Indexed Folder in a Dropbox-Synchronized Database

I have a database that I synchronize between two Macs that includes an Indexed folder. This indexed folder is in Dropbox. On Machine #2 (Machine #1 being the Mac where I originally created the Indexed folder), it is synchronizing in a way that I didn’t expect - it has the little arrow indicating an indexed folder and the files actually contain the text file contents. But, it doesn’t behave like an indexed folder in that “Show in Finder” does nothing, nor does “Update Indexed Items”, even though I know that there are new files in the Dropbox folder (I expected this, because the absolute paths to the indexed folder is not the same as it is on Machine #1).

Does anyone have suggestions for how to handle synchronizing this folder, knowing how DEVONthink handles sync, and how indexing is supposed to work? I thought maybe the indexed folder just wouldn’t synchronize and I could index it separately in the same database on both machines (and let Dropbox handle keeping the folder synchronized), but DEVONthink seems to be doing some sort of hybrid synchronization of the folder that I didn’t expect.

You are syncing the database via Drobox – but you are not storing the database in Dropbox. Yes?

Assuming you are logged into the same Dropbox account on both machines – if the indexed folder has the same relative path on each machine then the database should be able to find the files:

These two paths should be treated the same

/Users/Jones/Dropbox/Indexed Folder/…
/Users/Smith/Dropbox/Indexed Folder/…

because their relative paths are the same.

~/Dropbox/Indexed Folder/…

However the database will not index correctly if the paths are

/Users/Jones/Cloud Account/Dropbox/Indexed Folder/…
/Users/Smith/Dropbox/Indexed Folder/…

because the relative paths are not the same. On the machine where the indexing was first set up it will work as expected, and on the other machine it will not. Thus, Reveal in Finder will not locate the indexed folder. If you run Verify & Repair on the second machine you’ll possbily get a slew of “MIssing” reports. When you index a document, DEVONthink records its relative location from the volume root at that time. Moving a file to a different location will result in a “Missing” report. DEVONthink cannot self-heal these errors.

This is another great reason why sticking with an application’s default location choices is often the best idea. (And thanks yet again, korm)

That’s correct - I’m using the DEVONthink Sync dialog, connected to my Dropbox account.

Otherwise, thanks for such a complete answer. It turned out that the mistake was entirely mine and a strange set of circumstances. I had previously quit Dropbox on Machine #2 but hadn’t noticed it, and Finder was (oddly) not running when I attempted the “Show in Finder” step. When I restarted Dropbox and Finder, it worked as you described. The relative paths are indeed the same on both machines.

I didn’t initially see this in the DEVONthink documentation, but was able to track it down after reading your response. Thanks again!

I assume you’re talking about not storing database files in Dropbox, with which I wholeheartedly agree!