Scrivener Backups and Snapshots

Over the past week I’ve received several questions about Scrivener backups, snapshots, and versioning.

Regarding versioning, I use Scrivener on my primary Mac workhorse computer, occasionally on another Mac, and on the iPad. I’m the only person using my Scrivener files, so I don’t have to worry much about versions.

An aside: re the iPad. Please don’t get excited… There’s NO SCRIVENER FOR iPAD YET. 🙂 I use the Index Cards app on the iPad to work on a Scrivener file. To do this, I create Collections in Scrivener. (See the video tutorial below.)

If you collaborate with others you need versions, so you’ll find this post, MOSX Tumblelog, very useful:

” I also would encourage everyone to use Scriveners built in backup and versioning. You can save a revision of a current document when it’s highlighted in the document list, then type ??5. This causes a new Snapshot to be created. To view these snapshots, or to make one manually, go to the Documents menu. If this is all you need and feel like Snapshots will resolve most problems you run into, then you don’t need to read the rest of this article.”

Use Scrivener’s built-in backups

On the Mac, open Preferences/ Backup, and set your backup location. You can choose how often to back up — I’ve set mine to “Back up on project close”.

Go into your Backups folder occasionally, and remove the backups you don’t need. Otherwise, you’ll end up with gigabytes of backups, going back months and years. I use Scrivener all day, on many projects, so I remove unnecessary backups whenever I remember, which is about once a month.

Snapshots help you to keep your sanity

“Snapshots” are a wonderful Scrivener feature. Just remember that they work on the file level, not on the project level. You can create a snapshot at any time, and you’ll be asked to give the file a name. You can take snapshots of a document at any time. I use them before making major changes in the text.

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Angela Booth is a top copywriter, multi-published author, and writing teacher. She offers many guides, courses and classes to help writers to enhance their skills on her websites. She also provides inspiration and motivation for writers on her writing blogs. Angela has been writing successfully since the late 1970s, and was online in the 1980s, long before the birth of the Web. Her business books have been widely published.