OmniFocus Roach Motel (well, the exit is very narrow)

I’d like very much to export my OF tasks (all of them) to OPML. I see some old scripts around to do this with OF 2, but haven’t found OF 3 scripts. One would think this would be built in.

I did finally figure out that to export all tasks, you must:

  1. Select a project,
  2. Select View | Expand All
  3. Select a task in the tasks pane
  4. Click View Expand All
  5. Click Edit | Select All
  6. Then you can File | Export all the tasks to text, csv, etc.

OF 3.2.1 (v122.6 r325053)

Maybe it’s just differences in how our perspectives are set up, but all I have to do is hit the Projects perspective, click on a task and hit Command-A.

Yeah, could be. For me if I select a folder and Cmd+A a task, that only selects the tasks in that particular folder and its subfolders.

It’s easy to get married to OmniFocus. The divorce can be messy.

I don’t think OF3 exports natively to OPML? Though, I think that’s implied reading between the lines of @JohnAtl’s post.

Since for years I have divorced all versions of OmniFocus at least twice a year – I’m in the middle of that breakup right now, since Dynalist won my eye – I have long ago given up on the “export from OF --> import to new” game.

One reason is that .csv exported from OF is so full of needless stuff, that data cleansing the .csv takes more time than it’s worth to me.

Instead, when I move away from OF, what I do is forget export/import and instead gradually reproduce the tasks in the the new tasking app (Things, Todoist – whatever won your fancy) as needed.

Here’s the benefit for me:

  1. I don’t need all those tasks in OF. The bloat is one reason I’m leaving home.
  2. The most important tasks are those required in the near term, so “migrating” is not much effort.
  3. Rebuilding my tasks makes me rethink what they should be and how the new tool works best for me.
  4. If I leave all the OF tasks in place, then if I have less work to do if, a few months from now, I decide to go home to OF.
  5. I can always copy/paste or drag sections from OF to another place, but I find I rarely need to do it.
  6. OF makes a good archive for forgotten ghosts.
  7. Breaks the bad habit of using OF for recurring tasks – they are best kept in Reminders.

This is just my own experience. I despise OmniFocus. Alway have. It drains the soul. But sometimes I need the advanced features, so I get roped in again, and start the cycle over.


Thanks for relating your experience. I thought this time was a long-term relationship. :broken_heart:
I’m moving to a Bullet Journal, so the import is entirely hand-held.
I just went through all my tasks and sorted them into the columns (Working on, Should be working on, Want to be working on) for my Mental Inventory. Vetting will happen again when I create the collections in the BuJo for each project / area.

Like @anon41602260, when I switch I do it manually, and it’s an opportunity to rethink my task list. Like him, I have done it a couple of times a year.

OmniFocus 3 is sufficiently flexible that I hope not to go through that exercise again, because I’m thinking it is a waste of time.

(OTOH, Things is looking awful good.)(NOOOOOOOOO!!!)

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I move stuff in and out of OF regularly, in fact at least quarterly a huge chunk of my entire projects get moved out into DEVONThink.

All I do is set my view to my active with remaining custom perspective that has all notes expanded. Select a task, or a project (usually a whole project in my world) copy and then past into DT.


When it comes to task managers I’m still playing the field. Currently shacking up with Todoist, but only until I see if the promised revamp with Boards and improved checklists/subtasks pans out. If it doesn’t, I’ll probably give another look to Things, TickTick, Taskade (I got gifted a free year of Pro which I haven’t really used), ZenKit, and possibly even Dynalist. Unfortunately, although I own OmniOutliner Pro, OmniFocus does not appeal to me.

I use Dynalist for a few simple reusable lists. Shopping, packing and tv/movies I’d like to watch.

The Pro version lets you sync to Google Calendar (which I use), although it’s not a two-way sync like with Todoist. I know one person who fashioned Dynalist into his task manager… his everything manager, actually. I find it intriguing (and slightly better than its main competition, Workflowy and Checkvist) but I’ve balked at the pricing for the Pro tier, around $100/yr,

Why not using Seems like it can do the same for less money.