Scrivener updated my projects, but lost my writing

Posts: 1
Joined: Sat May 28, 2016 5:07 pm
Platform: Mac + Windows

Sat May 28, 2016 5:51 pm Post

I have been attempting to backup my projects to Dropbox, but ran into some trouble when I opened the projects I haven't worked on in a while.

Scrivener gave me this message:

Update project?
The project you are trying to load uses an older file format and cannot be opened. Would you like to update it? A copy of the old project will be saved in the same directory.

I let Scrivener update the projects, but when it opened them it was like it created new projects and only transferred the names. None of my writing was present.

I've tried to open the projects using the backups, but the same thing happens when I try scrivener. I haven't been able to find a way to upload the backups into Dropbox that will allow me to view any of my writing. I also tried uploading them into Google Drive with the same results.

I don't know what to try next. If someone could clue me in on how to save the backups or even just open them to view my writing, I would be eternally grateful.

Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 4:54 am
Platform: Windows

Mon Jun 13, 2016 5:55 am Post

The same thing happened to me just tonight! I only had about a week of being offline. I opened up my story like usual that I had just worked on last week and I got the unexpected "Update Project?" message. I hit "OK" but when I opened it, it was several months outdated!

I'm in a bit of a panic. I tried uninstalling and re-installing my original version (1.8.6) and opening the backup it made, but it opened a REALLY old version (from last year, perhaps around the time of the Oct 2015 update?) So I re-updated that to 1.9.0 and now I'm getting my several months old version again. It looks to be from around March 2016 when it is currently June 2016.

(I don't use DropBox, I use OneDrive. But what happened? I don't even see a recent update! Did I just lose my last three months of my work for no reason!? I'm fairly computer literate but I've used Scrivener for less than a year.)

***EDIT: Whew. I'm finding my writing updates in the Files > Docs folder. The text is not showing up in the scriv project for some reason, but perhaps it can be salvaged. (If nothing else, re-copied and pasted.)

Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2016 4:16 pm
Platform: Windows

Tue Jun 14, 2016 4:23 pm Post

I'm having the same problem. The prompt appeared on my laptop after upgrading to W-10. Now I've been able to recover them on the laptop, but they appear empty or won't open on my desktop, which runs W-7. I use drop box, and have had no issues until now. I backed up the file to my the docs directory on the laptop's hard drive just in case, and sent a note to tech support, which they say is experincing a high volume just now. I wonder why?

Posts: 551
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 1:18 am
Platform: Win + iOS

Tue Jun 14, 2016 6:23 pm Post

Short version:

Contact Literature & Latte tech support directly as discussed here

Long version:

Before anything else, best to make sure, in Windows (File Explorer, etc.) rather than in Scrivener, that you have safety copies of relevant Scrivener project folders (appear in Windows file system as folders with names ending in .scriv, which contain subfolders and subfiles... you want the whole thing, not just any one folder or file).

Windows 7 vs 8 vs 10 shouldn't be an issue.

My guess would be that the issues mentioned above are related to come combination of having different versions of Scrivener on the machines and/or use cloud storage services.

Assure that you have the same (probably should be latest) version of Scrivener on both/all machines. As I understand it, the latest version updates older projects for sake of compatibility with current/forthcoming iOS, Mac, and Windows versions of Scrivener.

As far as cloud storage sync services, there are considerations and issues, depending on the service used. DropBox is the only one recommended for use with live projects (projects in .scriv folder form in the Windows file system), and even with it one must exercise care (be sure to allow adequate time for sync to occur before shutting off the PC, not opening the project residing on DropBox on more than one PC at a time, etc.). There may be others safe for this, but OneDrive and Google Drive should only be used where Scrivener projects (.scriv folders) are first being compressed/zipped into single compressed physical files (which must subsequently be decompressed back into .scriv folder form before Scrivener can work with them). This has to do with Scrivener projects actually being, behind the scenes, databases comprised of multiple physical folders and files, the combination of which, as with databases in general, are sensitive to and easily corrupted by incomplete practices, syncs and backups involved with such services. This holds true on Macs also, even though the Mac operating system presents Scrivener projects to users as though they are single physical items (details are hidden behind the scenes unless one insists on OS X showing and letting one manually drill down into the details).

The following provide overview regarding this...

Using Scrivener with Cloud-Sync Services ... c-services
OneDrive/SkyDrived Advisory ... e-advisory
Google Drive Advisory ... e-advisory

Again, you may wish to directly contact Literature & Latte tech support...

Hope that is of some assistance.
I'm a Scrivener enthusiast and experienced in PC/network support... but I am not a Scrivener expert. And I'm still editing on my first book. So take any opinion or advice I offer with a large grain of salt.

Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2017 3:12 am
Platform: Mac

Thu Nov 30, 2017 3:19 am Post

I have depended on Scrivener's auto backup. Now that I "upgraded" to S3, I have lost all input for the last few months. I had a 100k manuscript, now it is 8k. This is grounds for litigation. Thanks for nothing.

Posts: 551
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 1:18 am
Platform: Win + iOS

Thu Nov 30, 2017 4:45 am Post

Not cool. Insufficient info, throwing anger and threats around, hijacking/reawakening an old thread instead of starting your own new topic, denying any personal responsibility, and likely posting in the wrong forum, all in your first ever post.

Scrivener 3 is available for Windows only as a clearly labeled 'use at your own risk' beta test, that requires manual installation (i.e. not available via 'update'). Accompanied by warnings to only be used on stuff one can afford to lose (i.e. test projects or throwaway copies of real projects). If Windows, why are you complaining? If not Windows, why not posting elsewhere (presumably the Mac OS X subforum)?

If this for real, it may be possible to recover your work. Try posting again, in the appropriate forum(s), using civil language and providing sufficient info that folks can figure out all the things involved. Windows? Mac? iOS? Versions? DropBox? Sequence of events? Multiple versions of Scrivener involved? Multiple machines? And/or directly contact L&L's tech support directly, as discussed above in this thread.

Also, read up on backup practices.Always assure frequent copies of backups exist both on and off your machine(s). I.E. copies of projects in other folders, on other machines and/or cloud services, and external USB thumb drives and CDs/DVDs. Be paranoid about assuring and verifying backup/recovery on a regular basis, regardless of apps, machines, operating systems, etc. involved.

Ditto for dealing with DropBox.
I'm a Scrivener enthusiast and experienced in PC/network support... but I am not a Scrivener expert. And I'm still editing on my first book. So take any opinion or advice I offer with a large grain of salt.