Skip to main content
Preslav Rachev

Obsidian gives users the freedom to decide whether to collect their notes in a single, or across multiple vaults. Obsidian is very relaxed about what constitutes a vault - any folder on disk that contains Markdown files is, by default, a vault.

And here comes an interesting question: should you use a single vault for all your notes, or is it better to split them across multiple ones?

There are advantages and disadvantages to each approach. A single vault is easier to manage and back up. It also contains all of one’s notes in one place - this is especially useful for cross-linking and knowledge discovery.

On the other hand, using multiple Obsidian vaults gives users more flexibility and fine-grained control in organizing their notes. Some people prefer to separate their work, study, and personal lives. Others may be bound by the need to share the notes over some joint project work with others, keeping the rest private. Whatever the reason, having a separate vault for each aspect is the way to do it. It must be said that this significantly reduces the opportunity for knowledge incubation, as one Obsidian instance can only work with one vault at a time.

Arguments aside, I wanted to see how the community sees this dilemma. So, I created a quick poll and asked people on Twitter:

The result of my quick Twitter poll.

The results of 100 voters are unequivocal: most people using Obsidian prefer using a single vault for all their notes. That said, take a look at theย repliesย I received. You might find it compelling to choose the opposite.

I’d say, unless explicitly necessary to do otherwise, start with a single vault. Collect notes in multiple folders inside the same vault if you need to ensure some boundaries (e.g., between projects). This way, it will be easier to turn each sub-folder into a separate vault if required.

Did you like this post? Part of it will make it into my upcoming book on using Obsidian for writing books. Be among the first and secure yourself an early draft of the book.

Have something to say? Join the discussion below ๐Ÿ‘‡

Want to explore instead? Fly with the time capsule ๐Ÿ›ธ

You may also find these interesting