Frustrations with OF2


For the moment, the compact view is still in the experimental stage until they can figure out a workable solution. But it is laying the groundwork for the future. But at least we know they are thinking about how to get it right.


It would be interesting if you could give some more specific examples of why you think OF1 is superior. I have felt a bit like you, but the more I use OF2, the more I find ways to use it my way, and the more I appreciate the new (in my opinion) much cleaner and clearer looks. The key for me was to keep the Inbox constantly open (behind the other window) and switch between the windows with the standard window switching keyboard command. Now I don’t want to go back to OF1. You say that (1) OF1 is a power user tool, that (5) it’s much more ergonomic, and that (6) it has more features. Could you tell me a bit more about that? I’m not questioning your opinion, I’m just curious.



please look for the few posts above to see some missing features.

Add to it (from my memory, deleted OF2):
… lack of proper “duration” field handling

As to the ergonomic failures:
a. you need more clicks for the same actions
b. OF2 inspector is a waste of screen estate (while you need some features of him)
c. in general you’re waisting screen estate. The perfect example: calendar :(
d. you need more keypresses to move around

If you have reasonable sized DB (I have around 80 projects, around 500 tasks and all stuff around), OF2 is twice slower. Sure, twice very often means 4 seconds instead of 2 seconds, but it’s SLOW and feels sluggish.

It’s just from my memory, list is longer, but I dont have OF2 installed.


Apparently we use Omnifocus differently. In general, I don’t need more clicks or keypresses in OF2 than in OF1, in some cases rather less. Regarding the screen estate, I much prefer the new solution with the inspector included in the main window. I keep it always open to have quick access to what I want. And to me, the calendar is a naturally placed elegant feature which I think has no equivalence in OF1.

I have about 800 tasks, and what happened instantly in OF1 happens almost instantly in OF2. It is a bit sluggish, I agree. But I like OF2 so much more than OF1, so I have come to accept that.


I’m forced into moving to OF2 due to SW/Hardware issues.

Things that OF1 did better include:
Better display of actions with context, dates etc. The one line column view is really easy to manage the 2 line switch is terrible.

Fonts are light and hard to see, yes Iv’e already done everything I can in accessibility to improve but for older eyes the light colors and thin lines are a PITEyes

Can’t switch the checkoff to the left side. I do not like checking off on the right and I can’t seem to get the supposed fix for compact view to even run. We need that back ASAP

Review, There is no way to replicate my preferred review workflow of looking first at just stalled projects, then just at pending ones, then active ones, then on hold and finally remaining for what’s left or that got changed. I hate the new review system and just can’t seem to find a way to work that even comes close to the speed and performance I had before. With over 1800 actions and over 500 projects I need the speed we had in OF1

Sluggish performance OF2 is noticeably slower in almost all areas than OF1. I know the size of my database is an issue but still…


Things that could improve matters for you:

  • check out the compact layout post by Ken

  • try to improve font matters on normal non-retina screens with this helpful trick

  • see 1

  • whew, that’s what I call database! These are all active or do you need to archive 9/10th of this? Also, try to detach the perspective adjustment window and cycle yourself through from more to less restrictive

As a final point- why not consider using OF1? Do you surely need to upgrade your OS? Currently there is not so much of an alternative for your size of db around…

Good luck!


I am already using the compact layout format. It is still not nearly as easy to use as OF1.

That database is all either active or on-hold projects. I archive old completed or dropped projects monthly.

As a farmer many, many projects are on hold during various times of the year but will become active. I use OF for tracking a lot of time critical repeating projects, things like vaccinations and weighing of lambs which is a multi-step project with time requirements that is triggered by when the rams go in with the ewes.

Add to that all my software development tasks for my sheep program, work as a board member on 2 volunteer organizations, schoolwork related to my masters degree and all my personal and hobby projects (I spin yarn, knit, weave, make scrapbooks and take lots of photographs) and you get a rather large database. I use OF and the GTD method to deal with everything in my life that is more than a single one off action I can do in 5 minutes or less.

I keep active all projects that I can work on during this season. Weather often determines my actions. So at any given time I typically have about 225-250 active projects. Today’s count is 235 projects with 398 available actions.

I had to upgrade my OS to run Quicken 2015, which is required for some financial tracking I need. I am also an Android developer working on a huge sheep flock management program (info at that needs to take advantage of some newer stuff only available under Yosemite.

