Spotlight results not wanted


When looking at my database properties, I do not have the box checked for “create spotlight index”, yet my files (mostly PDFs) are showing up in my Mac’s Spotlight search results.

The exact files that are being returned are under ~HOME/Library/Caches/Metadata/DEVONthink Pro 2/[LONG RANDOM STRING]/[two-digit hex code]/file_name.pdf.

I keep the Database and associated files in offline media, and I can confirm when I try to open these PDFs, DTPO states “Database not available… the database this Spotlight result points to is not available” which is good in a sense that these are not actual copies of the PDFs being cached in the Library, yet I don’t want DTPO keeping even metadata about these files in the Library directory. Is there a setting I’m not seeing that can exclude the database keywords from being kept in ~HOME/Library/Caches/Metadata/???


Assuming that the Spotlight index is disabled for all databases, then just remove the folder ~/Library/Caches/Metadata/DEVONthink Pro 2. Maybe it still contains some orphans of e.g. not properly deleted databases or due to a crash.

Thank you. I have removed the directory and will let you know if I see any problems.

To clarify though: is the checkbox of “Create Spotlight Index” under Database Properties what controls this directory?

Yes, en-/disabling this option adds/remove subfolders to/from ~/Library/Caches/Metadata/DEVONthink Pro 2.

Yes, that is the checkbox that tells DEVONthink to store Spotlight metadata in our cache folder.

Okay, after performing $ rm -rf ~/Library/Caches/Metadata/DEVONthink\ Pro\ 2/ successfully, I launched DTPO and the directory remains gone. Sometime during the day however, it reappeared.

Under ~/Library/Caches/Metadata/DEVONthink\ Pro\ 2/ I have the directory “Lookup”.

Here are the contents:

$ ls ~/Library/Caches/Metadata/DEVONthink\ Pro\ 2/Lookup/


The Lookup directory isn’t used by Spotlight, this is an internal cache of DEVONthink.

Got it. Thanks again.