Rather than set up iCloud sync, I’d like to export / import notes.

Is there a way to export all my notes written in the Notes app in any format so that I can import them to another Mac?

  • Ok, you might want to edit your question with that restriction because you did indicate "any format".
    – fsb
    Feb 22, 2019 at 20:21
  • Notes can import TXT, RTF, RTFD, HTML and Evernote XML Export (ENEX), so any of these formats is fine.
    – nohillside
    Jun 9, 2019 at 16:47
  • I’ve made this explicitly about export/import. Clearly iCloud sync is the easiest way to do this. Once sync up, one sync down, then disable the sync. Let’s assume Jim has a good reason to not just sync
    – bmike
    Jun 9, 2019 at 18:05

2 Answers 2

  1. Is there an option to save notes to iCloud?

    Yes, in system preferences-> iCloud.

  2. It seems I cannot import a pdf to notes.

    You can. The regular method of File-> import->import file, won't work. You can drag and drop multiple files into a note.

  3. Scripting.

    That would be a task for AppleScript.

  4. How to import the notes to new Mac?

    If the same Apple ID is used on both Macs, turn on the iCloud for notes (see 1^). They'll sync. If different IDs are used, there is no easy method. You can add collaborators (or people) and send them the invite. Then they can import all the notes to their Mac.

  • 1
    You are right. I could drag and drop the exported as PDF back to a note but it is not editable anymore. It is a PDF inside a note.
    – Jim
    Feb 23, 2019 at 9:43
  • With the option (1) for iCloud, does that save everything in Mac or only Notes?
    – Jim
    Feb 23, 2019 at 9:44
  • I don’t know the defaults but you get a choice in saving particular documents in the “iCloud drive” tab in the finder. Also, photos, calendar, reminders, safari are there for backup. It's up to you to turn on iCloud sync for certain things.
    – anki
    Feb 23, 2019 at 18:39
  • 1
    Scripting would be a task for AppleScript. There are no Automator actions for Notes.
    – benwiggy
    Jun 9, 2019 at 15:19
  • @benwiggy As I said, yet to learn. I don't want to update it as it pushes other good questions off the homepage. apple.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/3584/…
    – anki
    Jun 9, 2019 at 15:31

There is an app on the app store named Note2Txt that will convert each note to a text file and save it to a directory/folder of your choice. The app is $0.99 and is extremely fast and efficient. I back up my notes using this app. Each text file is given the name of the note with extension .txt

  • Hi - I’ve edited the question significantly. This really seems to be a round trip - expert / import as opposed to a backup of the whole data set in the user folder. Wanted to give you a heads up the question is edited now a bit.
    – bmike
    Jun 9, 2019 at 18:06
  • As to your answer, +1 - you didn’t say that notes can import these - you might call that out explicitly - once these are exported, you can draw the folder into Notes and import them all or you have do drag them one by one, etc...
    – bmike
    Jun 9, 2019 at 19:09

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .