How to choose when to use which linking method(s)?

Hi, all! I’m a newbie to this forum, and to Obsidian – but not to note-taking.

I’ve just imported about 5,000 notes from Joplin (which were previously imported to Joplin from Evernote), and am working on cleaning them up and starting to link them up.

But I’m getting stuck on knowing when to make a MOC, how far to take linking related notes, etc.

For instance, I’m guessing that if I link all the related notes from within each other, if there are more than 2 or 3, that will start to get unwieldy, with needing to go back and forth and add everything to everything else.

Right now, I’m working heavily with tags, because that’s what worked in Evernote and Joplin. And I know Obsidian can do so much more, but I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around when to use hashtags, when to use manual links between notes, and when to use MOCs.

For instance, if I have 32 notes on B vitamins, and they’re all tagged as such (#Bvits), is there any value in creating a MOC? Or am I just as well off to simply search for that hashtag when I want everything? I don’t want to duplicate all my hashtags as MOCs, right?

Can someone help me grasp this, conceptually? (I’ve spent about 2 days watching YouTube tutorials and reading, and this is just not clicking.)

Most of my notes fall into a handful of types:

  • book notes/highlights (copied in from Kindle, or manually typed up if it was a print book)
  • articles pasted in from the web
  • simple quotes (like you might find at someplace like
  • stuff I wrote on Facebook that I might want to reuse, or develop and expand into blog posts, etc.
  • random individual notes, like “peppermint repels mice” or “so-and-so recommended thus-and-such a book for thus-and-such a topic.”

In terms of the choice between building MOCs or not to and how far to go with linking, if I had to nudge you in one direction or the other based on my experience I would say to opt for manually building custom MOCs with a specific immediate purpose that you can begin utilizing. I say this because the pre-pre setups can easily pile up and dilute the vault. This can be especially annoying if this takes a lot of effort to build and then when you begin actually trying to use them you come to realize a different strategy or structure may have worked better.

Good luck!

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I think the main benefit of MOCs in this situation is that instead of just seeing a list of 32 notes about B vitamins, you can organize those notes with headings or lists, add context about how they are connected etc. Maybe this leads to some new ideas, or when you come back to this later it will be easier to understand because you have spent time laying it out for yourself. I also wouldn’t much about duplicating. Even if it’s just a couple small headings that is extra context for your future self, and you will always be able to go back and look at the search results.

On the technical side I would suggest checking out Tag pages from tag wrangler. I haven’t used these myself, but I think they would be perfect for you and would make it feel less like you are duplicating your tags.

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Thank you; this is helpful.