMAIL accounts as I did not post anything related to that
    I did so because contacts are usually associated with people's email accounts AND many people with duplicate & syncing issues who often have multiple email accounts configured and contacts from each account set to sync to their devices. Furthermore, I can't recall the amount of times where people will say that they don't have this or that configured and/or enabled just to find out that they do.
    - I have a single iCloud email account for iPhone, iTunes etc. AND I do not use that email on the iPhone for email. Just iCloud/ iTunes.
    Re-read your second sentence and compare it with this one.
    - The GROUPS are fine.
    Okay
    - The LINKED / UNIFIED duplicate contacts happened because of "Dual Sync" of the phone with iTunes+ Outlook and later with iCloud (when I upped from iOS4 to iOS 5.1.1b)

    I am guessing this was due to a faulty iCloud that people say was fixed in version 6?
    I suppose

    I do not have duplicates per se, these show as single contact in iPhone but when looking below it shows - Linked/ Unified Cards - iCloud > & iPhone >

    Do you get what I am saying?
    No

    Should I install the iCloud Setup Application for Windows?
    If you think it will help, go for it. I don't use a Windows computer and I've NEVER used the iCloud Setup Application for it.
    01-25-2014 04:24 PM
  5. crashnburn_in's Avatar
    Thanks for helping out. I appreciate it.

    Let me clarify and simplify this a little bit and LIMIT the SCOPE of the QUESTION and SOLUTION STEPS.

    Different number of Contacts on iPhone, iCloud & Outlook. How to find the ones not in both? & Fix it

    We have not yet installed the iCloud Control Panel for Windows on the PC - Win 7 x64

    Contacts and count as shown in the following sources:

    - Outlook:2481 Items
    - iCloud: 3010 Contacts
    - iPhone: 3135 Contacts

    Contacts as shown inside **iPhone 'Contacts'** App:


    **Groups**

    All Contacts > 3135 Contacts

    **From My PC**
    All from my PC > 2868 Contacts
    ..

    **iCloud**
    All iCloud > 3010 Contacts
    ..

    ( Note: .. = smaller sub-groups under each being ignored)

    Some new contacts are preset on iPhone + iCloud, but do not show up on my PC (in Outlook contacts).

    There are some "linked / unified" contacts inside the iPhone that are present on both iCloud and PC - i.e. the duplicates that show up as SINGLE in CONTACTS, but as 2 contacts in Whatsapp and similar apps.

    How do I find the excess, the contacts that are no present in the other and consolidate? and then Start Fresh and Correct this time around?

    PS: Currently on iPhone 4 iOS 5.1.1b and want to sort this out to Update to 6.1.x or 7.0.x
    01-25-2014 08:49 PM
  6. Kaitokomauri's Avatar
    I have had to deal with duplicated contact entries sourced from multiple accounts on my iPhone (i.e. Facebook name entries without contact details + iCloud contacts where only the email address would show). I tried manually going through the iPhone contact list trying to link as many contacts as possible to avoid them being shown as duplicates.

    The bottom line is that Linking on the iPhone is NOT a long-term solution. Why? It only takes you to accidentally un-sync say your iCloud contacts account from the iPhone (and then sync it back) and all the linking is gone with duplicates reappearing as separate entries. Apple would very much help if they actually SAVED linking data to iCloud - this is not the case.

    I have found that the only quick method to link duplicate contacts is to:

    1. Export all iPhone contacts (from all accounts) in VCF form on the PC
    2. Upload the VCF contacts into a Gmail account (can be a newly-created one - doesn't matter)
    3. Apply the "Merge duplicates" option in Gmail
    4. Export the contacts from Gmail back to your iPhone via using VCF as a vector

    This however, precipitates that you keep all your iPhone contacts in a single account after the above procedure (i.e. locally on the iPhone, iCloud, or keep them as they are syncing the iPhone with Gmail).
    Last edited by Kaitokomauri; 04-30-2014 at 05:33 AM.
    04-09-2014 06:39 AM

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