Sub-items are most useful in the following two distinct cases, when you want to:
- Attach multiple files, folders or links to an item. When you need to attach multiple files or links, sub-items are the best way of doing that. Alternatively, you could make the original item itself a shortcut item, but that is not always desirable and is limited to one shortcut (link) per item. You could also make hyperlinks in the item notes, though.
- Put multiple images into a single item – e.g. multiple photos related to a single item
Sub-items exist only inside another item, and nowhere else. When you delete an item, all its sub-items will also get deleted.
This has some interesting implications. For example, if any given item has multiple connections, and you convert that item to a sub-item (e.g. by viewing one of the items it is connected with, and right-clicking the connection leading to the original item, then clicking Convert to sub-item in the popup menu), it will become a sub-item of all the items it is connected with. It will remain stored as a single entry in the database.
When you delete an item that has a sub-item, the sub-item will get deleted only if it has no connections to other items (which is the usual case).
Another interesting thing is that sub-items themselves can have their own sub-items, but you can view them only when editing their parent sub-item, so usefulness of this is currently limited.
Creating sub-items from image files or other files
The easiest way to create sub-items is to Drag and Drop files into the connected items area, either in the main window or in the Add Item or Edit Item windows.
You can either Drag and Drop image files or other files. Image files create items with images, and other files create item shortcuts to the original files.
Once you drop the files into the connected items area, you will be asked if you want to automatically create sub-items from these files.
This is useful, for example, when you want to put several travel photos under an item that represents the trip. Creating separate item from each of the photos would make no sense in this case, and sub-items are ideal.
Converting existing items into sub-items
There are multiple ways of turning items into sub-items:
Right-click the item that you want to be the owner (parent) of the sub-item, then click “Make an existing item a sub-item…” in the popup menu. This will open the Select Item window, which will allow you to select the item you want to be converted into a sub-item.
You can also, in the main window, Drag and Drop one item onto another while holding the Ctrl key. This will convert the dropped item into a sub-item of the target item. (If you are not holding the Ctrl key, these items will get simply connected.)
If you already have an existing item connection where you want one of the items to become a sub-item of the other item, then in the item connections area, right-click the item that you want to become a sub-item, and click Convert to sub-item in the popup menu.
Converting sub-item to regular item
Simply right-click any sub-item, then click Convert to non sub-item (unbox) in the popup menu.
To delete a sub-item (or multiple sub-items), select it (or them) in the connected items area of the parent item, then right-click any of the selected sub-items, and click Delete in the popup menu.