Document Properties and Custom Metadata

I promise I have tried and tried but can’t discover any answer.

Having created individual PDFs out of some web links, I am trying to add info to various metadata fields both from within the Document/Properties of the Inspector on a per file basis as well as directly into the Database View column fields I have made visible for things like Author, Title, Organization, Copyright, Publisher, Custom Metadata Date, whatever.

Except for Author and Title and the Custom Metadata Date (which has too much not-real data in its timestamp but that’s another issue) I am unable to input anything into the following:

  • From within the Inspector/Document/Properties menu:
    Comment, Organization or Copyright fields

  • From the Database pane added columns for Copyright or Publisher

Why not? Do I have to own full fledged Adobe Acrobat to open these individual PDFs and input data there? I own PDF Expert and PDF Pen Pro but they don’t even show most of these fields to begin with.

NOTE: All of these PDFs were created from within DevonThink 3 using the Convert function for URLs I’d captured and DO NOT have any kind of password or encryption on them getting in the way.

I am using the latest Big Sur


Welcome @matscotca

You can’t use those fields with just any document.

From the Help > Documentation > Inspectors > Document > Properties

Do I have to own full fledged Adobe Acrobat to open these individual PDFs and input data there? I own PDF Expert and PDF Pen Pro but they don’t even show most of these fields to begin with.

DEVONthink isn’t using or integrating with Acrobat (or PDF Expert for that matter).

Thank you for zeroing in on that part of the documentation but unfortunately I still am at a loss.

In that Help topic you provided it begins by saying the Document Inspector’s Document Properties are related to info associated with “RTF and PDF metadata” and then a list follows which includes several of the fields I am having problems with: “Copyright, Comments, Organization.”

If it’s not in some sort of external PDF editor and it’s not here in the Document Properties, WHERE is one expected to edit input into these fields of the Doc Properties?

Also, though it is not included in the Help section you sent, why do I have “Publisher” available if I customize the Info Pane but NO way to input anything in that either?

Thanks for your super prompt reply!

As far a I can tell from a quick test, owning AA would not allow you to input data into these fields, as they are not offered by AA (presumably then, they are not part of the PDF standard, or are not offered for every type of PDF; disclaimer: I have not looked into this in any further detail; various copyright fields are offered in the Additional Metadata in AA, but none of these translate to the field shown in the inspector in DT.).

Thank you.

I am still led to reply WHY are there fields shown that can’t be accessed then?

How and with what do they ever get populated?

Presumably they can be under certain circumstances (different versions of PDF? I don’t know)

I get ya Blanc. I just re-phrased the question for others who may respond later.

Thanks again.

You’re welcome.

Why do you have Publisher where?

The entries in the Document > Properties inspector can all be used with rich text files.
PDFs can use: Author, Title, Subject, and Keywords.

I will look at clarifying this in the documentation for a future release.

Okay, I think I just figured out how to do what I want:

I went to Preferences/Data. Then I clicked on the plus button and I made (one at a time) new “Custom Metadata” items as follows:

  • “Date Published” Type: “Date” Format “Date” (no time)

  • “Venue” (Book Title, Internet show; Podcast) Type “Single-Line Text”; no values input (yet?)

  • “Kind” i.e Interview, (for want of a better term, for Book Excerpt, Video interview, Article, Blog Post, whatever)

Then I customized the pane view and this is what I believe will work for me.

That is correct. The custom metadata is useful for arbitrary metadata like the ones you mentioned.