Devon Software on Sale (Students)

Even though I didn’t fully use the trial, or fully grasp DevonThink Pro Office “yet”.

I couldn’t pass up on the sale.

40% off on their mac apps!

Hopefully, no buyer’s remorse. Or I can just force it work for me haha


I’m currently going to give this a shot, though I really don’t have time to tinker with it fully (I’m in dissertation writing mode!). I dropped a couple Evernote files into it, and will play around with it a bit here and there.

Any discount for non students? thank you

As the write-up on the blog posted linked to by the original poster:

We give 25% educational discount all year long but we want you to have a great start into the new term. So, students and teachers get our Mac apps for an exclusive 40% discount until September 16th, 2018. If this isn’t the best time in the year to get prepared for school, then when is?
(Emphasis mine)

So if you’re an educator (I suspect that means regular school and higher-ed) you’ll likely be eligible .

So I’m trying this out… does my database not sync with folders on my Mac? Meaning, I typically save files in specific folders, but I’m noticing that devonthink doesn’t automatically update the database as well? I don’t mean between devices, I’m talking just on my Mac alone, no iCloud syncing, etc.

When you add something to DEVONthink by, say, dragging it into the app, the default behaviour is to import it (usually by copying it) into the .dtbase2 database file. cmd-dragging it to DEVONthink will import it into the database and delete the original automatically.

What I gather you are actually looking for is to be able to point DEVONthink to a file or directory somewhere on your hard drive and for DEVONthink to keep a reference to that file? If so, read the section of the DEVONthink documentation on “Indexing”.

Indexing allows you to have DEVONthink refer to a file or directory where it lies in Finder. Things added to an indexed folder via Finder will be picked up by DEVONthink, and if you add something to that folder via DEVONthink, you can right click and select “move to external folder”.

The documentation does a better job of explaining this, and there is TONS of discussion about Indexing on the DEVONthink forums.

Brilliant, that’s exactly what I’m looking for. Thank you!

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I am not a student or a educator. But thank you for getting back to me

They usually join in on several sales for the general population each year. Look out for Winterfest later this year if you’re looking for a few bucks off!

Is Summerfest2018 coupon still available? Thanks again for sharing your knowledge with me :slight_smile:

Remember there is a return period on DEVONThink. No questions asked.

When I first tried using the software I went through the trial and purchased the software. At first it didn’t click with me. I returned it. Full refund.

Then after reading the manual and asking questions on their forums, I purchased the software a second time. I have been all in for over a year. Definitely no regrets for my needs.


Summerfest appears to be over, but now’s the perfect time to use up that 150hr trial so you can be certain its the right thing for you when the next sale arrives and pounce on it!

I am new to many things in technology and want to follow the experts and do it right the first time. Why question: Can you give me 3 - 5 bullets points why to purchase DEVONthink vs Evernote? Sorry for so many questions, and thank you for your valued time.

Hi Scott: When you have a minute, can you reply to my last reply I sent you. I know you are busy, and respect your knowledge on this subject. Thank you,

I don’t know your needs so I can’t really provide a meaningful answer to why you should buy DEVONthink instead of Evernote. Both are feature-rich applications (DEVONthink being considerably more feature-rich) that serve a lot of different types of users and use-cases. Not knowing anything about your situation I don’t know which subset of features are important.

DEVONthink offers a 150hr trial of their application (as in, 150hrs of run-time, not 14 days, not 30 days, just 150 hours of use, which means you don’t have to take a vacation from your day job to take advantage of the demo!) and Evernote has their free tier. DEVONthink has extensive documentation to support you in your trial, an active online community at and many third-party resources for how to use it (including at least one episode of MPU and at least one Take Control book). This will give you a much better sense of how each application fits your needs than if I just throw 3-5 random bullet points at you. But, all that said, here are MY 3-5 bullet points about why I use DEVONthink (and switched from Evernote, years ago now).

