Sync problemes wir DT

What is happening (and yes, i have internet connection)?

More info needed. What third party sync service on your internet connection are you using? While you say the internet is working, is the service available?

(My hunch is you are using Apple CloudKit or iCloud. Apple’s services, if you search the error message number here and for other apps is known to be unreliable. My guess you are experiencing that unreliability. Try another sync method.)

Yes, cloudKit!

What other service should I use. I depend on MacBook, Ipad and Iphone to be synced at all times.

Lately, that’s been a pain with CloudKit.

Whereby: how do other providers do that? How can it be that DT is so slow and can’t manage to update things in the background.
At least that’s the feeling I get. Before I leave the house in the morning, I deliberately sync all three devices. I have never done that with other providers.

Translated with DeepL Translate: The world's most accurate translator (free version)

I rely on Bonjour. All explained in the outstanding “DEVONthink Handbook”



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CloudKit has been absolutely terrible since Christmas (and a long time before that for many people, but I personally had rarely had an issue before this past couple of months). There are lots of reports online about this.

It amazes me that a company as successful as Apple is completely unable to deliver a reliable syncing service! (Even for its own products - obviously lots of third party apps use CloudKit, but my Apple Notes hasn’t been syncing correctly on one device since December either, and that’s their own product! Also, unlike third party apps where you can -hopefully- switch to another sync mechanism, for Apple’s products you’re stuck :frowning: Anyway that’s neither here nor there, it’s just very frustrating!)

When I get round to it, I will be switching to Bonjour - which seems not complicated and which is often recommended here. As the CloudKit issues have persisted for years and don’t seem to be improving, I’ve given up and assumed Apple won’t be fixing it any time soon.


Update processes – and that has been explained here already time and again – are time-limited by iOS. If a bg process runs for too long, the OS kills it. Not exactly what one would want for a sync, I guess. To answer you question: DT perhaps can update things in the background. Just not reliably so. Which is, in my opinion, worse than having sync run in the foreground and reliably.

As @rmschne said, you might want to see if Bonjour isn’t a more reliable sync option for you. Remote sync is only needed if someone needs to access the data while it (the data) somewhere else. If you’re the only person working with it, there’s no need for CloudKit or another remote sync option.

BTW: I love the translation of “Wobei” by DeepL. Usually, they’re very reliable, it’s only in some situations where the original language shines through. Brightly, in this case.


Thanks for the replies and explanations. I have been having massive problems with it for the last 2 weeks. I didn’t notice it before.

End up spending too much time worrying about the problems in and around DT. For as a user first never mind why they exist and where they come from. I have daily countless messages that distract me and I do not want that.

I read briefly into the book. There are reasons why different sync options are offered. As a user with no technical understanding, I want it to be simple. I have little desire to read through many options (unreflective, I know).

What I want: I want to have all my important data on Mac, iPad and Iphone up to date. If I understand correctly, I can’t do this with Bonjour, because the devices have to be on the same network, right? I work mobile in different places, sometimes using the ipad, sometimes the MacBook. This must work. If not, I need another solution.
Yesterday I needed a file, but it didn’t load on the ipad- wtf.
This is not acceptable for me in my job.

Then use a reliable sync service. There’s no other way to it.

OTOH: You will have to learn about the software you’re using. Like you have to read the manual of your dishwasher, your microwave and your car or e-bike. Any sufficiently complex product requires a minimum of learning from its user. If that’s too much trouble for you (“I have little desire to read through many options”), then the product is perhaps not for you?

We gave you ideas about alternative cloud services. At minimum read what we told you.

I rely on Bonjour. I rely on everything to sync up upon return from ‘out and about’ to be ready when next “out and about”.

iOS devices are limited in space. If you have sufficient space and good WiFi, bless. If I need “everything” while out and about, I simply set the portable devices to download everything … or I take the Macbook which has sufficient space for everything.

For sure, Apple cloud services, in their present state, will not do what you say you need.


I want to have all my important data on Mac, iPad and Iphone up to date.

The question is: do you need it all up to date immediately.

I finally decided to switch my sync this evening. I’d been putting it off for a few weeks as I’d assumed it would be complicated.

Spoiler alert It was very easy!

I’ve switched from CloudKit to Bonjour. It took maybe half an hour to: read the manual, convince myself that I was capable of doing it correctly (an important step!) and change the sync on 3 devices (Mac, iPad and iPhone). It was fine. Don’t know why I put it off for weeks.