DEVONthink cloudkit sync not reliable - what is the alternative?

To confirm, the second ID on another device not the ID on the device holding the databases? Interesting. Unless the database folders shared in a network permissions I am surprised.

Yes, and just to more fully explain, on the host computer, you enable incoming connections and set a password. The default port is typically fine. The databases on this host computer are in ~/Databases, which isn’t a shared folder.

On any guest/client computer or phone/tablet on the network, you then see that host computer show up as a sync option. You enter the password you set when you connect for the first time. Then you can see the remote databases and sync like normal. The guest device also doesn’t keep its databases in a shared folder.

Screenshot 2023-01-24 at 2.12.32 PM

It’s an elegant setup. I’m just experimenting with using solely Bonjour right now, but may keep doing it.


Really cool. Thanks for trying and explaining. Useful to others.

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thanks a lot for the suggestions and sharings

yes, I think I need to consider using Webdav instead of Cloudkit sync

I just checked, I only turned on Bonjour on one Mac. That probably explains why Bonjour wasn’t helping

just wondering I should turn off Cloudkit sync if I enable Bonjour? Anyway, I guess this only works when I am at home

sorry, I should be more clear, I am referring to the Dropbox native app for Apple Silicon. Also I only have a free account , I do not want to pay more on the subscription as my databases are taking over 250Gb of storage space

sorry, don’t quite understand this part. Do you mean that if I do not install Dropbox client on my Macs, then I do not have to pay for Dropbox storage above the free plan. Do not quite know how this works

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If you don’t want to use their app, it is not necessary to install on your Mac to use DT dropbox sync so you get around the limit of devices if you do not pay for a subscription. My sync is 1.1 gb so way below the free 6GB I have on my Dropbox account. So I do not need a paid subscription. If your sync is beyond what is free with dropbox, yes you will need to subscribe.

ah, got it, thank you

Multiple sync methods can work in conjunction with each other, but I’m not sure of the limitations. I’d try only enabling both on the host computer, and either Bonjour or CloudKit but not both on the others.

Bonjour to accept “incoming” should be turned “on” on only one Mac in a network. Consider that the server. Bonjour turned on with my only iMac on the network. If “on” for multiple machines, things won’t work.

You can keep Apple’s Cloudkit turned on even if Bonjour enabled. If and when Apple’s sync will work is another matter as many report it’s unreliable. I use Bonjour and Webdav on local NAS. No cloud sync running as a normal matter. Even when I’m "out and about, when I return home it all catches up. If I want “everything” when out, I take the Macbook. Otherwise it’s an iPhone with only what I’m working on or reading.

If DEVONthink allowed only one sync type at a time, they would have prevented that setup on the Settings for sync. That is not the case.

Re your Dropbox account questions. To get good advice, suggest you re-ask this on the DEVONthink forum. I use it occasionally for when I know I might want access to documents not yet synced to the iPhone–that rare. When I use it, it just works.

Like @ismh I use Dropbox, it’s rock solid.

Yes I’m paying $$, but it works and I have to think about it.