Undoing deleted folder

edited January 5, 2024
Split from https://forums.zotero.org/discussion/93102/automatically-export-at-regular-intervals

It seems like Zotero is in serious need of being able to undo or have some version control set-up.

I just learned this the hard way, and I was shocked this isn't done in a more automated way.

I'm organizing a bunch of papers for a lit review into a bunch of sub-collections, I have hundreds of references, I was trying to delete a reference from one of the higher-level collections and I must have selected a folder by mistake and everything got deleted. Pop up or not, when you're organizing/deleting a bunch of things it's easy to press the enter button when your finger is sitting over the delete button.

I lost hours and hours worth of organizational work because I couldn't undo a slip of the finger! Why is there not a setting that allows for adjusting the number of backups and the frequency of backups? The sync happened too quickly after I did this, and I wasn't able to prevent it from syncing with the online version.

  • edited December 6, 2023
    (Please start new threads for new issues — the thread you posted to isn't related. I've moved this to a new thread.)

    An upcoming version of Zotero will make it possible to restore a deleted collection from the trash, which will be the real solution here, but Zotero already makes automated local backups.

    If you just did this, you should be able to restore from one of those. Note the specific instructions for restoring collections.

    (Also note that the items are most likely still in your library root, even though you deleted the collection.)
  • Thanks for the quick reply, and I apologize for not starting a new thread. I managed to restore from one of the backups, but for some reason, the most recent backup was the day before. Unfortunately, that's over a significant amount of the organizational work that I was doing.

    I'm looking forward to that feature being implemented, I'm sure I'm not the only one who has made this mistake. It will help many.
  • +1 to more undo functionality.
  • Not the same as undo of course, but request for better visual feedback: https://forums.zotero.org/discussion/72848/suggestion-distinct-feedback-on-remove-from-collection-vs-move-to-trash#latest

    The visual feedback for "delete collection" (vs other, less destructive actions) is the same (the "?" image). The above thread suggests better feedback for the different options avaialble, to prevent accidents.

    For delete collection, the text is "Are you sure you want to delete the selected collection? Items within this collection will not be deleted." It could include "This cannot be undone."

    This may not have helped @cjrisi, but might help in general.
  • @mdover: I deleted your very long, rambling comment — it's just not appropriate here — but I linked to specific instructions for restoring from the automatic backup above. As I note, there are specific instructions for restoring a deleted collection.

    Also note that if you just deleted a collection by mistake, the items are almost certainly still in your library or in the trash, depending on which option you chose.

    Zotero 7 will allow restoring of deleted collections from the trash.
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