Where are user documents and files stored on the iPad? What is the recommended file system app?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by hajime, Mar 12, 2018.

  1. hajime macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #1
    Hello, on the Mac, we can store user files on the deskstop or within most folders. How about the iPad? I am confused about where user files are stored. As I read, in the past they are stored within each individual app. However, perhaps in iOS 11, things are different? I have a pdf file in dropbox. I tried to download it to the iPad but I cannot find the file on the iPad desktop. Could you please let me know where it is stored? Perhaps some kind of Download folder? Also, could you please recommend apps that allow me to view different folders on the iPad/iCloud/Dropbox, copy/move files to different locations, rename, etc.? Thanks.
     
  2. akash.nu macrumors 601

    akash.nu

    Joined:
    May 26, 2016
    #2
    The file should be accessible from within the specific app. The basic architecture of iOS is still the same on iOS 11.

    So you should be able to find the file within the Dropbox app.

    Also, depending on the apps you can copy and move from app to app and also rename the files within those apps.
     
  3. hajime thread starter macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #3
    What if I want to download a pdf file stored in Dropbox locally to iPad and then do pdf annotation there? I don't have internet connection all the time. So, I need to save it to the iPad locally.
     
  4. akash.nu macrumors 601

    akash.nu

    Joined:
    May 26, 2016
    #4
    There’s an option to save your files offline.

    Select the file and then tap on the three dots.

    [​IMG]

    Then choose - make available offline.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. hajime thread starter macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #5
    Thanks. Where in the iPad is the file going to be saved?
     
  6. techwarrior macrumors 6502a

    techwarrior

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #6
    iOS doesn't have a user accessible file system like the Mac. At least, the SDK and rules of engagement limit app developers from accessing the file system in traditional laptop\desktop manner. Thus, you cannot choose where you save docs, they go with each app.

    Under the hood, each app is likely stored in /Applications and the settings for each app in ~/Library (user's library folder). Likely, the files downloaded by apps like Dropbox are stored in ~/Library/Application Support/Dropbox.

    iCloud docs on the Mac are stored in ~/Library/Mobile Documents/com.apple.CloudDocs, and likely in a similar location on iOS.

    iOS generally doesn't use a user profile like Macs, but the ~/ is likely for "default" user as the /Library is intended for system level stuff. Since iOS supports limited profiles for education and such, there probably is a /Users path. But, since the only way to access files stored on the iOS device is through the respective apps, such as the iCloud "Files", Dropbox, etc, you are generally limited to this method.

    While it is possible for apps to share locally stored documents, this is done through the sharing mechanisms the OS makes available to apps. So, a PDF stored in Dropbox might be shared from within the Dropbox app to messages, mail, or other apps. But, other apps don't have direct access to the file stored in the Dropbox app.
     
  7. hajime thread starter macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #7
    Thanks. If I store the pdf files in Dropbox for the apps to access, do I have to internet connection all the time since the files are stored in the cloud?
     
  8. Longkeg macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2014
    Location:
    S. Florida
    #8
    If you made the file available offline then no you won’t need internet. You’ll have a copy of that file stored on your iPad within the Dropbox app. There will still be the original copy in the cloud. The catch may be, and I’m not sure if this is the case or not, that changes made to your locally saved, iPad copy may not be saved to the cloud copy since you won’t be connected to the internet.
     
  9. hajime thread starter macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #9
    What I want to do is the following:

    Do some pdf annotation of textbook at home. While on public transportation and waiting for somebody, do more pdf annotation.

    While I am on public transportation, I do not have internet connection all the time.

    So, what is the best workflow?
     
  10. akash.nu macrumors 601

    akash.nu

    Joined:
    May 26, 2016
    #10
    Once you’ve made it - available offline - you can do whatever you feel like, with it. You don’t need internet connection for that.
     
  11. hajime thread starter macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #11
    Thanks. So, when I get internet connection, it will automatically sync the changes back to the original pdf file stored in Dropbox?
     
  12. hobowankenobi macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2015
    Location:
    on the land line mr. smith.
    #12
    Think of Make Available Offline as essentially the same as Download and save to this device.

    Yes, it will sync once connected again.
     

Share This Page