  1. DEVONthink offers a very flexible organizational system of tags and folders that exceeds Evernote’s arbitrary limitations.
  2. DEVONthink allows me to choose what gets synced or stays local, what is stored locally on my mobile devices (to ensure access when not connected to a network) and what gets downloaded on demand (to save space, for example). Evernote syncs everything, and unless you buy premium, nothing is stored locally on a mobile device.
  3. DEVONthink allows me to either import files and store them in a DEVONthink Database, or “index” files, which means having DEVONthink reference a folder and “watch” it – the content is available in DEVONthink, searchable, usable with DEVONthink’s “AI”, and even syncable to mobile but lives in an arbitrary location on my computer (so, lets say you want it in DEVONthink and Dropbox, this would be the way to do it without duplication). With Evernote, it’s either in Evernote, or its not. DEVONthink gives you flexibility in how you add things to and access things.
  4. If I have a large number of folders/tags/files in DEVONthink that I no longer want in there, I can just drag them out of DEVONthink into Finder and my exact organizational structure is preserved. No proprietary organization, no special “exports”, no rebuilding from scratch. Whatever I do in DEVONthink I can pull out and move to Finder in a heartbeat. Your stuff is not locked in. Evernote organizes things in a proprietary way and all the effort you spend organizing your stuff in Evernote is lost if you need to move away from Evernote for any reason.
  5. Files are files. Files are NOT attachments to notes like in Evernote. This means they aren’t locked into proprietary storage (see 4 above) and on iOS it means you have access to them in the Files App in addition to through the DEVONthink iOS app.

Bonus bullet: DEVONthink doesn’t have your data and can’t get it. They don’t offer their own cloud service and can’t access what you store in their application. They are dedicated to providing you with a fantastic application at a sustainable price. They are not in the business of brokering user data. This means you can choose the sync service you trust, or not to sync at all (and this is granular, so not all-or-nothing. Sync some, and not others and there’s no risk of accidentally having something become spontaneously synced).

Bonus 2) Easy to back up. Bork one of your DEVONthink databases? Just recover it from your backup and your up and running. Back it up to a dozen locations if you want! DEVONthink databases are easy for users to move around and maintain, not locked behind ~/Library/Containers/blah blah blah, and they are modular – that is, it’s not going to Break devonthink if a database isn’t present, or if you replace one version of a database with another.


  • DEVONthink is not a cloud service, Evernote is. If you need a tool to collaborate, DEVONthink is not that tool (except insofar as you can have something in a shared folder in Dropbox or your file syncing tool of choice and index that in DEVONthink, but that’s not going to affect your collaborators).
  • DEVONthink is a massively powerful utility knife and its features can be a bi overwhelming compared to Evernote’s more pared-down feature set.
  • DEVONthink is not itself accessible on the web, (though the files you have in DEVONthink may be if they are stored in a file syncing service and indexed in DEVONthink).
  • DEVONthink’s native text-editing is not beautiful on iOS or macOS, but you can store any type of file in DEVONthink and edit it with any application you please, so if you like to write in BBEdit, iAWriter, or Word or Pages you can do that, DEVONthink doesn’t care!

I hope that helps, though I think you really ought to download the application and use the trial period and PLEASE, PLEASE, read the well-written and comprehensive documentation for the application!


Just bought it because there was a discount. Didnt install or anything yet. maybe in 1-2 years i will install the apps and take a look (meanhwile I hope that DT will not publish new versions which you need to buy…)

That is a curious strategy and I am almost certain that in two years a paid upgrade will be released. The current major release has been out for quite some time, and another two years would make it VERY long in the tooth – there are already a few bits and bytes that need updating to comply with standards introduced one or two OSs ago.

Since you own it, why not just start noodling around now? In 1-2 years, you’ll know the ins and outs so when you really need it in 1-2 years you’re not starting cold! And if there’s a paid upgrade in 2 years, you’ll know whether it’s worth it to pay and at least gotten some value out of your initial purchase!

Not challenging your decision, but honestly, I’d be reluctant to spend today’s money on something I don’t need for 2 years… I’d spend today’s money on something I need today. But everyone’s needs and means are different! I do hope that you’ll dip your toes into DEVONthink now that you own it though!

If you seriously do not think you have ANY need or ANY desire to noodle around with DEVONthink, I’d just ask for a refund and spend that money on something else. It’s no small chunk of change!

Actually you are totally Right. Actually I bought it. to kick myself to start testing out the apps. So I will dive into that in the next weeks and I agree with your argument.

Right on, I hope you find it useful! It’s nice to be able to ease into using a new tool rather than have a baptism by fire!

Good luck! :smile:

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