Become a MacRumors Supporter for $50/year with no ads, ability to filter front page stories, and private forums.

dnta11

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 6, 2021
4
2
Unfortunately I had double contacts from a migration a year or so ago. With 2000 contacts I just didn't deal with it as I believed I had to do so individually. I've deleted some as I've gone along, but still lots. Then, I just got a new Mac and now I have 4 of almost all Contacts! (Almost 8K now!) Here's my issue with finding and then merging duplicates - I use the NOTES section at the bottom of contacts regularly to put important info I need to remember (such as 'CODED' PW's, dates with a quick summary of a business interaction, etc.) I tested merging one set of Contacts and Cal kept the OLDEST contact - w/o new notes that had been put in after that one. So there's no combining OR the merge function randomly chooses which contact to keep. I am feeling beyond overwhelmed by this. Any ideas? Thanks!
 

Attachments

  • Example of some Triple Dupes.jpg
    Example of some Triple Dupes.jpg
    105.5 KB · Views: 199
  • Like
Reactions: kacmo21

BrianBaughn

macrumors G3
Feb 13, 2011
9,694
2,447
Baltimore, Maryland
With 4 x 2000 you've got work to do!

One thing I've thought of is possibly using another email service to handle this as it might work better. Such as…exporting all your contacts for import into a temporary Google account, using the merge function at Google Contacts, then exporting them out from Google for import back to the Mac.

Alternately…with the same temporary Google account…you could just sync the Google account to your Mac, copy the contacts (in the Contacts app) to the google account, go to the web portal of Google, then perform the merge. If it's satisfactory you can delete the original contacts and copy the Google ones back over to the account they started in.

I don't really know if Google, Outlook.com, or some other service will actually give you better results but it's worth a shot.

Be sure to make a backup of all those contacts before you start.
 

dnta11

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 6, 2021
4
2
Thank for your time in considering my post and for your ideas, yet not knowing in advance if other programs keep the most updated contact when they "merge" or, if like Apple Contacts, just randomly keep one of the 4 (I need the most up to dates on the contact's NOTES section, especially I'm gonna pass for now. AND I suspect the other programs might not even recognize my Apple Contact NOTES section, just the phone, address, etc areas.) Also, I'm quite attached to the way my iPhone, iPad and computer syncs haha. Yet HONESTLY, I do appreciate your ideas and help. After talking with another Apple tech (he suspects they DO keep the most up to date when merging but that even Apple only considers the pertinent info like phone, address, etc. - I am just going to keep the computer nearby when watching mindless TV and work on them 4 at a time. Thanks! Enjoy your holidays.
 

0128672

Cancelled
Apr 16, 2020
5,962
4,783
OK, just to be sure I understand this is the behavior you're experiencing in iOS 12, yes? I just tested this in iOS 15 and had the same results. But I also tested in macOS Monterey and both sets of notes were displayed. I don't know if you have access to an updated Mac (and maybe it works the same way in earlier macOS versions too), but that's a thought. If you do, I would test with a test contact or two duplicates of one of your originals with slightly modified data (so it won't affect your original).

Just added another test contact, and the merged contact displays all 3 unique notes.
 

LLK

macrumors newbie
Mar 10, 2023
1
1
Just had IOS 16 upgrade and still same issue. Unfortunately I didn’t realize this was an issue until it was an issue and too late. I have over 1000 contacts where the “merged” data, although basic contact fields were correctly updated, has overwritten the contact’s notes section with OLD/PREViOUS notes. I tried to go back to the iClouds data recovery to a previous version but unfortunately the few backups didn’t go far enough back by the time I realized it was an issue.

This is a MAJOR issue that apple needs to rectify. Quite honestly I can’t believe the functionality of this simple process of field mapping hasn’t been addressed sooner.

APPLE, PLEASE ADDRESS IN NEXT UPDATE!! The fact that I lost contact notes going back 10 years likely because of a lack in complete field mapping is simply shameful!!.
 
  • Like
Reactions: kacmo21

kacmo21

macrumors newbie
Sep 19, 2023
1
0
I have this same problem and it is a HUGE problem. Help!!! Just lost 15 years of critical notes data- had no idea this would be lost. Seems none of the Merge/Delete Apps out there address this either? Apparently everyone thinks only the names, email address and phone numbers are important and not the detailed notes I have added over all the years which there is no way to recreate? HELP!!!!! I could possibly restore from iCloud and then I'll be back to the 4x every contact, now up to 20,000. I want to upgrade my phone, but then I would be at 8x every contact. WTF. This is not sustainable and needs a real solution. APPLE, and APP DEVELOPERS: PLEASE ADDRESS THIS!!! If anyone has a legit solution that works, please share!
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.