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How to Remove Databases from Sync

March 8, 2022 — Jim Neumann
Screenshot showing how to cleane a database from a sync store in DEVONthink To Go.

In DEVONthink and DEVONthink To Go, it’s easy to make as many databases as you’d like. However, there are times when you’ve made and synced databases you’ve since deleted or perhaps just no longer want to sync. But the unwanted databases keep showing up in the sync location. Here’s how to get rid of them.

Often people will delete a database from their device expecting the database to disappear from the sync location too. However, a sync location is separate from your databases and is shared among multiple devices. Consequently, deleting the database from the device has no effect on the sync store. Technically, you could delete all your local databases and still have the sync data for all of them in the sync location.

The first step in cleaning up is to make sure no devices are synchronizing the unwanted database. Go into the sync preferences for DEVONthink or DEVONthink To Go and disable synchronizing the unwanted databases. Then…

  • In DEVONthink go to Preferences > Sync, select the sync location. In the Remote section of the databases list on the right, select the unwanted database. Click the Action button (with the gear icon) or Control-click the database to open the context menu and choose Clean Database. The cleaning will be reported in Window > Log when it’s finished.
  • In DEVONthink To Go, open Settings > Sync: Locations and tap the sync location to show the databases list. In the databases list, left-swipe the unwanted database, and choose Clean. A triangle will appear on the sync icon in the bottom toolbar when the cleaning is done to indicate that a message is waiting for you. Tap the icon to verify this.

Now when you view the sync location, the databases should no longer appear.

One very important thing to note: This will only work on non-Bonjour sync locations. As Bonjour is a direct device-to-device synchronization, there is no intermediary sync location to clean. If we allowed a clean on a Bonjour sync location, you would be removing the database from the other device.