I am running both OF1 and OF2 side by side both syncing to the same WebDAV server I have running on my own machines. It’s just frustrating that I have to do that when new revisions of software are supposed to improve the user experience not detract from it.


hummm, I always thought I was busy… Meeting you is certainly a humbling experience in this concerns. Thank you for giving me some background on your scheduling needs.

Also, consider me slightly nuts but if your lifes peace of mind is depending on OF1 why not run it on an older machine, say, a Mac mini that you can get for scraps? The worst things seems to me the dichotomy in task management unnecessarily complicating your life is the least wanted idea…


Would really appreciate some additional comment from the OmniGroup folks here. I appreciate the willingness of people who love OF2 to suggest workarounds, and its good to hear that there are others who consistently get more done using OF1. But it sure feels like the OmniGroup has moved on to other things.


It doesn’t sound like they’ve moved on to other things. If you check the Twitterverse, they are very actively talking about OmniFocus. The current focus appears to be:

  1. OmniFocus 2.1.1 golden master (in public beta test now)
  2. OmniFocus 2 Universal app for iPad and iPhone (in test flight now)

This is in addition to whatever Omni is working on with the other apps. I don’t follow the other apps closely but I do remember the blog talking about releasing a Universal app version of their current iPad software lineup.


The latest version in public beta test deals with none of the longstanding frustrations. The focus on developing universal iApps is part of what I meant by “moved on to other things”.


Yep, we’re nearly a year after 2.0 and months after the ‘why haven’t you upgraded thread’, but 2.1 didn’t have even a bone thrown to the regressions. I check in every few weeks, hoping that there’s some news, but nope, yet again still not a single peep.

Oh well, I’ve adapted to the lack of mail integration, so as long as OF1 continues to run, that’s my solution. My biggest fear is that Omni will come through with their threatened database changes that prevent syncing with earlier versions, and then Apple will break the iOS apps.

They keep revving the iOS apps, but seem content to leave money on the table by not touching OF2 for OSX. I’m darned glad I didn’t buy it hoping for changes later - I wonder how many people did, reverted, and Omni still got their money?

Oogie - OF1 runs just fine under 10.10. The only thing that breaks is the right click in mail.


I also found it disappointing that Omnifocus 2.1 didn’t deal with the frustrations, but I guess it’s reasonable that they started with doing some adjustments for Mac OS 10.10 after fixing the bugs. I think the future looks good. The Omni Group now delivers one Iphone app each week (!), and in another post Ken Case has said some things about the development of Omnifocus (click to see the full post - I failed to include the whole post here):


Circling back around after three months, and continuing to see no response from OmniGroup on any of these concerns. Pretty clear that they’re focused on the new stuff and have no intention of addressing any of the concerns that have been discussed in this post for almost two years.

My daily workflow is to start my day in OmniFocus 2, load the latest release to see if the’ve addressed any longstanding concerns, realize the answer is no, and then head off to work where OmniFocus 1 continues to be the central hub of my daily workflow.

One of these days OmniFocus 1 is going to stop working. My productivity is going to take a serious hit when that happens.


There are loads of the other features that Omnigroup has been working on that probably has a higher vote count… push syncing is the current feature that they are working on now. The compact view is still being tweaked and probably needs more work to get it to a good enough state to release.

A cake doesn’t magically appear one minute after it is put in the oven. OmniFocus is starting to shape up nicely.

Unfortunately, Mac OS X El Capitan and iOS 9 will probably keep Omnigroup quite busy because of new APIs that are lurking there.


Ken posted in another thread that 2.3 should include some things - including custom column widths. But I do worry about the 10.11 and iOS9 distractions


Cake does not appear in one minute - you are right, so one needs to decide how many cakes to bake at once… I can not get why building apple watch app (no I do not have apple watch) while core program is just not fully functioning …

It is just sooo frustrating - there unfortunatelly is no alternative to OF … Typical monopoly situation;)


There are certainly alternatives, just nothing as good, and I suppose in a way, that speaks for itself. I happen to agree with you: I’d rather see more resources directed to the Mac app, but Omni as a company has made a point of being able to deliver new iOS features on day one. They still make great apps and I’m hopeful the Mac will be getting more attention as this is a power user app after all is said and done.


We’ve been thinking that since OF 2.0 came out a long time ago…hasn’t happened yet!


I’ve been spending time with Todoist lately- as I work in a cross platform environment, both on OS X and in Windows 10. There’s some amazing features in Todoist that I wish OF had and vice versa. Overall, it’s not as powerful as a GTD tool and so I stick with OF.