Note Reference

Summary

Dendron allows you to reference content from other notes and embed them in your current note. This is also known as transclusion.

Details

Note references are different from regular links in that they actually include the content of the destination in the current note.

Dendron supports the following reference types:

  1. note references
  2. header references
  3. block references
  4. positional references

References have the following syntax:

![[note]]

You can create a reference with an anchor to reference a specific part of the note.

![[note#hello]]

NOTE: When referencing headers with spaces in them, the note ref needs to use - instead of spaces within the name

For more information:

NOTE: The Note Preview can only resolve chained note refs within a limit of 3. For e.g.: It the content of note a has ![[b]], note b has ![[c]], note c has ![[d]] and note d has ![[e]], then the preview of note a will not display contents of note e.

Reference Types

Full Note Reference

A full note reference includes the entire contents of a note.

![[dendron.topic.note-reference.sample]]

This is a sample page to demonstrate note references

Header 1

Header 1 Content

Header 1.1

Header 1.1 Content

Header 2

Header 2 Content

Header 2.2

Header 2.1 Content

Header References

A header reference includes the contents of a note starting from a header. A header reference will transclude everything from the given header to the next header of equal or lesser depth

  • NOTE: if you are coming from an pre 0.103.0 version of dendron, you will need to manually enable this by setting enableSmartRefs to true
![[dendron.topic.note-reference.sample#header-1]]

Header 1

Header 1 Content

Header 1.1

Header 1.1 Content

Header 2

Header 2 Content

Header 2.2

Header 2.1 Content

  • NOTE: notice that this reference does not include Header 2 because the header is at an equal depth as Header 1

Block References

A block reference includes to an arbitrary markdown block. Block references append a block anchor to the end of some text by using the ^ (caret) character to denote an anchor.

  • Source content
<!-- NOTE: ^block-ref-example will be grayed out in both the editor and in the preview -->
Header 1.1 Content ^1f1egthix10t
  • Example of block reference
![[dendron.topic.note-reference.sample#^1f1egthix10t]]

Header 1.1 Content

Reserved Anchors

Block references are generated automatically when you use the Copy Note Reference command. You can also manually add human readable block anchors. If so, note that the following anchors are reserved:

  • begin
  • end

Positional Reference

A positional reference references the position of a note. It has a special case of Note Reference.

Begin Positional Reference

This reference will reference the start of a note until it encounters the first header

![[dendron.topic.note-reference.sample#^begin]]

This is a sample page to demonstrate note references

End Positional Reference

This reference will reference the end of a note.

  • NOTE: the end positional reference cannot be used in the start-anchor position of a Note Reference
![[dendron.topic.note-reference.sample#header-1:#^end]]

Header 1

Header 1 Content

Header 1.1

Header 1.1 Content

Header 2

Header 2 Content

Header 2.2

Header 2.1 Content

Range Reference

References can also include a range which will cause it to transclude from the start-anchor to the end-anchor.

![[note#{start-anchor}:#{end-anchor}]]
  • Example from a header to a header
![[dendron.topic.note-reference.sample#header-1:#header-22]]

Header 1

Header 1 Content

Header 1.1

Header 1.1 Content

Header 2

Header 2 Content

  • Example of a header to a block anchor
![[dendron.topic.note-reference.sample#header-1:#^1f1egthix10t]]

Header 1

Header 1 Content

Header 1.1

Header 1.1 Content

Commands

You can create a reference either by hand or using the Copy Note Ref command.

  • shortcuts:
    • key: ctrl+shift+r
    • mac: cmd+shift+r
    • when: editorFocus

Copies a reference to the current open document

This lets you quickly create a note reference to the current note.

Advanced Options

Line Offset

You can use line offsets to skip a number of lines when using a header reference. The syntax is ,{number}. Below is an example of using a note reference offset to offset an initial heading, skipping the actual header when doing the embedding.

  • NOTE: currently, note reference offsets are limited to the first anchor inside a block reference. They must also be a positive value
![[demo.embed.block#head1,1]]

Wildcard Headers as a Range Boundary

When you're referencing a header by reference, sometimes you don't care what the next header is, just that the reference covers all text up to the next header. You can specify this using the * symbol in a header reference.

For example, the following would reference the content from header1 to the next header.

![[demo.embed.block#head1:#*]]

Recursive References

References can refer to notes with references inside. Dendron current supports references two levels deep. This applies to both the local preview as well as publishing.

References accept the * operator at the end which lets you grab all notes of a given level of hierarchy. This also works with typical note reference operation like block selection which means you can use it to grab specific blocks from every note in a level.

![[demo.journal.2021.*]]

Publishing

When you publish a note with a note reference, Dendron will embed the content of the reference in the page. If the content is part of a published page as specified by the publishing configuration, Dendron will include a link to the page. If not, Dendron will embed the content without a link. If the referenced content is not publishable (eg. published: false set on frontmatter), Dendron will generate a custom 404 link.

Configuration

  • note references by default come with an outline. They are called pretty refs.

Toggle the following configuration to turn off this setting.

usePrettyRefs

This setting is scheduled for deprecation 📆

Use enablePrettyRefs for publishing, or enablePrettyRefs for preview instead.

  • default: true

If set to false, don't use pretty refs when publishing.

You can override this configuration for individual notes if you want (or don't want) pretty refs for only some notes. Just add config: {global: {enablePrettyRefs: true}} (or false) to the frontmatter of that note, like this:

...
updated: 1636492098692
config: { global: { enablePrettyRefs: false}}
---

Children
  1. Commands
  2. Concepts
  3. Config
  4. Note Reference Sample
  5. Upgrade

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