11/09/11 20:30:06

Adding files to a DEVONthink database or not?

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I’m slowly converting all Coworking0711 coworkers to DEVONthink users. Today a colleague asked:

"Can I put files into DEVONthink without having them in the database?"

What he wanted was to leave all his documents outside right in the Finder, but still add them to DEVONthink’s database.

Counter intuitive, when you say DEVONthink is your database for keeping track of everything. Here are two suggestions for everybody with a similar problem:

1: Add DEVONthink, leave Finder behind

If you add a document to DEVONthink, the file is copied to DEVONthink’s database (with DEVONthink Pro you can even have as many databases as you want). To edit that file you can simply open it from within DEVONthink.
There’s no difference from editing a file this way, let’s say with Word, compared to opening that file directly in the Finder, because DEVONthink’s database essentially just keep all files intact, not encoded in a database file. Everything still exists.
That’s why you can also right click and choose “Show in Finder”. Then open the file manually, save and DEVONthink will update any changes to the database.

2: Add files as alias

DEVONthink is smart enough to know you’re adding an Alias (hold ⌥⌘ while dragging). When such a file is added to DEVONthink, a little curved arrow shows this entry is an alias, rather than a file. I suspect DEVONthink is literally saving the dragged item’s alias, as opposed to copying the file to the database.