How do I SAVE database?

Downloaded and installed DevonThink 2.0pb4

Wow! Looks good! Perhaps my search is over…

You see when I used PC I had the single most useful software called Keynote 1.6.5 (not Apple Keynote) - extremely flexible multi-tabbed notebook for Windows. It was free and despite the fact that development stopped about 3 years ago I am still using it on PC at work and… on my Mac at home (in Windows through VMWare Fusion)
All my friends I recommend it to still rave about it and although we all switched to Macs we still miss the Keynote.
It was that good!
(You can download it for free from here if interested

Sorry for the long introduction… but since switching to Mac there is no way I’d go back to PC (sorry, Microsoft). I mean I’m not really loyal to Apple - if Microsoft makes something better than OS X, well I’d consider it, but at the moment Macs are SO good - just love it.

So since switching to Mac I have been looking for a software to replace the Keynote 1.6.5 and to no avail until… DevonThink…
There is a glimpse of hope.

So… downloaded and began using it…
Nice, slim interface - cool…

Can keep all files and notes in the tree - good!
But no tabs though!!! In Keynote you can have multiple tabs and each tab would contain it’s own tree structure - very convenient - why is it not in DT?! :question: :frowning:
Should be trivial to implement.

Anyway… continue playing around… Can change color/label of the folders but can’t seem to find a way to change folder icons… Hmm…
Anyway, not so critical. Still love the program…
Actually I’d even like to love it!!! :slight_smile:

And now the problem.

Suppose I am editing a document in DT. I add some text, correct errors, remove the whole section. And after 10-15 minutes of work… Oops! It’s a wrong document - different version! You know all those long technical documents - they are very similar.
Here it is the correct document I need to edit - I click on it to check - that’s right!
Ok. Now I need to reverse all those changed I’ve done to the first document. From being in IT for so many year I know - this is not a problem - the simplest way to do it - just close the document without saving your changes.

But to my horror I can’t do it in DT!!! :frowning: :frowning: :frowning:

Because I already clicked away on something else - all the changes I made to the first document already saved there. Re-opening database doesn’t help. The Revert to Saved is grayed out - no help there.
There is no backup files.
How am I supposed to restore what I lost? I didn’t want saving the file!
It seems I lost data forever!

Hey guy, please help me out here. I really would love using DT.
But this IS a show-stopper for me - this is just one example of potential data lost - there are many more - and it’s not funny.

All the convenience and functionality is thrown out of the window when you face the data loss. And my users will lose data for sure - you know how they are… and there is no warning your data is being permanently written into the document without you actually hitting SAVE button.

For sure there must be a work-around or a way to go back. Undo button or something similar.

I just refuse to believe there is none - that’s why I took all the time to post a question here.

Can somebody explain what you do to go around this problem please?

Best Regards,

The behavior you experienced is what most users expect and want.

If you close a document that’s selected in a view window and that you have been editing, by selecting another document to open, the changes will be automatically saved.

But if, instead, you open a document in its own window in order to edit it, when that window is closed you will be given the choice to save the changes or not.

Some users have requested frequent auto-save of all edits. Personally, I prefer the current procedures, as that allows me to experiment with edits and change my mind if I don’t like the results. By selecting the document in a view window, such as Three Panes, and also opening it in its own window for editing, I can compare the edited version and the unedited version. For example, in this way I might play with rewriting a passage in a draft. If I decide the original was better, after all, I can close the open window without saving, leaving the original version in place.

Note that it’s also possible to create different versions of documents, simply by creating a duplicate of a document, then editing the duplicate and saving the changes. For example, I prefer keeping my reference documents ‘pristine, with no added annotations, highlighting or comments. In working with a reference document, I’ll often duplicate it, perhaps to save only a summary with my notes and comments in the duplicate.’ (If I’ve made significant changes, DEVONthink may decide that the second document is no longer a duplicate and remove the bold blue ‘duplicate’ designation.)

Suppose, as in your case, I were to discover that I had changed or deleted the wrong document. That’s where backups come in handy.

