Evernote – Keeping track of product and software manuals

Once I had all my notes from my trusty Cisco notebook entered into Evernote, I started looking at other ways that I could help me continue to be better organized. I had seen references to being able to “paste” a pdf into a note but hadnt given it a lot of thought. As I started taking stock of all the different pieces of network test gear, support equipment and specialized applications that I had in my bag of tricks, I began to see another way of using Evernote.

With more and more items no longer shipping with paper documentation, keeping track of the CD that was shipped with that piece of test equipment that you are trying to use may be a challenge. Some items such as applications like Wireshark dont “ship” with manuals. Downloading a copy of the manual is not a big deal. Now the challenge becomes keeping track of where you downloaded it. Some would argue that you can place it on a network drive or on a Microsoft Sharepoint site. While those are all valid ideas, they dont do you a lot of good if you arent where you have access to the share or site of if the network problem you are dealing with is preventing you from getting to the very files that you need to get.

I started the process of collecting all my manuals. Some I already had, others I had to download. I created a Notebook for each category – one for the test equipment, other for the different network applications. As I built my collection of manuals. I then created a Notebook Stack which allowed me to keep all of the different manual categories or Notebooks a little more organized and less clutter on the screen. With the PC version of the Evernote client, you can see one page of the PDF at a time and use left and right navigation to page through the document. If you have a PDF reader such as Adobe Reader installed and double click the note from the list of notes in a particular notebook, it should open up the PDF directly into Acrobat Reader when you navigation process is more like what you would expect. The Evernote client for Mac doesnt make you go through this process. If you happen to be on a computer that doesnt the Evernote client installed and have internet access, you still have the Evernote web client available to you which still gives you access to the same PDF you need at this point.

You dont have to worry about keeping a separate copy of the PDF manual you just brought into Evernote. It wouldnt hurt but if you ever need to extract a copy of the PDF, all you need to do is is on the Windows platform, to do a right-click and select Save As to save the file where you need it. On the Mac Client, to do press and hold the Control key and then click the mouse to get to the same option.

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