Somehow import DT Personal to Pro

When I first bought DTPro Office, the very first thing I wanted to do was to import my old database, but I never got the import dialog box. I’ve been using both now for months, but finally decided to try to do something about it. So, I joined here to ask.

Is there any way possible, after using DTPO for a while, to import the Personal database? And yes, I’m willing to muck around inside plist files if necessary. TIA


This is covered in the DTPO manual, pages 59-60 of the screen version of the manual. Quote:

When you are upgrading from DEVONthink Personal to DEVONthink Professional,
the application will copy your existing DEVONthink Personal database to your
documents folder (’~/Documents/DEVONthink.dtBase2’).

If by any chance it doesn’t do this automatically, do the following: Copy the complete
folder ‘~/Library/Application Support/DEVONthink’ to your Desktop. Then, rename
it to ‘DEVONthink.dtBase2’ (mind upper/lower case). The folder icon should change
into a DEVONthink Pro database icon that you can double-click.

Well, that didn’t work! Sure, I got a new database, but it was empty! Despite having over 140MB of plain text and rich text files in it (over 1200 documents)! The new database shows up as empty. I guess it’s back to two DTs…


I’d suggest opening a support ticket to get this resolved. You don’t want to be running multiple versions of DEVONthink on the same computer as it causes other problems with importing, using the Services menu, etc.

If you were using DEVONthink Personal 2.x, copy (Option-drag) the folder named “DEVONthink 2” at ~/Library/Application Support/ to another location, e.g. your Documents folder.

Next, in your Documents folder, select the folder named “DEVONthink 2” and Control-click, then choose the contextual menu option “Get Info”. Rename the folder as you wish and add the filename suffix, “.dtBase2” (without quotes). Close the Info panel. The folder has now become a DT Pro 2.x database package file and can be opened by DT Pro 2.x or DT Pro Office 2.x.

If your old database was created by DT Personal 1.x, it will be the folder named “DEVONthink” at ~/Library/Application Support/. Follow the instructions as above, but in this case use the filename suffix “.dtBase” (no quotes, but case is important). Close the Info panel. The folder has now become a DT Pro 1.x database. From DT Pro or Office choose File > Open Database and select the resulting database file. You will be offered the opportunity to convert the database to a new DT Pro 2.x database. Accept, and you now have a converted DT Pro/Office 2.x database.

Thanks. What I’ve done in the mean time is to simply drag my items straight from my old DT program (It was version 1.x) into the Sorter. Unfortunately, I couldn’t figure out if it actually copied the files into the new database or simply indexed them where they were, so this help is very useful. I shall do this, and remove the other files.