I use Time Machine. That allows recovery of previously backed up material.
I also use and recommend Backup Archive (Scripts > Export > Backup Archive) for DT Pro and DT Pro Office users. When I’ve invested significant time and effort in modifying a database, I usually don’t want to wait for a scheduled backup. At a convenient break time I’ll invoke Backup Archive. When I return from break, the database has been verified, optimized and has current internal and external backups. The external backup is the smallest possible, compressed and dated copy of the database and is suitable for storage on external media, as protection against hard drive failure or other contingencies.


Thanks for the tip - opening the document in its own window works - it asks whether I want to save changed or not - this is the usual behavior of most programs.

However the scenario I described is just one of many - in many cases opening the document in its own window would not be practical.

:arrow_right: For example… let’s say I am working in Three Pane view (and I think I only encounter this situation in this view, not in others)

Ok, I have my folders in the right panel, then a few files (Rich Text) in the top panel. When I click on the file I can view and edit it in the bottom panel.

What is happening at the moment - if I modify a file and click on another file in the same top panel - the first file is saved without warning whatsoever. :exclamation:

Of course if my intention is to work on that file I could open it in a separate window to prevent this or create duplicates as you suggested.

However suppose I just need to view this file to find some text that I might want to copy from it. I wouldn’t make duplicates because I am not going to modify it. And suppose I have 50 files like this that I’d like to quickly look through to collect some relevant information from - I wouldn’t want to open them in separate windows.

Now when selecting and copying text from those files I can inadvertently modify it. Perhaps - when text is selected - I hit a space bar with my elbow or press some other key by mistake - all selected text is gone.
At this point I am very close to losing my data - just one click on another file - that’s it.
And this can happen very quickly.

The worse case if I don’t realise that I inadvertently modified my source file. I click away - my file is saved - I lose data and… no warning at all! :frowning:
And since I didn’t notice - I wouldn’t even think restoring from backup.
Restoring from backup is the last resort. I’m not sure whether I can restore individual files (probably not), and if I need to restore the whole database I may lose other changes that I don’t want to lose.

:exclamation: What I’d like to see happening (if at all possible) is the warning when I click away that my file was modified and whether I would like to save changes or not.
This shouldn’t be difficult at all to implement but can potentially prevent data loss. :exclamation:

I understand many user may want to have auto-save feature and that’s fine.
But in almost all cases I’ve seen this implemented there is always an option to turn it off and to specify how often it should do the saving.

I do actually like DT and just would like it to be a little bit safer with my data.

Bill is this suppose to be in the menu? I don’t have this at all - maybe need to install it separately.

Thanks again.

Sorry, scripts are available only for DT Pro and DT Pro Office.

Found it!

I am using DT Pro…
There is an icon next to Help menu - didn’t even think it was a menu item.

Bill, I read your reply and while it does make sense, this saving process can cause data loss. I sometimes will open a document that I am working on in a separate window so that I have fast access to it. However, I’m all over my database since I use it as an “action management” program/db for my business as well as a depository for everything, personal and business. Sometimes, I forget that I have a particular window open, and I go to that document in main window. So I end up making changes in two different places, usually resulting in data loss, for the reason cited in the above quote. What I would like to see is an option in Preferences that would allow you to auto-update documents that are open in more than one window, so that if you make a change in one window, it’s automatically updated in the main window. If it were a preference, then users could choose which way they wanted to work with windows.

This came up in a 2006 thread - Christian indicated that it would be dealt with in a future version of DT:

Is this something that might be addressed in a future version?

Just as an aside…I LOVE DT and could not live without it!

Thank you!

Karen :slight_smile:

Believe it or not but this potential data loss problem is actually stopping us to commit to DT Pro…
Although DT is quite good and on our top list but we are still looking for others which may be similar to DT but don’t have this weird ‘problem’

It just doesn’t give much confidence knowing how easy our users can (and will) lose data. And also - which we completely cannot understand - why not make this ability optional.

Hope developers will improve it one day.