DEVONthink Server stops responding

I created a topic not long ago about how to stop DEVONthink from center-aligning all my tables, and it led to me putting a global CSS style sheet in place for my markdown notes. Unfortunately, I’ve noticed since then that the DEVONthink server, on which I rely to be able to access/edit my notes from non-Mac computers and when I’m away from home, stops responding. I’m not sure if it’s crashing or what, but once it stops responding the only way for me to get it working again is to close and restart the program.

It’s an intermittent problem, insofar as it doesn’t seem to happen at any well-defined point in time (e.g., first server access, Nth server access, viewing a particular note, etc.), but it is 100% repeatable in that the server will stop responding as long as I have a global CSS style sheet in place. The only “fix” seems to be to stop using a global CSS style sheet altogether. Is this a known issue? Is there a fix? Can I do something to help debug/fix the issue? Thanks!

Could you please upload the used sheet, one or more example documents and a screenshot of Preferences > Files > Markdown? Thank you.

Also, did you see that @chrillek did some more thinking on your original issue?

Yes. I’m out of town at the moment and the server has stopped responding, so I’ll get to that when I get back into town. I’ll reply with all those things.

Yes, actually, I’m trying to digest that in a separate tab right now. Thanks for calling it to my attention!

Sorry for the delay, but I was out of town when I got your reply. Please find attached an archive that contains my global CSS style sheet, a sample document, and a screenshot of the given preferences dialog as requested. Let me know if there’s anything I can do to help debug the issue! (328.9 KB)

Thank you for the files! Unfortunately I still couldn’t reproduce this. What kind of steps are usually necessary to cause this?

Use the web interface to create a new note or two, edit a few different notes in different groups. That’s all I usually do, and that reliably causes the problem after an unspecified time.

Which browser and macOS version do you use?

Probably a dumb question, but I’m good at those and will ask anyway. Are you sure it’s the server that crashes, or the browser?

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To expand on this good(!) question: Did you check if the server is still running, e.g. by using ps... on the command line, checking entries in /var/log/system.log etc.? Can you open other pages in the browser? Is the browser’s debug console showing any errors/warnings?

Also: What happens when you convert an MD file to HTML and open that in a browser (i.e. by circumventing DT server)?

DEVONthink’s server isn’t a separate process. As long as the app runs and is responsive, the server should work flawlessly.

To be clear, I access DT via the browser on my PCs, all of which are running Windows 10 Pro x64 and using Firefox. On my Macs, I use only the client application, though I use Firefox or Safari on the Macs for sake of reference. And all of those machines are running macOS Monterey version 12.2.1.

I’m fairly sure it’s the server insofar as I can close and re-open the browser or try from a different machine and not get any response from there as well.

Does this happen on the Mac using Safari or Firefox too? Or only on Windows?

Again, I don’t use the browser on a Mac. I use the native client application whenever possible. So the problem I’m reporting happens so far only when using a browser on an external PC.

i guess @cgrunenberg suggested that you try it on another platform and with other browsers. That could help Marie down the causes for the problem.


Tried using Chrome today on Windows instead, same problem. A few hours into my working day, and the server stops responding. I’ll see about using a browser on a macOS machine next.

So it works… until it doesn’t.