Workflow Archiving

Dear fellow Devonians,

When using Dropbox I’ve used the following system for archiving:

  • I’m using the P.A.R.A folder structure (Projects, Areas, Resources, and Archives).
  • When I have finished using files I move them into the Archives folder.
  • The Archives folder is set to “Online only” in Dropbox, so it doesn’t fill up my disk, but the files are still searchable, and I can download when needed.

This has been a super cool feature for me. I’m now moving more and more over to Devonthink, but I can’t see how I can replicate this workflow with Devonthink. It is quite cumbersome to have to move content to an archive database and then over to a separate hard drive and then reinstall the database again to search for old content.

How do you handle this?

I don’t have an archiving workflow
also no “folder structure” and a single database
For organization control, I use tag methodology
I assign an !Archive tag

Devonthink has no “online only” concept
Databases can be stored on an external drive; doesn’t “fill up my disk”

For project/task notes, I use the label feature for status (pending, active, completed, …)
also tags #Project or #Task
and #Project-aaaaaaa (optional)
and Due Date (optional)
My smart groups for active projects/tasks exclude status completed

I view my notes in date modified sequence, descending
so I’m usually looking at only my current notes

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If you are indexing files into DEVONthink you should be indexing local resources, not files that are only hosted online.

Exactly. That’s why a cloud based workflow would not work well within Devonthink. I could choose to move files out of Devonthink for archiving, choose online only, and have easy access to those files there. But, then again, I believe all the tags and meta information dissappears?

Metadata preservation of exported files would depend on the cloud service. That being said, tags and Finder comments applied in DEVONthink are applied to exported files. Other metadata, like custom metadata or ratings, are not.

External hard drives are dirt cheap. External SSDs are pretty cheap too.

Set up an Archive database on an external hard drive or external SSD and move items there when appropriate.

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Custom metadata is actually exported too as extended attributes but only DEVONthink’s import can handle this.