problem when moving items from collection to group

hi,
i discovered a behaviour of zotero that i don't understand.
say i have collection "C" which i want to share with some colleagues where nearly all the items have their PDF attached.
i create a group where i invite the colleagues.
in my zotero a new library appears, named "C".
i do a "select all" inside collection "C" and drag the selection to library "C".
the result is that _only for some items the attachment was transferred from collection to library_

the transferred attachment are those which appear with the usual PDF icon; i have also attachments whose icon is the usual PDF plus a chain: these weren't transferred from the collection top the group library.

the data directory is the default one (users/[myname]/zotero).
i have zotfile, configured with a custom location for files: (/Users/[myname]/Documents/Zotero_attach).

(BTW in zotero and zotfile documentation i didn't find an explanation of the relation of these two possible choices; and i see that actually the attachments do exist in both positions and zotero uses its one ignoring the one of zotfile)

thank you for your help
maurizio
  • Linked files (i.e. the ones in /Users/[myname]/Documents/Zotero_attach ) don't work in group and thus don't transfer
  • hi adamsmith
    2 questions:
    1) so should i use zotfile inside the default directory?
    2) how can i restore the situation so that the linked files come back to the non-linked status?

    (what's curious is that when i copy-paste to word text snippets extracted from the pdf, they are identified referring to the zotero data directory zotero://open-pdf/library/items/u8u4gf6h?page=4 where u8u4gf6h is the zotero directory for that item, under users/[myname]/zotero)
    with thanks
    maurizio
  • 1) If you want to use ZotFile to rename but not move files, you'd disable the custom location in the general tab of the ZotFile preferences
    2) As far as I know, you currently can only do this one-by-one using rename after changing the preferences as per 1) -- that's a bug in ZotFile. That bug may get fixed; if not, Zotero has also said that they're working on a solution. I can't tell you when either of those will happen.

    The u8u4gf6h is the attachments internal item ID in Zotero. It also gets used for storage, but attachments without storage directory still have such IDs and the open-pdf link works for those, too.
  • so, just to be sure:
    for 1: it means that in zotfile preferences general settings, i must choose "attach stored copy of file" but not "custom location"; while i can thick the option "use subfolder defined by [/%w/%y]
    for 2: after setting the preference in 1, i must do one by one a rename for every attachment

    more: after manually renaming, will the "activity referring to the file" be fully redirected to the zotero base directory, and i will be able to delete the zotfile attachment directory?

    BTW: is there any way this bug of zotfile can be made more evident so that what happened to me does not happen to others?
    best
    maurizio
  • 1. Not quite. If you store files in Zotero, you cannot determine the folder structure (I think the subfolder option in ZotFile will be greyed out; even if it's not, it's going to be ineffectual).
    2. Correct

    3. Not the Zotero base directory. The Zotero data folder. If things work correctly, the files should actually disappear from the ZotFile folder.

    4. Just to be clear, the only thing that's a bug here is that it's harder to revert from using ZotFile to using Zotero's internal storage. Everything else is working as intended.
  • hi adamsmith,
    about point 2, good news: i can CTR-A select all the items of a collection and do a global "rename attachments" which changes their icon to the usual PDF without the small chain
    about point 3: yes the Zotero data folder. the system message after starting the renaming operation is that files are being _moved_
    about point 4, i understand that what happens is by design and not a bug. nevertheless the result is 'particular' and actually causes trouble if one want to copy items from collections to groups. so those who want to use that particular function of Zotfile deserve to know exactly what will no more function in Zotero (so much so as in your words "it's harder to revert from using ZotFile to using Zotero's internal storage").
    best
    maurizio
  • Related thread: https://forums.zotero.org/discussion/76841/about-zotfile

    As I noted there, Zotero should probably automatically create a stored file in the group when copying a linked file.
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