Questions about using DTG, backups, media import, markdown

I have been trying out DevonThink for a while now and I have a few questions

  1. The Page 19 of DTG Manual recommends full backup of database using Apple time machine & an External Drive.

    • Is a Pen Drive/Flash Drive considered adequate for FULL db backups or SSD/Ext-Drive is better or is required ?
    • Is it okay to make periodic backups (FULL DB Backup) to a directory on iCloud/DropBox/Google Drive ?
  2. For editing markdown files, I use one of the IDEA Editors (because it has syntax coloring, support for Vim shortcuts, Collapsable TOC, Integrated GIT, builtin terminal) but for previewing markdown I use on Mac OS. Is there a setting in DTG to always preview markdown in an external App like Markdown and always edit Markdown in an External App like Vim/Webstorm ?

  3. Can the DTG integrated browser preview/play WEBM video Files ?

  4. When Importing video files, Does DTG automatically make links to files in a folder relative to the database file like ../videos/multipass-rendering.mp4, so video files can be stored externally in the filesystem and links will work as long as the database is moved or copied with the external media folders ?

If this is about using a “Pen Drive/Flash” for Time Machine backups, it’s not recommended.
Issues with storage size and these devices are not built for that I/O volume

Is it okay to make periodic backups (FULL DB Backup) to a directory on iCloud/DropBox/Google Drive ?

Sure, I store weekly backup in an iCloud folder
I also copy to a “Pen Flash/Drive” monthly, alternating between two drives

Thanx. So enabling iCloud sync is not a substitute for periodic cloud backups in the sense you still have to do periodic full db backups whether iCloud sync is turned on or not ?

I wouldn’t say “have to”, but I’m more comfortable with redundancy in my backups

Also consider the backup format
In a worse case scenario, I can directly access notes at my icloud folder/file backup

I would; sync is no substitute for backup. Any data corruption or deletion propagates automatically via sync; whilst there are scenarios where sync will get your data back (a defunct device replaced by a new one, for example), there are many more where it won’t. Sync also does not offer versioning, so intentional or unintended changes to files cannot be reversed.

Backup is a must if you value your data at all. I posted my strategy in this thread on the topic.

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For versioning, I rely on the Time Machine backups

edit; I also set up a smart rule to maintain record versions (records are copied to a Note History database when modified)

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Me too; I understood the OP to be asking whether they could forego backups if they were using sync. If I misunderstood then I’ll blame it on lack of coffee - still got to rant about backups though, so a good start to the day :crazy_face:

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In addition to @DTLow’s and @Blanc’s comments, my view on putting DEVONthink’s Zip backups into a third party syncing cloud service, e.g. iCloud, Google Drive, Dropbox, etc. … indeed the copy and sync works (or should work). And should there be need to retrieve a one or more of those files, it might be the first place I’d look as it would be “handy” if lost on desktop.

BUT, as these are third party sync services, then if in the past, perhaps without even noticing, on the desktop device(s) these files were lost/corrupted/deleted/whatever, then on sync the copies of those files on the servers would be lost/corrupted/deleted/whatever on the next sync after the “incident” proving them to be worthless in the intended purpose. They aren’t backups. I accept that some think they are.

Backup Strategies - #2 by Blanc a good strategy. I do something similar. Using the “3-2-1 Backup Strategy” is always good. 3-2-1 backup strategy - Google Search

Regarding question 2 (only): assuming your are talking about the desktop app, and not DTTG (DevonThinkToGo, the mobile app): If you double-click a .md file it will open in whatever app you have set as your standard app for that file format. That can be an editor or a previewer such as Marked 2. It cannot be set to both though. What you can do is to right-click a file and chose “Open in…” and pick an app from a menu.

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For the un-noticed “lost/corrupted/deleted/whatever”
A solution is to backup note versions

This is addressed automatically with Time Machine backups
Note versions can be retrieved for specific backup times

Another solution is to backup note versions every time a note is updated
This can be addressed with a Smart Rule

yes, agree. but if people rely on sync services for backup—and it seems many do—they sometimes do not do Timemachine as considered unnecessary or other reasons. i notice this from this and other forum postings. frankly i think some people think it “cool” to avoid Timemachine for their own reasons. cheers to that. :wink:

i backup Timemachine to two connected USB drives and NAS plus offsite Backblaze. iMac and MacBook. And i put very important stuff synced to NAS and backup the NAS to USB and Backblaze B2. too much? probably. but have lost too many drives over the decades. every laptop has failed. but no reliance on sync services for backup.

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