Blank pages after merging PDF

Hi,

I experience since some time - currently using DT 3.8.1 - a weird effect. When I merge two PDFs (created via Fujitsu ScanSnap) by moving one PDF file from the selection list per drag&drop to the end of page thumbnails of another currently open PDF, it looks ok. But after selecting another document and then coming back, the “imported” files are shown as blank pages. Closing and opening of the database or DT doesn’t make a difference, also syncing with my local DAV server. The imported pages in the PDF are shown blank, while the others (old content) is still shown correctly.

That process worked fine for years previously. Anyone els having this effect or a solution.

Thanks

I have seen this once previously, using DT 3.8. It did not recur. I have seen similar effects in Adobe Acrobat, probably when the file I am working on is either moved or renamed. In DT at least I have not been able to reproduce the issue (I never tried to reproduce it in Acrobat). Are the files on a local disk or is the database in question located e.g. on a NAS? In addition to restarting DT, I would certainly also restart my Mac if I encountered the issue you are describing.

I am now also encountering this problem. DTP 3.8.1. Seems to have only happened since the update.

Blanc, I have restarted my Mac since installing 3.8.1. I did so on Saturday and recall having the problem late last week before the restart. The first restart was after updating to OSX 11.6.3 and then again to restart Parallels. Everything is on the one HDD.

Which version of macOS do you use?

I was able to reproduce the issue. A method of the PDFkit framework of macOS to copy PDF documents internally before saving isn’t reliable anymore in case of inserted/pasted/dropped pages since using Xcode 13.2.1, the next release will work around this.

Criss, under which conditions does this occur? I could not reproduce it on macOS 12.2 using DT 3.8.1.

E.g. copy a page of one PDF document, then paste it into the thumbnails inspector of another PDF document. Close the document & open it again, the inserted page should be blank.

Thanks; I missed that the OP had said leaving and returning to the document was required. I can confirm the behaviour here to; it is different from what I described in my post further up, in that I could actually see the occurrence real-time when I previously experienced a similar issue (similar, but different and probably spurious).

As far as I can tell, this issue actually causes permanent damage to the PDF? Even in Acrobat there are no elements I can recover as far as I can tell from a quick test.

Yes, the inserted page is invalid/empty.

@cgrunenberg / @Blanc: Thanks for taking the discussion further. Just wanted to confirm, that what you described is exactly what I experience and why I opened the thread.

Furthermore, the official “merge” function is not of help, though it works without error, as it requires me to recreate tags, name, etc. to the new file created. My original approach of Drag&Drop with an error, allowed me to have a master document completely defined and just adding pages to it.

Thank you for your report!

There would be a pretty simple workaround for this; a toolbar script could change a record which contained the word “merged” in its title to use the metadata of the other marked file. That way you could mark the origin and the merged file, click, finished. Sure, that’s in no way a good replacement, but it would be a temporary aid.

From my testing and the results of some users in support, open the PDFs in Preview and do the page insertions there.

Or in PDF PenPro etc - unfortunately, it adds steps to the workflow.

It would be helpful if it was possible to force a save in DTP.

unfortunately, it adds steps to the workflow.

There is nothing they can be done about that at this moment.

One option would be actually to downgrade to version 3.8 until the next release will be available.

True but at a loss of many improvements and bug fixes.
The Preview option seems to be working fine for the people I’ve suggested it to - and costs nothing more either! :slight_smile:

Same here. I used to use this feature/function probably every time I was in DT for years and now I’m experiencing what you describe. Not sure if it started happening after upgrading to DT 3.8.1 or OS 12.2. Can replicate it every time I try to drag thumbnails from one file window to another. Have closed DT and rebooted mac and no joy.

DEVONtech have already confirmed this inconvenience and announced a fix for the next maintenance release.

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And this maintenance release will be available soon (definitely this month). In the meantime downgrading to version 3.8 is an option:

https://download.devontechnologies.com/download/devonthink/3.8/DEVONthink_3.dmg.zip