How to import PDFs from Safari

Mostly I read PDFs with the SchubertIT PlugIn and Safari. When I want to import this pages to DT, I have to save them on the harddisk before I can import them into DT.

Is there an easier way?

Is it possible, that you ask Mr. Schubert if he can add a menu item "Send to DEVONthing" ?


Christian: the folder action script “Save to DEVONthink” can be used here.  Attach the script to a folder (see Apple’s AppleScript pages for instruction if you don’t know how).  Then, using SchubertIT, save the PDF to that folder.  The script will automatically import your PDF to DT – you don’t have to leave your browser.

Hi Fred,

ok, it is possible to save the PDF first an then import it automatically to DT. But I use DT in that modus, that their is the File-Folder in the Application Support Folder with a copy of all files. And now I have to save them, then they will be imported automatically to DT and then I must delete the documents.
That’s not mac-like :wink:


Why don’t you use the “Save in DEVONthink” PDF service to “print” the PDF directly into your database?

Stefan Krieger, Corporate Communications

I’m just loosing my englisch :wink:

Vielen Dank für den Tipp!

Ich hatte das nie probiert, da es eine ganze Zeit nicht ging, ein PDF über den Druckdialog als PDF zu sichern. So ist ihr PDF-Service genau das, was ich suchte!

Christian Pech, Hannover

Lieber Stefan,

stehe ich da auf der Leitung?? Wo finde ich denn den "Save to Devonthink"-PDF-Service? Kann man den herunteraden oder ist der irgendwo in den Anwendungen versteckt?

Tom Levold

Das notwendige Skript "Save in DEVONthink" befindet sich im Ordner "Scripts" des DEVONthink Disk-Images.

“Copy this script to the folder “PDF Services” inside one of the Library directories. If there’s no “PDF Services” folder, create one using the Finder. Afterwards the print panel of every application provides a new popup button to save the document in DEVONthink. Please note that this requires an installed printer to work properly and at least Mac-OS X 10.2.4!”

I am trying to use the Action Import script to download PDFs using Safari and add them to DT automatically. It seems to work except for one annoyance. It not only adds the downloaded PDF, but also a folder containing a .plist file. I think this is just crud left over from the way Safari downloads files, but it would be nice if the script ignored these files.


Are you saying that a group containing a .plist file is created in DT whenever it imports a PDF file from the action folder that you’ve saved directly from Safari?  I can’t recreate that with DT 1.8 and Safari 1.2.

That’s exactly what was happening with DT1.8 and Safari 1.2. I’ve since logged out and back in again and I can’t reproduce it either. If it happens again, I’ll try to figure out what I did.

Thanks for your reply!


Hi; when I try to attach the Save to DEVONThink script to a folder using the "Attach Script to Folder" script I get the message:

"Save to is not a compiled script. (Ignored)."

What should I do?



Just move the script in the folder ~/Library/PDF Services (it’s not an action script).

See PDF Workflow for Apple’s documentation about it.

The print to DevonThink feature is a god-send. Thanks for including this script.

A couple of things: Perhaps you could write a safari-specific print to DT script which does the following:

  1. copies the page title to the DT document title
  2. copies the URL to the DT document’s URL field

These are both things that I end up having to do manually after each page print, and they really slow me down. I’d love to be able to continue working in Safari and not have to bounce back and forth between Safari and  DT so much.

Thanks for the suggestion but scripting of the Personal Edition is too limited to achieve this. However, the Pro Edition will improve this script accordingly (and introduce many new scripts).


That’s good to hear. I’m planning on upgrading.

Out with it already!


The improved script also tries to use the current document/window title in any application avoiding the need to enter this on your own. But DT Pro is still in alpha stages - the first complete public beta should be available next month.

I use OSX 10.3.3 using a PowerBook wirelessly connected to an Airport basestation and with a USB printer connected to the basestation. I need to get PDF files seamlessly, quickly and simply from Safari into DEVONthink most days. I don’t want links; I want the PDF file stored in the DEVONthink database. Tried the “create PDF Services folder” trick and dropped in the script - selected “print” from Adobe Acrobat Reader 6.0. What I found was a little “pdf” icon in the bottom left hand corner of the print dialogue box. I clicked on this and a dropdown menu appeared with these 2 options: “Save as PDF"and “Save to DEVONthink.” Clicked on both of these options and got:” Saving a PDF file when printing is not supported …etc".

So I’m stuck.  Suggestions anyone?  Am I missing anything?  I need a fix; this problem with lack of seamless PDF import into the DEVONthink database is a very significant barrier to my using DEVONthink effectively.

Question  to moderator:  Will the Professional version allow me to use the Services menu in Safari to drop PDF files into the DEVONthink database?  I sure hope so (p.s: I’m a registered owner of the Personal Edition).

From Preview (and possibly Adobe Acrobat), drag the proxy icon (the small document icon in front of the window title) and drop it over the DEVONthink application icon located in the Dock. The import should start immediately.

Please note that the way the document is imported depends on your configuration settings. In DEVONthink, open the Preferences window and select the "Images & PDF" tab. Here you can tell DT how to handle imported files:

a) Don’t copy: the document is imported but stays where it was downloaded (the desktop). Deleting the document will break the link between the imported document and the original one.

b) Copy files to database folder: the document is first copied into ~/Library/Application Support/DEVONthink/Files/ folder and then imported from there.

c) Copy files into database: the document is copied inside the database.

Use options (b) and © if your planning to move your database around and you want to keep a copy of the original PDF files.

Another option is to download my "Import to DEVONthink" droplet ( Used with option (a) it adds some flexibility as you may choose between importing without copying by dropping documents and folders on the application icon, and importing with copying by dropping the files on the droplet. You can also drop proxy icons on the droplet.

Hello to natinja.  thank you for the assistance re pdf file delivery into DEVONthnk. Very helpful. I would still like the option of pulling pdf files into DEVONthink via the Service menu for Acrobat Reader. Maybe that will come later; it would be good from the point of view of consistency and overall speed of usage.