Image management

It’s easy to insert an image into a note you just drag and drop it. Great !

… but then other questions occur:

  • The images also appear in the left file explorer panel! How can we avoid this? We can put them all in the same folder called “Attachments” for instance. Is this really a good practice?
  • What are the other options?
  • What happens when you delete a note? Does the file stay, do you have the choice to delete it also when you delete the note?

I’m a beginner and I think “image management” is a real topic newbies like me are facing. But I don’t see it treated anywhere :upside_down_face:
Maybe I’m just not searching with the right key words…

Thank’s in advance for you help :heart:

PS: Manage attachments is great to tell us how the basics work… but there is no advice there :upside_down_face:


Not ideal, but the best way to deal with them imo

There is none that I know of

There are some ways plugins to clean the notes(and files) without any back links like this , but nothing official to handle images in markdown. I think the solution can be saving all attachments and images in one .md file, like how it is for html files. but html is not as simple and human readable like markdown, so it maybe not possible or desirable.

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Thanks Archie :smile:

The plugin you mention find-unlinked-files is interesting. It means that you just delete your notes without wondering about attached images and once in a while you clean the mess.

By the way, it’s always more difficult to find what’s not possible to do, because you don’t know if you looked at the right place.

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So I’m going to put the images files “in a sub folder under the current folder” as specified in the Settings > Files & Links. Then I name this sub folder “Ω_attachements” because Ω lists after z in the alphabetical sorting.

This is NOT a very elegant solution but I understand it’s the best to do :upside_down_face:

I think that there is a need for a Feature Request : the possibility to hide this sub folder for attachments in the left file explorer pane, whatever its name is.

But being a newbie I’m not going to do this request yet. Someone else’ opinion would be nice :wink:


I keep the images in the same folder as the note with the same name as the note +01. This way notes and their images are always together and can easily be moved or deleted without having to go fishing in folders to find corresponding images. This does make the left explorer panel a bit large and unwieldy but I’m waiting for a toggle button to hide all non-md files.

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Hi Lise,

Sounds like a lot of work to rename the files and quite messy on the left pane. I think “Image management” is really a topic that needs to be handled. Eventually by managing what you do automatically: rename all image attachment names to <01> to <99> or more… and of course hide all this in the left pane :wink:

I gave a +1 to a feature request that’s going in the right direction: Allow hidden folder for pictures: ![aaa](.attachments/aaa.png)
Maybe you should too if it meets your needs.

You might be interested by this one too: Use the current note name in the attachment subfolder name


Also a new user here trying to figure this out as I move some notes from my previous systems into Obsidian. Glad I saw this thread!

Reading this post and the related post regarding managing attachments, currently thinking I’ll try out the option for “Under the current folder” storage. Agree don’t need images in the file tree generally but not sure I’ve thought it through either.

Had also thought about just storing images outside of Obsidian (google photos, etc.) and putting links in but seems to miss the point a of having everything local.

This is all still a little difficult, I think.

I originally used In subfolder under current folder but this starts getting a mess when you move notes around: The attachments stay where they are and you’ll eventually not know anymore which belongs where. Or you have to manually move the attachments into a new subfolder under their new folder. Also impractical, since you’d have to manually check and modify all links.

I then switched to using a central “Attachments” folder. This is also bad, since you have to name them so none overlaps and you’ll still know to which note(s) they might belong. Also: A zillion files in one place.

I might have to use the dreaded subfolder schemes again (like Johnny.Decimal) and store all attachments inside the folder with the note, like they recommend. Pros: They’re always “near” the note. You can move/rename the whole folder and everything stays together. Cons: Lots of odd file types together, cluttering the file explorer pane. And what if you use one image in many notes?

Seems there is no “optimal” solution, so probably good we can choose and experiment …


@Moonbase59, for the reasons you listed I keep the images in the same folder as the files (with the same name). As I was getting tired of having my navigation pane so cluttered, I switched to a new method that I’m quite happy with. Might be an option for you too. I put all my files/images/attachments in a folder, and in the root I keep one TOC file of that folder (kept updated automatically using the dataview plugin).

For example, my Admin folder includes subfolders for templates, plugins, and search (among others). All files go in those folders. The only file in the root is Admin TOC. (You can also create a TOC for each of the subfolders, but I like just the one TOC with sections in it for the various subfolders). To be a bit fancy I also included links to the headers at the top of the file so I can just hover and go directly where I want.

Uncluttered, and I never have to go through folders to find anything. The setup takes very little time because dataview does all the work. The second image shows the file in Edit mode where you can see how easy it is to setup.

The rules


@Lise, thanks for sharing! I still have to make up my “optimal structure”, but this sounds like a viable idea and I’ll surely experiment with that.

In pre-Obsidian times, I typically used project folders containg (pretty standardized) subfolders, like

- project-a
  - assets
    - css
    - fonts
    - img
    - js
  - docs

- project-b
  - …

but I surely want to get rid of the subfolder mania with Obsidian. (And I don’t keep programming projects in Obsidian, but just the notes on them.)

With so many projects, lateral thinking, and many areas of interest (from programming to fiction and textbook writing and structuring my life), it’s really not easy to find a structure that encompasses all. :slight_smile: I’ll surely have to focus more on the desired output, as @EleanorKonik said somewhere.

Anyway, the one thing I learned in the past 30 years or so is: Keep stuff together.

It doesn’t pay to respect the OS’s prescribed way to separate things into types, like “Documents”, “Images”, “Videos”, etc.

Instead, keep them all together, so you’ll find everything that is part of it, and can backup or sync it easily.

It has already been a great step forward that I now keep all my thoughts and notes together in one place (Obsidian vault), instead of having my notes cluttered around in a zillion subfolders on the discs. Kinda keep the knowledge together.

But I digress … :wink:


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