Pro Database, .Mac friendly now?

Ok so I know I asked about DEVONthink’s database in conjunction with .Mac and most recommended it wasn’t a good idea. But I just tried out the second public beta of Pro and noticed that its database looks like it’s just one file.

Could this be true? Is it simply some kind of file wrapper? I haven’t gone through the help and readme’s to understand how Pro stores its attachments yet however… do they get compacted into Pro’s database, set aside somewhere or simply linked from their actual location in the local/network file system?

So far it seems like it plays nicely with .Mac in Tiger 10.4.2. If this is true… hats off to DEVONtechnologies!

The DEVONthink Pro package actually contains the same files as does the DEVONthink Personal database.

But if you wish to send backups of your database to .Mac, this has become somewhat more practical for small to medium-sized databases. In the menu bar (just left of Help) is your Scripts menu. Select that, navigate to Export and choose Backup Archive. This script will verify and optimize your database, then produce a compact, compressed backup. The backup does not contain any Backup folders – just your current database in compressed form, with the date appended to the name as YY-MM-DD. This is useful for archiving database backups with minimal storage requirements. (There’s also a script for producing ‘traditional’ external backups of your database, containing all of your internal backup folders.)

So if you wish to archive small DT Pro database backups on .Mac, this could work for you. My own main database archived backup still remains too large to allow that as an option.

If you wish to download and run the database on a different computer, everything will work after you have unzipped the archive, except for externally linked files. Those, of course, are on your local computer and will not be available to a different computer.

Well then I’m getting confused, cuz when I remember using DEVONthink personal about a month ago, I set my database up IN my iDisk. When I looked at the directory I set it up in, there were 9 separate database files; this caused part of the problem with iDisk syncing since it would get confused.

When I placed my DEVONthink Pro database IN my iDisk, as pictured here:

there’s (what looks like) only one single database file, which I titled “myDEVONthink.dtBase”. This plays MUCH more nicely with iDisk syncing, which is the whole point of that service. It’s designed to simplify the archiving, reopening, unarchiving, re-saving, re-archiving, re-un-opening process. Working on up to 4 Macs a day, that .Mac service is worth many times its price to me.

So am I confused or mistaken? Were those 9 separate database files I saw in the personal edition a fluke or something? And is there help that describes how the database works, and how it handles media such as images and video? The tutorial linked from the Help menu opens a blank browser window.

Thanks a ton for your help in understand how DT works!

The DT Personal database is contained in a folder, comprised of multiple files and subfolders.

The DT Pro database is a package file, containing the same elements. But to the Finder it looks like a single file.

If you download the new version of DT Pro 1.0p2 (released today) you will find a much more extensive Help file.

Are you actually running your database on .Mac? That’s possible, but because .Mac synching is so slow, I wouldn’t try it except for a very small database, to which you don’t add much new content. It would be much more practical to store compressed archives as noted in my previous post. Even then, it is necessary to make certain that iDisk synchronization has finished before moving from one computer to another. If the synchronization operation hasn’t completed, the iDisk will not be properly synchronized – and it’s a slow process when large files become involved. “Sneakernet” involving an iPod or other portable FireWire drive becomes much faster and more reliable, especially as your databases grow in size.

How about an iPod shuffle, as long as it’s over a USB2 port?

(thanks again)

Fine until you outgrow it. And when you discover what you can do with DT Pro, that may not take long. :slight_smile: