Easy way to convert OneNote Notes to Markdown

OneNote to Markdown
OneNote to Markdown


I have been using Microsoft OneNote for 10+ years, hence have a lot of notes in it. Finding notes in OneNote is becoming difficult now, and there is no way to establish links between notes. I have started a journey towards adopting Personal Knowledge Management and Second Brain principles. After researching for options that suited my journey, I have selected Obsidian as a tool of choice. Obsidian allows hashtagging, ability to link notes very easily, resulting in information being at your fingertips when you need it. Obsidian notes are all in markdown, hence the need to convert from OneNote to Markdown.

Migration Plan

  1. Using One Note, export OneNote to .docx
  2. Use commandline utility [[PanDoc Format Converter]] convert .docx to .md
  3. Copy the .md files into your vault
  4. Open the Vault in Obisidan and update

I have about 1400 notes in OneNote, and steps 1 and 2 will take for ever. @sjoerdV has created a powershell script that will do steps 1 and 2 above.

Using ConvertOneNote2MarkDown.ps1

After you have cloned the repository make sure you do following:

  1. Ensure you meet the pre-requisites for the script, like installing [[PanDoc Format Converter]]
  2. Create a destination folder where the markdown files will be saved to
  3. Ensure OneNote 2016 is up and running
  4. If you have password-protected your OneNote notes, make sure you unlock them
  5. Ensure you have Microsoft Word running
  6. Go to the folder where you cloned the ConvertOneNote2MarkDown repository and follow the instructions to run the script!!!! Read the notes below.
    • As soon as you run the script, it will ask you for the folder path where you want to store the .md files
    • Then I selected defaults, option 1, for all the subsequent options.
    • For every tab, it created a folder and created markdown files for each note
    • It took about 20 minutes to complete the export
    • 80% of the work is done, not it is up to me to tag, link, and reformat the notes in OneNote