highlights on mac preview disappears


all the highlights that I make in pdf files using macbook's preview app disappear even though I kept pressing ctrl + s. I didn't edit files that are externally saved. I save all the pdf files in zotero folders, I click 'show file' and then made highlights on those files that are saved in Zotero folders. But somehow after I save the highlight changes and then reopen the files through Zotero 'show file' function, almost all of the highlights got lost and only a handful are left. This is extremely bugging me... It worked previously but now it is not at all working and I lost all the highlights and notes that I made. Anybody know how to sort this out?

  • If you open a file outside Zotero, Zotero doesn't have anything to do with the saving.

    Note that you do appear to have been at your file sync quota until recently, and you're still using only 300 MB. So if you're trying to open a file on another computer from where you made the changes, the file may just not have synced from that computer. Now that you have more storage space, it should sync when you next sync that computer.
  • This is probably not due to the sync. I have the sync turned off and am using zotero locally on my mac. I am experiencing this same issue.
  • edited August 15, 2023
    @jxshen: I mean, it's what I say — files not syncing is absolutely a potential cause of this if the highlights were made on another computer, and beyond that it wouldn't have anything to do with Zotero.
  • @dstillman Totally agree that files not syncing could be a potential cause. I did not intend to disagree with you. I simply wanted to add a data point in case this is helpful for people to troubleshoot. Apologize if my comment came off as irritating.
  • In case this is helpful to anyone who comes to this discussion for a solution. This likely IS an Apple Preview bug, and here is a PDF Annotation Fixer someone developed. It did work like a charm!

    Helpful links:
    - Apple forum discussion where I found the answer: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/253093013?answerId=255798424022#255798424022
    - Github page of the PDF Annotation Fixer: https://github.com/julihoh/pdf_annotation_fix#readme
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