Feature Request: Support for „External Folders“

As you may know, Apps like Textastic or 1A Writer support „External Folders“ (the name differs), as they are also possible in Working Copy.

This enables several Apps to work on files in the same directory, preventing the need for multiple copies and such things.

I already asked since a long time for support for „Open In“, so that can at least be made possible for single files in DTTG.

But adding external folders would allow to do so for whole directories, which would be fantastic.

This way all Apps could use an folder within DTTG, and therefor would be saved and encrypted!
DTTG could then finally be the core of a system of apps using encrypted storage.

Please, start to work on DTTG and add those things that are so enormously required and needed. I understand, that you also have other things to do, but i think we waited long enough for DTTG to reach a really usable level. Really, out some thoughts and work into DTTG, please.

Many thanks

These apps simply write their documents into a folder. They don’t maintain a database like DEVONthink To Go does. However, you can already access all documents in DEVONthink To Go through the Files app and just about any app that accesses other documents through that mechanism.

How do these apps differ from what DEVONthink To Go’s Files app integration offers?

You can only access file in DTTG over the Files App that you actually can “find”.

And thats the problem, as often stated in this forum!

DTTG is great in tagging, sorting, searching and finding things.

But you get a list of results - and can do nothing with it.

What is greatly missing, is a way to send those results to some actual Apps, Editors, Notetaking Apps, TODO Apps, Annotation Apps, and so on.
And those Apps need to work on the very files within DTTG, not on a copy in their own space!

And for this, you need “Open In” support, as far as i can tell.

And the point was, that DTTG acts as an encryption engine for cloud storage, you can locally handle content, that will be saved / synced to remote storage and will encrypt everything before it lands there.

But you need a way to use this!

Allow other Apps to create “External Folders” within DTTG, that they can use like regular folders but that are managed by DTTG, searchable in DTTG and able to be synced encrypted to remote storage.

Just like Working Copy offers that.

More clear?

The problem with “Open In” is that it is a mechanism that, as far as I can tell, only works when files are stored in an app’s internal Documents folder. This cannot be the case for DEVONthink To Go which also shares data with the Files app (through a so-called file provider extension).

Wouldn’t adding external folders support look very much like a workaround? A place where some of your files are stored but not all?

To be honest, i am not sure what and how to answer.

Either i am missing something and in part also misunderstand you, or you know less about this than me.

Do you know Working Copy?
It is an git client and is very similar to what DTTG does:

It has an folder that is visible in the Files App, as a „document provider“.
It also offers other Apps itself as location where „External Folders“ can be created.
And in addition, it offers a way to sync it´s complete content with remote folders.
But it is „only“ a version control application.

It does not offer the encryption of the remote storage as DTTG does.
Also, it is no „document handling software“ with tagging and search and what ever.
Still, the basics are very similar.

Apps like Textastic or iA Writer can use folders within Working Copy like their own storage - totally transparent.
And then, in Working Copy, you csn simple checkin and commit such any changes and also sync this to any remote git server.

And THIS exactly is what would make DTTG so great as the central file handling and remote encryption mechanism in iOS. You could finally use remote storage in a secure encrypted way and still totally transparently use it for your Apps, be it text, Excel sheets, MarkDown, PDF, MIDI files or whatever.

The internet is full of articles about such features!

In case you dont know this, here is an example:

And another with more details:

Realy, this is how it needs to be!
Please read those articles.

I know exactly what you mean :slightly_smiling_face: I’m just not thinking in “features” but already in the next step: implementation. The whole API that is involved is not overly well documented if at all. However, triggered by your post here I have done some more research again yesterday and someone gave me a tip. So, let me have a look again.

If I may. Maybe and easy attempt to boil it down. just like we can and DEVONThink3, “open“ a document within the database to the editor of choice.

As stated, and I do this very often, you can use any app that uses the native file picker and access the database. The only time where this doesn’t really work for me, is when I want to rely on the search capabilities with a DEVONthink to go.

That already gives me hope :blush:

Big plus one for this. In my experience using DTTG, you can go to another app like iA writer and open a DTTG file however you can’t make a DTTG folder available, the way some other apps can. For instance, in the links above Federico describes how in iA writer, you can make a whole folder from Working Copy available in the iA writer app. There are plenty of other apps that do this too.

I imagine this has something to do with the way DTTG integrates with the Files app, which, just like Dropbox does not actually support the open-in-place Files APIs introduced with iOS 11 in 2017. (I can’t be sure about this, but based on the way they both operate it seems similar.)