Attachments creating unwanted new files?

What I’m trying to do

I’m new to Obsidian, and not sure I’ll be able to describe this cleanly, but I’ll try: When I paste an image into a file, it creates a link to that image within the file. Okay. But it also creates a new file containing only that image. So if I paste, say, a dozen images into a big file I’ll have a giant mess of a dozen new, free-floating files in iCloud.

Is this normal? An oddity? If it’s normal I’m not sure how that’s sustainable?

Thanks for any help!

Totally normal. Obsidian uses plain text Markdown (.md) files to store your notes - they can’t contain other file formats (images, PDFs, etc.) - only plain text. When you drag an image (or PDF or audio file or…) into Obsidian, the image file is copied into your vault and ![[an embeded link]] is placed in your note to display the image. There’s the note and the link to the original image file (in this case).

You have a few options to deal with attachments. Most people keep one attachments folder somewhere, or keep all the associated attachments within a project folder if that’s what you are working on.

Thanks very much!

I know you were wondering about why no easy export to .docx yesterday. Not saying you are asking this but, “why doesn’t Obsidian store my image in the note itself?” comes up every so often. First, it’s not possible, but it comes down to a basic principal of Obsidian:

Your knowledge should last.
Obsidian uses open, non-proprietary files, so you’re never locked in, and can preserve your data for the long term.

Sure, one could fill their vault with PDFs and .jpegs and Obsidian will happily read them, but at the end of the day, your actual notes will be readable by most anything as long as you are around.

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