macOS Sierra moved my DEVONthink databases to iCloud Drive

I recently noticed that my DEVONthink database folder had taken up residence in iCloud Drive. I made this discovery when DTPO wouldn’t permit me to create a new database.

Why was my database folder, which had always been stored locally in my Documents folder, suddenly in iCloud Drive?

MacOS Sierra introduced a new feature: the ability to save “Desktop & Documents Folders” to iCloud Drive. Note that it’s all or none, not one or the other. Saving my Desktop to the cloud is certainly convenient. But since my Documents Folders automatically go along for the ride, where am I supposed to store my DEVONthink database folder?

My solution, for now, was to disable iCloud syncing of my Desktop and Documents Folders. A shame, because if not for DEVONthink, it’s a nice-to-have option.

Is there anyplace on my MacBook beyond iCloud’s reach that would make a good home for my DEVONthink databases? It looks like Library/Application Support used to be the default location, but I could swear that DEVONThink chose Documents by default when I installed it about a year ago.

I think that the answer to this is because you enabled Sierra’s optimise storage feature.

You may wish to read this thread for some information on the effect of Sierra’s new iCloud storage optimization feature on DT databases, and for the new advice regarding the recommended location for databases:

Interesting article here also on the potential problems created by the feature: … nightmare/

You can use the option if you want to… but not with your DEVONthink databases.

You should never put your databases in any cloud-synced folder (including the Documents folder if you are using the disk management feature in macOS 10.12 Sierra). ​Never. If you have, you ​must ​relocate them immediately or you could irreparably damage them. The safest location is a folder in your Home Directory, like ​~/Databases​.