Deleting hashtag-derived tags


After checking ‘Convert hashtags to Tags’, DEVONthink will assign Finder tags to indexed Markdown files, which works great.

However those are not removed if the corresponding hashtag is removed from the text. Is this the intended behavior? Is there a way to refresh tags based on current hashtags included in text files? I have tried “Update Indexed Items” without success.

Thanks in advance!

What operating system are you running?
I’m not seeing an issue here.

MacOS Catalina (10.15.17) and DEVONthink 3.7.2

meaning that it’s working as intended, or that on your machine Finder tags are deleted if the corresponding hashtags are deleted?

Assigning tags is probably a one way operation, i.e. removing a hashtag doesn’t remove the tag.

You need a Smart Rule if you want to update tags automatically:

  • Trigger

    • After Saving
  • Actions

    • Remove Tags
    • Convert Hashtags to Tags
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Except (for completeness) in certain cases. (I do appreciate that’s probably irrelevant to the specific case the subject of this thread but mention it only in the context of your more general comment.)


Actually, removing a hashtag from the content of a file also removes the tag from it.

Is this what you’re referring to @gi0vanni ?

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yes! It doesn’t on my machine though…

Could it be that you manually added the hashtag and also manually added the tag? Removing a manually added hashtag doesn’t update tags over here.

Oh, I see the issue. I removed the hashtag in a third-party application (Obsidian) so presumably the script updating the tags did not run as it is not part of the indexing process.

Perhaps I can edit @pete31’s rule (thank you!) so that tags are refreshed upon opening of DEVONthink or something like that.

thank you all for your help!


If you edit the content of an indexed file - say a plain text file editing in TextEdit, typed hashtags are converted to tags in DEVONthink.
Removing the hashtags in the content while in TextEdit doesn’t remove the file’s tags in DEVONthink when it updates.

Adding and removing the hashtags in DEVONthink adds and removes them as expected.


A conflict of Finder tags updated by TextEdit and DEVONthink converting hashtags to tags. Next release will fix this.