Known Issues

A bug in iOS 11.3 and later may cause noticeable delays when working with older versions of forScore. forScore 10.4.6 and forScore mini 3.4.6 include a complete workaround for these issues, and we are assisting Apple to ensure the underlying iOS bug is fixed as soon as possible. Please see this article for more information.

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Common Questions

Backing up your data to your computer

Your data is incredibly important—priceless, in some cases. That’s why forScore includes a built-in backup function that plays an essential role in your overall backup strategy. This article provides step-by-step instructions for backing up your information, but it’s also important to understand where your data is stored and how forScore works with iOS, iCloud, and your computer. For more information on these topics, visit this page.

Creating a full backup to your computer

  • In forScore, open the Tools menu and choose Backup
  • Tap the + button to create a new backup file that will save all of your annotations, metadata, setlists, and settings into a single file. When it’s finished, you will see the new file listed in the backup panel, named with the date and time.
  • Access the iTunes File Sharing panel
  • Select all of the files in the documents panel by clicking on one and pressing Ctrl-A (PC) or Command-A (Mac)
  • Click the “Save To…” button and specify a location on your computer to save all the files. We recommend creating a dedicated folder for your forScore library.
  • Once chosen, the transfer will begin immediately, with a progress bar displaying at the top of the iTunes window.
  • When the transfer is complete, you can disconnect your device from your computer.

Creating a full backup using the Services panel

You can also back up your library to a supported cloud service through forScore’s Services panel. We don’t typically recommend this since backing up an entire library can be slow when relying on an internet connection (instead of a USB connection to your computer), but the following instructions will create a full backup using the Services panel:

  • Open forScore and choose the Backup section from the Tools menu
  • Create a new backup file by tapping the + button in the upper right corner of the backup panel
  • Open the Services panel in the Tools menu, choose your account, and select a folder to upload to (please note: iCloud Drive does not support multiple file selection so there is no way to backup your whole library to iCloud Drive)
  • Tap the + button to view the Upload screen and tap All to select all scores
  • Make sure PDF is selected as the Format option in the lower right corner
  • Choose Upload to start the upload process (note: this may take some time depending on the size of your library)
  • When the upload is complete, tap + again and choose the Backups view
  • Tap to select the backup file you created earlier and tap Upload

Please don’t leave your hard work up to chance, back up regularly!

If you ever need to restore your data from a forScore backup, see this article: Restoring your library from a forScore backup file

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How do I annotate behind the toolbar at the top of the page?

While you’re annotating, forScore displays a toolbar so you can change drawing presets, tools, save or cancel your changes, or move between pages. This toolbar covers up part of the page, so you’ll need to move it when you want to annotate near the top of the screen.

On either side of the toolbar you’ll see a set of three horizontal lines. This is a standard iOS control that signifies when something can be moved up or down, for instance when reordering items in a list. Tap and drag this control up or down to move the annotation controls out of the way and they’ll stay there until you move them again (even if you exit and re-enter annotation mode later).

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Can I brighten a bad scan or copy and paste measures between pages?

PDF files are designed to display their information predictably and to look the same no matter which device or operating system you use to view it. The file extension stands for “portable document format,” and it’s generally only meant to be read, not modified (except for in certain specific cases, like forms with fields).

Although PDF files can be created from images, you can’t work with them the same way you might work with an image file. Instead of pixels, PDF files think in terms of vectors and points—relative measurements rather than concrete ones. They often include highly specific data that can’t be conveyed through an image, like web links, multimedia, or computer-readable text.

What this means for apps like forScore is that while we can allow users to take photos and make adjustments to brightness and contrast, once those images are saved into a PDF file those kinds of changes can no longer be made safely. As a result, any issues with your scans must be corrected before you create your PDF file.

For the same reasons, copying and pasting measures isn’t practical with an app like forScore. We provide additional tools that let you augment how your document is displayed (by adding annotations, for example), but we can’t modify the document itself in the same ways.

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Why is there a blue line across my page?

When your device is in portrait orientation, half-page turns allow you to see the top half of the next page while finishing up the bottom half of the current page. This feature can be enabled by tapping on the circled “1/2” button in the main control bar. Tap it once to enable half-page turns (it will turn blue) and tap it again to disable them (it will turn gray).

A blue horizontal divider shows you where the page is split so you don’t get lost, and you can reposition this divider vertically by dragging the three horizontal lines up or down. The divider’s position is saved per page of score, so you can set it once to the most convenient location for each turn and it’ll always split in that same spot.

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Why do bookmarks stop me from turning the page?

When you create a bookmark in forScore, you can either specify an “end page” number or you can simply leave it blank. There are important differences in how forScore works depending on which choice you make.

If you leave the end page blank, the bookmark works like an easy reference to a specific page. Select it from the Bookmarks menu and you’ll go to the corresponding page, but everything else will stay the same—you can turn pages backward and forward throughout the entire score just like you’d expect.

