Feature request: update OF without opening OF

I recently discovered that when I use the OS X “share” feature (e.g., accessible in Safari if you want to “post” a webpage to an OF task) that the task I created using the Share feature does not actually get into OF until after I activate OF.

This isn’t desirable because there are lots of times that I may have created tasks in such manner, and expect to see them when I open OF on ANOTHER computer, but I don’t. The reason is because I had not yet open OF on the computer where I created those tasks using the “share feature”. Having to remember to open OF on the computer I’m using before switching to another computer (I use three computers: two office computers, one home computer) turns out to be problematic.

For future release versions, can OF automatically update itself each time a task is created using the “Share” feature of OS X?

If you are running two instances of OmniFocus, the easiest way to “share” the same database on Macs, iPhones, iPads, and iPod touches is to use the free Omni Sync server.


I would use the share feature to send a task to someone who doesn’t use OmniFocus.

If OmniFocus isn’t running, it can’t watch for a task to be created and update itself. I suppose it might be possible to create a small helper app that can watch for Share actions to get created and wake up the main app. But you’d need to remember to run the helper app…

You can set OmniFocus up as a login item, so that it starts automatically when you login. Then minimize it rather than quitting it. Then it would notice shared items even while it’s running in the background and sync them more regularly.

Another option, if you’re using Omni Sync Server, would be to use the same Safari Share button to ‘Share’ items via email to your Mail Drop address. That way they’d go straight to the sync server and all your other devices will notice them next time they sync, even if you never launch OmniFocus on this computer.

Thanks for the suggestions. A background helper app would be one solution.

I think ultimately from the user’s point of view, they don’t want to remember to do the little tricks of having the app open at login (I have the habit of quitting and opening apps multiple times a day, especially when my screen gets cluttered); or using the Mail Drop in some situations instead of more directly (UI perspective-wise) using the share to Omni. Sharing via Mail Drop opens up yet another app which means slower and more intrusive and thus more usage friction.

I already use the Omnipresence sync server.

I’m a little crazy but I use 5 instances of OF: two iOS devices, three Macs :)

I have omnifocus on 2 macs and 3 ios devices. ;-)

You can always use command-h to hide the forefront app or command-option-h to hide all background apps. That should help with clutter.

I am also fond of using The freeware app Hocus Focus to auto hide apps


I generally don’t quit because I have an 8 GB MacBook pro and a 16 GB Mac Mini.

With the SSD drives, it’s so fast to open and quit applications. Yes, probably hiding an app is better–now, if I can change the old habit…