Sync Problem / Version Control

Hi all,

I’ve been syncing databases between DT3 on a '21 iMac and a '15 MacBook as well as with DTTG on a new iPad Air. I haven’t had any issues until today, when a very particular problem happened. Perhaps it’s too particular to garner any help, but I was freaked out, so I thought I would add it here. It has to do with an .rtf.

  1. At the start of the year, I edited this .rtf on both the MacBook and the iMac.

  2. For the past month, I’ve been editing the rtf almost exclusively on the iMac. Last night, I edited the rtf on the iMac, and logged out.

  3. Today, I opened the rtf on the MacBook, and for some reason, it displayed a very old (older than a month) version of this document under the same name, in the same place in the file hierarchy. (I suspect somehow this particular file was not syncing; I don’t know why, because I have not noticed other files not syncing on DT3 on the MacBook.)

  4. I then opened DTTG on my iPad, found the file, opened it (requiring a download first), and it too displayed the old/wrong version also currently on display on my MacBook.

  5. Nervous, I went to the iMac, which is in my office and had been asleep this whole time, unplugged its ethernet to be double sure, logged in, saw the “newer”, correct version of the rtf still up from last night. I immediately copied it / resaved it in two different locations, both on the cloud and on the harddrive. I also made a copy of it in DT3 on the iMac under a new name.

  6. I then reconnected the iMac’s ethernet, and sure enough, the rtf_original_name on the iMac synced, and its “newer”/correct contents were replaced with the contents from the old version currently displaying on the MacBook and iPad.

  7. I’m baffled because all three devices have “duplicate” toggled under sync options for conflicts. I tested this by opening the troubled rtf_original_name on the iPad (with older contents) and began editing it with test lines. I then opened that same rtf_original_name (with older contents) on the iMac, and pasted into it the newer/correct contents. The iPad and the iMac then immediately produced rtf_original_name_copy with the contents displayed on the iPad, as would be expected.

I don’t understand why, initially, this morning, the MacBook’s version would have been able to overwrite the newer version. Any thoughts? And any tips on ways to avoid this kind of issue in the future? Is there any kind of version control possible with DT3?

I hope this was halfway legible—my tech knowledge is such that syncing is more or less black magic to me.


What kind of sync location do you use? Did you recently migrate from DEVONthink To Go 2.x to version 3.x or did you recently clean the sync store(s)?

Sync location is Dropbox for all of three.

I did not do any migration or recently clean the sync stores.

And do you use DEVONthink (To Go) on all computers/devices frequently/daily?

I use DTTG daily on the iPad. I use DT3 daily on the iMac.

I use DT3 most days on the MacBook, but even on the days where I’m not using it, it remains open on my desktop.

  • Is there anything reported in DEVONthink’s Window > Log?
  • Is there a triangle on the sync icon in DEVONthink To Go’s bottom toolbar? If so, tap it. What is reported?

Thanks for replying, and apologies for my slow response.

• The DT Log on the Macbook shows:

  • Not connected to Internet (NSURLErrorDomain-1009) on 2/25/22 at 18:00 (after the event in question)
  • Cannot find host. (NSURLErrorDomain-1003) on 2/28/22 at 14:00 (also after the event)
  • Nothing else

• The DT Log on the iMac is clear.

• There is a triangle on the sync icon on DTTG. Tapping it shows:

  • Synchronization could not be completed. (NSURLErrorDomain-1001.):Timeout.(NSURLErrorDomain-1001) on 2/19/22 at 10:00
  • An SSL error has occurred and a secure connection to the server cannot be made: NSURLErrorDomain-1200 at 2/12/22 at 16:00

No worries - life gets busy!

The errors you are reporting are network issues as well as issues with the remote servers.

What version of DEVONthink and DEVONthink To Go are you running?

I’m using DTTG v3.3.3 (17191) and during this event have been using DT3 v3.8 on the MacBook and DT3 v3.8.1 on the iMac.

(I just noticed the discrepancy in the DT3 versions and have now upgraded both to 3.8.2)

Have these devices been rebooted any time recently?

The iMac is rebooted maybe once a week. The MacBook was probably rebooted a month ago, and it might be two months+ since the iPad rebooted.

Can that lead to syncing problems?

Computers get “confused” (technical term) sometimes and re-booting will resolve things. A month a long time, I think. Even Mac’s need a reboot every so often. I try to reboot at least once a week. Rebooting your machine might help you with the sync problem. But @bluefrog advises that the error message is related to something on the server which you may or may not have control over.