Devonthink database question

I am trying to understand something so that I can prevent a great deal of confusion. I guess this question could be asked of many of the “personal information manager” software programs. If I drag a file, say a word document, into devonthink, as I understand it, the program makes a copy of the file into the library folder created. The program will also attach existing openmeta tags on the import. Is the expectation now that I delete the original file? If I forget that the file was added to devonthink and see it on the desktop, open and edit the file, my guess (and I’ve tried this) is that the changes are not seen in devonthink(makes sense I guess). The idea of moving all added files to a single folder, without any hierarchy seems strange to me. I realize that the PIM and spotlight should make it easy to find a file, but again, if you do a spotlight search and open the file directly while devonthink is running, I believe that can cause issues as well. I believer some PIMs (devonthink?) can also index files in place of importing them. yep and leap do that although they are more search improvements than note taking software. As far as I can tell, eaglefiler, devonthink, together, yojimbo and evernote all copy the file and leave the original in place. Evernote puts it into a proprietary database which I do not like.

Also, together and yojimbo don’t seem to use openmeta tags. Although it’s been a little inconsistent, devonthink and eaglefiler seem to accept each other’s tags.

I’m trying to scan a whole bunch of papers and am trying to tag and index them as well as provide a place for web clippings, notes, photos, etc.

Thoughts as to how not to screw this up. Also, even if I think to open and edit a file though devonthink, my wife may not, especially if it’s sitting out on the desktop.

I’ve already seen this post at least in the forums of 2 competing applications :wink:

That’s up to you. If you don’t need the files in the Finder or other applications without DEVONthink running, you could delete them.

Yes, DEVONthink supports indexing (see File > Index).

Thanks for the reply. I did post essentially the same question on a few other sites. Glad to see you are checking on the competition. It is difficult, I think, to find some detailed answers to some of these questions, especially for a newbie. I have been using a demo of DT for a few weeks and really love it. Seems to do most anything I might want but it is a bit complicated (and way more powerful, obviously) for my wife compared, for example, to evernote. Trying to weigh pros and cons. We are in the process of trying to extract a bunch of data from an old version of paperport for windows. Printing and rescanning data is not a good solution when you want to change platforms/software. Thus a simple program like evernote is out (must export files to html wrapper. Tough to work with a large number of files) Even the issue of tags…how to avoid retagging if you change programs or use more than one, is very confusing. The “middle complexity” programs (together, yojimbo and eaglefiler) have many pros and cons. No program (except evernote) has the ability to access data from an iphone. I don’t really want to store all my data on the phone but without storing the data “in the cloud” there isn’t any other good way…can you use DT with the iphone easily if you don’t have a home server/vpn/static ip address?

Thanks for the info. I guess there is no perfect answer.

Right now the only solution is to use DEVONthink Pro Office’s web server which supports the iPhone. However, we’re also working on a client application for the iPhone which should be available in Q2.

Well that just sealed the deal. I love DT and an iphone app will make it perfect for my uses. Thanks.

I am also in the process of finding a new home for my documents. Currently using Paperless by Mariner Software. But they are falling behind rapidly. Don’t allow full text search, etc… I do like their simplicity though as I am not a power user. I also didn’t like that they switched to a database format instead of organized folders. (Seems like Devon is doing the same though.)

I have a few quick questions, maybe you can help me:

  1. I’d like everything to be stored on my iDisk so I can access the data from my laptop and desktop as well as the iPhone. (I like being able to access my files via the Finder as well.) I assume there’s no way to have everything in an organized folder structure instead of the single database file? iDisk will have issues with syncing a single file and I assume even TimeMachine will have to backup the entire file ever time I make changes? I guess storing my PDF files on iDisk first and then importing them as an index files could be an alternative? Is there any way to have the ‘sorter’ import files as index files instead of filing them into the database automatically? Is this even a recommended workflow? Is there a better alternative for me?

  2. How will the iPhone app sync with the desktop version? Will it work with all of them or only the pro or office pro version?

I’d love to hear your thoughts!


That’s a possibility.

No, the Sorter supports currently only importing.

EDIT: Actually it’s possible by pressing the Command Option modifier keys and dropping the files/folders on a group in the Sorter. But it’s not supported by the global inbox, seems to be a bug. I’ll foward this.

It will support all editions (and DEVONnote) and sync via WLAN.

Great. That works! HA! :slight_smile:

So does that mean it’s a manual sync only? Is automated MobileMe syncing still considered?

Can you talk about timeframes?

I have to say the more I am reading on these forums the more impressed I am with this software. The interface is a bit overkill for me but I like a lot of the options.

It’s not (yet) automatic.

We don’t do this any longer for various reasons :wink: Meaning that the above information (Q2) is the only one I can give you right now.

Completely understand! I’m almost sold on this software. It looks very solid, but what I like even more is that you guys seem future-proof with lots of ideas for upcoming releases.

Tell me his (make me happy):

If I purchase DevonThink now will I be a happy user in a few month being able to have native access to my documents on my iPhone and iPad? :wink:

Hopefully :wink:


I’m trying DT now and I step in the same bug, seems old :

Dropping with Cmd+Option on the Global Inbox in Sorter does still not work (copying instead of indexing) contrary to dropping on another custom group setup in Sorter.

Could you push again this bug, please ?