Tinderbox Forum

Merging or dividing files

I was struggling trying to decide whether to create multiple Tinderbox files vs. creating one extremely large file with multiple levels—I think each has its benefits as well as its drawbacks. That dilemma had me look into how I might either merge two TB files or divide them if I changed my mind later on. I first tried dragging notes from one file to another without success. I then tried cutting and pasting notes, which seem to work ok, but then I discovered that some of the nested notes were lost. Is there a way to either merge files or move a note(s) to a separate file?

Copy, paste and confirm is the correct approach. I don’t recommend cut and paste because if something goes wrong and you cannot undo the cut, then you’ve lost the notes in the original. That’s also why I suggest “confirm” as the last step.

Things that can go wrong:

  1. If you have user attributes in the source document that have not been configured in the target document then you will end up without those attributes and their values when the notes are pasted from the source document.
  2. Ditto for prototypes
  3. If you copy an agent but the object of its query is not copied, then the agent will have no result. (Could be the case with your “nested notes were lost” issue?)
  4. You cannot copy stamps, document preferences, backgrounds, etc. without copying them from the XML source and pasting to the target document’s XML source – which is a tricky procedure.

The best way to split a document is to duplicate the document and delete notes from the duplicate that you do not want, then delete notes from the original. (Personally, I do a double duplicate and fix the two duplicates but preserve the original until time passes and I am sure I did the right thing.)


This is also what I do. Also, see a summary of my black-box testing of Copying/Moving notes within Tinderbox. Also see here.

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Copy and paste should not misplace the descendants of any copied notes*.

  • Exception: aliases won’t be copied, because you can’t have an alias in File #2 to a note in File #1.
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