Combining PDFs from a binder

My mental model of DEVONthink seems defective. I am scanning some old notebooks so I am using a sheet feed scanner instead of my usual ScanSnap. So I now have 250 PDF files sitting in binder in Imports, and I need to combine them into a single PDF file. If I select the binder, or if I select all the contents of the binder, I can’t see how to combine them. “Tools/Merge Documents” is grayed. I have looked for ‘combine PDF’ and ‘binder’ in all the documentation I have found, and I did not see anything relevant.

I am concluding that I must move all the files in the binder into some other container which enables merging documents. Yet, when I select the files in the binder and bring up the context menu, I see only Save, Move to a binder (2 choices), and Move to Trash.

So, my questions are:

  1. How can I combine my files?
  2. Is it possible to get a file out of binder once it has been put in?
  3. What is a binder for?

Thanks for your help.

It has occurred to me that I could send all the files in the binder to the trash, and then I could move them to some other container. Please tell me an easier way.

Why are you moving files to the Trash to act on them??

How can I combine my files?

In a binder.

What is a binder for?

The same thing your notebook is for. The binder is exactly what you wnat, just as your notebook functions as a binder. Just replace the word binder with notebook in your mind.

Is it possible to get a file out of binder once it has been put in?

Yes. If you select a binder, you can see the contents and move them around. They can be moved within the binder, to another binder, or even back out to imports.

I was being snarky about moving files to the trash. I apologize. What I really need to do is to combine all of these files, each one of which is the image of a page, into a single PDF. I can’t see how I can do that while the pages are in a binder. If I copy the pages into the Imports location that is the parent of the binder, the situations seems unchanged: the Tools/Merge Documents menu item is disabled, and there doesn’t seem to be a way to move the pages out of the Import/binder hierarchy – at least there is nothing on the context menu that seems to allow that.

I created a second window (File/New Window), so I was able to drag these files out of the binder into a normal group in the other window. The + icon showed while I was dragging. However, when I dropped it into the new group, the objected created was a text file named DTSFileURLS with “DTSFileURLS” as its only content.

Can you tell me what I should do to create a single PDF file by concatenating the separate page PDFs?


No worries! We’ve had people try some very interesting things so… :wink:

The Tools > Merge command doesn’t apply in the scanning interface.

Again, the binder is exactly what you want - just like your notebook is where you gathered your thoughts.

  1. Put the page images in the Binder.
  2. Check the Action menu in the lower right corner for OCR, location, tags, etc.
  3. If all is well, press Save.

Thanks, that did it. I had tried ‘Save’ before, but since I hadn’t set the destination, I didn’t see any evidence that it had done anything.

I’m glad I don’t need to delete everything :wink:. In my test of deleting from a binder, I could not find anything in the trash. Am I missing something there?



The scanning interface has its own independent Trash.