I want to transfer my Notes app notes from one Macbook Pro (OSX Yosemite 10.10.5) to another (macOS Sierra 10.12.1).

I've been able to transfer notes just fine from Yosemite to Yosemite before by simply airdropping my NotesV4.storedata, NotesV4.storedata-shm and NotesV4.storedata-wal files in /Users/myuser/Library/Containers/com.apple.Notes/Data/Library/Notes to my other Mac.

Sierra's Notes files are the same, but are NotesV6. After I replace the notes files, I can usually close and reopen Notes and my notes appear. If I transfer V4 files into V6 Notes, the files are removed and re-replaced with V6 files due to, I'm assuming, compatibility.

How else can I export notes then from an older Notes to a newer Notes?

On Yosemite:

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On Sierra: (Where I'm trying to transfer)

Same iCloud sync as above.

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6 Answers 6


Why not just sync your notes using iCloud?

If they aren’t currently associated with your iCloud account, just copy them over to that account (within the Notes app) on the machine running Yosemite. Then, enable iCloud on the machine running Sierra, checkmark “Notes” to sync under iCloud preferences, and then you’ve successfully transferred them.

It’s a much easier solution than navigating through the filesystem and manually selecting the data.

  • Okay I see in Notes now that iCloud > Notes appears on both computers, but are both blank. How can I transfer the notes I already have into iCloud?
    – user3871
    Dec 20, 2016 at 5:44
  • You can simply select all notes (command + A) within the notes app. It shouldn’t matter whether they are “on my Mac” or “gmail”, etc. Then, copy and paste to “All iCloud”. They will then transfer over to your iCloud.
    – njboot
    Dec 20, 2016 at 5:58
  • I have iCloud Notes and am even testing with a simple new note within my Yosemite iCloud > Notes - yet these notes aren't showing up on my Sierra laptop despite setting up iCloud on both
    – user3871
    Dec 20, 2016 at 8:03
  • Please see above edit
    – user3871
    Dec 20, 2016 at 8:07
  • I tried this - but it doesn't work. It turns out that you cannot sync Yosemite notes to an iCloud account that is synchronized with Sierra notes. Can't find the link right now that confirms this.
    – Floris
    Mar 13, 2017 at 15:51

i have the same problem, but i extracted the files (NotesV4.storedata NotesV4.storedata-shm NotesV4.storedata-wal)

, and with novicat premiun on the table ---> ZNOTEBODY, copy the html string and with html editor online only copy paste the code, and you have the note, and copy and paste on the notes.app.


If they aren't as of now connected with your iCloud account, simply duplicate them over to that record (inside the Notes application) on the machine running Yosemite. At that point, empower iCloud on the machine running Sierra, checkmark "Notes" to match up under iCloud inclinations, and after that you've effectively exchanged them.

  • No they still aren't syncing. On my Yosemite, I've tried creating a new test note under iCloud Notes within Notes app. My Sierra mac isn't syncing/picking up these notes.
    – user3871
    Dec 29, 2016 at 6:01
  • Doesn't seem possible to sync with notes on an OS older than El Capitan: discussions.apple.com/thread/7677563?start=0&tstart=0
    – user3871
    Dec 29, 2016 at 6:11

I'd upgrade the old MBP, so the notes would be converted in the process. Failing that, I'd create a small Yosemite partition on the newer MBP, copy the notes there and upgrade it to Sierra.


I just imported them. I had a directory containing my old V4 notes from Yosemite:


Opened Notes in Sierra, selected File, Import to Notes, then selected the directory containing the above files and clicked Import.

Notes imported it to a new directory called Notes on This Mac and I moved them across to the Cloud/Notes.

Easy peasy!


This is a manual solution, works on a per note basis..

TL,DR : set up screen share to connect the computers. Then copy and paste the note between computers, it will copy over all attachments as well, embedded figures, linked files, etc.

To get a note from computer "A" to computer "B", connect both computers to the same local network, and then :

  • on computer "A", go to system preferences , sharing, and then select screen share and note the hostname provided e.g. vnc://name@foo.bar

  • on computer "B", go to screen sharing, then enter the hostname for computer "A"

  • now you are on computer "B", but you can interact with computer "A" in a screen-share window, so go to that window, navigate to the notes, and then click the body of the note you want, Command+A to highlight everything, Command+C to copy .

  • go to the notes app in computer "B", create a new note, and in the body press Command+V. The note should copy over with all attachments

  • on newer computer

For I migrated from El Cap to Mojave just now, and I have a few Notes that are really big (with a lot of attachments)

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