Finding missing files

I just did a Verify & Repair on a DEVONthink database, and it reported 3 missing files. I was able to find one indexed file which I had moved, and I replaced it with an index to the newly located file. However, Verify & Repair still reports 3 missing files. A couple of questions: (1) Is there a way to find which files are missing? (2) If ultimately I am unable to find which files are missing, is there a way to clear the error message?

The error message should not be cleared.

After running Verify & Repair inspect the Log (Window > Log) for a list of missing files. The list can be saved for future reference. If there are Orphan files (Orphan group was created), they should be filed into your database.

To clear errors, run Tools > Rebuild Database. Inspect the Log.

In my experience the most frequent cause of “missing” files is indexed files that were moved or removed in the filesystem. Before I do V&R I open a database in 3 pane mode, use Edit > Select All to choose all groups, and then File > Update Indexed Items. V&R rarely fails after that, except for orphaned files. I understand Bill’s suggestion of looking into the log, but I find that I waste time that way because I still need to do the update of indexed items so it’s just better to start with that.

I also update indexed items before using Sync, because Sync bombs out on missing items with no clue given as to why that happened.

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Thanks.

That’s a very helpful tip, thanks Korm :slight_smile:

I’ve just come across this string because suddenly for no obvious reason 4 of my 5 databases have been showing Missing File messages when I look up files. Having followed Korm’s suggestions most of the files in each database have been lost. One of them has 1300 files relating to a trust of which I am one of the trustees and I don’t have paper records any more!!

The real potential horror is that my principal database which has all the records of my little business going back 5 years has over 13000 files. Fortunately at the moment all seem to be OK but I’m required by my regulator to maintain these records which are open to inspection by my regulator and if they were to be lost I would be absolutely screwed.

While I can’t be certain, I can’t recall ever having noticed this problem before. Is it possible that it could have happened following a software update? It’s really strange that all 4 of my lesser databases should all suddenly suffer in this way

I made the decision to go paperless a few years ago having found what I thought was this wonderful program (I have DEVONthink Pro Office) and this discovery has made my blood run cold

I have read the comments and suggestions above and elsewhere and am not sure that I understand them completely. I am not particularly techie. Is there anywhere where it is set out clearly what I need to do to make sure that this never happens again. I save my emails monthly into DTPO by clicking on the Add to DEVONthink Pro Office option in Mailbox in Mail and then transfer them to the relevant folders after they have been copied over. Usually I will have my business database open and the files appear there and are dealt with. However my take on the suggestions above and elsewhere lead me to believe that if I had one of my other databases over and transferred the emails over to the business database before sorting them there I risk these becoming Missing Files. Is this correct please?

Help please! I’m a worried man!

Hi. I am afraid I don’t know what happened in your case, but one thing that I think is absolutely essential, no matter what your workflow, is to make Time Machine backups. It’s inexpensive, painless, and a lifesaver if anything goes wrong.
christopher-mayo.com/?p=962

Are you indexing your files? It doesn’t sound like you are. But, that is one thing that is a little tricky, and can get you into trouble if you are not careful. You might want to file a support ticket if the advice here doesn’t help.

@chrbyr, your BEST course of action right now is to open a ticket with DEVONthink Support.

If you have a massive number of Missing File messages the most likely problem is that you moved or renamed or deleted the folder(s) in the file system where those documents are or were located. If those files were on an external drive it’s possible that the drive is offline – rebooting might correct the situation.

The Support team can help walk through steps with you. Other than the simple tips above, I wouldn’t change anything in your databases before working with Support on this.

And @Frobgoblin’s advice is definitely the best prophylactic.