Renaming file creates duplicate file with new name and deletes file with original name

Sorry for the weird title, it’s a rather weird problem.

I’ve been working on digitising all my personal paperwork using a Fujitsu ScanSnap. My workflow is as follows: scan piles of papers using the DevonThink profile (which sends the files to DevonThink Pro 3), process the imports in DevonThink by renaming and tagging new files accordingly.

Any time I rename a file, DevonThink creates a duplicate file with the new name, and then deletes the file with the old name. This has been a massive headache for me being forced to handle all these files numerous times—first creating, then processing, then confirming that a file in the bin should really be deleted. Is this weird duplication and deletion by design? If so, is there a user preference somewhere that can be disabled? If not, is there something in my workflow with ScanSnap that’s causing this behaviour? Additionally, I’m concerned for the longevity of my SSD with so many thousands of superfluous writes, rewrites, and deletions.

Please help, any suggestions appreciated. Currently, my method of dealing with the frustration is simply to avoid the work altogether, but I must resume soon.

Any time you rename a file… where?

using the DevonThink profile (which sends the files to DevonThink Pro 3),

Please post a screen capture of the ScanSnap profile you’re using.

Please see my ScanSnap profile below, along with the dialogue box that appears once DevonThink has received the scanned images from ScanSnap. From this window, I rename and tag each file as much as I can so that the smart rules do most of my sorting. Using this dialogue box to categorise my files is more efficient than working from the inbox.

So from here, I would change this file name to be something more appropriate, then the next file would appear in the dialogue box. But, at the same time (and behind the scenes), DevonThink will duplicate the file with the new name and delete the original file with the original name. I only noticed when my bin kept filling up with all these files that I had processed.

You have obfuscated the Save to field in the screen capture. Where are you saving the file?

Also, DEVONthink won’t just duplicate and rename files without some intervention via scripting, smart rules, etc.
What rules do you have active?

The save field had my username, which is why I blurred it. It saves to …/Documents/ScanSnap Home folder. The original file is not deleted from this folder after renaming in DevonThink. Most of my smart rules (the ones I made myself) are just moving and sorting files based on tags. However, there are some that either came ‘preinstalled’ or are DevonThink suggested rules for use with ScanSnap. These are:

  • Incoming Scans: change creation date to document date; change name to proposed name (on demand only)
  • Filter Duplicates: if any document is duplicated, then move to trash (on demand only)
  • Remove Obsolete Versions: if any document tagged automatic version is not modified within the last 7 days or item is duplicated, then delete (on demand only)
  • Create Version: if any document is not tagged automatic version and is not news, then duplicate to current location into /Versions and add tags, change name, and mark locked (on demand only) [I don’t know where this one came from or what exactly it’s doing]

There are also Bates Numbering and Reminders, neither of which do anything with duplication or deletion.

Please note, all of these rules are ‘on demand’ only, and the duplication and deletion occurs automatically when I hit enter in the dialogue box (after having changed the file name) without any additional input or applying rules. The deleted files go directly to my Mac’s bin and not to DevonThink’s trash folder.

Also, DevonThink is not renaming files on its own. Maybe I’ve explained it poorly. Here is the order of events:

  • Scan documents
  • ScanSnap sends to DevonThink
  • DevonThink receives documents
  • DevonThink presents dialogue box for editing file names, author, subject, tags, date
  • I rename and tag the first file accordingly
  • I hit enter/click save
  • DevonThink (simultaneously) duplicates the file giving it the new name I have specified; deletes the file with old name (directly to Mac’s bin, completely bypassing DevonThink’s trash); presents to me the next file for editing in the dialogue box

Try setting up the ScanSnap profile like this (and the Continuous Scan option doesn’t matter in this case)

I changed the managing options type to Mac (Scan to File), but I was unable to remove the ScanSnap folder path name. I tried a test scan, but the results are the same as before.