Newbie database set up question

Hi all. Let me start off by starting that I am reading the help files in the software, the manual and the Take Control ebook- I’m sill confused about how to set this up.
I will use DTPO on my work supplied machine with work files kept locally and synced to OneDrive. personal docs to iCloud and Ideally I would prefer to keep my personal files only in iCloud Drive.
But if I understood correctly, DT won’t/can’t work without a local folder.
What’s the ideal set up for this situation? I have a 2011 Mac mini attached to my home network and I could keep my personal files there.
I’m a bit lost and would appreciate any guidance anyone is willing to offer.
Stay safe happy new year

Depends on the definition of “local”. You can’t (read: should not) put your database on a networked device (NAS, iCloud, OwnCloud etc.). But you can index files on networked devices. The help describes the difference between “import” (aka “put in the database”) and index (aka “leave in the filesystem”).

Thanks for responding.
I envision that the database itself will sit on my work machine and would index the personal files from either iCloud Drive or from my Mac mini (internal or USB external drive).
I have two licenses of DT and could install one on the mini.
Am I over thinking this or does this make sense?
Again, thanks.

Welcome @Dannyre

First of all, don’t think “I’m going to keep all my data in the cloud”.
Even if you’re indexing (not importing) files into DEVONthink, they will be indexed from local files, not files that exist only in the cloud.

You will always have a local database, and as @chrillek properly points out, you should never put your DEVONthink databases in any cloud synced location or you could irreparably damage them.

While it’s technically possible to index files from the Mini, that would require you to mount and index the drive on the Mini and to keep it mounted in order to access the files.

If you’re using DEVONthink on the Mini too, you could put a file repository on an NAS and index the files (if indexing is actually a good option - see Help > Documentation > In & Out > Importing & Indexing).

If you’re just using the work machine, you could put the file repo on a connected external drive and index them, or just put the DEVONthink database on the external drive and import the files.

In either case, you should make sure the external drive is added to your local backups.