Problems with DTTG

I hope this isn’t too long for folks to read. I first started to use DT in the early 2000’s. In the 20 or so years since then I’ve only used it sporadically, mainly because I don’t really need all its power. I just use it for storage for important documents. I have three databases (Family, Art, Technology) that only currently total only about a gigabyte.

I’ve decided, however, that DT will be my main database app from now on. (I’ve previously used OneNote, Evernote, Apple Notes, and Keep It.) But DT just handles all kinds of data so much better.

A few days ago I imported all of my documents into DT and distributed them (about 500) to the proper groups throughout my three databases.

I have DTTG on my iPhone 12 Pro Max. When I look at it I see no documents. The info screen says:
111.4 MB, 221 items
Launched 12 minutes ago

Last synchronized
iCloud (Legacy) today 7:43 AM
In the background: 9/13/22 12:39 PM

When I go to iCloud, I don’t see any folder that contains DT information. I also don’t understand why if it was synchronized today there are no items to be see; nor do I understand the “in the background” from last month.

Could anyone help me figure out what’s going on and how I can fix this problem? Thank you.

First off, what you see in the sync location–for you it’s Apple’s iCloud (Legacy)–you won’t see the files because they are not there. It’s a special data store that holds information used exclusively by DEVONthink and DEVONthink ToGo.

To confirm that the sync worked, first try the “Verify”. More information about trouble-shooting syncing, if you in fact have a problem, are in the outstanding DEVONthink Handbook and DEVONthink ToGo Handbook. If in fact there is a problem, work through the suggestions there. No need to repeat here.


How do you “go to iCloud”? If you’re talking about your browser, that is to be expected. If you’re referring to something else, please explain what you are doing.

On your i*OS device, you can add DTTG to the “Files” app, though I keep forgetting how to do that (it just is there for me after I did The Right Thing™). But I’m sure that it has been explained here in the forum before. In any case, if you do that, you can see all your DTTG data as folders and files in the Files app.

For the sync questions, it might help to post the relevant screenshots here (your settings, what you see on your device etc.

In any case, you should use CloudKit (instead of iCloud Legacy), if you really want to use Apple’s sync services. Many people are experiencing problems with that. Alternatively, you could setup Bonjour which is reportedly faster and more reliable.

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Thanks for the reply. Yes I did mean going to on my browser. I now understand from your reply and from rmschne’s. I’ll try to find out how to add DTTG to the Files app. I’ll also explore your other suggestions. Thanks again.

Thanks for your response. When you say to try the “Verify” I’m afraid I don’t know where that is. I don’t see in in DTTG – is that where you mean? I will look in the handbooks as you suggest. Thanks again.

The DEVONthink ToGo manual has it all … see page 43 of the Ver 3.5.7 PDF version. For other versions the section on “TROUBLSHOOTING” might be on a different page in the “SYNC” chapter.

The iOS Files App is discussed on page 33 of the Ver 3.5.7 PDF version of DEVONthink ToGo.

You add it in just like adding in connections to other apps in most iOS apps. Hard to describe. Easier to show. Probably some YouTube videos out there, but you use the standard iOS “way”.

Long-press the database on DEVONthink To Go’s home screen and choose Verify & Repair.

Thank you BLUEFROG. I’m afraid I can’t do that because I don’t even see any databases in DTTG. I think I need to just delete DTTG from my iPhone, redownload it again, and then reconnect with DT not using iCloud (Legacy). Thanks for the response.

Why would reinstalling change anything?

Reinforcing @chrillek, delete/reinstall DEVONthink ToGo will not fix anything. You are missing databases because you’ve not made a successful sync. Go back to where the syncs did happen (Mac?) and Verify there. And yes, probably good to pick a different sync method. Bonjour found by many to be very fast and reliable (unlike Apple’s services, both iCloud and CloudKit). See the DEVONthink Manual for how to setup Bonjour, and supplement those instructions with Bonjour Simplified

I use Dropbox (free version) synching one “works in progress” database to iPhone and more databases (with shallow sync) on iPad which has more space, and Bonjour with both.

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Thanks again, rmschne. I am set up synching with Bonjour following the instructions in Bluefrog’s “Bonjour Simplified” for which you kindly provided a link. The only problem now is that one of my databases is not synching. When, on the home page of DTTG, I tap the little cloud icon at the bottom of the screen, which has a little blue triangle on it, the screen that comes up says “Database busy.” I’m not sure what this means, but it stays this way. If you, or anyone reading this, has any idea of why this is so, I’d love to hear it. Again, thanks for the response and the link.

It means what is says. Database busy. Give it time. First sync will take the time it takes. If it persists then I guess something amis and needs troubleshooting. but there are few knobs to turn as its simple to set up.

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Thanks. Guess I just have to be patient,

You may not know this but there can only be one active Bonjour connection at a time, so if a device is talking to the Bonjour server, the other(s) will queue up and wait their turn.

PS: Beautiful paintings! :heart:


All well now. Everything’s working a charm. It was a question of waiting. Really appreciate the group’s help it getting this set up correctly. And thanks so much for you kind comment about my painting. Much appreciated.