Renaming Issue

When I scan files as PDFs for DT Pro I usually scan them with simple names like RCPT_01, RCPT _02 etc. to make the scanning go quickly. Then in DT I can re-name (Rename files and Folders) them which then changes their names in the database folder (I import as Copy files to database). Simple, works great. But I’ve found something that may be a bug.
I went to change the name of a PDF and was going to call it something in sequence. I already had a file called PO.pdf and I went to change the next file to PO_02.pdf when I found that the 2nd file could be changed to the same name as the first (PO.pdf). There was never a warning that a file already existed with this name which is weird. So I thought DT must be doing something that other apps don’t so I changed all 10 files to the same name. All the pdfs were different scans. The I went to change the file names officially using the Rename files and Folders script. Out of curiosity I wanted to see what DT did to the file naming in the database folder so I checked. All the newly renamed files were gone except for one! They were not in the database folder at all. And of course the originals were gone because they were renamed. Then I went to the DT window and although the files were still listed, all the previews were now resampled low res versions that were a very small size and were illegible. Except for the one that had the name of the remaining file in the database.
So what happened? Why doesn’t DT give a warning that when you rename a file that one with the same name already exists? Sometimes if I’m using a certain naming convention I don’t know if that name already exists in another group. So if I did the Rename files and Folders option, I might not know that one of my PDFs is getting thrown out or at least resampled illegibly.
Is there something I’m missing?

Yes, you are missing something, and no, it isn’t a bug. :slight_smile:

The Finder will let you do a number of similar operations, which might have unintended consequences.

I don’t use the script to rename files and folders, because I don’t care what the names of the original files are, as I can find them immediately in DT Pro.

DT Pro will allow you to have documents and/or groups with the same name, but with different contents. So long as the content is different, such documents are not identified as duplicates. But documents with identical contents, although they have different document names, will be identified as duplicates – very different than Finder behavior.

There are good reasons for such conventions in a DT Pro database. For example, I may find it convenient to use the name “Chapter 1” for multiple documents in my database, given that each such document is organized under different groups in my database. For that matter, DT Pro would let me create a group into which I copy or replicate every document named Chapter 1. And I can think of reasons for doing such a seemingly strange thing. Obviously, the Finder would not let me create a folder and populate it with multiple PDF documents having the same filename. But DT Pro will let me create a group and populate it with PDF documents having different content, but with the same document name. That’s a design feature, not a bug. It allows me to create groups with the contents of Search results, for example, without the constraints that would be imposed by the more stringent Finder conditions on file names. In reality, I would usually replicate rather than move Search results into a group. Note that replicants don’t really have any corresponding entity in the Finder, although they behave somewhat like aliases.

There’s not a one-to-one correspondence between groups and folders, nor between document names and filenames, unless the user deliberately forces such a correspondence in his organizational structure and document naming conventions. From my perspective, that would take extra time and effort and would impose limitations on my database. So I don’t do it, and I don’t expect to control my filenames in the Finder from within DT Pro 1.0.2.

All that said, there will be changes in the DT Pro database structure in version 2.0. All the files corresponding to DT Pro documents will be stored in the Finder, and your database will be converted automatically to the new structure. There will be a new kind of correspondence between DT Pro document names and Finder filenames, and DT Pro group structures and Finder folder structures, but without most of the problems you encountered using the rename script.

Suggestion: Hold off for a while. The world may still not be perfect, but your patience will be somewhat rewarded. :slight_smile:

Thanks for the detailed answer Bill.

I understand the reasoning. I’m so used to the Finder naming method that it feels weird to not think of naming and duplicate files the way I’ve been used to. I think my need to want to have an actual document that is the same as what it is named in DT is from my first use of iPhoto. Apple decided you never need to find the photos of your library in the Finder and made all exporting, burning etc. go through the iPhoto interface. I just hated the idea that Apple had decided how I should access my files. Kinda pissed me off! And I didn’t want to give up that kind of control over my photos. I’ve been using iView for all my photo cataloging since then.
When I found that if I wanted to get a file from DT that I had renamed in the database window and discovered they were their original names (pre Pro) I kinda got nervous. It was shades of iPhoto (albeit in a different way). I thought the Rename script was my answer. Which I think still is, I just need to be conscious of my naming!

I look forward to what 2.0 will bring.