Getting Started with DevonThink and Spark

Hello all,

First, thanks for all the useful info I’ve picked up as a lurker here. Finally have a specific question.

Intrigued by the people who swear by DT’s artificial intelligence, I want to finally commit to using the software for long enough to decide if it’s worth it. But I’m running into a problem–Spark is by far my favorite email client and I can’t figure out how to move emails from Spark into DT. Does anyone have a solution here?

Related, when getting emails into DT, is the idea that all of your email gets filed in there, or just what you chose? I’ve read some review that have indicated that everything gets dumped in there, even from multiple email addresses. But, that seems wasteful.

I’m on desktop for the moment, but will want to tackle this on iOS as well.

Any help is appreciated–thanks in advance!


What flavor of DEVONthink do you have? DT, DT Pro, or DT Pro Office?

Only DT Pro office has built-in email archiving.

My own use: no need for archiving my emails there. If there is an email with content I want to put into DT Pro, I just print it to DT Pro’s Inbox. Easy-peasy.

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It’s the DT Pro Office trial. But assuming it catches on with me, I’m willing to pay for that magic.

This probably dumb–or, at least, extremely newbie-ish, but when you say “print it to DT Pro’s inbox”…how do you do that? I think I prefer to selectively add, so that would probably work great for me.

Thank you very much!

Oh oh! You mean using the “Save PDF to DT Pro…” dropdown in the print dialog?

I placed a copy of DT Pro’s global inbox right into the Favorites list of all my finder windows. I can drag stuff there, etc.

It also appears in the Print dialog when I print anything.

You have to enable the Global Inbox if you didn’t when you first fired it up – if you didn’t, go to the DEVONthink menu and select “Install Add-Ons…” and you should see a checkbox there. Just check it and you should be good to go.

Edited to add: The name of the Global Inbox is just “Inbox” so it’s easy to miss when you first add it to finder window.s I tried to rename it years ago to make it more obvious what it was, but that didn’t work out too well. I forget what happened, but it seemed to need to be named “Inbox” and nothing else. It’s possible that DEVONthink has become more flexible about this in the years since I tried renaming it.

No, not the “Save PDF to DT Pro” (although you can use that as well) – Printing to the Global Inbox is much more flexible. And having the Global Inbox in the Favorites in all finder windows is very useful, too.

Now I’m cooking with gas! Thank you. I see what’s happening. I also tried renaming and it just didn’t process the files that went in. Switch the name back to “Inbox” and it worked just fine.

Again, new guy question here. The file that goes into the Inbox folder and gets processed–that file now lives in DT…is that correct? So it’s not like DT has an alias of the file or something.

My business relies heavily on Dropbox to minimize file attachments and such, so I’m trying to wrap my brain around the impact on my team’s workflow if I start keeping a bunch of stuff in DT. As has been noted, DT is not a collaboration platform, so that might be a hiccup for me.

Anyway, thanks for your help! This was definitely the hump I needed to get over to see if it’ll work for me.


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For folders with shared files, you can have DT index them. This lets the AI know about them without them being moved from their location.

Yes, the DT Global Inbox behaves that way. If you want a copy of whatever you want to put in there, copy the item there rather than just dragging.

It’s a little odd to watch – if you have DT open when you drag an item to the Inbox folder in the sidebar, it immediately disappears. It’s disconcerting at first, but after you check once or twice you realize it’s now in the Global Inbox within DT.

If you drag something there when DT is not open, it behaves like any other folder – you can look in there and see the item.

Another hint that makes this all pretty seamless. This has been posted here in more than one thread. Map the keyboard shortcut Command-P to “Save as PDF” in the print dialog box. WHen you want to print something, just hit command-P twice and the save dialog opens. Select the Inbox and drop whatever you’re printing in there.

Oh, that is super helpful, thank you!

All of this is.

Ended up buying the “Getting to Know DevonThink” book and so am using my trial to read through that. It’s beginning to come together. Next step is just figuring out how to automatically index certain folders, probably using Hazel.

But I’ll read through and hopefully come back with smarter questions than this first round.

Thank you much!


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