eliminate duplicate groups


I manage a recordings database in DevonThink Pro Office.

Not sure how, but all my groups have duplicates.
How can I clean and eliminate duplicate groups (folders) ?

Dan :neutral_face:

DEVONthink doesn’t consider two groups with the same name as duplicates – many people use same-named group as part of their approach to organization – and so a smart group will not find them. I suggest you set the view to List, View > Sort to “Kind”, and View > Collapse All. Then inspect and delete the groups you do not want. This works best if it is the parent groups that are duplicated.

Hi Korm,

I have a list of 779 groups, it should be exactly half of this.
Each group has a duplicate, and I can not delete one by one.
How can this happen?
Is there any way to create a new fresh database and import the originals?
Or perhaps a way to remove identical duplicate groups?

This is a huge problem, and I wonder how this happened.

The obvious cause is selecting some or all groups and pressing ⌘D. User error. Never say never, but in 9 years I’ve never seen a group copy itself by itself.

Do you have a backup (in Time Machine perhaps) from before you noticed the duplication?

As I wrote – DEVONthink cannot automatically find “duplicate” groups because groups with the same name are not duplicates in the same sense as duplicating a file. Sorry, short of writing a customized script to investigate every pair of groups and their content to determine if they are duplicates – which is a feasible alternative that would take as long to test as it would to manually cleanup your 700+ groups.

You could use a smart group to find duplicate files within your groups – but I’d suggest you’ll want to inspect the files before deleting them.

Hi Korm,

I found that the duplicated all happend on a specific day, so I deleted these groups.
*** Just found that if I export (files and folders), the result exported mp3 is empty.(zero bytes)
I can use TimeMachine, but is there a way to fix the export problem before I restore from TimeMachine?


… and it is not zero bytes in the database?

Exporting merely makes a copy of the file inside the database and puts it in the destination outside the database – export does not modify data or files.

We’re beyond the capacity of the forum to work on this problem – you should open a ticket with Support. Include sample .mp3 so they can test themselves, if you can.

Yes, it is not zero bytes in the database, and files can be opened.
Only when doing export, I get zero bytes file size files exported.

I’ll contact support.
Thank you for the help.