I'm playing with PB since a few days and am very enthusiastic - would love to completely move over. In Mindmanager I am used to add a lot of support material into the text notes, so I was thrilled PB offers this as well. However, just now encountered a major deal breaker:

When adding a larger note (250 kb), PB completely freezes, CPU usage shoots to 99% or so, computer becomes almost unusable. Took a long time to activate and then delete this note. Is there any workaround other than adding the note to a text file and linking that?

PB Version: (Free, Pro trial)
Win XP Pro
Java: 1.6.0_05

Happy about any advice, greetings from Germany,

P.S.: A couple of other issues I noticed (feel free to move to separate threads):
- the arrangement of notes, properties etc. windows does not stick...once PB is restarted they are all over the place/docked again
- when floating the notes window (for me on the right edge of screen) and repeatedly hiding and showing it with double click somewhere in the plex, the window shifts further and further to the right

Greetings, thanks so much for posting this. This is a bug that needs serious fixing. What you can do for now is spread the note among thoughts, would that be convenient for you?
no, not really. It would be way too much hassle to split and edit larger text files into separate thoughts/notes (at least for some of them).

My workaround for the moment: save those notes in separate txt-files and link those in the thought. However, I guess in the free edition you cannot do that, so after my trial expires in some days, this is not gonna work anymore. I'd love to continue using PB, but not being able to really add notes is a serious hassle, especially if you wanna keep everything in one place...


Harlan (the boss of PB) has been discussing the notes size issue before, and his conclusion was (please correct me if I'm wrong) that Notes are for small notes, not as a substitue for documents. I think the reason was that TheBrain was not going to develop a MS Word or OO Writer substitute, as this would take too much focus away from other development areas.

If your note becomes too large, a separate document (in whatever format you choose) should be attached. This may not be very consistent with your experience, but it has worked briliantly for me.

PB will index attached documents (at least PDFs).

Hopefully you can attach your notes as text files and the search function will work as normal.

Edit: Found a posting by Harlan on notes size, it's not very specific, but at least I have confirmed my memory Here
Thanks for the explanation!! I understand that there are always different development priorities...but I for one little user would be very happy if PB allowed me to keep ALL text notes in one place - the notes, even larger ones. I am just used to this from Mindmanager.

Also, as noted above, guess I won't be able to link txt-files anymore after the trial month expires.

And, looking around the logs I noticed that PB tries to index ALL attachments, even .jpg or icons, and since I was worried about it slowing down once I added a lot of thoughts I disabled that function. Anyone got experience with 10.000s of thoughts and this indexing turned on? Think it would be good to have exclusions there, as in - index all .txt and .pdf, but NOT .jpg, .ico, etc.

Anyway, thanks for the help and explanations - guess I'll wait til the trial expires and then think hard if I can come up with some workaround to make text notes work in PB or stick with Mindmanager.


Can someone please indicate to me how I can obtain a report that shows all the thoughts that have Notes above 100Kb?   In light of this thread I would like to make sure that my brain is not being slowed down by large Note files.

Axla wrote:
veit, ...Notes are for small notes...

Harlan, can you please suggest what should be an ideal size limit for Note content?

Thanks in advance.

@Shiiko: very true, I forgot this point! I was wondering myself where to draw the line, which notes to put into txt files and which to leave in PB. I actually experimented by clicking back and forth between thoughts with larger notes and then just went with gut feeling as to which seemed to activate/open a bit slower ;-)

Would be great to have someone who knows the inside of the program to tell us where we should cut off :-)
I'll add this into our feature request list.  Obviously it's not something that we have available right now (checking the note file size).

There is an option on the Reports tab to view all thoughts with Notes, but it doesn't check on the actual size.

It's funny - just reading this last post it hit me that an essential feature that I'm used to from Mindmanager is missing in PB - we not only need to know how large a note is...but if there IS a note at all. Not just with a report, but when looking at the plex...a little icon will do the trick.

Added it as feature request here:


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