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How are annotations tied to the sheet music?
The sheet music for a musical that I'm about to do is 115 pages long and is contained in three different PDF's. I have made extensive annotations that have taken me hours of time to enter. And now, the director has changed the sequence of the songs a bit.

What I have now as the files is (not the real names):

file1.pdf pages 1-48
file2.pdf pages 1-1
file3.pdf pages 1-66

So you can see that comes out in MobileSheets as pages 1-115. They contain 25 songs.

What needs to happen is that one of the songs gets replaced by one of the other numbers. So, using those three files, I might have something like (not the real numbers, but close enough to discuss it):

file1.pdf pages 1-20
file3.pdf pages 30-31
file1.pdf pages 23-48
file2.pdf pages 1-1
file3.pdf pages 1-66

That still comes out to 115 pages.

So here's my question. How are the annotations tied to the pages? Are they tied to the pages as rendered in the final song? In other words, would they still be tied to the original MobileSheets page number 1-115? That would make the annotations mostly correct exept for the "moved" pages. Or, are they tied to the page number within the original files by file name? That would make the annotations follow the original pages. Or are they tied to the first file in the list, the 2nd file in the list, the 3rd file in the list, etc. The first two ways would be okay, but the 3rd one would screw up my annotations.

Another way of doing this might be to replace the two pages in file1.pdf and just replace that file in the MobileSheets folder. Then, I'd have to redo the annotations on those two pages. I think I have an app that will split and combine PDF files.

So, bottom line is, what's the best way to do this so that I don't mess up my annotations? Actually, if the replaced song had the annotations from the song it replaced, that's not a biggie. It's only two pages.
The annotations are tied to the "absolute" page number in terms of the song (and not any individual files within the song), so they would be marked from 1 to 115 in your example. It is set up this way so that different annotations can be placed on different instances of a page (i.e. you could have one set of annotations when the first page is displayed but a different set of annotations when the first page is displayed again later in the page order). 

I should mention that MobileSheets will do its best to figure out how to preserve the annotations when you remove a file or add a different one. However, in your example (which is a complex one), things may get messed up when you shorten the page order for the first file, then add in the third file after it. If you want to preserve your annotations in their current form, I would actually advise you to take a little bit of a different approach. Long press the song to select it on the library screen, tap Share->Export files, enable the option to export annotations as well as the option to join the PDFs into a single file. Then remove all of the files from the song, add that one file that was generated (which will have the annotations embedded in it), and if needed, delete all of the annotations in the song that aren't in the file (there is a delete all option in the annotation editor). Alternatively, enter the annotation editor with your existing files, tap the three dots at the top right, then tap "Embed Annotations". This will write the annotations into the PDF itself. If this is not acceptable for what you are trying to do (which I can see if you are duplicating pages with different annotations on them), then I think the only safe way to handle it is to take the approach you discussed with splitting and combining PDFs outside MobileSheets and just replacing the file on disk. 

Before changing anything, it might be a good idea to backup your library under Settings->Backup and Restore->Backup Library. That way you can restore your library if needed if anything doesn't work the way you want. Another thing you can do is make experiment with adding and removing files and changing the page orders, and if the result is not what you want, you can go to Settings->Backup and Restore->Restore Automatic Database Backup and revert the database to an earlier version which will reset it to a state from before you made your changes.

Thanks, Mike.

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