If you supply an end page, you’ll be creating a kind of “virtual score” in your forScore library. This is intended to help people split up multiple works within a single PDF file without having to actually separate the pages into many different files. It treats a specific range of pages as a different piece in your library, so when you select it from the Bookmarks menu you’ll only be able to work with those pages. For instance, if your bookmark starts on page 3 and ends on page 5, you won’t be able to turn backwards from page 3 to 2, or forward from 5 to 6.

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I accidentally deleted a stamp, can I get it back?

If you accidentally delete a stamp from the default set that comes with the app, you can get it back by visiting the Settings panel in forScore’s Tools menu. Near the bottom of the list, tap “Reset,” then tap “Reset Stamps” and confirm.

Warning: resetting stamps removes all of your stamps and replaces them with the default set. If you’ve customized your stamps in any way, consider replacing the missing stamp with an image instead of resetting all of them.

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Does forScore sync or back up my files to the cloud?

No. forScore helps you work with your own PDF sheet music collection by augmenting it with additional information and tools. Due to technical and legal considerations, forScore deals only with the files that exist on your device (in forScore’s Documents directory) and does not transmit these files to any server.

If you use iCloud and have enabled iCloud backups for your device, Apple routinely updates a copy of all the information on your device to their own iCloud servers. If your device is damaged or lost, or if you’re migrating to a new device, this backup can be used to transfer all of your information and settings over. Note, however, that iCloud backups can not be used to restore information for a specific app—it’s all or nothing. Note also that these backups are not incremental; if your information is corrupted and then backed up to iCloud, there is no way to revert to an earlier state.

As such, it’s important to regularly back up your sheet music library and your forScore database to a computer. Learn more about forScore backups here.

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Understanding Backups, Syncing, and iCloud

Backing up your data is an important part of using forScore, and with today’s cloud-connected devices it can be hard to know exactly where your data is at all times. This document explains how and where forScore stores your information and gives you a broad understanding of how you can effectively back it up. For step-by-step instructions, visit this article.

App Storage

Every app on your device has a standard set of folders that it uses to store information. The Documents directory is commonly used to store user content, like documents you add to (or create within) an app. If an app chooses to do so, it can make the contents of this folder available through the Files app or through iTunes on a computer when your device is connected to it.

Other data like app settings, which are designed to be changed through the app’s interface and not edited directly, are stored in a number of private app directories instead.

Documents (Public)

PDF files, CSV indexes, recordings, tracks, 4SB backups, and more

Library (Private)

Annotations, setlists, bookmarks, metadata, settings, and more

4SB Files

Since only some of this data can be accessed through iTunes, forScore’s Backup panel lets you create 4SB files which archive private app data and store it in the Documents directory so you can back it up. They don’t duplicate your scores or other files, but they do contain forScore’s information about those files and more. Your PDFs and other documents plus an up-to-date 4SB file are all necessary to ensuring that your data is completely backed up.

iCloud Backups

Depending on your settings, iOS can regularly back up your entire device through iTunes or iCloud. If your device is lost or damaged, you can usually use this information to get back up and running quickly. Keep in mind, however, that iCloud offers limited storage and that you can’t restore data for a single app—it’s all or nothing. Because of this, we also recommend manually backing up your forScore library on a regular basis.

iCloud Syncing

Some apps use iCloud to store and synchronize their content between devices. This gives you access to your documents from any device, but it also comes at a cost: an app may not always be able to access those documents immediately. If the system is busy syncing, or if the content simply hasn’t been transferred over to your device yet, the app must wait. Since forScore was built for speed, we don’t use this system. When musicians turn the page from one score in a setlist to the next, they need it to be ready at a moment’s notice.

Deleting forScore

If you delete forScore from your device, all of your information goes with it. If an Apple employee tells you to delete the app to fix a problem, be sure you have made a complete backup first. We don’t store a copy of your files and can’t help you get them back if they’re erased.

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Why is there a gray bar in annotation mode?

forScore 10 introduced a ruler feature that you may have enabled by accident. Learn more about this feature in this “Feature of the Week” article: Ruler

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What happened to the page thumbnail preview?

With iOS 11, the long press gesture is used with Drag and Drop, so Quick Peek (the page thumbnail that allows you to preview a page or open a file in a new tab) can now be activated by long pressing with two fingers, or by swiping from left to right over a menu item. Users with iOS 10 or earlier can continue to use the long press gesture.

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Why are there blue rectangles on certain pages?

Many PDF files embed hyperlinks into their pages to direct you to a webpage or perform certain actions (like compose a new email) when you click on a specific word, phrase, or image. These hyperlinks are just one type of embedded PDF annotation that your files may include on any of their pages. In forScore, hyperlinks are highlighted using a semi-transparent blue rectangle with a darker border. If they’re particularly small, like the hyperlinks that are sometimes added to every note in LilyPond files, they may appear as small bubbles instead.

If you’re working with files that misuse these links, or if you don’t use them, you can disable them in forScore’s settings panel. Open the Tools menu and choose Settings, then tap “PDF annotations” and uncheck “Hyperlinks” as well as any other embedded annotations you prefer not to see.

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